RF97 Hybrid set up ideas

Keendog

Professional
Hey all, I have a RF97A and play a lot of doubles so I like hybrids for the touch volley shots in particular, as well as the comfort. I started with Xcel/Alu Power which really worked well, next tried VS/YPTP which I absolutely hated, and now have VS/Alu Rough at 55/52lbs. I'm finding that it is a bit too powerful, anything less than full cuts are flying long and my slice isn't as precise feeling.

So to dial back the power and get a bit more control should I up the tension on the current set up, switch to VS/4G at a similar tension, or go back to a multi/Alu setup? maybe Origin this time as xcel really is too soft for hybrids.

I have sets of 4G and Element and RPM Rough lying around so have a few options. I have VS/4g in my vcore which works well.

Anyone with this racquet love to hear your thoughts.
 
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Kaznkul

Rookie
I have a RF97 but I haven’t strung it in any hybrid setup just yet. I’m a poly user and I’m probably going to lean towards a poly/ poly hybrid in the future because gut and I don’t mix and multi’s aren’t my thing ATM but I could change my mind. I will give natural gut a go once I find my ideal poly hybrid setup. Anyway off my experience with softer poly’s I usually string them up tighter than stiffer poly’s to knock off some power. I haven’t used ALU power rough, but I’d assume the gut would make it feel softer? So you could probably get away with stringing both mains and crosses tighter. Maybe keep the same ratio if that’s what you like. eg ALU power rough at 54lbs and VS at 57lbs.


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Moosch

New User
Don't know if you are into all poly setup but there are two combos that I love, Tier One Firewire boost and Firewire/Head Hawk Touch. Firewire boost is a bit too harsh for my shoulder since I had shoulder surgery, so I personally like Firewire/Head Hawk Touch better. Love the touch, spin, and control with both. I think the ladder has better feel and comfort to me.
 
Stick with the one you love the most and increase the tension by 2-3 pounds to tame the power. 4g es less powerful but way more stiff and if will feel different than your current setup.
 

IowaGuy

Hall of Fame
Mains: Tough Gut 1.25 or Lux gut 1.25 at 60#
Crosses: MaxPower 1.25 at 55#

This combo works well for me to tame the power and keep a lower launch angle.
 

Keendog

Professional
Stick with the one you love the most and increase the tension by 2-3 pounds to tame the power. 4g es less powerful but way more stiff and if will feel different than your current setup.
Mmm yes that's my concern, I guess I'm going to have to try it to know for sure though otherwise could be chasing the right tension forever. It's just expensive to experiment with gut. I'll put the ALU rough away though and go back to regular and decide between that and 4G, maybe at 58lbs and 53lbs
 

Keendog

Professional
Mains: Tough Gut 1.25 or Lux gut 1.25 at 60#
Crosses: MaxPower 1.25 at 55#

This combo works well for me to tame the power and keep a lower launch angle.
Thanks. Lux is a bit exxy for me and can't get pacific here. Might have to try higher tensions, have been reluctant to go that high with poly as I've found full beds too stiff above 48lbs, but in this frame might work.
 

USPTARF97

Hall of Fame
Thanks. Lux is a bit exxy for me and can't get pacific here. Might have to try higher tensions, have been reluctant to go that high with poly as I've found full beds too stiff above 48lbs, but in this frame might work.
Playing with Natural Gut mains there is no worries with Max Power or 4g making the string bed too stiff. I use Max Power 1.25 crosses as a substitute for 4g to save a bit of money.
 

Traffic

Hall of Fame
Hey all, I have a RF97A and play a lot of doubles so I like hybrids for the touch volley shots in particular, as well as the comfort. I started with Xcel/Alu Power which really worked well, next tried VS/YPTP which I absolutely hated, and now have VS/Alu Rough at 55/52lbs. I'm finding that it is a bit too powerful, anything less than full cuts are flying long and my slice isn't as precise feeling.

