In praise of Kevlar/ZX hybrid!!!

I played 3 sets of doubles last night.... All 4.5 players.

So far, I've spent a 1/2 hour hitting on a ball machine. 1/2 hitting serves... And now 3 sets.
The stringbed is completely locked up. I think i need to keep a bottle of silicone spray handy to keep the strings sliding. When the strings can move, the kev/zx playability is sublime. Spin, control, soft feel.... it's all there. When the strings lock up, it's painful to hit with. It feels like I'm hitting with a 2x4.

Speaking of spin. I've always been a big topspin player.... Playing into being a lefty. On 4 occasions last, I was shocked that balls dropped in. I usually know/expect certain balls to drop in.... But these were shots where i felt i over cooked it..... But the ball dropped like a rock l, safely in the baseline.... Leaving the opponents in wonderment. So, the spin factor is real with this combo.

What really impressed me was the directional control on this combo. It reminded me of a well worn in full gut stringjob. The type of directional control where the ball goes exactly where your mind intended it. It was very confidence inspiring.

As the night wore on and the strings locked up, all the wonderful qualities i just mentioned went away. The kevlar is notched up....and one mishit in the upper hoop completely tore through the outer braid of the kevlar. I'm pretty sure this stringjob is at the end of days. I'm spray it with silicone to see how much more i can get out of it, though.
Can anyone elaborate how can a soft zyex string do so much harm to kevlar?
One would think that even when installed as the crosses the zyex string should be the first one to snap...
 
Monogut ZX is very elastic (which gives it its soft feel) and has a very tough and slick outer surface (which provides good spin and snap-back). Although the string itself is brittle (if weakened through a hard bend or nicked, e.g., during stringing), once strung there is probably no string as resilient to frictional stress (mains sliding over crosses or vice versa) than zyex-based strings. Based on my experimentation, the only string that can break Monogut ZXP is Monogut ZXP (when used as a full bed). I have NEVER been able to break it when used as a cross with Kevlar. The Kevlar gets sawed away over time until it finally snaps.
 
Can anyone elaborate how can a soft zyex string do so much harm to kevlar?
One would think that even when installed as the crosses the zyex string should be the first one to snap...
Basically, kevlar and zx have polar opposite properties:

1. Kevlar is a braided multifilament, which means it is porous, soft, compressible, and easily dented when pressure is applied from the side, as it is almost 50% air. Zx is a monofilament, hard, glassy-surfaced material that does not dent or scratch easily.

2. Kevlar has very high elastic modulus so it is very stiff and doesn’t elongate much when tension is applied. Zx has very low elastic modulus so it elongates a lot when tension is applied.

It’s like rubbing a rope against a glass rod: which one will wear in half first?
 
So it can also be a good main if one was looking for a soft monofilament alternative to multifilaments for a hybrid with poly crosses (Babolat Origin excluded)?
 
So it can also be a good main if one was looking for a soft monofilament alternative to multifilaments for a hybrid with poly crosses (Babolat Origin excluded)?
I've posted about it earlier in this thread -- Monogut ZX in a full bed can play brilliantly but I had trouble replicating this performance over time (after restringing) and I also had trouble with string breaks while tensioning mains (but never crosses) using this string. Monogut ZX is powerful but at the same time you can't really string it high as it will break (keep it under 60 lbs for sure, under 55 lbs even better).

But, I wouldn't use it in a hybrid fashion (except with Kevlar) -- it simple destroys the other string (whether as cross or main) way too quickly.

Monogut ZX may be a soft *playing* string, but it isn't soft on other strings. I strung some natural gut mains with ZX crosses, and all I'll say is that that was a very short - and expensive - experiment. Won't ever do that again.
Agree, I've used Monogut ZXP as a cross with a couple different polys and I am lucky to get 3-4 hours before a string break (always the poly).

Good news is you can reuse ZXP over and over and over if you want. 2 pieces of ZXP can be used no problem as crosses in a racket as long you spend a couple mins thinking about where to best tie off the first piece and start the second piece.
 
My last 6 or 7 kevlar/zx stringjobs were all done with recycled crosses. I have built up a stock pile of used zx.

1 reel can last you a long, long time (several years) if you don’t mind using more than 1 segment to do the crosses.
 

v-verb

Hall of Fame
Ok 2 hours of hard singles and practice today. Ashaway Kevlar 18 mains at 35 lbs. Ashaway monoGut ZX Pro 17 at 35 lbs.

