Do polyester strings only lose tension over time or do they also lose function?

Djokovicfan

Semi-Pro
From what i have read ppl seem to say poly strings will go dead after a few hours, but do they mean just they will become loose and drop in tension or will they also start playing like 5h!t?
 

socallefty

Legend
When they go dead, they will make your arm hurt and they will become even less powerful than before - there might be some increase in erratic response also. Change your poly strings when your arm feels some discomfort even if the strings play fine otherwise. Better to give money to your stringer now than your doctor/surgeon/PT later.
 

esgee48

G.O.A.T.
When you string up a full bed of polyester strings, it will always lose tension just sitting around. It will lose tension to the point that the remaining tension can no longer stretch the string. If you do not use the racquet, tension will generally just stay stable at this point. This type of tension loss is called static tension loss. The % of loss will be all over the map because people use different ref tensions, strings and gauges. Now you start to hit balls with the racquet. Ball impacts will cause the strings to start stretching and losing tension again. It will lose tension until the player can no longer generate enough ball impact forces to stretch the strings. These are called dynamic tension losses. When this occurs will depend on the player. If the strings continue to snap back, then it would be safe to say that perhaps you have not reach end-of-string-life yet. However, if your ability to hit spots or spin disappears, then your strings are "dead." If they move all over and stay out of place, the strings are basically "dead." If your arm starts to feel uncomfortable, then your strings are "dead."
 

Slicehand

Professional
From what i have read ppl seem to say poly strings will go dead after a few hours, but do they mean just they will become loose and drop in tension or will they also start playing like 5h!t?
I first only changed strings when i pop them, thats about 3 or 4 months, but as i play more and more, after a few weeks they just lose all their properties, elasticity, snapback and feel, so i find myself forced to change them when i feel this because it makes the experience much worse for me, tension is not much a concern of mine when changing them but the feel of them instead, so to answer your question, yes, they degrade besides losing tension
 

Djokovicfan

Semi-Pro
When you string up a full bed of polyester strings, it will always lose tension just sitting around. It will lose tension to the point that the remaining tension can no longer stretch the string. If you do not use the racquet, tension will generally just stay stable at this point. This type of tension loss is called static tension loss. The % of loss will be all over the map because people use different ref tensions, strings and gauges. Now you start to hit balls with the racquet. Ball impacts will cause the strings to start stretching and losing tension again. It will lose tension until the player can no longer generate enough ball impact forces to stretch the strings. These are called dynamic tension losses. When this occurs will depend on the player. If the strings continue to snap back, then it would be safe to say that perhaps you have not reach end-of-string-life yet. However, if your ability to hit spots or spin disappears, then your strings are "dead." If they move all over and stay out of place, the strings are basically "dead." If your arm starts to feel uncomfortable, then your strings are "dead."
Wow. I think ive got kirschbaum in one of my sticks and luxilon alu something in the other. I probably have played 50 hours with each racquet. They still seem to play just fine for me. I guess i havent reached the critical point yet, but im surprised because i see so many ppl saying ploy goes dead in 4 hours etc..
 

Arak

Hall of Fame
To me it’s not the tension loss but the elasticity loss. Poly is not an elastic material. Every time you hit the ball, the string stretches but does not return completely to its original state. After a certain number of hits, the string does not stretch at all. It becomes dead.
 

Djokovicfan

Semi-Pro
Thanks to everybody who contributed to answering my question. Especially esgee48.
I paid attention playing tennis today to how my dead racquet actually felt and the idea of “loss of springyness” in the string became very apparent.

are there different types of poly that maintain springyness as well ast synthetic or natural gut, or are they all doomed to more or less the same formulation?

But Id assume there has to be better dynamic elasticity in poly than in syn gut otherwise what would be the point right?

And one more question; does nat gut or syn gut eventually go dead like polyester? Or does it maintain its springyness?
 
syn gut and multis (same material, just monofilament versus polyfilament, respectively) maintain tension, and therefore elasticity, up until they break, usually.

polys are a different plastic altogether, hence the different chemical properties.

And of course natural gut is derived from…gut. Yummy
 

Djokovicfan

Semi-Pro
syn gut and multis (same material, just monofilament versus polyfilament, respectively) maintain tension, and therefore elasticity, up until they break, usually.

polys are a different plastic altogether, hence the different chemical properties.

And of course natural gut is derived from…gut. Yummy
I think i would snap nat gut pretty early bc of how much spin i put on the ball. I used to snap alot of strings in my old racquet.

the weird thing is that the tension remaining in my kirschbaum max power poly is still pretty tight but they are so dead the racquet feels like a plank of wood.
 

Arak

Hall of Fame
Thanks to everybody who contributed to answering my question. Especially esgee48.
I paid attention playing tennis today to how my dead racquet actually felt and the idea of “loss of springyness” in the string became very apparent.

are there different types of poly that maintain springyness as well ast synthetic or natural gut, or are they all doomed to more or less the same formulation?

But Id assume there has to be better dynamic elasticity in poly than in syn gut otherwise what would be the point right?

And one more question; does nat gut or syn gut eventually go dead like polyester? Or does it maintain its springyness?
They never go completely dead, but there is a noticeable tension and elasticity loss with nylon and gut. The loss is much slower and incremental than with poly though. They probably break before they become unplayable.
 

FiddlerDog

Professional
Gut/multi absolutely loses tension even after a few hours.
I am going to cut out the gut/multi after 3 hours of play.
The strings are moving already, and the ball goes right into the net
 
Top