Monogut ZX Findings

mrc

Rookie
Played Baseball 25 years everyday or else I would be using Full Poly string bed. However, even soft Poly strings like Sonic Pro Edge and others make my shoulder bark. I plan on playing tennis a long time so I am trying to think long term about my arm health.

I have to say, the Monogut ZX hits the mark for me in almost all categories. It doesnt hurt my arm but I can shape the ball and "hit out" because of the control I get and spin. Its almost full poly like in the way I can control it.

I do prefer the "touch" and less "plasticky" feel of PPA and Natural Gut at the net but that's not enough considering the other positives.

Bottom LIne..No arm issues-poly like spin..
 

Torres

Banned
A unique string, made from a material like no other currently on the market.

I've been trying it out over the last couple of weeks as a cross with Cyclone 16 mains. There poly is actually getting more notched than the ZX where the strings intersect.
 

Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
Played Baseball 25 years everyday or else I would be using Full Poly string bed. However, even soft Poly strings like Sonic Pro Edge and others make my shoulder bark. I plan on playing tennis a long time so I am trying to think long term about my arm health.

I have to say, the Monogut ZX hits the mark for me in almost all categories. It doesnt hurt my arm but I can shape the ball and "hit out" because of the control I get and spin. Its almost full poly like in the way I can control it.

I do prefer the "touch" and less "plasticky" feel of PPA and Natural Gut at the net but that's not enough considering the other positives.

Bottom LIne..No arm issues-poly like spin..
ZX strings always pop back into place. No sick poly spin but nice. Pain-free play even after 6 weeks.
 

mrc

Rookie
I have been using it with Genesis Spin X Mains at 50lbs and Monogut ZX at 55lbs. I really dont think I am dropping that much spin than full bed of Genesis Spin X.
This string lasts longer than a McDonalds french fry in a car seat...
 

Adles

Rookie
A unique string, made from a material like no other currently on the market.

I've been trying it out over the last couple of weeks as a cross with Cyclone 16 mains. There poly is actually getting more notched than the ZX where the strings intersect.
Please say more about how you find this combo - I'm looking for another cross to use with Cyclone. I currently use OGSM, but don't like how it feels after a week or so.
 

Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
I have been using it with Genesis Spin X Mains at 50lbs and Monogut ZX at 55lbs. I really dont think I am dropping that much spin than full bed of Genesis Spin X.
This string lasts longer than a McDonalds french fry in a car seat...
Empty car seat?
 

Torres

Banned
Please say more about how you find this combo - I'm looking for another cross to use with Cyclone. I currently use OGSM, but don't like how it feels after a week or so.
I strung Cyclone 16 / ZX 16 at 52/54 CP in a 96/16x20. When it's freshly strung, it's fantastic. Crisp yet comfortable, spin, power, control, predictable, consistent etc.

The problem I'm having with this particular string combination is performance longevity. Over time, the Cyclone starts notching quite significantly (in a way that full bed Cyclone doesn't). The ZX dents at the string intersections but doesn't notch as much as Cyclone. Not sure whether its because Cyclone is a softish poly and ZX is more abrasive once the slippery (teflon?) coating has gone.

The problem with this is that over time, the strings tend to "lock" where they intersect which prevents the strings sliding as freely as they could do. If you think how many intersections there are in a stringbed, that locking can be quite significant in terms of the strings moving as freely as the could do. I found that manually manipulating the ZX crosses to free them up (so that the crosses have a 'smiley' face') frees them up but I'm hoping that there's a better solution. Need to do some more trials.

Genesis Black Magic 17 / ZX 16 was another great combination. Didn't notice the notching as much - Black Magic is a slightly stiffer string than Cyclone - but the problem with Black Magic is that is that it doesn't last long. For me Black Magic is pretty dead after about 5-6 hours of hitting so I tend to cut it out at that point.
 
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mrc

Rookie
I have been using Genesis Spin X for a long time and recently been using Sonic Pro Edge which I like as well. I'm a 4.5 relativley hard hitting player. Both of those have been lasting a long time with very little Tension loss.

