Polyester vs Synthetic Gut

#1
This may be a newbie question but can someone sum up the major differences, tradeoffs, strengths/weaknesses between polyester and syn gut? I read the brief descriptions at the TW learning center and the impression I got was that polyester was more durable but less comfortable, so people hybrid polyester with syn/nat gut to soften up the string bed. Any advantages to using polyester other than durability?
 

Ripper

Hall of Fame
#3
Polyester strings are much more difficult to break, don't move around and provide more control. Also, they have less feel and tension retension is bad.
 
#6
my polys don't lose tension unless you actually hit with them for a while. my backup was strung with bb ace 18 and I had not pulled it out in a while and it still felt the same. Not until i got some good hours on it befor eit lost tension. So they are correct that atmospheric conditions don't affect it. it doesn't lose tension as fast as say X1 biphase though.
 

Ripper

Hall of Fame
#7
Sebastien said:
...but now there is a lot of good poly that maintain the tension better than syn. gut in my opinion.
The best syn guts, still, have better tension retension, by a large margin, over the best polys.

vinnier6 said:
is bb alu good at maintaining tension....
Within the polys, yes, but there are polys that are better at this.

BiGGieStuFF said:
my polys don't lose tension unless you actually hit with them for a while.
All types of strings will hold tension quite well, before you start hitting with them.
 
#8
Ripper said:
All types of strings will hold tension quite well, before you start hitting with them.
I guess what I really mean is the strings don't go dead just sitting there like some strings do. I could leave the racket sitting in my trunk for a while and it'll still hit like it was freshly strung. I couldn't do that with my multi's but that's besides the point since we're comparing to synthetic gut.
 

Pusher

Professional
#9
gfdoto said:
This may be a newbie question but can someone sum up the major differences, tradeoffs, strengths/weaknesses between polyester and syn gut? I read the brief descriptions at the TW learning center and the impression I got was that polyester was more durable but less comfortable, so people hybrid polyester with syn/nat gut to soften up the string bed. Any advantages to using polyester other than durability?
Poly is like a ferrari-it performs better at high speed.

If you don't knock the crap out of the ball then syn is better.
 
#10
I don't have a lot of experience with polys, but when I hit with a poly after hitting with a synthetic, I'm always struck by how much more the poly "grabs" the ball, which in my case, results in increased topspin that keeps in balls that would normally go out.
 
#12
Hmm, I just ordered some SPPP 1.18 and I'm currently playing with PSGD (and previously Gosen OG Micro). Do you guys think I should try a hybrid first or just a pure poly job? I'm currently using the Babolat PD+ so I'm concerned about how harsh the poly will feel compared to the syn guts.
 
#14
I find too much flex in Syn Gut. At 65# Prince Syn gut/Aramid play like 50# Yonex Poly Touring Fire with a lot less control in my opinion. It was an emergency restring and had no choice in the matter, but I tried them and hated them. Went back to 65# on the Yonex Fire String within 24 hours.
 
#18
Yes with the old style poly, but now there is a lot of good poly that maintain the tension better than syn. gut in my opinion.
This is 100% wrong. The best poly does not come near the tension maintenance of an average synthetic.

This may be a newbie question but can someone sum up the major differences, tradeoffs, strengths/weaknesses between polyester and syn gut? I read the brief descriptions at the TW learning center and the impression I got was that polyester was more durable but less comfortable, so people hybrid polyester with syn/nat gut to soften up the string bed. Any advantages to using polyester other than durability?
Poly strings should only be used by those that can swing very fast and take control of the ball. Poly strings should not be used for their durability, because while their durability (time until they break) is better than a synthetic, their playability (time until string stops doing what it's supposed to) is very poor.

When poly strings are fresh, they have a very control-oriented feel and give you tons of spin assuming you can swing fast enough. Most rec players cannot swing fast enough to utilize the spin potential of poly. When poly strings are dead, they don't give you added spin and they don't absorb any shock, transmitting that directly to the player, making them very hard on the body.
 
#19
Personally, I find a hybrid of synthetic gut and poly to be the best for me. I use a thin gauge synthetic gut in the mains and a thin gauge poly in the crosses. The synthetic gut breaks when it is supposed to and I think this helps me keep my arm fresh and healthy. So why use polyester at all? Well, IME, synthetic gut in the mains and crosses was good, but control wasn't as good. I find polyester in the crosses (Luxilon TIMO) increases spin and enhances control. Why? I won't pretend to know. :) But it works for me. During the indoor season, I like to use natural gut, Pacific Tough, in the mains and the same polyester in the crosses at a 3 - 4 pound difference - 54 - 50.

