Crank Tennis Machine (Should you lock or unlock crank when not in use)

xaeniac

New User
Should you lock the crank or unlock the crank when the machine is not in use? I have heard to reduce tension, but unsure if the crank should spin freely or be in the locked position. For reference I have the Gamma 5003. Thanks.
 

NoChance

Rookie
I have an Ektelon H; have had it for almost 20 years. It still does the job for me.

I unlock everything I can unlock when I am finished, and putting the machine away. I also make sure to turn down the tension knob to the bottom, to take pressure off the spring.
 

LttlElvis

Professional
Unlock. I asked GammaTech when I bought mine years ago and he specifically said to NOT turn down the tension knob for Gamma machines
 

LttlElvis

Professional
Honestly, I am not sure. I had been told by an MRT to turn down the tension knob on the NEOS/Ektelon to save the spring. I did specifically ask about this when I purchased my Gamma. He did say no to decreasing the knob on the Gamma. He did give me a reason, but I cannot remember. Something to the degree of not having to re-calibrate as often & the spring is higher quality than others, but I cannot remember the specifics. Probably springs wear out if you keep on compressing/decompressing too much. It’s a non issue for me since I use a Wise. Calling Gamma would be the best to answer your questions. I spoke with Brett years ago but there is another GammaTech now
 
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jason n

Rookie
I’m new to crank machines, what do you mean by lock or unlock? Just picked up a used gamma progression ii.
 

xaeniac

New User
I’m new to crank machines, what do you mean by lock or unlock? Just picked up a used gamma progression ii.
The crank has two modes. 1. locked where you can not spin the crank and 2. unlocked where the caddie rolls freely.
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
I’m new to crank machines, what do you mean by lock or unlock? Just picked up a used gamma progression ii.
When a LO / crank machine reaches the set tension the brake release lever pops out and engages the brake to stop all movement of the tensioner assembly. What is being asked is should the brake be engaged (brake lever released) when the machine is not in use.
 

xaeniac

New User
Unlock. I asked GammaTech when I bought mine years ago and he specifically said to NOT turn down the tension knob for Gamma machines
I'm no gamma tech, but it would be logical for tension to be taken off the machine. A torque wrench is something that you always reduce the pound of pressure. Would like to get other insights.
 

Karma Tennis

Hall of Fame
I always keep the crank unlocked when not in use.

I reduce the tension to zero if I am not going to use the machine for a few weeks. (My machine is so old that it probably doesn't matter either way. But I regularly check the calibration for peace of mind.)

I purchased a new tension string for the machine a couple of years ago with the intention of replacing the old one. But the advice from some of the gurus on this board was "If it ain't broke, don't fix it". So the new spring is still in the plastic packet, and the old spring continues to deliver sterling service.
 

speedysteve

Legend
Everything should be unloaded.
No tension. Pressure, force, load on any part will decrease component life.
Standard eng. practise.

You wouldn't leave your Derailleur racing bike in lowest gear / cables under tension.


Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
Everything should be unloaded.
No tension. Pressure, force, load on any part will decrease component life.
Standard eng. practise.
You can’t unload everything. The springs are constantly under tension and when the brake release lever is released The springs are still under tension and the brake pads holding the disc on the tensioner assembly is under maximum pressure. The only way to unload everything is to take the tensioner apart and remove the springs. Don’t do that.
 

Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
Once again @Irvin has convoluted an otherwise simple proposition. @xaeniac please disregard the post above as it is meaningless and has nothing to do with your question. When tension is set to zero, the spring is relaxed as much as it can be. If the brake is off, rest assured the disc pads are not holding anything at any pressure for God's sake.

@speedysteve sums it up best. When I purchased my first NEOS, Jim Henry, who started TENNISMACHINES, told me himself that if I were to leave my machine out of use for a period of time I should set the tension to zero. Just tell the machine at ease and then make it so.
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
There is no xero setting on a lockout tensioner, and the brake are spring operated.
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
@xaeniac why don’t you call Gamma and ask?

sorry guys this is NOT true with the current GAMMA machines. All of the springs are designed to never loose tension or need replacing. You can leave the tension on any setting. you could end up with other problems if you do turn it to zero and the spring isn't pre-loaded. if the spring rotates, even an 1/8 turn, it can affect the calibration (@ low or high lbs.).

bret
Allowing the tension spring to turn because it has lost pressure can change the linearity of the tensioner. That’s the low and high setting that will be off when checking the tension.
 

Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
There is no xero setting on a lockout tensioner, and the brake are spring operated.
There was a zero on the tensioner on my NEOS 1000 &1500. And when I stored the tension head, I set it to zero per Jim Henry. The brakes are spring operated, the OP asked if they should be deployed or against the disc when not in use. The majority of the answers were no, they should not be locked or deployed. There is simply no reason to have the disc pads pushing against the disc which could cause it to go out of round due to the prolonged pressure thereby ruining the unit.
 

Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
Please describe in detail how the tension mechanisms differ between the two: Prince and Gamma.
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
If you could set the tension to zero, how much tension would it take to release the brake release lever? Or because the tension being set to zero, would the brake auto engage? @xaeniac if it was my machine I would listen to the mechanical engineer at Gamma (Gamma Tech) and leave all springs and tension in normal position.
 

Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
all things considered, the brake will not be engaged unless tension is met. Once the lever is released, it cannot be deployed without cranking again. So if he's through stringing, leave it as is.
 
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