Spin was excellent - not sure if as much as Diadem Elite 18 but tons of spin. I was hammering shots I would never land with poly/ZX or poly/poly. Directional control was excellent

Zero discomfort, no arm, wrist or shoulder pain,

Drawbacks? Serves had less pop. I would guess maybe 5 mph less on average. That said I did hit a couple of sweet aces against my speedy opponent and also was scoring some nice kick serves as well. The sidespin serves didn't kick violently sideways as they do when I have Diadem mains though.

However, considering the major increase in power and accuracy on my groundstrokes and the increase in punch on my volleys, I'll accept that minor cost to serve speed for the other benefits of Kevlar mains

So...I highly recommend this combo.
 
Ok 2 hours of hard singles and practice today. Ashaway Kevlar 18 mains at 35 lbs. Ashaway monoGut ZX Pro 17 at 35 lbs.

Spin was excellent - not sure if as much as Diadem Elite 18 but tons of spin. I was hammering shots I would never land with poly/ZX or poly/poly. Directional control was excellent

Zero discomfort, no arm, wrist or shoulder pain,

Drawbacks? Serves had less pop. I would guess maybe 5 mph less on average. That said I did hit a couple of sweet aces against my speedy opponent and also was scoring some nice kick serves as well. The sidespin serves didn't kick violently sideways as they do when I have Diadem mains though.

However, considering the major increase in power and accuracy on my groundstrokes and the increase in punch on my volleys, I'll accept that minor cost to serve speed for the other benefits of Kevlar mains

So...I highly recommend this combo.
Good stuff. What racquet is it?


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Kevlar with zyex is for sissies! I use kevlar with poly crosses. OK, full disclosure, it is on a Wilson Sledgehammer 3.4 135 head shortened to 27" with a 1 oz. steel/silicone vibration damper to add heft and make head light. Kevlar/poly tames the power and gives decent control. 200 lb. test uncoated Emma Kites outdoor kevlar and 18g Pros Pro poly crosses. Proportional strung 56/58/56 mains, 52/56/52 crosses.
 

v-verb

Hall of Fame
Good stuff. What racquet is it?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Thanks - a bit of a strange beast. Wilson Ultra XP 100S. 16 x 15 pattern which naturally softens the string response. I much prefer classic type racquets like the POGs, Head Prestiges and Wilson PS 85 and 88. However for matches the Ultra XP 100S (and 100LS) works well for me

Kevlar with zyex is for sissies! I use kevlar with poly crosses. OK, full disclosure, it is on a Wilson Sledgehammer 3.4 135 head shortened to 27" with a 1 oz. steel/silicone vibration damper to add heft and make head light. Kevlar/poly tames the power and gives decent control. 200 lb. test uncoated Emma Kites outdoor kevlar and 18g Pros Pro poly crosses. Proportional strung 56/58/56 mains, 52/56/52 crosses.
Cool stuff. Those old monsters are hella fun with poly at low tension as well
 
Has anyone tried kevlar/synthetic in a prince 93p. I am really interested in the 93p 14x18 but only like to play kevlar and find small heads bad for this setup. I currently use the phanthom 100.
 
Shroud I had a persistent shoulder injury. Finally went to physio and they gave me exercises for rotator cuff muscles and I'm back to 90% normal. My first serve in back onto the 80's easy with the occasional foray onto the low 90's. 100 is still sadly out of reach

What happened to you?
Hey dude thats just it. No big injurys. Just sore from stupid doubles. Back gets tight and its harder to serve. Can never get all the muscles loose. And no real injuries. Sure shoulder is always sore but doesnt seem to affect play.

Just old man. And some of it may be the courts. These are college courts and unlike most they are 2-3’ thick concrete courts. Never crack like thin public courts. Always seem to be more sore after those courts.

Glad you are better. I think i am around those speeds myself. Seems like these days I have the slowest serve on the court. Ugh. It used to be the opposite. Now 100 is out of reach too I think.
 
Ok 2 hours of hard singles and practice today. Ashaway Kevlar 18 mains at 35 lbs. Ashaway monoGut ZX Pro 17 at 35 lbs.

Spin was excellent - not sure if as much as Diadem Elite 18 but tons of spin. I was hammering shots I would never land with poly/ZX or poly/poly. Directional control was excellent

Zero discomfort, no arm, wrist or shoulder pain,

Drawbacks? Serves had less pop. I would guess maybe 5 mph less on average. That said I did hit a couple of sweet aces against my speedy opponent and also was scoring some nice kick serves as well. The sidespin serves didn't kick violently sideways as they do when I have Diadem mains though.

