Tier One Firewire + PK Q+5

PK Ki Q+5 (RA = 67) came strung with Head syn gut. Near impossible to hit with spin. Figured I’d test its comfort with a poly so strung it with a full bed of Firewire. The whole point of the PK purchase is to get a comfortable racquet.

Result: great spin! no discomfort! I was super impressed with Firewire.

Kinda regretting doing a 1-piece string job. Was saving the demo set of Ghostwire for a full bed comparison to cyclone tour.

So here’s my question: is Firewire a stiff enough poly to really judge how arm friendly the PK is?

Also, how much better is Firewire with GW crosses compared to just a fb of Firewire?

Thanks!
 

mikeler

Moderator
My current setup that I've used the last few years is Firewire Boost (Firewire mains and Ghostwire crosses) in a very comfortable frame. I was intrigued after trying a full bed of Firewire, I loved the spin but in a 16x16 frame but the sharpness of the strings did not allow the setup to last very long. Ghostwire fixed that problem and seemed to add more feel to the setup while still maintaining the ferocious spin. Firewire is a soft poly and Ghostwire is a very soft poly. You would think Ghostwire is a stiff multi with how much it stretches on the stringing machine. Try it out but I definitely recommend Firewire in the mains for spin with Ghostwire in the crosses to soften it up and add longevity.
 
Well, I took advantage of Tier One’s 4th sale and nabbed 4 sets of FW boost so I can still test the fb of GW for giggles. Wife loved NXT for feel, is really liking cyclone tour as I try to transition her away from multis which she rips through in a few days, but don’t really want to stop at one soft co-poly before committing when there are others. Might get her on FW boost even!
 

mikeler

Moderator
Well, I took advantage of Tier One’s 4th sale and nabbed 4 sets of FW boost so I can still test the fb of GW for giggles. Wife loved NXT for feel, is really liking cyclone tour as I try to transition her away from multis which she rips through in a few days, but don’t really want to stop at one soft co-poly before committing when there are others. Might get her on FW boost even!
Dang, your wife must really hit hard! Let her try a set and then you can both hate and heckle me if you don't like it...
 

eah123

Semi-Pro
It’s hard to tell exactly what the cause of arm discomfort in your particular case is, or what might be the cause of it in the future. It’s a combination of equipment , technique and physical fitness. In my opinion, just do everything possible to minimize the chance of injury.

There are 2 variable you are asking about , racquet and strings. I don’t think you can get -a more arm friendly racquet than the PK Q kinetic racquets. With strings, the softest polys I’ve played with are Tier 1 ghost wire, Diadem Flash, Volkl Cyclone Tour, and Volkl V Square. They feel to my arm as soft as multifilaments. I thought T1 FireWire was stiffer than all of the aforementioned, and T1 Black Knight stiffer that FW.
If you think FW Boost is soft enough for your arm, I would stick with it. Definitely full bed of FW will have decreased durability due to crosses sawing into the mains.
 

esgee48

G.O.A.T.
In another thread, OP said his wife played for her college/university. I suspect that she is not so concerned with gear like OP. But it is his excuse to try out different frames. 8-B

This one:
 
I was intrigued after trying a full bed of Firewire, I loved the spin but in a 16x16 frame but the sharpness of the strings did not allow the setup to last very long. Try it out but I definitely recommend Firewire in the mains for spin with Ghostwire in the crosses to soften it up and add longevity.
Definitely full bed of FW will have decreased durability due to crosses sawing into the mains.
I had not really considered that a shaped poly would cut through itself, though I should have since I noticed the spiral in the cyclone tour is gone in the sweetspot. Looking forward to getting more court time in. Liking the PK especially with FW. Feel is kinda weird with this racquet since it seems to absorb everything. There actually seems to be more feel from the FW than the syn gut it came with.
 
In another thread, OP said his wife played for her college/university. I suspect that she is not so concerned with gear like OP. But it is his excuse to try out different frames. 8-B

This one:
My concern is shelling out $37 for NXT and labor over and over again for her racquets. I don’t go through multis nearly as fast. Since starting to play competitively over the last 2 years (married 15) my game is changing very quickly so I think my body is just trying to keep up. Right now I’ve managed to bring it down to elbow soreness instead elbow pain by switching away from a pure strike. I love top spin so whatever racquet I can get that lets me use (soft) polys I’ll use it if it’s in my spec range.
 

esgee48

G.O.A.T.
Stay with the PK if you want to minimize risk of arm issues. You can use anything in the PK without harming the arm so long as tension is not ridiculous.

For the wife, she could perhaps trial Head Velocity, FXP or Rip Control; Gosen AK Control; Prince Premiere Control; Tecnifibre RPX, Dura Mix, HDMX, Multifeel; Wilson Sensation [tho I do not like it]. The suggested strings are control oriented rather than power oriented. You can play test frames while she tests strings.