Cyclone is the "one night stand" of Tennis strings. I love it for one match then it turns to rocket launcher and is 35 lbs.
 

mrc

Rookie
Please say more about how you find this combo - I'm looking for another cross to use with Cyclone. I currently use OGSM, but don't like how it feels after a week or so.
All of the Syn Guts and Multi's softened the string bed but did not have any dynamic traits and compared to poly and did not have that dwell time on the strings. ZX hit the mark..You should try it. String it up a bit becuase its powerful. Its not just some dead boring string...
 

spinovic

Hall of Fame
I have been using it with Genesis Spin X Mains at 50lbs and Monogut ZX at 55lbs. I really dont think I am dropping that much spin than full bed of Genesis Spin X.
This string lasts longer than a McDonalds french fry in a car seat...
Classic. But, I have to call you out on that. How can anything last longer than forever? Unless eaten, that is how long a McDonald's fry will last.

Perhaps that is the answer...no one will eat the MonoGut, but eventually that fry will get consumed.

I see your logic now. Carry on.
 

scotus

G.O.A.T.
ZX is strangely stiff at 30 lbs.

Both Dunlop Black Widow and Volkl V-Torque are much much softer at that tension.

Perhaps ZX gets softer, relative to polys, as the tension goes up?
 

mikeler

Moderator
ZX is strangely stiff at 30 lbs.

Both Dunlop Black Widow and Volkl V-Torque are much much softer at that tension.

Perhaps ZX gets softer, relative to polys, as the tension goes up?
ZX feels like a stiff string to me but never hurts my arm.
 

JackB1

G.O.A.T.
I can't get past the weird "plasticky" feel, but in all other aspects its a great string.

But my #1 priority with strings is how it feels off the stringbed. If I don't enjoy hitting
with it, I won't use it.
 

corners

Legend
ZX is strangely stiff at 30 lbs.

Both Dunlop Black Widow and Volkl V-Torque are much much softer at that tension.

Perhaps ZX gets softer, relative to polys, as the tension goes up?
Zyex is unusual as a material in that its stiffness only increases a small amount relative to increases in tension. By contrast, polyester and nylon become progressively, and appreciably, stiffer the tighter the string is tensioned. In this regard, Zyex is a bit like natural gut. So a Zyex string at 60 pounds will not be much stiffer than one at 30 pounds, while a poly will be much less stiff at 30 than at 60.

Nevertheless, this does not adequately explain your perception that Black Widow is "softer" at 30 pounds than is Monogut ZX. According to the TWU String Database, when Black Widow is at an actual tension of 23 pounds and Monogut ZX at an actual tension of 27 pounds, BW's stiffness is 170 while ZX's is 85. So, while BW at this super-low tension is significantly less stiff than a syngut at normal tensions, it remains much stiffer than ZX. However, this is stiffness in the longitudinal direction, and one of the great things about the TWU database is that we also can look at two other measures - deflection and peak force - when the old-fashioned stiffness measurement doesn't match our on-court experience.

Deflection is a measurement of how far the string deflects upon impact in the plane perpendicular to impact, so it is a measure of perpendicular stiffness, which is probably more relevant to how a string plays and feels than is longitudinal stiffness. Here we find that the differences between the two strings is much smaller: At the same tensions (actually, during the same impact) above, BW deflects 33.9mm and ZX deflects 35.2 mm. Not much difference, although BW is still stiffer than ZX.

Finally, the peak force measurement gives us a measure of how much force is transmitted by the string to the racquet frame. Here, BW exerts 29.8 pounds of force and ZX 26.1 pounds. Again, the two strings are quite close, but ZX is still "softer", insofar as it transmits less force than BW.

So how to explain your observation that BW at 30 is softer than ZX? One thing to look at is impact angle. All of the above measurements come from an impact directly perpendicular to the string - head on. But during actual play, very, very few impacts are like this. Even on flat shots, because the ball is usually rising or falling during impact, the angle of impact is almost never square like this. (Flat serves might be a good example of when the impact could be square.) So it could be that BW feels softer for some reason that has to do with the difference between the ball-string interaction during head-on versus oblique impacts.