However, considering the major increase in power and accuracy on my groundstrokes and the increase in punch on my volleys, I'll accept that minor cost to serve speed for the other benefits of Kevlar mains

So...I highly recommend this combo.
Yep. The serve speed is the only drawback imho.
 
Before you start insulting someone you should do a little research. Right now at ******** Sports it is $8.50 with a line drawn through $21. Try google before you start typing misinformation.
Have you ever looked at a string and realized that it wasn’t for you without having to buy it and use it? I’m sure you have just as everyone has. People reading this thread can make an educated guess about whether or not they want to use this set up. Believe or not there are people on here with tremendous experience.
It’s the Kevlar.
Hey @ashridge can you chime in?

Is it the kevlar? Usptarf mskes it sound like things were fine and you used kevlar, tore your arm up, healed and now you play fine with every other string.

But is that the case? Doesnt poly at 30lbs hurt your elbow too? Did you have rlbow issues before kevlar/zx?? Is there a combo that doesnt hurt??
 
Hey @ashridge can you chime in?

Is it the kevlar? Usptarf mskes it sound like things were fine and you used kevlar, tore your arm up, healed and now you play fine with every other string.

But is that the case? Doesnt poly at 30lbs hurt your elbow too? Did you have rlbow issues before kevlar/zx?? Is there a combo that doesnt hurt??
Kevlar will cause pain and also exacerbate any pre-existing pain. Strange that you guys don’t associate the use of Kevlar with the chronic shoulder pain you are describing. Or even concerned enough to use softer strings.
 
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It is clear that the hybrids I was suggesting are the ones listed. Shroud, just carry on with your chronic shoulder pain and lack of awareness of what is contributing to your issues.
Where are you getting that I have chronic shoulder pain? I had a bullet proof shoulder till I grabbed a suitcase off the luggage belt. Even after that I can play tennis. its just a bit sore. Most old tennisplayers have sore shoulders after playing regardless of the string. And often even the left shoulder can be sore too. Just old age
 
Where are you getting that I have chronic shoulder pain? I had a bullet proof shoulder till I grabbed a suitcase off the luggage belt. Even after that I can play tennis. its just a bit sore. Most old tennisplayers have sore shoulders after playing regardless of the string. And often even the left shoulder can be sore too. Just old age
You said “shoulder is always sore”. That would be chronic. I know I should never comment on something you say. You always deny what you say.
Not true about shoulders. I have had reconstructive shoulder surgery with titanium staples and a screw in my shoulder. 42 years of competitive play. Play completely now at 5.0 without pain and have for years. Really started taking tensions and stiffness of string seriously in terms of my arm preservation.
Level of play went up with Natural Gut mains and lower tension full poly set ups.
 
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I’ve used Kevlar mains as a kid, never had any problems. Didn’t play for about 30years and went back to the same setup. Didn’t warm up properly one time and got tennis elbow. After some rest, TE went away and back to Kevlar again. No issues.

Kevlar doesn’t cause injuries, poor technique, improper prep can cause injuries.

Tried Zyex but don’t like the feel. Not a big fan of most polys.. but still experimenting with them.
 
You said “shoulder is always sore”. That would be chronic. I know I should never comment on something you say. You always deny what you say.
Not true about shoulders. I have had reconstructive shoulder surgery with titanium staples and a screw in my shoulder. 42 years of competitive play. Play completely now at 5.0 without pain and have for years. Really started taking tensions and stiffness of string seriously in terms of my arm preservation.
Level of play went up with Natural Gut mains and lower tension full poly set ups.
i dont think in the last year or less is exactly chronic. Its more along the lines of not doing rehab from the luggage deal. And strings dont explain the left shoulder... but yes kevlar will not only explode your shoulder it will shrink your balls and rot your brain too.

Right strings make your level of play increase. Ok.
 
I’ve used Kevlar mains as a kid, never had any problems. Didn’t play for about 30years and went back to the same setup. Didn’t warm up properly one time and got tennis elbow. After some rest, TE went away and back to Kevlar again. No issues.

Kevlar doesn’t cause injuries, poor technique, improper prep can cause injuries.

