Complaint About Uneven Tention

Heck

Rookie
I have a Gamma Progression II for over a year and done many string jobs on my 3 main sticks.
I leared from here and You Tube and I never felt I had a bad string job. Lately some friends
found out and I have done a few jobs on the side to get more experiance with other frames.

Now one job I heard someone complained about uneven tention. He said the strings on the
outside were more loose than the ones in the middle. I told the person that he needed to hit with it
to settle in or break in a new string job. The only thing about the job was his grommets were
in bad shape and some even broken. I told him he should let me change them but he said he
did not want to do that. I then told him it could affect the string as far as breaking. His last
set was in his racquet for a year and broke do to old age lol.

Now am I a bad stringer or is what appears to be loose strings on the outside of the bed normal?

I will offer him a full refund rather than having him talk to others about my job.
 

am1899

Hall of Fame
With a 2pc string job (usually) the last main on either side of the racquet goes to a tie off. This is unlike any other main string on the racquet - each of the rest of the mains are positioned next to another tensioned string. These factors, on their own, contribute to the outside mains feeling looser than the rest. There are ways to mitigate the outside mains feeling this way. But frankly, it shouldn't matter to your customer. If he's hitting the ball on those outside mains, he has bigger problems than the string job. If he's hitting the ball in the sweet spot, then those loose outside mains shouldn't matter much, if at all.

You mentioned "settling." It's important to point out that any stringbed will lose tension over time - both statically (racquet sitting idle), or dynamically (hitting balls with the racquet. However, the tension of the stringbed does NOT "even out" over time - either by playing with the racquet, or letting it sit.

Getting back to your customer - IMHO anyone who yanks at the outside mains to determine whether or not the string job is accurate or not is a tire kicker. There is very little (if anything) to learn by doing this. That said, I've seen countless people do it (including some futures level players). And I'm sure they won't take my word for it and stop it.
 

am1899

Hall of Fame
I should have clarified - what you're describing is not just a side effect of 2pc stringing only. Same thing happens with 1pc (only you have 2 less strings that feel looser to the touch).

Bottom line, any string that is not flanked by a tensioned string on either side of itself, is going to feel looser than the rest. This is totally expected and ok. Keep in mind that this is generally going to effect one or both outside mains, and one or both of the top and bottom crosses. Nobody good at tennis hits the ball there, so it really shouldn't matter.
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
The longer your customer hits the looser the outer strings will get. The first problem may be the clamps you use, and another problem could be the tensioner and how you use it. There are different models of the Gamma Progression II machine some are LO, others are DW, some have flying clamps, while some have fixed clamps. What type of machine do your use? Do you increase tension on the tie off strings to mitigate tension loss? Have you ever considered using a Yonex loop so the other mains aren’t tied off? Do you use or have a starting clamp?
 

am1899

Hall of Fame
Now am I a bad stringer or is what appears to be loose strings on the outside of the bed normal?
It's normal. What you are describing, on it's own, is not determinative of whether you are a "good" or "bad" stringer.

I will offer him a full refund rather than having him talk to others about my job.
Personally, if someone yanked on the outside mains, and started talking about "uneven tension," I wouldn't offer then a refund. I would explain why doing such a thing won't tell them much (if anything) about the quality of the string job.

As Irvin points out, there are some ways to mitigate the tie off strings feeling loose to the touch. You also need to rule out your technique and your machine. Are you using best practices to mitigate tension loss, for example? Is your machine in good working order? If not, this issue that your customer complained about (and other issues) will be exacerbated.
 

Muppet

Legend
The stringing pattern from Dunlop for my MuscleWeave 200G had me tying off a 1-piece on one side after the last main and looping and covering the crosses from the other side. This had the effect of giving me a very loose outside main on the short side and a tight, straight outside main on the long side due to the tension being carried through to the crosses.

I remedied this by shifting where the short side mains tied off a little bit. By continuing onto the bottom cross, then tying off, that short side outside main keeps tension much better. But I also increase the tension by 6 lbs. on each string before a knot. And on strings that are durable enough, I cinch up the knots pretty tight and take out slack using a starting clamp. Starting clamps start at about $35 for a good one.
 

Heck

Rookie
With a 2pc string job (usually) the last main on either side of the racquet goes to a tie off. This is unlike any other main string on the racquet - each of the rest of the mains are positioned next to another tensioned string. These factors, on their own, contribute to the outside mains feeling looser than the rest. There are ways to mitigate the outside mains feeling this way. But frankly, it shouldn't matter to your customer. If he's hitting the ball on those outside mains, he has bigger problems than the string job. If he's hitting the ball in the sweet spot, then those loose outside mains shouldn't matter much, if at all.

You mentioned "settling." It's important to point out that any stringbed will lose tension over time - both statically (racquet sitting idle), or dynamically (hitting balls with the racquet. However, the tension of the stringbed does NOT "even out" over time - either by playing with the racquet, or letting it sit.

Getting back to your customer - IMHO anyone who yanks at the outside mains to determine whether or not the string job is accurate or not is a tire kicker. There is very little (if anything) to learn by doing this. That said, I've seen countless people do it (including some futures level players). And I'm sure they won't take my word for it and stop it.
Yep seems like a tire kicker. I just wanted to make sure what I assumed was true before I reply to the friend who heard the complaint. I know my jobs are not perfect but I play my own work and do well so that should say something.
Thanks for the reply and info.

The longer your customer hits the looser the outer strings will get. The first problem may be the clamps you use, and another problem could be the tensioner and how you use it. There are different models of the Gamma Progression II machine some are LO, others are DW, some have flying clamps, while some have fixed clamps. What type of machine do your use? Do you increase tension on the tie off strings to mitigate tension loss? Have you ever considered using a Yonex loop so the other mains aren’t tied off? Do you use or have a starting clamp?
I have the drop weight with flying clamps I never increased the tension on the tie off string and do not use a starting clamp. These things I will look into and add to my kit. Thanks
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
I have the drop weight with flying clamps I never increased the tension on the tie off string and do not use a starting clamp. These things I will look into and add to my kit. Thanks
When you are ready tie off the outside mains you had just pulled tension on the outer main, clamped it and removed the tensioner. Now your clamp twists dues to drawback and you loose a lot of tension on the outer string. You tie a knot and loose more tension. Your outer mains will then be extremely loose. You will not be able to compete with a high quality machine in holding tension on the outer mains. I'm not saying you can provide a high quality job I'm just saying the way the machine works your outer mains will be looser. If you string for someone who tests those outer mains for stiffness you'll get complaints.
 
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brownbearfalling

Hall of Fame
The only time I offer a refund is if I did something wrong. In this case, it is a misunderstanding of stringing and the result is not catastrophic. The grommets aren't the problem here. Even if you were to redo the job, the strings are still going to feel loose at the out edge. Of course you can make them feel "less" loose but it's just inherent of the racquet as Ams explained.
 

esgee48

Legend
If you are worried about tension on the tie off strings: Add 10 pounds to the tension and pull. Then clamp with your flying clamp. When doing you 1st part of the tie off knot, pull that string until you have most of the slack gone. Stick a toothpick ala Irvin in the hole. Finish the knot. I normally don't do this, but every once in a while, I see a long run between the last main and its tie off point OR a cross and its tie off. If it is a few cm or more than 2 holes, this is what I would do tho I have fixed clamps.

Another option is to invest in a Stringway triple clamp. Drawback on this clamp is minimal
 
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