Of late, I have been considering going up a gauge for the synthetic gut. I'm getting 3 - 4 sets out of my current set up. On the flip side, I have also decided to quit fooling around so much with my gear.
 
#20
Since quality Natural gut can be had for $25-35 and will last you 4-5 times longer and play better than synthetic gut. I don't see a reason to use synthetic gut
 
#21
It takes so much more tension for me on Syngut to gain the control. I already max my DG 97 frame using Yonex PolyTour Fire 1.30 with 10% prestretch at 65#. My Prince React XLT frame runs them at 70# full bed, and got nothing close to the control from 70# on Syngut.

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Traffic

Hall of Fame
#22
It takes so much more tension for me on Syngut to gain the control. I already max my DG 97 frame using Yonex PolyTour Fire 1.30 with 10% prestretch at 65#. My Prince React XLT frame runs them at 70# full bed, and got nothing close to the control from 70# on Syngut.

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Have you tried stringing poly at low tension? Like 44#?
 
#23
Since quality Natural gut can be had for $25-35 and will last you 4-5 times longer and play better than synthetic gut. I don't see a reason to use synthetic gut
Syn gut cost me 3 bucks for the best in arm feel and ball control(I practice on the bang wall a lot to groove my strokes and timing) as I string my own and have no concerns anymore since i switched from poly to Forten Sweet 17
 
#24
Have you tried stringing poly at low tension? Like 44#?
I dont like the trampoline effect of lower tension strings. Thats below min spec for my Yonex Duel G 97 and my Prince React Lite XLT. I tried 55# full bed once and it felt I like lost a lot of control and ball slowed way down, so I went back up to 70# on the Prince with no prestretch, and 65# on the Yonex with 10% Prestretch using the Poly Tour Fire 1.25.
 
#25
I dont like the trampoline effect of lower tension strings. Thats below min spec for my Yonex Duel G 97 and my Prince React Lite XLT. I tried 55# full bed once and it felt I like lost a lot of control and ball slowed way down, so I went back up to 70# on the Prince with no prestretch, and 65# on the Yonex with 10% Prestretch using the Poly Tour Fire 1.25.
It's different for poly. Most people need to use the bottom of their racquet's tension range or lower. Poly is very dead and has more control than nylon-based strings and natural gut. For poly, decrease your multi tension for a racquet by about 10% and you should get much better results.
 
#26
I know that this is a Zombie thread, but nobody has yet to address the elephant in the room. And that is that Poly string is the most revolutionary force in tennis today. Specifically co-poly, as first introduced by Luxilon with their ALU line of strings. Back in the 70's, mavericks were trying to gain an advantage and introduced spaghetti stringing, which magnified spin effects and was swiftly banned from formal competitions. When Luxilon first introduced ALU and Sampras witnessed the spin it could produce in the right hands, he referred to the company as "Cheatilon". This was a watershed moment in Tennis history. Up until then almost every professional player played a full bed of natural gut. Now almost nobody plays with that set-up. Now it's either poly hybrid or full bed of poly.

Now that doesn't mean that there's not a place for synthetic gut for the recreational player. In terms of durability and cost, it's probably the best value around. I get plenty of play-ability and durability out of a synth gut/poly hybrid -very economical, very playable. Plays longer and retains it's tension better than straight poly, and it's easier on the arm, particularly after poly loses it's elasticity. The best set-up of course for most, all factors being considered (playability, durability, power and comfort) is natural gut/poly hybrid.
 
#27
I know that this is a Zombie thread, but nobody has yet to address the elephant in the room. And that is that Poly string is the most revolutionary force in tennis today. Specifically co-poly, as first introduced by Luxilon with their ALU line of strings. Back in the 70's, mavericks were trying to gain an advantage and introduced spaghetti stringing, which magnified spin effects and was swiftly banned from formal competitions. When Luxilon first introduced ALU and Sampras witnessed the spin it could produce in the right hands, he referred to the company as "Cheatilon". This was a watershed moment in Tennis history. Up until then almost every professional player played a full bed of natural gut. Now almost nobody plays with that set-up. Now it's either poly hybrid or full bed of poly.

Now that doesn't mean that there's not a place for synthetic gut for the recreational player. In terms of durability and cost, it's probably the best value around. I get plenty of play-ability and durability out of a synth gut/poly hybrid -very economical, very playable. Plays longer and retains it's tension better than straight poly, and it's easier on the arm, particularly after poly loses it's elasticity. The best set-up of course for most, all factors being considered (playability, durability, power and comfort) is natural gut/poly hybrid.
 
