Inbound College player breaking strings within 2-4 hours

s5blitzer

New User
I have my son who will play as a freshman in a D2 school Always played elevated USTA tournaments and for whatever reason besides being physically stronger and using more top spin, he is now breaking strings under 4 (sometimes 2) hours. We have tried Solinco (can't recall the type), Luxilon 4G 125/130, 4G Rough, ALU Power/Rough and different hybrids with the Wilson NXT on the mains and crosses and lastly RPM Blast. The 4G 130 last a tad longer but not by much.

He breaks the strings much faster than when he was in high school. Assuming that he got stronger with his use top spin, etc., what are your recommendations with other brands that will add 2-3 more hours without foregoing the quality of the strings. Getting really expensive at $18 for the 4G (less with the reel) and not even counting the hours spent on restringing time.

Thanks in advance.
 

esgee48

Legend
What racquet is your son using? And where is the string breaking? What was the tension? Were any of the strings already 15 or 15L? Breaking 4G 16 Gauge in 4 hours (or less) is normal for 5.0+. Depending on your answer regarding frame, he may have to go to 15 or 15L poly. You or he may also have to learn how to string.
 

gmatheis

Hall of Fame
#1 is he using one of the new "spin" rackets that has less strings in it? If that's the case consider going to at least a 16x19 or 18x20 racket. (I realize this may not be the case but just making sure)

#2 It sounds like you string your own rackets, why not Drop $35 on a reel of Pro's Pro Spinox and maybe a real of their Black Out. At under $3 a set you can live with breaking strings a lot.
 

graycrait

Hall of Fame
I get to hit on occasion with some D1 men and several are string breakers as often as your son. They string their own rackets with school provided Black Code on the school stringing machine. Does this school provide adequate string and a machine?
 

s5blitzer

New User
What racquet is your son using? And where is the string breaking? What was the tension? Were any of the strings already 15 or 15L? Breaking 4G 16 Gauge in 4 hours (or less) is normal for 5.0+. Depending on your answer regarding frame, he may have to go to 15 or 15L poly. You or he may also have to learn how to string.
I knew I would forget a critical piece of info. He uses the Prostaff 97. Strings at 57lbs.
 

s5blitzer

New User
I get to hit on occasion with some D1 men and several are string breakers as often as your son. They string their own rackets with school provided Black Code on the school stringing machine. Does this school provide adequate string and a machine?
Since he will be an incoming freshmen, we don't know the specifics yet but I believe the D2 school will provide RPM Blast and Luxilon (not sure what yet). He strings on my stringing machine right now and probably will do the same on the school's machine. Just think it is nuts to spend 30+ mins per job every 2-4 hours of play.
 

Booger

Hall of Fame
Since he will be an incoming freshmen, we don't know the specifics yet but I believe the D2 school will provide RPM Blast and Luxilon (not sure what yet). He strings on my stringing machine right now and probably will do the same on the school's machine. Just think it is nuts to spend 30+ mins per job every 2-4 hours of play.
RPM blast and Lux alu don't play well for more than a few hours, anyway. Gotta keep the equipment manager busy.
 

esgee48

Legend
The spacing on the PS 97 is almost as bad as the spin effect frames. And the high poly tension tells me your son uses a full stroke to hit spin and for control. If your son has the inclination, he could try moving to an 18x20 pattern. That pattern with 16 Ga poly in the high 40's will do wonders for longer lived strings. Does he have access to a Prestige like frame? If he stays with the PS 97, he is going to continue to break strings. He could try 15L and see how long that lasts. IMO, it may last another 2 hours. Kevlar hybrids are also options, but maybe not for your son. (Pre-stretch the Kevlar like mad to help with tension maintenance.) Final option would be to try using string savers, but the subjective feel may be affected and your son may not like it.

As a throwaway thought, maybe it is just as well he breaks the poly before they go dead. He'll become very proficient and efficient at stringing. That's all I can think of. :(
 

SpinToWin

Talk Tennis Guru
Give Wilson Revolve a try. It lasts fairly well even in Spin Effect patterns. Give the 16 gauge a try and if that still doesn't yield the desired durability, I'm afraid that you'll have to look for 15G strings to use.
 

