Beginner question: how do I properly get the right amount of string?

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Deleted member 768841

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Hi everybody, first time stringer here. Recently bought my first machine and a reel of forten. I pulled 16 and 19 lengths out of the reel, but both times I had to restart. I then did 17-18 pulls for the mains and then 19-20 pulls for the crosses. I got the mains perfect but the crosses I didn’t have enough for a 16/19 clash 100 tour so it is a 16/18 until I cut the strings out and restart. This is my first racquet I’ve ever strung myself with no help(other than pushing through a grommet once or twice) but how can I make sure this doesn’t happen again? Cheers.
 

g4driver

Hall of Fame
Here my process: My wingspan(WS) is 5"6"

3.5 WS= 19' 3" mains for 100 square and less frames
3 WS = 16'6" or crosses for 100 square and less frames.

For 18x20 frames, I add the length of my elbow to the end of my fingers or slightly more than a foot.

One piece on a Babolat Pure Control 16x20 , Pure Strike 16x19, Yonex Ai/EZone 98 = 6 WS

If I get something like a Head Ti 6S (115 square inch) or other 115 to 120 sq inch fan shaped patterns, those need 3.75 WS for mains
 
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badmice2

Semi-Pro
Ditto to the wingspan approach. My wing span is just under 6 ft wide, usually take 3 1/2 span and it’ll be proper per 1/2 set. Takes the thinking and measurement out of the equation.
 

UQ_Student

New User
Off the reel, I pull x times the length of the middle mains and y times the length of the middle crosses. I don't think I've ever been short doing so. For drop weights, I think you'd need to cut off a bit extra.
 

LttlElvis

Professional
Individual packs are usually 40 ft. Start with 21’ for mains and 19’ for crosses. Off a reel, I would suggest the same until you are more confident. You’ve already wasted some but that will pass with experience
 

Wes

Professional
I pulled 16 and 19 lengths out of the reel, but both times I had to restart.
It's because you didn't account for the fact that you still need enough string to reach the back of the gripper (when pulling those final main, or cross, strings) and enough to tie your knots.

@Tennis sprew,

Besides hoop size, # of mains and # of crosses, there are a few other factors to take into account.
  • (quite important) The type of machine you're using (distance from the mounted frame's grommets to the back of your tensioner. Rotational grippers require more string length to get to the back of the gripper than a linear gripper does)
  • (quite important) Whether you're stringing 1pc. or 2pc. (2pc. uses more string than 1pc. does. However, learn 2pc. first - since you're a beginner)
  • (fairly important) The type of string being used (some stretch more than others)
  • (less important) The tension being used (the higher the tension, the more the stretch)
It's likely that you could use 18 feet for the mains and 17.5 feet for the crosses (or even less).
However, the smart thing to do is this...
Cut exactly 19 feet for your mains.
Once you are pulling tension on each of the 8th/outer mains, carefully measure exactly how much extra you have protruding beyond the back of your gripper. Subtract that (extra) amount from the 19 feet that you started with. Now you know what length that you actually needed for your mains.

Cut exactly 18 feet for your crosses.
Since you begin with the 1st/top cross, you shouldn't have any extra length at the head of the frame.
Once you are pulling tension on the 19th/bottom cross, carefully measure exactly how much extra you have protruding beyond the back of your gripper. Subtract that (extra) amount from the 18 feet that you started with. Now you know what length that you actually needed for your crosses.

Write those measurements down somewhere. Better yet, start keeping a "stringing log".
 

MathieuR

Professional
Off the reel, I pull x times the length of the middle mains and y times the length of the middle crosses. I don't think I've ever been short doing so. For drop weights, I think you'd need to cut off a bit extra.
Same for me with a small variation. I measure, with Xmains, X/2 length of the middle mains (directly with the string), and double that length; then I add 20cm to reach gripper.
 
I measure it out on the table I work on with my drop weight machine. It is 90cm wide.

for a 100sq inch 16/19 i take 6,0 to 6,2 metres for mains and 5,5 for crosses.

for larger frames or closed patterns I add 30 cm or so. I can’t remember ever coming up short.
 