So to dial back the power and get a bit more control should I up the tension on the current set up, switch to VS/4G at a similar tension, or go back to a multi/Alu setup? maybe Origin this time as xcel really is too soft for hybrids.

I have sets of 4G and Element and RPM Rough lying around so have a few options. I have VS/4g in my vcore which works well.

Anyone with this racquet love to hear your thoughts.
55/52 seems a bit low and would yield too much power for me.
I think gut hybrid can play wonderfully. But finding the right combo of crosses and correct tensions could be a bit of a journey.

Right now I'm grooving with legend/velocity. I'm finding velocity to tone down the power of gut and help add spin. But finding the right tension has been a little tricky. Also, velocity doesn't last terribly long. Or I suppose 20hrs is pretty respectable. Then I cut out the crosses and re string to get another 20hrs. Though I've started to take bigger cuts at the ball lately so that 20hrs might diminish.

Try vs/alu @ 58/53 for a bit more control. You can also try Xcel/alu @similar tension.

One of my favorite hybrid is Velocity/Cream @ 51/50. Great control and forgiveness and good access to spin.
 

Keendog

Professional
55/52 seems a bit low and would yield too much power for me.
I think gut hybrid can play wonderfully. But finding the right combo of crosses and correct tensions could be a bit of a journey.

Right now I'm grooving with legend/velocity. I'm finding velocity to tone down the power of gut and help add spin. But finding the right tension has been a little tricky. Also, velocity doesn't last terribly long. Or I suppose 20hrs is pretty respectable. Then I cut out the crosses and re string to get another 20hrs. Though I've started to take bigger cuts at the ball lately so that 20hrs might diminish.

Try vs/alu @ 58/53 for a bit more control. You can also try Xcel/alu @similar tension.

One of my favorite hybrid is Velocity/Cream @ 51/50. Great control and forgiveness and good access to spin.
Yeah seems I've gone too low there, VS is 17g and alu was rough too. Will still try 4G first though, I have liked it in other racquets and the tenison maintennace is good. Just gonna be painful taking a knife to the gut, ouch! If I had a 2nd racquet be tempted to try velocity/rpm blast rough or even element/velocity but not with my only match racquet.
 

Keendog

Professional
After posting all this it actually felt ok today, I think the poly is dead so less power but still enough spin and control. So gonna stick with alu smooth at higher tensions I think.
 

Keendog

Professional
Up the tension if you find them too powerful.
Thanks trialling Gut/4G at 58/53lbs to see how it goes. As much as I like the 'pop' from Alu it would be good to have a bit more control as I hit long often and also the strings last about 3 months for me so the tension maintennance is also appealing. Also have a second racquet with Element/VFeel volkl's premium multifilament just to see what it's like, I think at 53lbs all round.

Hopefully try it tomorrow
 

Crisp

Professional
Lux be Alu mains x tecnifibre syn gut. Decent set what relatively cost effective price
 

Keendog

Professional
So just to follow up the element was awful, all over the shop with height and length and couldn't hit a slice at all. Like not once. Got the tensions wrong there I think, the element should be like 50lbs and vfeel probably 54lbs.

The Gut/4G first hit took some getting used to very different launch angle than alu power. Hitting partner wasn't helping hitting hard and low but probably should've gone a couple of pounds lower. It will go down with time anyway. Didn't hit many volleys so can't say much about that, but great control on return on serve, can take bigger cuts on forehand without fear of hitting long and slice is good. Serve lacking that bit of 'pop' but all landing in which is probably more important for comp. I struggled a bit with the lower balls as the launch angle of alu the drives just went over the net without thinking but I'm sure with a bit of practice I can get that shot going. It was only a 20 min hit and as I said hitting partner wasn't helping rifling balls at my feet. Will have a hit with ball machine and a game then decide between gut/4G, gut/Alu or multi/alu going forward.

I've had a few sets lying around but as I run out value might come into consideration, and for that the multi/alu would win as I'm not snapping strings too quickly and I get most of the benefits that gut offers with slightly less power.
 