Imago

Hall of Fame
Since he will be an incoming freshmen, we don't know the specifics yet but I believe the D2 school will provide RPM Blast and Luxilon (not sure what yet). He strings on my stringing machine right now and probably will do the same on the school's machine. Just think it is nuts to spend 30+ mins per job every 2-4 hours of play.
Try for once stringing on another machine. There is a chance of strings being notched while stringing - or grommets not hiding the sharp edges of the frame. Otherwise order a reel of PP Strategem 6, 1.30.
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
Where do the strings break? I mean is the breaking do to string friction or just stoke inconsistency? You can change your equipment or string to come up with a longer lasting combination but you may end up with a combination you really don't like.
 

mctennis

Legend
Try the Alien brand strings available here on TW site. These strings were designed because the owner got tired of constantly restringing his son's racquets because he was breaking his strings. Give it a try, nothing to lose.
 

s5blitzer

New User
The spacing on the PS 97 is almost as bad as the spin effect frames. And the high poly tension tells me your son uses a full stroke to hit spin and for control. If your son has the inclination, he could try moving to an 18x20 pattern. That pattern with 16 Ga poly in the high 40's will do wonders for longer lived strings. Does he have access to a Prestige like frame? If he stays with the PS 97, he is going to continue to break strings. He could try 15L and see how long that lasts. IMO, it may last another 2 hours. Kevlar hybrids are also options, but maybe not for your son. (Pre-stretch the Kevlar like mad to help with tension maintenance.) Final option would be to try using string savers, but the subjective feel may be affected and your son may not like it.

As a throwaway thought, maybe it is just as well he breaks the poly before they go dead. He'll become very proficient and efficient at stringing. That's all I can think of. :(
THANKS!!!

Funny you mentioned the string pattern as a possible solution. When he was trying out demo racquets, he tried the Head Graphene XT Speed Pro (18x20) as well as a PS97 (16x19), he broke the strings on the PS97 3 times during the one week loaner and not on the Head. I thought that was an interesting observation. However (for better or worse now), he decided on the PS97 since he had played the Wilson Pro Open for 5 years before and wanted to stick with the Wilson line. He played well with BOTH racquets short of adapting to the different head size and weight. I guess you can say we are "stuck" with the 3 new PS97s we purchased for his collegiate experience. I am so tempted to try out the Head again to see whether this is really the case when it comes to string longevity.

So here comes the dumb question as I am sure I heard the reason before .... why would a denser string pattern add hours to the strings? Guessing it limits movement within the string bed?

Yes, he is getting faster with his stringing jobs. Just did not want him to spend unproductive time restringing racquets every 2-4 hours of play even though the strings may be free for the team. He will be in a preselected Pre-Med program and should be studying every chance he gets.
 

s5blitzer

New User
Where do the strings break? I mean is the breaking do to string friction or just stoke inconsistency? You can change your equipment or string to come up with a longer lasting combination but you may end up with a combination you really don't like.

See my response back to esgee48 why I think we may be "stuck" with the PS97s. Strings consistently break at the mains in the sweet spot area.
 

1HBHfanatic

Legend
I get to hit on occasion with some D1 men and several are string breakers as often as your son. They string their own rackets with school provided Black Code on the school stringing machine. Does this school provide adequate string and a machine?
strings-- all poly 16g string, or thicker,
but as stated here, this is a common issue with college players
restringing is necessary,
choose a string thats cost effective, tecnifibre, solinco, genesys are cost effective poly strings
 

s5blitzer

New User
Give Wilson Revolve a try. It lasts fairly well even in Spin Effect patterns. Give the 16 gauge a try and if that still doesn't yield the desired durability, I'm afraid that you'll have to look for 15G strings to use.
Thank you! Will pick a couple up next time. Something tells me that a denser string bed might solve the "problem". We intentionally avoided the racquets with the SPIN label but it looks like the 16x19 pattern may be the culprit.
 

hoodjem

G.O.A.T.
THANKS!!!

Funny you mentioned the string pattern as a possible solution. When he was trying out demo racquets, he tried the Head Graphene XT Speed Pro (18x20) as well as a PS97 (16x19), he broke the strings on the PS97 3 times during the one week loaner and not on the Head. I thought that was an interesting observation. However (for better or worse now), he decided on the PS97 since he had played the Wilson Pro Open for 5 years before and wanted to stick with the Wilson line. He played well with BOTH racquets short of adapting to the different head size and weight. I guess you can say we are "stuck" with the 3 new PS97s we purchased for his collegiate experience. I am so tempted to try out the Head again to see whether this is really the case when it comes to string longevity.