Tried Zyex but don’t like the feel. Not a big fan of most polys.. but still experimenting with them.
i dont think in the last year or less is exactly chronic. Its more along the lines of not doing rehab from the luggage deal. And strings dont explain the left shoulder... but yes kevlar will not only explode your shoulder it will shrink your balls and rot your brain too.

Right strings make your level of play increase. Ok.
Stringing frames at 86/86..it’s no wonder your shoulder won’t heal and continues to hurt a year later. Kevlar must effect the brain because to have shoulder pain and still string high tension with Kevlar and add all that weight..there is some bad thinking going on. Have messed yourself up with all that wack testing.
It is awesome to play with zero arm pain during and after matches, For me it requires taking care of myself and making smart choices about string and tension.
 
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Have been off the courts for a couple of weeks due to rolling my ankle hitting against a good humored D1 kid at UTR 13. I had no real reason to be hitting with him other than the coach of the team is my friend. Anyway, got a call to sub in 4.0 league so said "why not?" Went out and got a Mueller ankle brace and went for it. Brought 2 rackets, one strung with Wilson Revolve at 55 and the other Ash Kev x Zyex. Kind of loss control with the poly hybrid so went with the Ash Kev x Zyex. Differences are subtle but I was able to swing out a bit more with the Ash Kev x Zyex without pounding the back wall.
 
Stringing frames at 86/86..it’s no wonder your shoulder won’t heal and continues to hurt a year later. Kevlar must effect the brain because to have shoulder pain and still string high tension with Kevlar and add all that weight..there is some bad thinking going on. Have messed yourself up with all that wack testing.
It is awesome to play with zero arm pain during and after matches, For me it requires taking care of myself and making smart choices about string and tension.
From the beginning you never had good reading skills. It has little to do with tennis or kevlar. If I dont play at all there is no change. Shoulder is just sore sometimes. Just laying wrong can make it sore. If the kev and tension had anything to do with it i would change but it doesnt. And fwiw i can go hit serves for hours and no pain. Its just sore sometimes.
 
I had a throwaway frame and decided to experiment:

Tried Kevlar mains at 66lbs and alu power crosses at 56lbs.

Not extremely soft, but I haven't ever used monogut zyex so I can't compare it to that.
It's not softer than a syngut or multifilament IMO.

Replaced the crosses with ALU 4g with the same tensions as before.

Oh boy. It felt like a board for the first 5-10 mins. But felt slightly better after that. My forearm was feeling it like hell (my elbow felt it too but not as much)

Takeaway: The Kevlar mains/luxilon 4g crosses feels a hell of a lot stiffer than Kev/ALU power by a mile.
 
From the beginning you never had good reading skills. It has little to do with tennis or kevlar. If I dont play at all there is no change. Shoulder is just sore sometimes. Just laying wrong can make it sore. If the kev and tension had anything to do with it i would change but it doesnt. And fwiw i can go hit serves for hours and no pain. Its just sore sometimes.
I’ve been to law school and graduated with honors. The point I was making is that no matter how you hurt you shoulder, to play tennis with the stiffest strings made at high tension is probably not the best in terms of healing your shoulder. A shoulder that hurts for a year would be chronic.

You would be an interesting witness on the stand as you consistently say things that you very quickly deny. You diabolically turn your words and take the position that others can’t read or understand what you are saying. Defense mechanism that prevents you from taking in any information that could possibly indicate you are not right on point about a subject. The truth eludes you many times when it is very plain.
 
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Ironically, at this point the person who can take the most credit for getting hundreds of new players to try out out kevlar/zx is the person who is almost single-handedly keeping this thread going strong by arguing that it must be bad, amusingly contradicting the overwhelming majority of positive reviews when he himself has never tried it.
Yea right, I’m sure I’m the greatest proponent for Kevlar. Used Kevlar for a couple of years with crosses not much stiffer than Zx. You got a few guys playing in pain advocating Kevlar hybrids. If they don’t have extreme linear strokes like yours they are going to have problems. 5-10yrs from now you guys may remember this old USPTA guy trying to warn you. Good luck.
 