Last option is to look for a used stringing machine and learn to string. Or find a good cheap local stringer. Most of the stringers that do it are doing it out of self defense. Restringing weekly or semi monthly gets expensive quickly.
 

BPlain

Rookie
It’s hard to tell exactly what the cause of arm discomfort in your particular case is, or what might be the cause of it in the future. It’s a combination of equipment , technique and physical fitness. In my opinion, just do everything possible to minimize the chance of injury.

There are 2 variable you are asking about , racquet and strings. I don’t think you can get -a more arm friendly racquet than the PK Q kinetic racquets. With strings, the softest polys I’ve played with are Tier 1 ghost wire, Diadem Flash, Volkl Cyclone Tour, and Volkl V Square. They feel to my arm as soft as multifilaments. I thought T1 FireWire was stiffer than all of the aforementioned, and T1 Black Knight stiffer that FW.
If you think FW Boost is soft enough for your arm, I would stick with it. Definitely full bed of FW will have decreased durability due to crosses sawing into the mains.
I just switched from a full bed of Black Knight to FireWire Boost (aka FireWire/GhostWire hybrid) and definitely appreciate the extra spin. FireWire full bed is actually stiffer than Black Knight according to Tier One but FireWire Boost is pretty close in stiffness taking into account the stiffness (or lack there of) of Ghostwire. I've struggled with tennis elbow since college and much prefer a full bed of poly so finding good results with no elbow pain has been no small feat.

Here's the data that Tier One shared with me when I asked i.e. tension loss and stiffness ratings:

T1-Black Knight 12317 / co-polyester15.39197
T1-Black Knight 12816 / co-polyester14.95203
Ghost Wire 12716 / co-polyester16.27188
Ghost Wire 12217 / co-polyester14.77181
Ghost Wire 11718 / co-polyester18.69167
Ghost Wire 11019 / co-polyester23.77146
T1 Firewire 12018 / co-polyester15.41195
T1 Firewire 12517 / co-polyester13.85221
T1 Firewire 13016 / co-polyester14.18236

I'm using FireWire Boost 17 at 48 mains, 50 crosses in my Yonex Ezone 98 2020 27.25 frames right now.
 
Am trying Firewire, main, Techifibre NRG2, cross; both 16g at 44lbs. Plenty powerful, Firewire has a bite never before experienced, fewer balls hitting net b/c of lack of top spin, more balls hitting line, not going long b/c of increased spin. Call Tier One an off brand or a small specialty, bespoke brand, they don't make 25 different strings trying to be everything to everybody but what they do they do very well at a reasonable price. Will Firewire eventually destroy the cross strings, I don't know. Time will tell.
 

onehandbh

Legend
I just switched from a full bed of Black Knight to FireWire Boost (aka FireWire/GhostWire hybrid) and definitely appreciate the extra spin. FireWire full bed is actually stiffer than Black Knight according to Tier One but FireWire Boost is pretty close in stiffness taking into account the stiffness (or lack there of) of Ghostwire. I've struggled with tennis elbow since college and much prefer a full bed of poly so finding good results with no elbow pain has been no small feat.

Here's the data that Tier One shared with me when I asked i.e. tension loss and stiffness ratings:

T1-Black Knight 12317 / co-polyester15.39197
T1-Black Knight 12816 / co-polyester14.95203

Ghost Wire 12716 / co-polyester16.27188
Ghost Wire 12217 / co-polyester14.77181
Ghost Wire 11718 / co-polyester18.69167
Ghost Wire 11019 / co-polyester23.77146

T1 Firewire 12018 / co-polyester15.41195
T1 Firewire 12517 / co-polyester13.85221
T1 Firewire 13016 / co-polyester14.18236

I'm using FireWire Boost 17 at 48 mains, 50 crosses in my Yonex Ezone 98 2020 27.25 frames right now.
According to this chart, the 17 gauge hold tension better than the 16. That is quite surprising.
 

BPlain

Rookie
According to this chart, the 17 gauge hold tension better than the 16. That is quite surprising.
I also hadn't seen that before either. I just ordered a set of 18 gauge FW Boost to give that a try and compare/contrast to the 17 gauge. Started the feel the 17 gauge just a touch in elbow recently so hoping 18 gauge does the trick.

Edit: Did I stay a touch? I meant my elbow is screaming bloody murder again! Hoping 18 gauge helps but it might be back to Volkl V-Square for me if not.
 
Last edited:
For what it’s worth I’ve sidelined the PK and gone full CX OS. That extra cross in the PK just limits spin imo, plays like a soft PD. CX OS has a RA of 62ish so arm friendly enough. Put in FW Boost yesterday for the first time.

It seems to settle at a higher tension than VCT after stringing which seemed to impart a little more control. Despite that, zero pain which isn’t something I can always say about hitting sessions with fb VCT (surprisingly). Wasn’t super fond of the stringing process since FW is triangular = guaranteed to get squished just so the clamps hold.

Kinda curious how ultra cable with GW would be…
 
Top