So here comes the dumb question as I am sure I heard the reason before .... why would a denser string pattern add hours to the strings? Guessing it limits movement within the string bed?

Yes, he is getting faster with his stringing jobs. Just did not want him to spend unproductive time restringing racquets every 2-4 hours of play even though the strings may be free for the team. He will be in a preselected Pre-Med program and should be studying every chance he gets.
Yes, denser patterns add life to the strings but cut down on spin.

Have you thought of Kevlar?
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
See my response back to esgee48 why I think we may be "stuck" with the PS97s. Strings consistently break at the mains in the sweet spot area.
There are all kinds of ways to stop the string from breaking. You could change rackets, change strings, use string savers, lubricate the strings ... This list is large, but it boils down to this if you don't want to break strings hit a soft lob on every shot. If you want to win and not break string You must change something. Even many of the pros change change something. Find a combination you can live with and change rackets before the strings break.
 

esgee48

Legend
18x20 patterns limit the amount of movement the mains can make, so yes, the strings will last longer. As hard as your son swings, that may be your only practical solution if he (and you) do not want to restring often. People with pro level RHS can generate just as much spin using an 18x20 as using a 16x19. Just string it at a lower tension so you get the SBS you want. Check out the For Sale part of this forum if you're interested.

Wilson Revolve is renamed RipSpin (I think) and like 4G is design for ESP and SEP frames (fewer crosses). Both do come in 15 Ga, but hard hitters still break the string at 4-6 hours.
 

s5blitzer

New User
There are all kinds of ways to stop the string from breaking. You could change rackets, change strings, use string savers, lubricate the strings ... This list is large, but it boils down to this if you don't want to break strings hit a soft lob on every shot. If you want to win and not break string You must change something. Even many of the pros change change something. Find a combination you can live with and change rackets before the strings break.
You share my life philosophy .... almost everything can be put in an equation with multiple values on both sides of the EQUAL (=) sign. If one side of that equation states the end result is to do put away power shots with flat/top spin shots, kick serves, etc, the other side of the equation is already predetermined. Which is a long way to say, one has to live with this situation.
 

Kenny022593

Professional
What I've found with all of the guys coming in to RIT is that they break strings in juniors more because they are just going out and hitting as opposed to having an organized practice in college. It changes from player to player, though, and the amount of time difference could just be an extra hour or two.

Two of the guys used to play full Pro Hurricane Tour 16 gauge and break in 3-5 hours when they were in juniors. Once in school, the strings started to last a bit longer. One of them had their durability go up to 6-10 hours and the other 9-15 hours. So as your son transitions in to college, the difference in practice and strategy could change the amount of wear he puts on strings.

More food for thought, though. One of the guys (freshman) who played 2 and 3 for us this year plays with a Steam 99S. His played around with set-ups a lot while he was a junior and landed on 4G 15 gauge in the mains and 4G 16 gauge in the cross. He has a very heavy forehand, one handed backhand, and a fairly big serve. He was breaking strings every 3-5 days when he hit with one racquet for the entirety of that period. He had 5 racquets, though and rotated them. So, I was stringing for him every week and a half or so.

Maybe Irvin could give more insight onto why the 16g in the cross would make a set up last a bit longer than full 15g. The only reason I could think of was because the 16g doesn't have as much surface area to notch and saw into the mains.
 

gchen

New User
Breaking string is much less common in the denser frames than the spin frames. I believe it is related the the dispersion of the force of the ball on more strings.

If the school supplies strings, and time is a premium, have someone else string the racquets. Labor is cheap enough these days, plus why not spend more time playing tennis than stringing. Considering the cost of college, and the value of getting better grades(i.e. lifetime earning potential as a doctor), you could consider paying someone to string, it is pretty easy to find someone to string for 10 dollars a frame. The reality is life is good as a college student, never in your life again will you have more time on your hands, unless you are unemployed afterwards.
 

s5blitzer

New User
Can't seem to edit my last post. :-(
Anyway, I was saying the time it takes to break strings start to matter more when my son serves, drills and matchplay 4+ hours 5 days a week. Even with 3 racquets, he is expecting to restring at least 4 times each week. Short of dropping the $18 strings (less with reels), down to $12 ones, a lot of time is also spent restringing each week. I am guessing minor changes in the strings may add a couple of hours.