One explanation might be lateral main string sliding. We know that when the main strings are free to slide sideways that the ball then stays on the strings longer (greater dwell time) than if the strings were stuck together. Increased dwell time results in decreased shock and a softer feel. BW, as a slick, hard-surfaced poly, slides very well upon itself, so it's reasonable to conclude that on all but very square impacts the main strings will slide to some degree, increasing dwell time and decreasing shock. However, ZX, although not as hard and slick as poly, is also known to slide and snapback, at least initially.

These facts suggest that when brand spanking new ZX might feel softer than BW at 30 pounds, but that after some play, when the ZX loses some of its surface luster and stops sliding freely, that BW feels softer. Some players have complained about ZX producing a "clicking" sound, which suggests to me that after it's become notched and scuffed a bit, that it starts to stick together at impact. This could, through the loss of main string sliding, lead to increased shock and a harder feel the older the string gets.

In any case, if you find BW to feel softer at 30 pounds there seems little reason to use ZX at such a low tension. BTW, how would you compare the power level of BW and ZX at 30 pounds?
 
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scotus

G.O.A.T.
^^
At 30 lbs contant pull, both BW and V-Torque have a slightly more pop and a lot more spin and playability than ZX.

And ZX actually did cause arm pain at 30 lbs whereas BW and V-Torque do not.

And these are my observations from the first couple of days after stringing.
 
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tlm

G.O.A.T.
Played Baseball 25 years everyday or else I would be using Full Poly string bed. However, even soft Poly strings like Sonic Pro Edge and others make my shoulder bark. I plan on playing tennis a long time so I am trying to think long term about my arm health.

I have to say, the Monogut ZX hits the mark for me in almost all categories. It doesnt hurt my arm but I can shape the ball and "hit out" because of the control I get and spin. Its almost full poly like in the way I can control it.

I do prefer the "touch" and less "plasticky" feel of PPA and Natural Gut at the net but that's not enough considering the other positives.

Bottom LIne..No arm issues-poly like spin..
I liked the zx also but it does not have as good of control as poly does, to much power for me.
 

mikeler

Moderator
^^
At 30 lbs contant pull, both BW and V-Torque have a slightly more pop and a lot more spin and playability than ZX.

And ZX actually did cause arm pain at 30 lbs whereas BW and V-Torque do not.

And these are my observations from the first couple of days after stringing.
I'm a little surprised at that but everybody is built differently.
 

mrc

Rookie
Keep in mind, I didnt say it was better than poly. The point was that ZX gives me the softer stringbed resulting in much less shoulder soreness. Its a great ALTERNATIVE to all Poly setups and gets very close to spin and stiff feel I like in the hybrid X's as opposed to bland feeling soft multi.
 

Lukhas

Legend
Say, how fast ZX loses its tension compared to poly? Have some numbers regarding playability duration?
 

Ramon

Legend
Say, how fast ZX loses its tension compared to poly? Have some numbers regarding playability duration?
When I tried full bed ZX the tension loss over a long period was about 15%, which is much better than poly. It seemed to lose control (or maybe my game just sucked) after about 2-3 matches, but it never hurt my arm. Even with a gut/poly hybrid my arm can detect dead poly after only 3-5 hours of play, so I'm very sensitive to that. ZX/Multi seemed to play consistently until breakage (>10 hours), but maybe that's all in my head.

I definitely think ZX maintains tension and consistent playability longer than poly. You might find some poly strings that feel softer at first, but they will eventually lose elasticity, and someone with a sensitive arm will feel it even if it doesn't seem too bad on the surface. As for playability without regard to tennis elbow, I like poly better. The arm-friendliness of ZX is the main benefit it has for me over poly.
 
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Ramon

Legend
Thanks for the answer. And compared to multi? I know, that's stretching (I'm using PPA).
According to my RacquetTune measurements, PPA averages about 13% loss, which is good for a multi. I would definitely say ZX is closer to a multi than poly if you're talking about tension maintenance and arm-friendliness.

