Why does 16g produce more spin than 16L or 17L?

#1
I'm looking to try some different strings, my usual go to and have been going back too is signum poly pro plasma 1.23 or hextreme 1.25. I've tried Yonex poly tour pro black in 1.25, yonex poly tour spin 1.25. Recently I tried the volkl cyclone 17 and I do like it so far, but was curious about something similar, but maybe softer without upping the power. I noticed from my list on the data learning center, most of the strings I choose for example, cyclone tour 16, hyper-g 16, lynx 16, are showing data of spin potential that's higher than their 1.25's. I thought the general rule of thumb, thinner gauge more spin & more power. Thank you in advance for the help.
 
#2
Not too surprising as long as you are comparing apples to apples. Think of it this way. Same string, but one is 16 Ga and the other is 17 Ga. Pull 51# of ref tension. Both strings will go to 51#, but the 16 Ga will have a lower DT than the 17 Ga due to cross sectional areas. Lower DT allows better cupping and easier string movement/snapback..
 
#3
Not too surprising as long as you are comparing apples to apples. Think of it this way. Same string, but one is 16 Ga and the other is 17 Ga. Pull 51# of ref tension. Both strings will go to 51#, but the 16 Ga will have a lower DT than the 17 Ga due to cross sectional areas. Lower DT allows better cupping and easier string movement/snapback..
Apologies for the ignorance, DT? Dwell Time?
 
#4
Not too surprising as long as you are comparing apples to apples. Think of it this way. Same string, but one is 16 Ga and the other is 17 Ga. Pull 51# of ref tension. Both strings will go to 51#, but the 16 Ga will have a lower DT than the 17 Ga due to cross sectional areas. Lower DT allows better cupping and easier string movement/snapback..
What?! How exactly does the "cross sectional area" of the thicker string lower DT?

And how do you explain the other strings that have greater spin potential as the gauge gets thinner? Or how some strings have no apparent correlation between the gauge and spin potential? For example, the "spin potential" for Hyper-G, according to the TW site, goes 18g > 16g > 16L = 17. What gives?

I'd actually be interested to hear the science behind this
 
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#6
Thicker strings give more SW which can lead to more spin/plowthrough. I think thin strings are a gimmick, no one on the tour really goes thinner than 1.25
 
#8
I'm looking to try some different strings, my usual go to and have been going back too is signum poly pro plasma 1.23 or hextreme 1.25. I've tried Yonex poly tour pro black in 1.25, yonex poly tour spin 1.25. Recently I tried the volkl cyclone 17 and I do like it so far, but was curious about something similar, but maybe softer without upping the power. I noticed from my list on the data learning center, most of the strings I choose for example, cyclone tour 16, hyper-g 16, lynx 16, are showing data of spin potential that's higher than their 1.25's. I thought the general rule of thumb, thinner gauge more spin & more power. Thank you in advance for the help.
Have consistently played 1.25. Played Lux Alu Power for about 15 years straight at 1.25. Looking at the string comparison chart, a number of the 1.25 strings have better numbers in terms tension maintenance. Durability is definitely better than the thinner strings. Used 1.10, 1.20, 1.30 over the years and 1.25 seems to provide the best playability to durability ratio.
 
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#10
I think thin strings provide better spin in a closed pattern and thick strings provide better spin in a more open pattern.
Why?

Even when you read some tw short description it says, try this thinner gauge for even more spin, but then the learning center shows 16g having more potential for spin.

Spin is supposedly off snap back and bite on ball, I would think open pattern has more room to move the strings. This is to say everything else being equal.

After being able to afford strings and not worry about durability, I went to 1.25 and that just seems to be my magic number. But now researching and looking for certain strings to try the data just baffled me.


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#11
Because with closed patterns its harder for the strings to really bite into the ball and for the strings to snapback and a thinner string will help the string get penetration into the felt and the string bed to move. Open patterns don't have that handicap with the wider spacing leading to good felt penetration and easier snapback, so thick strings add friction to the ball that thin strings don't.

But this is totally supposition on my part since I'm no spin physicist.