IowaGuy

Hall of Fame
So just to follow up the element was awful, all over the shop with height and length and couldn't hit a slice at all. Like not once. Got the tensions wrong there I think, the element should be like 50lbs and vfeel probably 54lbs.

The Gut/4G first hit took some getting used to very different launch angle than alu power. Hitting partner wasn't helping hitting hard and low but probably should've gone a couple of pounds lower. It will go down with time anyway. Didn't hit many volleys so can't say much about that, but great control on return on serve, can take bigger cuts on forehand without fear of hitting long and slice is good. Serve lacking that bit of 'pop' but all landing in which is probably more important for comp. I struggled a bit with the lower balls as the launch angle of alu the drives just went over the net without thinking but I'm sure with a bit of practice I can get that shot going. It was only a 20 min hit and as I said hitting partner wasn't helping rifling balls at my feet. Will have a hit with ball machine and a game then decide between gut/4G, gut/Alu or multi/alu going forward.

I've had a few sets lying around but as I run out value might come into consideration, and for that the multi/alu would win as I'm not snapping strings too quickly and I get most of the benefits that gut offers with slightly less power.
MaxPower might be another cross to try, if you like the feel of gut/4g. Slightly softer than 4g but still good tension maintenance. Also a little cheaper.
 

Sardines

Hall of Fame
Sounds like you just like stiffer setups. Try Poly Tour Strike as a cross. It's not too stiff but is quite low powered for sluggers. The PE coating is also quite decent for spin.
 

Keendog

Professional
So had a couple of hits now. Compared to Alu Power a lot less power, more spin and control and lower launch angle. I think at a couple of pounds lower it would be great, got some wrist discomfort from a few off centre shots. Since I only play doubles comp keeping the ball in is more important than pace of shot so will stick with 4G. If I was only playing singles or broke strings within a month I would probably go Alu at a higher tension.

I feel the low volleys Alu was actually easier to get it to come back up and over the net but otherwise 4G is easier to control the volleys. Serve noticeably lacking some pop but a bit more dip means more are going in.

Once my last set of 4G and gut run out I might go for a more value option like a multi/alu soft or multi/max power. In fact if I wasn't playing comp I would play around more with different strings, got some packets or rip spin, velocity, cyclone tour, lynx and hawk touch plus a ton of syn gut just lying around getting dusty.
 

Keendog

Professional
Had another hit now and while the stringbed feels soft and the 4G works great for my game, unfortunately still getting some wrist discomfort so will have to put it away, it's just not worth the risk. I guess ALU wins. I might try Max Power or RPM blast one day with a multi when I'm out of gut
 

Keendog

Professional
MaxPower might be another cross to try, if you like the feel of gut/4g. Slightly softer than 4g but still good tension maintenance. Also a little cheaper.
Is it only slightly softer? I'd like the control of 4G but without that tinny vibration it seems to get.
 

IowaGuy

Hall of Fame
Is it only slightly softer? I'd like the control of 4G but without that tinny vibration it seems to get.
Only slightly softer.

Probably worth a try, to me it played pretty similar to 4G, but I only tried 4G once and it's been about a year so I'm not a 4G expert.

I've also found that stringing a little lower tension can get rid of that "tinny" vibration.

My RF97A frames (4) also seem to be softening a little bit with time, and have less vibration than when I first started hitting with them.
 

Keendog

Professional
Only slightly softer.

Probably worth a try, to me it played pretty similar to 4G, but I only tried 4G once and it's been about a year so I'm not a 4G expert.

I've also found that stringing a little lower tension can get rid of that "tinny" vibration.

My RF97A frames (4) also seem to be softening a little bit with time, and have less vibration than when I first started hitting with them.
I've had over 12 hours hitting and left it in the sun today so would be down in the 40's lbs by now. It's great and I don't really feel it while hitting but at the moment there's not pain but definite discomfort which concerns me. What have you got in your 4 frames?
 

IowaGuy

Hall of Fame
What have you got in your 4 frames?
1.25 MaxPower in crosses on all of them.

