Frugal drop weight'ers: Electronic machine is a REVELATION.



https://www.tennis-warehouse.com/Gamma_Progression_II_ELS_Stringing_Machine/descpageGAMMA-GPELS.html

OMG.

Words can't even express what a quantum leap this is.
This is the best tool upgrade I have done in years.

If you're regularly stringing with a drop weight
you have no idea what you are missing.

Treat yourself before you die and leave your money to offspring who will fly 1st class.

What is that?
I am an idiot who has no idea what he's doing ?

Macho syndrome? I don't need a fancy pants yuppie machine.
I feel sorry for people who have gotten by with a drop weight their entire lives.

Tension with a press of a button. It is utterly insane.
I am so glad I ditched the garbage drop weight after only a year.

Stringing elastic ZX or Gut takes 2-3 adjustments of the ratchet wheel.
The ratchet wheel snags the string and chews it up.
If stringing high 50s, you need to turn that ratchet wheel one last time until a vein in your neck explodes.
At some point, old people don't even have that kind of grip strength.

Not convinced? I'm just an idiot on the internet? Fine.
Go to your local stringer and at least ask him to let you try stringing a few mains.
Tell me you don't smile like you've just had an orgasm. Yes, it's that much better.

$1400. Your money or your life.
It is the most joyful money you will ever spend in your life.
And you'll get back 50-75% of it when you retire from tennis.

Can't afford $1400?
If you find a used one, drop everything and go buy it.
Leave work early, and drive directly to the seller's house.

If you've been on the fence, or are just used to living the slogging life of a DW guy
Go withdraw $800 right now, and prepare yourself for stringing nirvana.

https://www.tennis-warehouse.com/Gamma_Progression_II_ELS_Stringing_Machine/descpageGAMMA-GPELS.html
 
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Upgrading from a drop weight (which now feels like a cheap toy)
to a powered stringer is more like taking Adderal and Ecstasy while tripping on acid.

It is a tragedy to use DW for their entire lives.
A drop weight is the equivalent of Fred Flintstone's car or a unicycle
 
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DanF1961

Rookie
I strung two sticks this week with my Gamma dropweight, and I agree with all the hassles you mentioned. I'm thinking about an Alpha Revo 4000, then I can put a Wise on it in the future. Good luck with your new machine.
 

jxs653

Semi-Pro
I still shoot film, and using camera analogy maybe your feeling is like moving from all mechanical to auto-everything camera. But there are still people who like fully mechanical cameras and I enjoy both types myself.

I began with drop weight and am now using crank. I've never used electric machine but it doesn't seem that hard to fathom what would it be like to string with it. I regularly saw a coach string on an electric machine at my previous club and pressing button instead of rotating handle doesn't seem like such a "quantum leap" experience.

Maybe I would understand your excitement if your machine weaves automatically?;)
 
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I strung two sticks this week with my Gamma dropweight, and I agree with all the hassles you mentioned. I'm thinking about an Alpha Revo 4000, then I can put a Wise on it in the future. Good luck with your new machine.
Go for it! A crank machine will give much of the quantum leap over dickering around with a DW
 

jim e

Legend
Probably more than what I paid for it.
When xtremesportsmachines took over that machine, they charged around $4000.00 for it when they were selling it.
I typically tell people to get as much Machine as they can afford, as it does make stringing more enjoyable. BTW that machine I got an incredible deal on back then, as distributor in US lost it's distributor of that machine back then. I believe I purchased in 2007.The seller was dumping a number of them on the big auction site back then.
Got my use from it, it has paid for itself many times over and still runs perfect.
If something ever happened to it, I would most likely go with the alpha ghost as that machine has a number of good features for the price.
 

TypeRx

Semi-Pro
Used to have an entry level electronic machine (Silent Partner) since the very late 90s. I loved that thing even though it was still a 2-point mount, table-top, and used flying clamps. Unfortunately, the motor died on me about a year ago so I ended up chucking the thing and getting an X2. Its amazing because everytime I see one (the SP electronic, not the X2) pop on the bay they go for hundreds of dollars. I bought mine for maybe $200 way back when.

X2 gets the job done for now. Since I only string for myself I find it hard to justify the expense of a higher end machine.
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru


https://www.tennis-warehouse.com/Gamma_Progression_II_ELS_Stringing_Machine/descpageGAMMA-GPELS.html

OMG.