Brand77

Rookie
When I string a racket for the first time I just use whatever the stringing instructions say. Afterwards I measure the wasted string and write it down in my database (Memento app).

As a measuring unit I use racketlengths because that way I don't have to worry about extended rackets.
 
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Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
Assuming you're stringing a 16x19 mid plus racket you will need about 36' of string. If you have a starting clamp you could use for a bridge you can get away with less. If you have a rotary gripper and no starting clamp it could take more. So let assume to be on the safe side it will take 37'. How you measure 37' doesn't matter. 37' is 37'. Now to see hold much string you need one side of the mains run in enough string to string the mains with no tension and reach the gripper - 4". The string will easily stretch 4" stringing the mains with tension. Now you have enough string to string the racket and you know how much string you need for your short side. If you're stringing 2 piece don't cut the string now. String all the mains and tie off the 2 ends. What you cut off the long side is enough for your crosses if you use a starting knot.
 

tennisbike

Professional
Hi everybody, first time stringer here. Recently bought my first machine and a reel of forten. I pulled 16 and 19 lengths out of the reel, but both times I had to restart. I then did 17-18 pulls for the mains and then 19-20 pulls for the crosses. I got the mains perfect but the crosses I didn’t have enough for a 16/19 clash 100 tour so it is a 16/18 until I cut the strings out and restart. This is my first racquet I’ve ever strung myself with no help(other than pushing through a grommet once or twice) but how can I make sure this doesn’t happen again? Cheers.
Suggestion:
  • Put starting clamp on your shopping list, highly recommended. If you can afford it, get two. Starting clamp can be used to bridge the last pull or two to save you from having to cut out the string job.
  • Look up the pattern online. (Do a search on say G.. and seach for racket make name and "stringing pattern")
  • Add say 1/2 foot or if you are not sure add 1 foot to the number from the length given in the pattern found.
  • Keep a stringing notebook and record the racket stringing pattern, including the length you cut. Note if length is good or need bridging 1x or 2x, assuming you have a starting clamp that can bridge the short length to the tensioner. Experience is what you accumulate to become a better stringer. Record what you did, what worked, and what did not work. And paper record is more reliable than the grey matter in our brain.
I have only strung for a few years and I am still not comfortable counting out from "wing span" or the hoop or racket dimension. I trust a ruler more than other measurement methods.
 

mucat

Hall of Fame
There is a sticker of measuring tape on the base of my machine. I use that. I can be super precise on racket I've strung before.
 

Wes

Professional
There is a sticker of measuring tape on the base of my machine. I use that. I can be super precise on racket I've strung before.
That's great, but that doesn't really help @Tennis sprew know whether he should cut 17.5', or 18', or 18.5', or 19', or 19.5', or 20', or...
Right?
 
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Deleted member 768841

Guest
That's great, but that doesn't really help @Tennis sprew know whether he should cut 17.5', or 18', or 18.5', or 19', or 19.5', or 20', or...
Right?
I searched up the stringing instructions for the racquets I strung today(clash 100 and blade v6 98L 16/19) and it was informative, but I didn’t understand that part. Does it mean number of main/cross total pulled or feet?
 

Injured Again

Hall of Fame
Just do as @Wes said in post #6. Once you do that, you'll know within inches how much string you need. For example, for my SW104, I can do a one piece ATW with my normal string with 35'8". The last string I pull always covers the entire length of the gripper but never with more than an inch beyond that.

I've done the same for the other different racquets I've strung and it works great. This is basically no waste of string at all.
 
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mucat

Hall of Fame
That's great, but that doesn't really help @Tennis sprew know whether he should cut 17.5', or 18', or 18.5', or 19', or 19.5', or 20', or...
Right?
You can usually find these info from string machine manufacturer and the string length from string machine manufacturer are extremely generous. Let's say the racket you want to string needs 19/17. For the very first time, I will cut 19/17 for main/cross, and when I am at tying off, I will measure how much extra I can save....less say, there are 1/2 inch extra for both main and cross. Next time when I string the same racket, I know I only need 18.5/16/5. Not sure if this help.
 