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Yea right, I’m sure I’m the greatest proponent for Kevlar. You got a few guys playing in pain advocating Kevlar hybrids. If they don’t have extreme linear strokes like yours they are going to have problems. 5-10yrs from now you guys may remember this old USPTA guy trying to warn you. Good luck.
off-topic but are linear strokes better for your elbow/shoulder/arm than loopier/arc ones? im curious since i have no knowledge about it
 
off-topic but are linear strokes better for your elbow/shoulder/arm than loopier/arc ones? im curious since i have no knowledge about it
Linear strokes minimize mishits. Less mishits and oversized frames make a huge difference. Also how tight one is holding the grip can make a difference. Being off with technique or holding the frame too tight and also not warming up, as one poster pointed out when he was injured with Kevlar, can make the difference. Softer setups are forgiving but Kevlar will make you pay.
 
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If you hit a ball on the edge of frame or around the hoop, with racquet head speed, most strings will break or flex. If you do that with Kevlar it will not break and will flex minimally. especially if you have pre-stretched to minimize flex. It will ring your arm like a tuning fork.
 
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It will ring your arm like a tuning fork.
I think this also applies to dead poly. Even my "old" limbs like fresh poly. Fresh syngut is OK too, but that means less than 2 hrs old. A rare multi might work for a few hours, but when those thin outer coatings go so goes the control. You might make me try full bed natural gut again, but have to figure out a tension that works for me.
 
I had a throwaway frame and decided to experiment:

Tried Kevlar mains at 66lbs and alu power crosses at 56lbs.

Not extremely soft, but I haven't ever used monogut zyex so I can't compare it to that.
It's not softer than a syngut or multifilament IMO.

Replaced the crosses with ALU 4g with the same tensions as before.

Oh boy. It felt like a board for the first 5-10 mins. But felt slightly better after that. My forearm was feeling it like hell (my elbow felt it too but not as much)

Takeaway: The Kevlar mains/luxilon 4g crosses feels a hell of a lot stiffer than Kev/ALU power by a mile.
Weird. I love that combo. Last 4g was kev/4g at 86/56. No pain
 
I’ve been to law school and graduated with honors. The point I was making is that no matter how you hurt you shoulder, to play tennis with the stiffest strings made at high tension is probably not the best in terms of healing your shoulder. A shoulder that hurts for a year would be chronic.

You would be an interesting witness on the stand as you consistently say things that you very quickly deny. You diabolically turn your words and take the position that others can’t read or understand what you are saying. Defense mechanism that prevents you from taking in any information that could possibly indicate you are not right on point about a subject. The truth eludes you many times when it is very plain.
It's not my fault that people dont do nuance well or cant understand in the 1st place because they have some dogmatic belief (like kevlar always hurts players) that makes them leap to false conclusions
 
When you're hitting a serve, the ball is not moving into you, so there is no incoming energy in the ball that would provide shock on impact.

I do tend to think that Ash Kev users as a whole are using heavier frames, and trying to move that mass in an efficient way does require good serve mechanics for shoulder health. So therefore:

1. Keep you chest and chin up longer through the serve motion. A lot of people try to rush the torso through the hit and then the arm lags behind and creates an akward angle for the rotator cuff.

2. Maintain a consistent toss location. Some players will try and accentuate the slice serve by tossing the ball to the side and then swooping around it, but this can be jarring on your shoulder it it isn't the swing path it is used to.

3. Use your lower body to create momentum! Whoever it was that was saying "serve is all arm action" a while back deserves to be taken out back and, well, given a stern talking to. Arm action is important, but if you don't have the right kinetic build to that point, then your shoulder is put under too high a stress.

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When you're hitting a serve, the ball is not moving into you, so there is no incoming energy in the ball that would provide shock on impact.

I do tend to think that Ash Kev users as a whole are using heavier frames, and trying to move that mass in an efficient way does require good serve mechanics for shoulder health. So therefore:

1. Keep you chest and chin up longer through the serve motion. A lot of people try to rush the torso through the hit and then the arm lags behind and creates an akward angle for the rotator cuff.

2. Maintain a consistent toss location. Some players will try and accentuate the slice serve by tossing the ball to the side and then swooping around it, but this can be jarring on your shoulder it it isn't the swing path it is used to.

3. Use your lower body to create momentum! Whoever it was that was saying "serve is all arm action" a while back deserves to be taken out back and, well, given a stern talking to. Arm action is important, but if you don't have the right kinetic build to that point, then your shoulder is put under too high a stress.

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Nooo. I break all of those...
 
Right. I'm looking at the 400 gram frame choice as a bigger issue than the strings in it.

Putting too much stress on the shoulder lever.

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Fwiw i am at 350g these days iirc. Maybe lighter The issue with the heavier racquet seemed to be more in decellerating it than getting it going.
 
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