Words can't even express what a quantum leap this is.
This is the best tool upgrade I have done in years.

If you're regularly stringing with a drop weight
you have no idea what you are missing.

Treat yourself before you die and leave your money to offspring who will fly 1st class.

What is that?
I am an idiot who has no idea what he's doing ?

Macho syndrome? I don't need a fancy pants yuppie machine.
I feel sorry for people who have gotten by with a drop weight their entire lives.

Tension with a press of a button. It is utterly insane.
I am so glad I ditched the garbage drop weight after only a year.

Stringing elastic ZX or Gut takes 2-3 adjustments of the ratchet wheel.
The ratchet wheel snags the string and chews it up.
If stringing high 50s, you need to turn that ratchet wheel one last time until a vein in your neck explodes.
At some point, old people don't even have that kind of grip strength.

Not convinced? I'm just an idiot on the internet? Fine.
Go to your local stringer and at least ask him to let you try stringing a few mains.
Tell me you don't smile like you've just had an orgasm. Yes, it's that much better.

$1400. Your money or your life.
It is the most joyful money you will ever spend in your life.
And you'll get back 50-75% of it when you retire from tennis.

Can't afford $1400?
If you find a used one, drop everything and go buy it.
Leave work early, and drive directly to the seller's house.

If you've been on the fence, or are just used to living the slogging life of a DW guy
Go withdraw $800 right now, and prepare yourself for stringing nirvana.

https://www.tennis-warehouse.com/Gamma_Progression_II_ELS_Stringing_Machine/descpageGAMMA-GPELS.html
Seems like all your complaints were about the DW tensioner not the X2. For less than $700 you could have bought a DW Adapter and a Wise.
 
I got my used electronic stringer for much less than that.
But I scored a deal, if you don't have the time, just buy it from TTW
Sold the X2 to drop my cost basis to almost nothing.
 

Nick P

New User
Just my thoughts here . . .

I've been really frustrated with my Klipper's performance for a few months now due to slipping clamps and crimped/flattened strings so I looked at getting this machine. I bought my Klipper in June 2018 and have strung probably 25-30 frames on it. From reading here and contacting the company I found out I had not been doing the required maintenance of sanding down the clamps and cleaning the jaws/clamps after 6 frames. After I did the maintenance the machine was like brand new. I just used the disposal isopropyl alcohol wipes you could find at any drug store and some 120 grit sand paper and the machine feels brand new now. On my last frame I didn't have any clamp slippage and I didn't have any crimped/flattened strings. After stringing on it for a year I'm at about 75 minutes to do a frame.

I think I will eventually upgrade to this machine or something similar in the future but I would like to work on my stringing technique more first. Getting better at tying knots, faster at weaving the crosses, etc. Once those skills get better I'll drop the coin on this machine. IMO . . Herb makes it look too easy on that video, the man looks like a pro stringer : ). I'd love to get up to be able to a frame that quick some day.
 

struggle

Legend
Just imagine the bliss you are missing out on by having that rotational gripper on your new steed.

And those base clamps.

You're only halfway there.
 

Dan007

Hall of Fame
Just imagine the bliss you are missing out on by having that rotational gripper on your new steed.

And those base clamps.

You're only halfway there.
Some people can't justify having a $3000+ professional machine but desktop gamma electronic machines will still do its job. Just ordered one myself.
 

Chadalina

Hall of Fame
I forget its name, but you can get an electric tensioner for $500 and put it on your machine. It even has a foot pedal.

I still prefer the feel of a drop weight
 

r2473

G.O.A.T.
I bought a used Alpha Axis 20 years ago on classifieds for $200. Still going strong.

My first machine was a brand new electronic machine for $1,000. Sold that within 6 months for what I paid for it. No reason at all for a guy that pretty much just strings 20-30 racquets for himself a year to spend that kind of money.

As far as speed, who really cares.

But I do agree with the OP. Drop weight was a PITA. I’d never go back to one of those
 
Yea, it's not about speed, it's just about the ease.
You just get into the zone and stay in the zone.
No distractions from the drop weight. That whole nonsense is just eliminated.
I actually want to string friends rackets for free now, just to use the machine!
 