And its all quite possible the different spin values are within the error range of the testing apparatus. I take all TWU's spin numbers with a heavy grain of salt.
 
#12
Another thing to consider is that a 16 gauge of a string will be lower power than a thinner gauge. So you end up swinging faster to get the same court penetration. If you're using spin technique, the faster racquet head speed will give you more spin.
 
#13
I'm looking to try some different strings, my usual go to and have been going back too is signum poly pro plasma 1.23 or hextreme 1.25. I've tried Yonex poly tour pro black in 1.25, yonex poly tour spin 1.25. Recently I tried the volkl cyclone 17 and I do like it so far, but was curious about something similar, but maybe softer without upping the power. I noticed from my list on the data learning center, most of the strings I choose for example, cyclone tour 16, hyper-g 16, lynx 16, are showing data of spin potential that's higher than their 1.25's. I thought the general rule of thumb, thinner gauge more spin & more power. Thank you in advance for the help.
Good question. I would guess the string manufacturers have slightly different formulas for the different string gauges which would show different results during testing.
 
#14
Some studies show that with a textured string, a higher gauge actually imparts more spin, due the the increased contact area of the string and the ball. These were done before poly was getting to be the norm. Strings like Prince Topspin and Alpha Ultraspin are 15L--makes sense.
 

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#15
Also, the same string in different gauges will have different stiffness. Usually the thicker the gauge the stiffer (but not always). Wonder if there’s some corollation between the increased spin capacity with stiffer variants of the same string. Then again, in some ways that sounds counter intuitive.

Too many variables for my small brain to think about. I go sleepy now.
 
#16
I think thin strings provide better spin in a closed pattern and thick strings provide better spin in a more open pattern.
I would say more useful spin, thin strings in an open pattern gave me more spin for sure, however more tension loss and higher launch angle. What good is all that spin when you can't control it?
 
#17
Go back to the ORIGINAL "BIG 3", Howard Brody, Rod Cross and Crawford Lindsey.

In the case of round strings or shaped multisided strings that are close to being round.... Thicker gauge strings are usually stiffer than their thinner gauge brothers.

Stringbeds with thicker gauges typically provide lower "Rebound Power" due to less deflection of the string bed as the ball and string bed collide compared to their thinner gauge brothers.

The player usually feels this as a less powerful shot. The player then compensates for this by swinging the racquet faster. The net effect is an increase in Racquet Head Speed. Spin Potential increases as RHS increases assuming the player is using the appropriate stroke technique. Obviously, if the player is a flat hitter, the differences in string gauge aren't going to make that much difference with regards to spin generation.

In the case of shaped strings that are not close to being round, three-sided, four-sided, five-sided and perhaps six-sided, it is difficult to create a consistent stringbed because the string can twist during the stringing process or when the ball collides with the string bed. This can produce inconsistent results with regards to spin generation. Although I would suggest that thinner gauges are closer to round shapes than thicker gauges. This might lead to increased "grabbing" of the ball and greater spin potential.
 
#19
I would say more useful spin, thin strings in an open pattern gave me more spin for sure, however more tension loss and higher launch angle. What good is all that spin when you can't control it?
True. But I was just answering the spin question. Advantage of thin strings in a closed pattern is the closed pattern already provides superior control so it mitigates against tension loss somewhat. Thin strings in an open pattern is a disaster sometimes. So I always go 15-16g mains and 17 crosses in a 16x19 and 17g mains and 18-19g crosses in a 18x20.
 
#20
True. But I was just answering the spin question. Advantage of thin strings in a closed pattern is the closed pattern already provides superior control so it mitigates against tension loss somewhat. Thin strings in an open pattern is a disaster sometimes. So I always go 15-16g mains and 17 crosses in a 16x19 and 17g mains and 18-19g crosses in a 18x20.
When using different gauges do you use a differential or do you select strings in gauges that will provide the needed difference with equal tensions?
 
#21
If you're looking at the TW data, they use mainly two data points to determine spin potential IIRC. (Feel free to go read their info to cross check this.)