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mucat

Hall of Fame
I searched up the stringing instructions for the racquets I strung today(clash 100 and blade v6 98L 16/19) and it was informative, but I didn’t understand that part. Does it mean number of main/cross total pulled or feet?
All the information I'vw found are per feet. Not familiar with blade v6 98L....should it be 19/16 instead of 16/19 though? (that's wrong, I thought it was the length)
 
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g4driver

Hall of Fame
Those are number of string not length? lol...stupid me...yep, ignore me...
Just teasing you. Your not stupid. I have made many a dumb post. Folks on here have brought me many laughs during Covid. Hope I do the same for others.
 

mucat

Hall of Fame
Just teasing you. Your not stupid. I have made many a dumb post. Folks on here have brought me many laughs during Covid. Hope I do the same for others.
All good. I rather to be corrected than have incorrect information confusing others.
 

WYK

Hall of Fame
I just pull the string loosely and measure 8 frame lengths to start. It usually ends up being a bit more than 19'. I have a lockout, tho, and it easily pulls tension with less than 8 inches of string sticking out of the stick.
 

LOBALOT

Hall of Fame
It would take 20 lengths of my wingspan to make 40 feet. ;)

I use a 3 ft mark from the edge of bench. For increments less than the 3 feet I just eyeball the appropriate length (i.e. 1.5 feet is half the length, 1 foot is a third, etc.).
 
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Deleted member 768841

Guest
It's because you didn't account for the fact that you still need enough string to reach the back of the gripper (when pulling those final main, or cross, strings) and enough to tie your knots.

@Tennis sprew,

Besides hoop size, # of mains and # of crosses, there are a few other factors to take into account.
  • (quite important) The type of machine you're using (distance from the mounted frame's grommets to the back of your tensioner. Rotational grippers require more string length to get to the back of the gripper than a linear gripper does)
  • (quite important) Whether you're stringing 1pc. or 2pc. (2pc. uses more string than 1pc. does. However, learn 2pc. first - since you're a beginner)
  • (fairly important) The type of string being used (some stretch more than others)
  • (less important) The tension being used (the higher the tension, the more the stretch)
It's likely that you could use 18 feet for the mains and 17.5 feet for the crosses (or even less).
However, the smart thing to do is this...
Cut exactly 19 feet for your mains.
Once you are pulling tension on each of the 8th/outer mains, carefully measure exactly how much extra you have protruding beyond the back of your gripper. Subtract that (extra) amount from the 19 feet that you started with. Now you know what length that you actually needed for your mains.

Cut exactly 18 feet for your crosses.
Since you begin with the 1st/top cross, you shouldn't have any extra length at the head of the frame.
Once you are pulling tension on the 19th/bottom cross, carefully measure exactly how much extra you have protruding beyond the back of your gripper. Subtract that (extra) amount from the 18 feet that you started with. Now you know what length that you actually needed for your crosses.

Write those measurements down somewhere. Better yet, start keeping a "stringing log".
Hey man sorry to respond late, but I gave it some thought. My machine has a tension head that doesn’t move so I have some problems there. I do 2 piece right now. I f*cked up two string jobs and had to throw them away. 18/20 gravity pro is a pain! I read the instructions for stringing and it says 21 feet for the mains and 18.5 feet for the crosses. That absolutely blows my mind that they expect that from a 40 ft package. I can’t buy a reel of whatever I wanna try! But God it absolutely killed me today, I spent two hours trying to string. And that is on top of the two hours I spent the previous day and wasted two strings.
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
Hey man sorry to respond late, but I gave it some thought. My machine has a tension head that doesn’t move so I have some problems there. I do 2 piece right now. I f*cked up two string jobs and had to throw them away. 18/20 gravity pro is a pain! I read the instructions for stringing and it says 21 feet for the mains and 18.5 feet for the crosses. That absolutely blows my mind that they expect that from a 40 ft package. I can’t buy a reel of whatever I wanna try! But God it absolutely killed me today, I spent two hours trying to string. And that is on top of the two hours I spent the previous day and wasted two strings.
There is no reason 40’ of string is not enough string to string your racket. Next time do not cut the string into a main and cross section. Measure out 5 racket lengths of string for the short side. After tying off the mains use what was cut off the long side to string the crosses using a starting knot to start your crosses.
 