Dan007

Hall of Fame
Congrats! What model did you order?
What have you been using until now?
I got the Progression II ELS. I really wanted an Alpha Ghost 2 or a used professional electronic machine but just couldn't justify spending that much money since I am mainly stringing for myself, friends, and a few students. I used to have an Alpha Pioneer DC Plus which I used throughout high school but got rid of it when I moved a few years back.
 
I forget its name, but you can get an electric tensioner for $500 and put it on your machine. It even has a foot pedal.

I still prefer the feel of a drop weight
I thought that a foot pedal would be a game changer, but then when I had one, I used it a couple times, then put it away. It just never felt any quicker... The big one for me is having the tension button right on the tension head (like Baiardo). Being able to use the string to activate the tension head after putting it through the jaws is so easy! When I string on my LO Gamma 6004 it feels so slow!

What do you prefer about the feel of the drop weight?
 
I'd probably settle for a crank if I were to get back into stringing. Either an Alpha Revo 4000 or a Prince Neos 1000. Would loveeee to just try an electronic one.
 
I thought that a foot pedal would be a game changer, but then when I had one, I used it a couple times, then put it away. It just never felt any quicker... The big one for me is having the tension button right on the tension head (like Baiardo). Being able to use the string to activate the tension head after putting it through the jaws is so easy! When I string on my LO Gamma 6004 it feels so slow!

What do you prefer about the feel of the drop weight?
Yes, did your see how the guy in the video does it? One fluid movement.
 

c-had

Rookie
Used to have an entry level electronic machine (Silent Partner) since the very late 90s. I loved that thing even though it was still a 2-point mount, table-top, and used flying clamps. Unfortunately, the motor died on me about a year ago so I ended up chucking the thing and getting an X2. Its amazing because everytime I see one (the SP electronic, not the X2) pop on the bay they go for hundreds of dollars. I bought mine for maybe $200 way back when.

X2 gets the job done for now. Since I only string for myself I find it hard to justify the expense of a higher end machine.
I still string on my Silent Partner e.Stringer CL I got back in 2003. The CL is the version with fixed clamps and "6 point mounting". I've had a couple times where I thought the motor had died, but I managed to coax it back to life. And I have to measure the tension externally, as the dial is way off at this age (currently setting the dial to 35 lbs results in a tension of 48 lbs). But it still strings a racquet.

I debate about replacing it with something nicer. I also debate about keeping the table and putting a Wise head on it, though it feels weird to put a $625 tensioner on a stringer that only cost $469.
 

thehustler

Semi-Pro
I have a drop weight and I've been happy with it for the past 10 years or so. I enjoy stringing my rackets, it's kind of like a therapy in a way. Only takes me about 45 min to do one and I'm not in a rush typically. I think my wife would kill me if I spent the money on this without having a legit reason. The money I've saved having a $250 drop weight machine and buying my own string reels has been great, but not to the point where I need to buy a new machine. Wouldn't you need to calibrate the machine anyway? Isn't it possible for the computer to get the tension wrong? Isn't that why a drop weight is so great? The weight doesn't change.
 
If you find a used one, you will see the cost is trivial.
And the used machine has already depreciated, so the cost is technically just interest rate.
Machine can be calibrated with a simple pull weight.
 
I have a drop weight and I've been happy with it for the past 10 years or so. I enjoy stringing my rackets, it's kind of like a therapy in a way. Only takes me about 45 min to do one and I'm not in a rush typically. I think my wife would kill me if I spent the money on this without having a legit reason. The money I've saved having a $250 drop weight machine and buying my own string reels has been great, but not to the point where I need to buy a new machine. Wouldn't you need to calibrate the machine anyway? Isn't it possible for the computer to get the tension wrong? Isn't that why a drop weight is so great? The weight doesn't change.
That is one thing that drop weights have over CP and LO machines, they don't need to be calibrated. But most quality electronic machines are really easy to calibrate, much easier than lock out crank machines.
 

GaryV

New User
It takes an 1/8 of a brain and 5 minutes to calibrate a LO. My older Revo 4000 is more than 15 years old and is still accurate. It took me 3 minutes to calibrate my Neos 1000. I wouldn't take calibrating into consideration if/when selecting a machine.

After my experience with the Gamma X-2, I'd never try a standard DW again.
 

Chadalina

Hall of Fame
I thought that a foot pedal would be a game changer, but then when I had one, I used it a couple times, then put it away. It just never felt any quicker... The big one for me is having the tension button right on the tension head (like Baiardo). Being able to use the string to activate the tension head after putting it through the jaws is so easy! When I string on my LO Gamma 6004 it feels so slow!