#28
I know that this is a Zombie thread, but nobody has yet to address the elephant in the room. And that is that Poly string is the most revolutionary force in tennis today. Specifically co-poly, as first introduced by Luxilon with their ALU line of strings. Back in the 70's, mavericks were trying to gain an advantage and introduced spaghetti stringing, which magnified spin effects and was swiftly banned from formal competitions. When Luxilon first introduced ALU and Sampras witnessed the spin it could produce in the right hands, he referred to the company as "Cheatilon". This was a watershed moment in Tennis history. Up until then almost every professional player played a full bed of natural gut. Now almost nobody on the pro tour plays with that set-up. Now it's either poly hybrid or full bed of poly.

Now that doesn't mean that there's not a place for synthetic gut for the recreational player. In terms of durability and cost, it's probably the best value around. I get plenty of play-ability and durability out of a synth gut/poly hybrid -very economical, very playable. Plays longer and retains it's tension better than straight poly, and it's easier on the arm, particularly after poly loses it's elasticity. The best set-up of course for most, all factors being considered (playability, durability, power and comfort) is natural gut/poly hybrid.
 
#29
I know that this is a Zombie thread, but nobody has yet to address the elephant in the room. And that is that Poly string is the most revolutionary force in tennis today. Specifically co-poly, as first introduced by Luxilon with their ALU line of strings. Back in the 70's, mavericks were trying to gain an advantage and introduced spaghetti stringing, which magnified spin effects and was swiftly banned from formal competitions. When Luxilon first introduced ALU and Sampras witnessed the spin it could produce in the right hands, he referred to the company as "Cheatilon". This was a watershed moment in Tennis history. Up until then almost every professional player played a full bed of natural gut. Now almost nobody on the pro tour plays with that set-up. Now it's either poly hybrid or full bed of poly.

Now that doesn't mean that there's not a place for synthetic gut for the recreational player. In terms of durability and cost, it's probably the best value around. I get plenty of play-ability and durability out of a synth gut/poly hybrid -very economical, very playable. Plays longer and retains it's tension better than straight poly, and it's easier on the arm, particularly after poly loses it's elasticity. The best set-up of course for most, all factors being considered (playability, durability, power and comfort) is natural gut/poly hybrid.
 
#30
The key to using polyester string is to re-string on a regular basis.

In the July 2012 issue of Racquet Sports Industry magazine, there is an editorial entitled “We Need a ‘Restring’ Campaign” by Editorial Director Peter Fancesconi. Although he doesn’t mention any types of strings specifically, reading between the lines, I think he’s talking about polyester when he states, “We need to make sure consumers know they should restring their racquets more frequently” and “Playing with dead strings may actually hurt the player too.” Interestingly, in the same issue, there is an interview and Q&A with Lucien Nogues, one of Babolat’s top stringing experts where he discusses the necessity of changing strings more often and that pros are stringing at lower tensions. And my personal favorite snippet in the Industry News was an ad for new orthopedic braces being developed for sports injuries, including a photo for a new elbow brace!


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#30
The key to using polyester string is to re-string on a regular basis.

In the July 2012 issue of Racquet Sports Industry magazine, there is an editorial entitled “We Need a ‘Restring’ Campaign” by Editorial Director Peter Fancesconi. Although he doesn’t mention any types of strings specifically, reading between the lines, I think he’s talking about polyester when he states, “We need to make sure consumers know they should restring their racquets more frequently” and “Playing with dead strings may actually hurt the player too.” Interestingly, in the same issue, there is an interview and Q&A with Lucien Nogues, one of Babolat’s top stringing experts where he discusses the necessity of changing strings more often and that pros are stringing at lower tensions. And my personal favorite snippet in the Industry News was an ad for new orthopedic braces being developed for sports injuries, including a photo for a new elbow brace!


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#31
The key to using polyester string is to re-string on a regular basis.

In the July 2012 issue of Racquet Sports Industry magazine, there is an editorial entitled “We Need a ‘Restring’ Campaign” by Editorial Director Peter Fancesconi. Although he doesn’t mention any types of strings specifically, reading between the lines, I think he’s talking about polyester when he states, “We need to make sure consumers know they should restring their racquets more frequently” and “Playing with dead strings may actually hurt the player too.” Interestingly, in the same issue, there is an interview and Q&A with Lucien Nogues, one of Babolat’s top stringing experts where he discusses the necessity of changing strings more often and that pros are stringing at lower tensions. And my personal favorite snippet in the Industry News was an ad for new orthopedic braces being developed for sports injuries, including a photo for a new elbow brace!