I actually tried ZX/PPA and I played great with it. I also like ZX/Hexy Fiber. The Hexy hybrid played like a muted ZX with some extra pocketing and I liked it better than full ZX when I compared them side-by-side. It seemed to play as well after 11 hours (breakage time) as it did fresh. The PPA hybrid was a big surprise. It had none of the plasticky feel but also less spin than the other setup. It felt and played a lot like full bed PPA, which wasn't such a bad thing for me.
 

PBODY99

Legend
I use ZX to extend the life of a poly hybrid. Tension maintenance trails natural gut, exceeds everything else that I have used.
 

mrc

Rookie
I strung Red ZX in the Crosses at 56lbs and Yonex Poly Tour Sprin in the mains at 50lbs. Racuqet tune came out to 52.5. I played so long with it, I forgot how many matches. It still had not broken and I was thinking of restrining it..got out racquet tune and it was at 46lbs. Still playing with it...If it lasts a few more matches I am going to have it scientifically inspected
 

Lukhas

Legend
Well thanks for the answer. Have some sets of PPA waiting, but when I'll be done with it I'll think about ZX.
 

Torres

Banned
I've noticed something very odd with this Cylclone 16 / Wheat ZX 16 stringbed. The stringbed has actually turned hard and feels half dead.

Can't remember how many hours of hitting its had on it - maybe 8 or 9? - but there seems to be so much notching or denting of the strings at the intersections, as a result of which, the strings seems to be interlocking rather than sliding freely. It feels nothing like when it was when fresh when it was crisp yet smooth and plush, powerful yet forgiving etc.

Not sure whether its due to my racquet - it has a fairly dense 16x20 drill pattern. Maybe a more open pattern will allow the strings to slide more freely, but currently these strings are not moving well in my stick.

Can't really be sure whether its the Cyclone causing this or the ZX. I wonder if there's a way Ashaway can mix that slippery coating in with the actual PEEK material so that even if the ZX wears, any soft mains don't start notching because of the repeated sliding motion?

I might try PTFE spraying the strings to see if there's a way of rejuvenating the strings but I suspect there's too much notching/wear. At the moment, I feel like cutting out both strings.
 
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travlerajm

G.O.A.T.
I'm still rocking with pre-stretched kevlar/ZX at 20-lb differential. Doesn't noticeably lose any tension after the kevlar breaks in. I go until the kevlar breaks, which happens at about 15h. ZX still smooth. Going to switch back to 16g kevlar to get longer life- should allow me to go months with great spin and control.

The key with MGZ is to pre-stretch it until it doesn't stretch any more.
 
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Torres

Banned
Notching. This seems to be the problem over time with a Cyclone/ZX setup. The poly, which is already notched, sits in little dents made in the ZX crosses which inhibits the mains sliding. The crosses sliding up and down the mains is even worse but probably less relevant on ground strokes.

Am wondering whether its because the Cyclone is ridged?
http://img4.imageshack.us/img4/5393/cycmacro.jpg

Maybe it needs a stiffer or round poly?
 
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mrc

Rookie
Notching. This seems to be the problem over time with a Cyclone/ZX setup. The poly, which is already notched, sits in little dents made in the ZX crosses which inhibits the mains sliding. The crosses sliding up and down the mains is even worse but probably less relevant on ground strokes. Maybe it needs a stiffer poly?
I really like Cyclone..but I think it loses its playability very quickly and loses tension quickly at the 8 to 9 hour mark. Maybe the short lifespan (one night stand of strings) is part to blame?

I have notcied any nothing on the ZX Crossess I have used. However, I have used Genesis Spin X and Yonex Pro Poly Tour Spin...they last longer than Cyclone.
 

rev200g

Rookie
My own experiences with Ashaway Monogut Zyex 1.27 as a cross with Tourna Big Hitter Blue Rough 17 mains have been very positive. Very good playability which has lasted for over 12 hours so far. Mind you, I am using 18x20s. Better spin and power than my other hybrid combo of BHBR mains/Head PPS crosses at the same tensions. The BHBR/PPS has better comfort and feel though.
 