What do you prefer about the feel of the drop weight?
You can move to the clamps faster with the foot pedal. That and the +5lb pre streching thing are what i like most about electic. I strung at a box store for a year or so on the babolat machine, was cranking out 3.5 an hour including mounting.

The string bed is too stiff on the crank and electric for me. Drop weight feels a little bit softer to me for some reason.
 

jim e

Legend
The string bed is too stiff on the crank and electric for me. Drop weight feels a little bit softer to me for some reason.
Reason:
Most likely the clamps will make that difference, as most cheaper drop weights have floating clamps, and with floating clamps more drawback and twisting and loss of tension, giving a lower string bed stiffness, feeling softer to you.
More consistent if strung on a better machine and drop tension to your preference.
Consistency is the key, besides speed of stringing.
You don't see drop weights with floating clamps at the slam stringers rooms.
 

Chadalina

Hall of Fame
Reason:
Most likely the clamps will make that difference, as most cheaper drop weights have floating clamps, and with floating clamps more drawback and twisting and loss of tension, giving a lower string bed stiffness, feeling softer to you.
More consistent if strung on a better machine and drop tension to your preference.
Consistency is the key, besides speed of stringing.
You don't see drop weights with floating clamps at the slam stringers rooms.
Nah, i have really nice diamond fixed clamps on mine. Been using my machine for like 25yrs now and like it the best.

Its hard to explain, i like my rackets strung on drop weights. I prefer to string others on electric.

Here is a pic of my machine, i mounted it on a stand.

https://i.postimg.cc/nL8pxPhN/0528191754b.jpg
 

jwalk

New User
Bought a progression els as my 1st stringer. love it. I'm sure the 5000.00 Baiardo would be even better. Good thing for me I don't know any better.
 

am1899

Hall of Fame
Easier said than done. If some random guy came into the shop where I work and asked to “string a few mains,” I’d politely decline. Maybe the employee of an independent shop would approach such a request differently. But I wouldn’t assume any big shop with a flag ship machine to turn over the controls to facilitate nirvana for someone they’ve never laid eyes on before.
 

mad dog1

G.O.A.T.
Easier said than done. If some random guy came into the shop where I work and asked to “string a few mains,” I’d politely decline. Maybe the employee of an independent shop would approach such a request differently. But I wouldn’t assume any big shop with a flag ship machine to turn over the controls to facilitate nirvana for someone they’ve never laid eyes on before.
I wouldn’t let just anyone try my sensor. And definitely not a person like TTPS.
 
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DanF1961

Rookie
I have a Gamma Progression 200 DW. I can tolerate the constant adjusting of the DW when using a softer string, even though it's hard on your hand after a while. The string can get caught and scuff in the tensioner, but I'm careful to avoid it. It's slow, but I can accept that too. However, the one PITA that I can't stand is trying to tension the center mains when lifting the tension arm, the string doesn't have a straight path with the raquet handle in the way (Irvin's video explained the problem perfectly). It's time to upgrade.
 
Easier said than done. If some random guy came into the shop where I work and asked to “string a few mains,” I’d politely decline. Maybe the employee of an independent shop would approach such a request differently. But I wouldn’t assume any big shop with a flag ship machine to turn over the controls to facilitate nirvana for someone they’ve never laid eyes on before.
No, you don't just ask a stranger outright
Next time, the guy stringing at your club.
Ask him how he likes the Power 5000 model he is using.
Tell him you're thinking of upgrading your DW.
Ask if the motor is really worth the extra $1000.
What are the main advantages over your $200 DW?
Do it right, and the guy will OFFER to let you try a few strings on the machine.
 
You can move to the clamps faster with the foot pedal. That and the +5lb pre streching thing are what i like most about electic. I strung at a box store for a year or so on the babolat machine, was cranking out 3.5 an hour including mounting.

The string bed is too stiff on the crank and electric for me. Drop weight feels a little bit softer to me for some reason.
Interesting.... I feel like a drop weight, because technically it is still a CP tensioning system, produces a stiffer feeling string bed compared to a LO machine. But it has been years (decades) since I have strung on a drop weight machine, so I might be mis-remembering. Funny thing is, I can still feel that pain of wrapping the string around my hand to get that initial pull of tension on a drop weight!
 
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