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
#31
The key to using polyester string is to re-string on a regular basis.

In the July 2012 issue of Racquet Sports Industry magazine, there is an editorial entitled “We Need a ‘Restring’ Campaign” by Editorial Director Peter Fancesconi. Although he doesn’t mention any types of strings specifically, reading between the lines, I think he’s talking about polyester when he states, “We need to make sure consumers know they should restring their racquets more frequently” and “Playing with dead strings may actually hurt the player too.” Interestingly, in the same issue, there is an interview and Q&A with Lucien Nogues, one of Babolat’s top stringing experts where he discusses the necessity of changing strings more often and that pros are stringing at lower tensions. And my personal favorite snippet in the Industry News was an ad for new orthopedic braces being developed for sports injuries, including a photo for a new elbow brace!


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
#32
The key to using polyester string is to re-string on a regular basis.

In the July 2012 issue of Racquet Sports Industry magazine, there is an editorial entitled “We Need a ‘Restring’ Campaign” by Editorial Director Peter Fancesconi. Although he doesn’t mention any types of strings specifically, reading between the lines, I think he’s talking about polyester when he states, “We need to make sure consumers know they should restring their racquets more frequently” and “Playing with dead strings may actually hurt the player too.” Interestingly, in the same issue, there is an interview and Q&A with Lucien Nogues, one of Babolat’s top stringing experts where he discusses the necessity of changing strings more often and that pros are stringing at lower tensions. And my personal favorite snippet in the Industry News was an ad for new orthopedic braces being developed for sports injuries, including a photo for a new elbow brace!


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
#32
The key to using polyester string is to re-string on a regular basis.

In the July 2012 issue of Racquet Sports Industry magazine, there is an editorial entitled “We Need a ‘Restring’ Campaign” by Editorial Director Peter Fancesconi. Although he doesn’t mention any types of strings specifically, reading between the lines, I think he’s talking about polyester when he states, “We need to make sure consumers know they should restring their racquets more frequently” and “Playing with dead strings may actually hurt the player too.” Interestingly, in the same issue, there is an interview and Q&A with Lucien Nogues, one of Babolat’s top stringing experts where he discusses the necessity of changing strings more often and that pros are stringing at lower tensions. And my personal favorite snippet in the Industry News was an ad for new orthopedic braces being developed for sports injuries, including a photo for a new elbow brace!


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
#35
The key to using polyester string is to re-string on a regular basis.

In the July 2012 issue of Racquet Sports Industry magazine, there is an editorial entitled “We Need a ‘Restring’ Campaign” by Editorial Director Peter Fancesconi. Although he doesn’t mention any types of strings specifically, reading between the lines, I think he’s talking about polyester when he states, “We need to make sure consumers know they should restring their racquets more frequently” and “Playing with dead strings may actually hurt the player too.” Interestingly, in the same issue, there is an interview and Q&A with Lucien Nogues, one of Babolat’s top stringing experts where he discusses the necessity of changing strings more often and that pros are stringing at lower tensions. And my personal favorite snippet in the Industry News was an ad for new orthopedic braces being developed for sports injuries, including a photo for a new elbow brace!


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No offense, but let's consider who that editorial is directed towards. It's a pretty simple deduction that more frequent restringing translates to more revenue produced for the manufacturers. If I'm still winning with a particular racquet and it's not tearing up my arm, I really don't care how long that string has been in there. Personally, I swear there's a covert campaign by the manufacturers to not make any strings that are too "durable". Back about twenty years ago there was a string called Comfort Zone that was easy on the arm and lasted forever. It was a round core covered with some kind of multifilament, but it didn't fray and it didn't die easily. That string has disappeared from the face of the earth and the new multifilaments fray and die faster than anything.
 
#36
No offense, but let's consider who that editorial is directed towards. It's a pretty simple deduction that more frequent restringing translates to more revenue produced for the manufacturers. If I'm still winning with a particular racquet and it's not tearing up my arm, I really don't care how long that string has been in there. Personally, I swear there's a covert campaign by the manufacturers to not make any strings that are too "durable". Back about twenty years ago there was a string called Comfort Zone that was easy on the arm and lasted forever. It was a round core covered with some kind of multifilament, but it didn't fray and it didn't die easily. That string has disappeared from the face of the earth and the new multifilaments fray and die faster than anything.
I understand your position. That said, you can’t believe the number of players at my club who don’t understand that they have to restring Poly string on a regular basis or risk of injury and playability.

I hear them complain about how their arm hurts and how they can’t seem to keep the ball in play - yet it’s been six months, a year, sometimes 18 months or more between string jobs because the polyester never breaks. Seriously.