Chas

Rookie
Just broke my first set of Red full bed ZX after about 120 hours. Normally get about 30-40 hours max out of PPA, Discho or similar.


It seemed to play much the same throughout its life, and no arm pain etc.

I'd tried it because I can't afford to restring Poly hybrids when they go dead, to avoid arm pain, and was looking for longer life than I got from PPA. So it definitely achieved that.

It does have a somewhat off putting plasticky or pingy sound/feel, and I'm not sure if it's less consistent off the string bed than the multis I've used. That's one of those things that can play on your mind - is it me or the string :???:

All in all an interesting, and for me, cost effective, alternative type of string. I think I'll try another set. My other racquet has the natural colour ZX in it. I think the red is slightly stiffer, so I'll string it a pound lower than the natural next time (ie. 52 lbs)
 

Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
Just broke my first set of Red full bed ZX after about 120 hours. Normally get about 30-40 hours max out of PPA, Discho or similar.


It seemed to play much the same throughout its life, and no arm pain etc.

I'd tried it because I can't afford to restring Poly hybrids when they go dead, to avoid arm pain, and was looking for longer life than I got from PPA. So it definitely achieved that.

It does have a somewhat off putting plasticky or pingy sound/feel, and I'm not sure if it's less consistent off the string bed than the multis I've used. That's one of those things that can play on your mind - is it me or the string :???:

All in all an interesting, and for me, cost effective, alternative type of string. I think I'll try another set. My other racquet has the natural colour ZX in it. I think the red is slightly stiffer, so I'll string it a pound lower than the natural next time (ie. 52 lbs)
Have 2 months on a set of red 17 gauge. Finally lost a bit of tension.
 

Ramon

Legend
Just broke my first set of Red full bed ZX after about 120 hours. Normally get about 30-40 hours max out of PPA, Discho or similar.


It seemed to play much the same throughout its life, and no arm pain etc.

I'd tried it because I can't afford to restring Poly hybrids when they go dead, to avoid arm pain, and was looking for longer life than I got from PPA. So it definitely achieved that.

It does have a somewhat off putting plasticky or pingy sound/feel, and I'm not sure if it's less consistent off the string bed than the multis I've used. That's one of those things that can play on your mind - is it me or the string :???:

All in all an interesting, and for me, cost effective, alternative type of string. I think I'll try another set. My other racquet has the natural colour ZX in it. I think the red is slightly stiffer, so I'll string it a pound lower than the natural next time (ie. 52 lbs)
I've been experimenting with ZX/Multi combinations. One of the weird things I discovered is that ZX/PPA plays and feels like full bed PPA. In fact, the plasticky feel even goes away. On the negative side, you don't get the full benefits of ZX, like the extra spin, but you do get the durability in the main strings (the crosses will break first). I play well with PPA, so naturally I played just as well with the ZX/PPA, and it seemed to maintain playability better than full bed ZX (that may be in my head also, but it seems to be in a lot of people's heads). So if you like PPA and just want more durability, this might be the right combination. I'm going to keep experimenting with this combo at different tensions because I bought so many sets of PPA at the $6 discounted price.

Right now I'm playing with ZX/DNA. Time will tell, but it might be my favorite combo. DNA is soft, just like Hexy Fiber, and it lets the ZX do its thing. The spin is great with this setup.
 

Torres

Banned
Just broke my first set of Red full bed ZX after about 120 hours.
120 hours of actual play? That's insane. What racquet was it strung in?

I normally cut mine out around the 15 hour mark as it doesn't feel anywhere near as good as it was when fresh (principally the strings don't seem to slide as well due to string to string abrasion).
 

Lukhas

Legend
^I tend to agree. Yet there's no poly, it's still a monofilament. I can only imagine the tension loss. Since he seems to be coming from multi, maybe he does not care about string movement. But that's still a nice playtest to read.
 

Chas

Rookie
120 hours of actual play? That's insane. What racquet was it strung in?