I like the notion introduced by kenny022593 that the strings may actually last longer in college practice due to the types of drills, frequency, etc. Be nice if that holds true.
 

djNEiGht

Hall of Fame
My suggestion is down a different path. In the hopes of saving costs, check out what string companies have sponsorship/discount programs. Often the smaller companies have them. The two that come to mind to check are Tier One as well as Genesis. Both make very good strings.
 

s5blitzer

New User
Breaking string is much less common in the denser frames than the spin frames. I believe it is related the the dispersion of the force of the ball on more strings.

If the school supplies strings, and time is a premium, have someone else string the racquets. Labor is cheap enough these days, plus why not spend more time playing tennis than stringing. Considering the cost of college, and the value of getting better grades(i.e. lifetime earning potential as a doctor), you could consider paying someone to string, it is pretty easy to find someone to string for 10 dollars a frame. The reality is life is good as a college student, never in your life again will you have more time on your hands, unless you are unemployed afterwards.
Well said. Always looking to see folks' opinions/suggestions in perspective instead of being clouded by things I can't control. [emoji2]
 

djNEiGht

Hall of Fame
I noticed that the D2 program might have strings available to students so hope that helps. Good luck to your kid with the sports and medicine program
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
Can't seem to edit my last post. :-(
Anyway, I was saying the time it takes to break strings start to matter more when my son serves, drills and matchplay 4+ hours 5 days a week. Even with 3 racquets, he is expecting to restring at least 4 times each week...
I used to string rackets for one of my sons when he was in HS at least 10 times a week. In addition to that I would string for my other son who only broke a few sets every week, my wife and myself. Among the four of us I would probably string at least two frames ever day year round. Then in order to recoup my losses I would string for others. In the late 80s and early 90s I would easily string over 1,000 rackets every year.

BTW the way you can't edit your posts until you have only 50 posts.
 

s5blitzer

New User
I used to string rackets for one of my sons when he was in HS at least 10 times a week. In addition to that I would string for my other son who only broke a few sets every week, my wife and myself. Among the four of us I would probably string at least two frames ever day year round. Then in order to recoup my losses I would string for others. In the late 80s and early 90s I would easily string over 1,000 rackets every year.

BTW the way you can't edit your posts until you have only 50 posts.

Post #31.

That's a lot of string jobs. Just don't want him to spend time stringing when he should be hanging out with the team or better still, study for this pre-med education.
 

s5blitzer

New User
LOL My son hated stringing
I think 98% of all of our children share the same gene pool. They would rather do something else. I was happy stringing both my kids racquets for the last 4 years as I don't have a huge social life (sad but true) but now he is going to college, he figured he will either sink or swim with doing his own string jobs, especially now. College is suppose to breed independence and make them into adults. Nah, still wishful thinking.
 

Muppet

Legend
You really ought to consider encouraging him to do his own stringing. Taking the time to do one or two racquets a day would be a great activity that won't be mentally taxing for him. There is so much social and educational thinking that a student has to do that stringing could really help him clear out his mind each day.
 

Kenny022593

Professional
My suggestion is down a different path. In the hopes of saving costs, check out what string companies have sponsorship/discount programs. Often the smaller companies have them. The two that come to mind to check are Tier One as well as Genesis. Both make very good strings.
s5blitzer, I blank quoted you so you would get the notification. Genesis offers very good deals for college players. I forget the reps name, but when I contacted him he was very nice and quick with responses. A reel of Hexonic went down to $60 and I believe others were down at least $25 from their retail prices. Furthermore, I'm assuming your son is for sure playing for a college team. If a coach orders strings, they get an even bigger discount than if a player would order them. I'm not sure how the coach price would work with junior coaches, though.
 

Rjtennis

Hall of Fame
I guess the first thing I'd try is a 15G string. If that doesn't work he will either have to switch rackets, spend to much time stringing or pay someone else to string. 4G is a fairly durable string so I doubt you will fair much better with any other 16g or 17g string.
 
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