I know one player who is playing with the same set of original Poly that he bought with his Raquet TWO YEARS AGO! This is not a beginner either, this is a USTA tournament player in his 60s!

Many players who are not well informed on polyester and it’s characteristics seem to struggle with this concept of restringing regularly. Just sayin...
 
#37
I understand your position. That said, you can’t believe the number of players at my club who don’t understand that they have to restring Poly string on a regular basis or risk of injury and playability.

I hear them complain about how their arm hurts and how they can’t seem to keep the ball in play - yet it’s been six months, a year, sometimes 18 months or more between string jobs because the polyester never breaks. Seriously.

I know one player who is playing with the same set of original Poly that he bought with his Raquet TWO YEARS AGO! This is not a beginner either, this is a USTA tournament player in his 60s!

Many players who are not well informed on polyester and it’s characteristics seem to struggle with this concept of restringing regularly. Just sayin...
Yeah I hear ya. I'm a little frugal but I don't touch a racquet that doesn't feel good to play with.
 
#38
For one and all who love poly....enjoy and I hope you never get the arm problems that such a stiff unforgiving bed of string can bring....almost put me on the sidelines again after a 30 year layoff...So players blessed with arms of steel( not to mention shoulders..et al..).... play with whatever floats your boat....but be aware of the consequences when you get those twinges that could put you back on the sofa....Again...I'd rather be out there playing with healthy limbs and frame(back-shoulders) than put myself at risk for something that is trendy and provides a quick cure for overhitting
 
#39
I understand your position. That said, you can’t believe the number of players at my club who don’t understand that they have to restring Poly string on a regular basis or risk of injury and playability.

I hear them complain about how their arm hurts and how they can’t seem to keep the ball in play - yet it’s been six months, a year, sometimes 18 months or more between string jobs because the polyester never breaks. Seriously.

I know one player who is playing with the same set of original Poly that he bought with his Raquet TWO YEARS AGO! This is not a beginner either, this is a USTA tournament player in his 60s!

Many players who are not well informed on polyester and it’s characteristics seem to struggle with this concept of restringing regularly. Just sayin...
This is someone who understands poly strings and how they were intended to be used for maximum playability. Playing full poly I restring my frames somewhere around 6hrs of play. For the reasons mentioned, stiffness and playability, the frames just feel right that way. If I am lucky I get to hit twice a week which is about 3hrs. Can string three frames at the beginning of each month at $5.00 a frame and my racquets play consistent. Players attempting to keep poly in their frames long term are rolling the dice with their arm and by the time they restring it feels like they are playing with a completely different set up.
 
Last edited:
#40
If you like poly type spin, but want to go months without stringing while maintaining the same level of control and spin, and want a comfortable arm-friendly feel, there is only one type of string I have found that can do all that. Kevlar mains with monogut zx crosses. If you prestretch thoroughly and string the mains much tighter than crosses, the strings will play exceptionally well until the Kevlar finally breaks, which can be a really long time if you use a dense pattern. Saves the hassle and expense of restringing.
 
#41
If you like poly type spin, but want to go months without stringing while maintaining the same level of control and spin, and want a comfortable arm-friendly feel, there is only one type of string I have found that can do all that. Kevlar mains with monogut zx crosses. If you prestretch thoroughly and string the mains much tighter than crosses, the strings will play exceptionally well until the Kevlar finally breaks, which can be a really long time if you use a dense pattern. Saves the hassle and expense of restringing.
This thread is about synthetic gut and poly. Kevlar is the best way to destroy someone’s arm. Would suggest the OP read information on Kevlar strings outside of this website.
 

4-string

Professional
#42
Cue Shroud.

Prepare yourselved for reading about stringing kevlar at super duper high tensions, without even a hint of arm pain, no damaged frames etc. etc.

Followed by a hitting video or two in an attempt to counter those who question the quality and level of hitting...

 
#43
Cue Shroud.

Prepare yourselved for reading about stringing kevlar at super duper high tensions, without even a hint of arm pain, no damaged frames etc. etc.

Followed by a hitting video or two in an attempt to counter those who question the quality and level of hitting...

Now that’s funny, definitely the truth.
 
#45
Cue Shroud.

Prepare yourselved for reading about stringing kevlar at super duper high tensions, without even a hint of arm pain, no damaged frames etc. etc.

Followed by a hitting video or two in an attempt to counter those who question the quality and level of hitting...

Careful. If you say Shroud three times, he will suddenly appear - just like Beetlejuice!

Let the rant begin.

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