esm

Hall of Fame
Hey man sorry to respond late, but I gave it some thought. My machine has a tension head that doesn’t move so I have some problems there. I do 2 piece right now. I f*cked up two string jobs and had to throw them away. 18/20 gravity pro is a pain! I read the instructions for stringing and it says 21 feet for the mains and 18.5 feet for the crosses. That absolutely blows my mind that they expect that from a 40 ft package. I can’t buy a reel of whatever I wanna try! But God it absolutely killed me today, I spent two hours trying to string. And that is on top of the two hours I spent the previous day and wasted two strings.
21+18.5= 39.5... that is plenty.
if you measure these correctly, you should find you’d have some “left over”, which you can then adjust the length for the next stringing jobs..... so you can save some when you get a reel later on.
also, as mentioned, a starting clamp can use useful to bridge the gap if not enough to reach the gripper.
good luck with it - it will be like riding a bike the more you do it.
 
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Deleted member 768841

Guest
There is no reason 40’ of string is not enough string to string your racket. Next time do not cut the string into a main and cross section. Measure out 5 racket lengths of string for the short side. After tying off the mains use what was cut off the long side to string the crosses using a starting knot to start your crosses.
5 racquet lengths or cross lengths? And short side as in the crosses? And that’s a good idea with the leftover main string to use for the starting knot.
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
5 racquet lengths or cross lengths? And short side as in the crosses? And that’s a good idea with the leftover main string to use for the starting knot.
No 5 racket lengths from tip to tip. A racket is 27” long (2.25’) so 5 rackets lengths is 11.25’. Take a full set of string and put the 11.25’ of string on one side to string the mains on that side. Use the remaining 28.75’ of string to string the mains on the other side. After you tie off the mains. You will have 1-2 feet of string on the short side you can throw away and almost 20 feet of string you cut off the long side. You can use the string you cut off the longer side to string your crosses. If you take note of the minimum amount of string you must have and you ever buy a reel of the same string or another string with similar stretch you will know the minimum amount of string you need to string your racket. I usually get 18 - 20 sets of string out of a reel depending on how much the string stretches.
 
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Deleted member 768841

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No 5 racket lengths from tip to tip. A racket is 27” long (2.25’) so 5 rackets lengths is 11.25’. Take a full set of string and put the 11.25’ of string on one side to string the mains on that side. Use the remaining 28.75’ of string to string the mains on the other side. After you tie off the mains. You will have 1-2 feet of string on the short side you can throw away and almost 20 feet of string you cut off the long side. You can use the string you cut off the longer side to string your crosses. If you take note of the minimum amount of string you must have and you ever buy a reel of the same string or another string with similar stretch you will know the minimum amount of string you need to string your racket. I usually get 18 - 20 sets of string out of a reel depending on how much the string stretches.
So you’re saying I string the mains with two separate pieces? I don’t quite get it. How would you do that?
 
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Deleted member 768841

Guest
21+18.5= 39.5... that is plenty.
if you measure these correctly, you should find you’d have some “left over”, which you can then adjust the length for the next stringing jobs..... so you can save some when you get a reel later on.
also, as mentioned, a starting clamp can use useful to bridge the gap if not enough to reach the gripper.
good luck with it - it will be like riding a bike the more you do it.
But how do I measure correctly? Any specific technique I should learn because I’ve done two methods(measure 18 main pulls and 20 crosses and 21 ft and 18.5 cause I use a gravity 18/20) and it hasn’t worked out.
 

jim e

Legend
What has not worked out?
Most 18/20 racquet would use 21'x19'
If you are having issues with fast measure techniques, then just use a yard stick and exactly measure. It is also helpful to have a starting clamp if you measure too short, as with starting clamp you can bridge the string to finish the job.
 
