String journey

jhick

Hall of Fame
Hi all,

Up until recently, my string experimentation has been somewhat limited, even though I've been stringing (mostly my own) racquets for many years. When I was young, I just strung with cheap synthetic gut, but switched over to kevlar and/or poly strings when I started to frequently break strings in my youth. I distinctly remember playing with Prince problend and full beds of Forten kevlar in college just to maximize string life and keep costs down. Well, as an adult I eventually moved away from Kevlar and went to a full bed of poly for a number of years. I used to string in the 60-70 lb range and eventually lowered my tension to around 58. Then tennis elbow became an issue close to 10 years ago. At that time I switched back to a full bed of syn gut, which is what I've used up until recently. I now play 1-2 times/wk and generally hit flatter than in my youth so string breakage is not an issue.

Recently I've decided to experiment with some new string. Currently I have one of my racquets strung up with a hybrid of Klip natural gut mains at 58 lbs and ALU power (ice blue) on the crosses at 48 lbs. I like this setup for feel as well as increased spin potential when I need it. However, I'd like to try some other hybrid setups (non gut) so see how those feel. My tennis elbow has not returned yet thankfully. I guess occasionally I will feel an ache around that area but I get that even playing with syn gut...nothing that affects my tennis. I've been following the string forums, and recently purchased the following: Gosen AK Pro 17, Gamma Live Wire Professional 16, and Weiss Cannon Silverstring 16L that I plan to use in my crosses. Looking for some more suggestions for strings to try out with either multis or syn gut for the mains and poly in the crosses. For poly recommedations, I'm leaning towards a softer string setup with good tension maintenance that will last a while, as I'm not a fan of cutting out strings before they break.

Thanks!
 

Frankc

Professional
Try your Klip gut mains with syn gut cross - that hybrid has been around for decades now with serious players. Not as lively as full bed gut - but more control and kind to the joints.
 

jhick

Hall of Fame
Alternatively, the Ashaway kevlar/ZX monogut hybrid seems intriguing. I might try that out. What are tension suggestions for that setup?
 

jhick

Hall of Fame
Try your Klip gut mains with syn gut cross - that hybrid has been around for decades now with serious players. Not as lively as full bed gut - but more control and kind to the joints.
Thanks. I had never tried natural gut before so wanted to try it out, but I don't really want to string it with my cheap drop weight Klippermate, so having someone else string it makes it a bit expensive for me to use regularly. I guess what I'm saying is I'm looking for natural gut alternatives at this point.
 

2nd Serve Ace

Hall of Fame
Alternatively, the Ashaway kevlar/ZX monogut hybrid seems intriguing. I might try that out. What are tension suggestions for that setup?
Thats more of a baseline, heavy topspin hybrid. Great durability on the string, but it wears out the player!

Try the AK pro with the silverstring first and see how that goes.
 

jhick

Hall of Fame
Thats more of a baseline, heavy topspin hybrid. Great durability on the string, but it wears out the player!

Try the AK pro with the silverstring first and see how that goes.
Okay that's not really my game. I play more of an flat attacking game looking to close into the net and more doubles than singles.
 

LOBALOT

Hall of Fame
A lot of people try to head down the path of finding a cheaper natural gut-like string. The issue is that the alternatives never check all the boxes so you need to determine what you are willing to give up. Some of the more costly multis come somewhat near the feeling of natural gut but cost almost the same.

Assuming that you are willing to sacrifice some on the feel for the needed decrease in expense then I would look to slipperiness (Is that a word?) and tension maintenance as key drivers to strive for. The main is going to take some abuse by being stretched and snapped back... stretched... snapped back as you hit the ball.

You probably have read the posts on Head Velocity 16G. I would give that a try. Some time ago someone here recommended I try Prince Premier Control 16G and I string a lot of that in the mains in hybrids with a poly cross.

The next issue you may find is longevity in that the setup doesn't last as long as the gut one did so you can also try 15L guage but in the end I don't think it is really possible to be fully happy with alternatives to gut.
 

slchsu

New User
Your string journey mirrors mine almost exactly--cheap syn gut as a beginner/intermediate, Prince problend in juniors and college, then full-bed polys. About 3-4 years ago I started using natural gut and have since settled on VS Touch mains and Tourna Big Hitter Silver crosses. Works great for me and I've largely resisted the rabbit hole of endless experimentation.

But it rains a lot here so I do keep a few frames strung with non-gut, and I can really recommend Velocity for a substitute main. It's a bit overhyped on these boards but it's a very solid string.
 

jhick

Hall of Fame
Your string journey mirrors mine almost exactly--cheap syn gut as a beginner/intermediate, Prince problend in juniors and college, then full-bed polys. About 3-4 years ago I started using natural gut and have since settled on VS Touch mains and Tourna Big Hitter Silver crosses. Works great for me and I've largely resisted the rabbit hole of endless experimentation.

But it rains a lot here so I do keep a few frames strung with non-gut, and I can really recommend Velocity for a substitute main. It's a bit overhyped on these boards but it's a very solid string.
Tourna big hitter silver is another poly I've heard some good things about. For multis, I've been looking for some higher end ones that run on special (such as the Gamma Livewire Professsional that I recently purchased). Will consider Head Velocity. Thanks!
 

LOBALOT

Hall of Fame
@slchsu I string a lot of big hitter silver as a cross to gut as well. It does play a tad stiffer than Wiess Cannon Silver. It is however slicker and holds tension better.
 

irulan

Rookie
If you're worried about tennis elbow, Tier One Ghostwire is an excellent poly cross string. Super slick, while also being extremely soft and comfortable on your arm.
 

jhick

Hall of Fame
Try the AK pro with the silverstring first and see how that goes.
Any ideas on tension for the Gosen mains? I like Legend at 58 lbs and the power level it provides, but wondering if I should string the AK pro a little lower tension since it's not NG.
 

jhick

Hall of Fame
If you're worried about tennis elbow, Tier One Ghostwire is an excellent poly cross string. Super slick, while also being extremely soft and comfortable on your arm.
Might try this and/or Isospeed Cream in the future.
 
Top