Experimenting with gut mains still.

1.25 ToughGut in two frames.
1.25 Lux Gut in two frames.
1.30 Babolat Tonic + on the way to try next week.

Mains ~60#, crosses ~55#. Usually let them sit for a week or so after stringing before hitting, to settle the tension in a bit.
 

USPTARF97

Hall of Fame
Klip Legend 1.30/ Max Power 1.25
VS Touch 1.30/ Max Power 1.25

Two best gut/poly set ups I have used other than VS/4g.
 

Keendog

Professional
For those playing along at home I just put in VS 1.30/Alu 120 at 59/56lbs. So much better feel and effortless spin compared to 4G
 

IowaGuy

Hall of Fame
For those playing along at home I just put in VS 1.30/Alu 120 at 59/56lbs. So much better feel and effortless spin compared to 4G
Tension maintenance probably won't be as good as 4G or MaxPower crosses, keep us posted.

Are you measuring the tension loss with RacquetTune?
 

Keendog

Professional
Tension maintenance probably won't be as good as 4G or MaxPower crosses, keep us posted.

Are you measuring the tension loss with RacquetTune?
Yes that's the trade off but it's sooo good in this racquet. No I dont use that, prefer the seat of my pants method 8-B
 

USPTARF97

Hall of Fame
VS 1.30/ Alu 1.25 played really well in my frames but the tension loss was drastic in the first few hours. VS 1.30/4g 1.25 57/54 was the longest lasting Gut/poly set up I have used. Going up to 59/56 the next time I string it. Expensive.
 

Keendog

Professional
VS 1.30/ Alu 1.25 played really well in my frames but the tension loss was drastic in the first few hours. VS 1.30/4g 1.25 57/54 was the longest lasting Gut/poly set up I have used. Going up to 59/56 the next time I string it. Expensive.
That hurts my wrist just reading that!
 

Keendog

Professional
How many hours of play are you hoping to get out of that setup?
Dunno about hours, probably 2 good weeks hitting 3 times a week, then I'd assume another 6 to 8 weeks of life. It may get erratic towards the end but can just play around that a bit, I'm not too fussed.

4G changes less over time but at no point is it as good anyway so I don't see the benefit. Now I'm out of alu power I might try Alu soft next which has better tension maintenance.
 

Taveren

Professional
I have used Gut/Poly in my RF97A at 60/55, poly was Isospeed Blackfire and it played great and lasted 6 months, thats with 4 hours a week of tennis so YMMV.

Blackfire is smooth, slippery and low powered which allowed the Nat Gut to slide well and taper the power without affecting feel and ball pocketing.
 

haqq777

Legend
I playtested the RF97A (all black) here for TW when it was released. Really liked the racquet. For me, mid tension gut/poly is by far the best string combo for this racquet. I am a full bed poly player, for reference.
 

USPTARF97

Hall of Fame
I playtested the RF97A (all black) here for TW when it was released. Really liked the racquet. For me, mid tension gut/poly is by far the best string combo for this racquet. I am a full bed poly player, for reference.
Started out at 55/52 and the more I became comfortable with the frame the tension needed to go up. Reached the point that 57/54-59/56 is money depending on the conditions. If it is hot then 59/56 is on. It’s just the cost of buying natural gut that is wearing me out.
 
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haqq777

Legend
Started out at 55/52 and the more I became comfortable with the frame the tension needed to go up. Reached the point that 57/54-59/56 is money depending on the conditions. If it is hot then 59/56 is on.
Yes exactly. I don't remember the exact tensions since it has been a while, but I am sure it was very similar.
 

Keendog

Professional
So right now have VS Gut 16G mains and 120mm Alu Power crosses, marketed as Alu Power Feel. Feel plays like rough but a bit more consistent through its life and less notching into the gut. With 16 gauge gut gives it a little more control and a little less lively than 17 gauge. Was strung at 58/54 from memory. Next up is 15G Tonic with Alu Soft but that will be a while off, playing less often now
 
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