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esm

Hall of Fame
But how do I measure correctly? Any specific technique I should learn because I’ve done two methods(measure 18 main pulls and 20 crosses and 21 ft and 18.5 cause I use a gravity 18/20) and it hasn’t worked out.

have you seen this before? For a Gravity Pro 18x20, the suggested required length for mains is 20’ and cross is 18’.
How do you usually measure your string per foot? Do you use a ruler or a tape measure? I marked out 1 door length at the base of my stringer, so I can use that to pull the string as required. So for your Gravity Pro (string pattern 18x20), the suggested mains length is 20’, so I pull the string 10 times on the marked length at the base of my stringer.....
So... for an example, from the same site, for my Flexpoint Prestige MP (string pattern 18x20), the suggested mains’ length is 21’ and the crosses length is 18’, so I will pull 21 times on the marked length at the base of the stringer to get 21’ for my mains.

Hope this makes sense.....

question - what stringer do you have?
 
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Deleted member 768841

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have you seen this before? For a Gravity Pro 18x20, the suggested required length for mains is 20’ and cross is 18’.
How do you usually measure your string per foot? Do you use a ruler or a tape measure? I marked out 1 door length at the base of my stringer, so I can use that to pull the string as required. So for your Gravity Pro (string pattern 18x20), the suggested mains length is 20’, so I pull the string 10 times on the marked length at the base of my stringer.....
So... for an example, from the same site, for my Flexpoint Prestige MP (string pattern 18x20), the suggested mains’ length is 21’ and the crosses length is 18’, so I will pull 21 times on the marked length at the base of the stringer to get 21’ for my mains.

Hope this makes sense.....

question - what stringer do you have?
Gamma 7900 ELS, the local club pro taught me to pull from the throat to the top the number of mains and pull from the widest part of the crosses the number of crosses.
 
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Deleted member 768841

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What has not worked out?
Most 18/20 racquet would use 21'x19'
If you are having issues with fast measure techniques, then just use a yard stick and exactly measure. It is also helpful to have a starting clamp if you measure too short, as with starting clamp you can bridge the string to finish the job.
I don’t know a proper way, I know two ways but I’ve tried them with a set of poly and it hasn’t worked out well. The racquet is a 21 by 19.5 and I just have trouble getting specifics and then feel like I’m running out on the crosses or have too little to finish either mains or crosses.
 

mucat

Hall of Fame
So like I mentioned before. I have a measuring tape sticker on the base of my table top stringer. I just measure a foot at a time as I pull string out of my reel. So for 21 ft, I just have to pull 21 times...one foot at a time... for example. If you are not certain, you can mark it and remeasure it again see if your measurement is correct or not. You know ...measure twice, cut once :D
 
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Deleted member 768841

Guest
So like I mentioned before. I have a measuring tape sticker on the base of my table top stringer. I just measure a foot at a time as I pull string out of my reel. So for 21 ft, I just have to pull 21 times...one foot at a time... for example. If you are not certain, you can mark it and remeasure it again see if your measurement is correct or not. You know ...measure twice, cut once :D
I’ll keep that in mind, I will try stringing next week because I have a fresh set of RPM blast and big hitter blue at the moment in my racquet so I’m gonna wait, but I’ll set up a foot marker and measure 21 feet and use the extra 19 for the crosses. I hope that’s right!
 

BlueB

Legend
Off the reel, I pull x times the length of the middle mains and y times the length of the middle crosses. I don't think I've ever been short doing so. For drop weights, I think you'd need to cut off a bit extra.
This is a safe bet on stretchy strings. For poly I add one more length.

Sent from my SM-G965W using Tapatalk
 
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Deleted member 768841

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This is a safe bet on stretchy strings. For poly I add one more length.

Sent from my SM-G965W using Tapatalk
My stringer’s tension head is stationary, it can’t move closer so I can get extra length. My local club pro taught me the same, I add an extra length by maybe 1 for the mains and 1 for the crosses if I’m from a reel, but I’m having trouble out of a 40 ft. pack.
 

Villain

Professional
Hey man sorry to respond late, but I gave it some thought. My machine has a tension head that doesn’t move so I have some problems there. I do 2 piece right now. I f*cked up two string jobs and had to throw them away. 18/20 gravity pro is a pain! I read the instructions for stringing and it says 21 feet for the mains and 18.5 feet for the crosses. That absolutely blows my mind that they expect that from a 40 ft package. I can’t buy a reel of whatever I wanna try! But God it absolutely killed me today, I spent two hours trying to string. And that is on top of the two hours I spent the previous day and wasted two strings.
Gravity Pro isn’t that bad, you’ll get used to it. I’ve only been stringing myself for about five months on a drop weight. A 40’ pack of gut will get you two string jobs for the mains because the string stretches slightly while tensioning, just make sure you have the string exactly even or you might run just short on one side when you tension the last main. Multi/Syn gut stretches the same. Poly won’t stretch and if you buy a pack of poly to just use for the mains and hybrid with something else, 20’ isn't enough on most 18x20s. A 40’ ft pack of any string though is enough if you do a full bed on that racquet. It can be frustrating at first but you’ll get the hang of it.
 