I normally cut mine out around the 15 hour mark as it doesn't feel anywhere near as good as it was when fresh (principally the strings don't seem to slide as well due to string to string abrasion).

Angell TC95 16x19 racquet. I play a fairly hard hitting, all court game, with plenty of top spin on both sides etc., so my strings get a good workout.

Mostly doubles play, with a mix of league matches, competitions and club sessions. I wouldn't expect it to have lasted this long with all full on singles, or competition style play.

I actually found string movement with Zx less than some multis I've tried. Most of their life they snapped back really well. The strings lasted me about 3 months play, and for the last month I tried finger rubbing in some vaseline in the centre area about once a week, which seemed to help with getting them to snap back. Not sure if this helped at all with their performance, but it makes you feel better to have lined up strings, doesn't it :)
 

Torres

Banned
One thing I can't get my head around is how different this string can play depending on how you string it.

Previously strung Black Magic/ZX at 52/54CP and it played great until the poly died.

Did the same thing yesterday in the same stick but this time at 50% pull speeds and it feels firmer and nowhere near as nice. That crispy/crunchiness you get when it fresh doesn't seem to be there either.
 

Sander001

Hall of Fame
I want to try this string. Thinking of using it in the mains with Pro Line 2 1.20 in crosses.
Right now I'm using Yonex 850/Pro Line 54/44lbs and I love it but durability is the concern.

Thoughts or suggestions?
 

Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
I want to try this string. Thinking of using it in the mains with Pro Line 2 1.20 in crosses.
Right now I'm using Yonex 850/Pro Line 54/44lbs and I love it but durability is the concern.

Thoughts or suggestions?
ZX does not seem to notch
 

SJSA

Professional
Does anyone try Natural Gut/ZX Pro in hybrid?
Is it better than a full bed of ZX Pro?
Thanks!
 

mrc

Rookie
Have not tried it. To me, ZX playing characteristics are nothing like Natural Gut. ZX is more explosive and spinny. Almost like your cheating...
NG is very true and has better feel and touch. I don't think ZX is for a NG player, more of a Poly alternative.
 
ZX seems popular so I may be the odd man out, but I hated it. First of all it was a pain in the butt to string on my drop-weight cuz it just kept stretching and stretching, and then it also seemed to stiffen up fast after playing with it for a bit.
 
I love Ashaway MonoGut ZX Pro.
I use it in my Yonex VCORE Xi 100.
Best string I have ever tried.
Very lively and crisp. Love the feel, comfort and power.
Nylon multifilament strings now feel stiff and boring in comparison.
 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
ZX seems popular so I may be the odd man out, but I hated it. First of all it was a pain in the butt to string on my drop-weight cuz it just kept stretching and stretching, and then it also seemed to stiffen up fast after playing with it for a bit.
Did you prestretch it? I strung it once and dont recall having that issue, but I did prestretch it a ton manually, and used the setting on the machine too.
 
Did you prestretch it? I strung it once and dont recall having that issue, but I did prestretch it a ton manually, and used the setting on the machine too.
I didn't do a prestretch. The instructions on the packet just said something about letting it tension for at least 15 seconds before releasing, so I just kept pulling it through the stringer until the bar stayed level for that long. It took forever lol.
 

Ramon

Legend
I tried increasing the tension differential on ZX/PPA to 4 pounds (54/50), but the results are still the same. It's a good setup, but I think I'm going to settle on ZX/DNA.

ZX/DNA seems to take dwell time and spin to a different level. Right now, when I play with ZX/DNA I don't miss poly. The main drawback is that it seems to get springier after about 6-8 hours, but it still plays well if you don't mind a bit of a trampoline effect. I'll probably tighten up the crosses next time and go with 54/54 or 56/56.
 

Shroud

G.O.A.T.
I didn't do a prestretch. The instructions on the packet just said something about letting it tension for at least 15 seconds before releasing, so I just kept pulling it through the stringer until the bar stayed level for that long. It took forever lol.
Ok. I did a prestretch and did a 20% prestretch on the machine too.

I think that string needs a prestretch
 
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