They look at string to ball friction and string to string friction. The idea is a string with high string to ball and low string to string will have more spin potential. This makes perfect sense. So it's quite possible that on average and in general (caveat, disclaimer, etc.) a larger gauge with have similar ball bite but less string to string friction. I'm sure this will vary from string to string, but I wouldn't get too hung up on this. You really have to test for yourself at the tension you like.

The problem with using these numbers to gauge spin potential for a particular player is they are only a couple of factors and they are lab tests. Valuable for comparing similar strings perhaps, but they don't consider a players own setup.

For example, a 17 versus 16 guage string can make a noticeable swing weight difference. Have a lower swing weight could affect your racquet speed which will possibly affect your spin potential. Also, depending on what tension you string the racquet at you may enhance or detract from your spin potential. The gauge you pick may affect your final tension based on how the racquet feels so for a particular player 17 might be better if they string it at a more spin enhancing tension. It could work the opposite for a different player.

My advice is generally try to find a string you like the feel of first. Then make changes from there. I think most people enjoy the game more if they like the way hitting the ball feels. I know people like to try and get more and more spin, but I think the difference in spin from just a string change is fairly marginal. It can be noticeable, but I don't think it's game changing.
 
#22
In general, thicker gauge, less power. Less power requires greater racket head speed to achieve same ball velocity. Greater racket head speed = more spin.

I'm speculating, but another factor is that a thicker main string will be raised higher off the cross string that it sits on top of, creating a higher ridge to help with string to ball friction when brushing up on the ball. I can feel this when I run my hand from side-to-side across my racket. This is even more pronounced when using a thicker main sting and thinner cross.
 
#23
Why?

Even when you read some tw short description it says, try this thinner gauge for even more spin, but then the learning center shows 16g having more potential for spin.

Spin is supposedly off snap back and bite on ball, I would think open pattern has more room to move the strings. This is to say everything else being equal.

After being able to afford strings and not worry about durability, I went to 1.25 and that just seems to be my magic number. But now researching and looking for certain strings to try the data just baffled me.


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The guys who did some scientific comparisons of the interactions of tennis balls with various string types and tensions (see post #17 above) found that there are several contributing factors to how we produce spin with our strokes and also how we perceive it. The crazy thing with all of this is that much of our string choice simply boils down to what feels right. Think of our brains sensing the feedback we feel through the racquet handle and comparing that with how the ball travels to the other end of the court. When the ball does what it feels like it's supposed to do, that string setup is probably "right". That might be your best qualifier.

I also agree with the idea that a thicker string might make the racquet face a less resilient "trampoline" compared with a thinner gauge of that same string. So that produces less linear velocity on the ball for a given swing, but the angular contact (across the ball) probably still produces a similar amount of spin for that given swing. That moves the ratio of velocity vs. spin more in the direction of spin. The same rpm's can put more curve on the flight of a slightly slower ball, so the shot has more "spin effect" even if the ball has the same rpm's.

The "snap back" of the strings factors into spin, but when strings can easily snap back, that indicates that they can also readily slide out of position. When they can do that easily, I believe that the strings can more readily lock up with the ball and get it turning instead of just sliding across its surface. Some of our pals here have made the observation that spin can still be generated when hitting with a frame that has an old string bed that's "locked" - the mains can't easily slide over the crosses. So while "snap back" is a piece of the spin puzzle, it's likely not the whole deal.

One thing we get with a more open string pattern is more space between the strings for more of the surface of the ball to "smush" into at contact. Word on the street is that this makes it easier for a more open string bed to "grab" the cover of the ball and get it spinning. When we use a thinner gauge of string, that effectively produces slightly larger spaces between the strings, so maybe there's more potential for spin that way. But it's also believed that thinner string can bite into the felt on the ball to make spin, even if the string is round and the pattern isn't ultra open.

If the 1.25mm is feeling right for you, I'd say stick with it. No need to chase too much data and try to get along with a string that looks like a better performer on paper, yet feels awful when you're hitting with it. If you're already using a full poly bed or poly hybrid, the only way you'll likely get substantially more spin is to get some of Uncle Rafa's DNA added to your own... and I haven't read about any of those experiments.
 
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