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Deleted member 768841

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Gravity Pro isn’t that bad, you’ll get used to it. I’ve only been stringing myself for about five months on a drop weight. A 40’ pack of gut will get you two string jobs for the mains because the string stretches slightly while tensioning, just make sure you have the string exactly even or you might run just short on one side when you tension the last main. Multi/Syn gut stretches the same. Poly won’t stretch and if you buy a pack of poly to just use for the mains and hybrid with something else, 20’ isn't enough on most 18x20s. A 40’ ft pack of any string though is enough if you do a full bed on that racquet. It can be frustrating at first but you’ll get the hang of it.
Do you think I’ll haven enough length for a full bed of poly? I’m planning on getting some poly strings and trying them out, but I want to buy them in individual packs. The only problem is I know a good technique but I need to practice with 18/20 frames, specifically the gravity which is my racquet of choice.
 

Villain

Professional
Do you think I’ll haven enough length for a full bed of poly? I’m planning on getting some poly strings and trying them out, but I want to buy them in individual packs. The only problem is I know a good technique but I need to practice with 18/20 frames, specifically the gravity which is my racquet of choice.
Shouldn’t be a problem. I use a Klippermate and had no issues stringing up a FB of Black Zone on a Gravity Pro. Just cut 21’ for the mains and 19’ for the crosses and you’ll be fine.
 

jim e

Legend
If you get a starting clamp, and if you cut string a little short, you may still finish job , as long as you have enough to tie the knot. Starting clamps are relatively cheap and have a good number of uses. Bridging a short string to tension the last string that is too short to reach tension head is only one of many reasons to get one.
 

esm

Hall of Fame
The only problem is I know a good technique
Do you mind telling us what that good technique is?
Also, this local club pro you spoke of, if he has been teaching you stuff, surely he can spare some moments and show you how it can be done on your Gravity Pro?
 
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Deleted member 768841

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If you get a starting clamp, and if you cut string a little short, you may still finish job , as long as you have enough to tie the knot. Starting clamps are relatively cheap and have a good number of uses. Bridging a short string to tension the last string that is too short to reach tension head is only one of many reasons to get one.
My stringer came with a starting clamp, how would I use it in general?
 

jim e

Legend
Click on this link it has some pictures of it in use.

There are many uses for Starting clamp.
The more you string the more you will realize how important it is to have one.
I have 3 of them.
Uses are many
Use to start cross strings for 2 pc stringing.
There are some racquets where the cross tie off to start is listed to tie on a cross string, one example,Babolat P Storm, the cross tie off to start crosses is on the 3rd cross (not on a main). You need a starting clamp so you can weave the first several crosses , then tie off at the 11 H, that is if you needed a 2 piece string job on this racquet.
Some ATW patterns require the use of a starting clamp, to hold the tension of the string on outside of the frame, until you free up a machine clamp.
Also used to bridge a scrap piece of string, to extend the length of string to reach tension head when string was a little short.I could have tied a string, but that is time consuming, and not reliable! This save me many times in past! Just one time come up an inch short to reach tension head with an expensive nat. gut and you will wish you had one, as that could just about pay for the clamp with that one occurance.
I have used it for flattening out the tip end of the string, which made cutting the tip at an angle easier, to help slide the string through a blocked hole.
To back up the machines 1st anchor clamp with a starting clamp on that 1st main pull, as the 1st pull puts the most forces on that fixed clamp, as there is no opposing force on the string with that one. I use the Yusuki method to back up the fixed clamp .A nice way to start mains.
Some stringers use a starting clamp to cinch up knots, I just use my fingers.
 
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