Category Archives: Natural Gut String
We were thrilled to have Dr. Brad Goodman visit the World Headquarters to produce a session for his Doc-Talk-Live program!
Dr. Goodman is a tennis player who wants to know more about equipment in an effort to protect his body and beat his opponents. You can catch this episode here: Doc Talk Live
In addition to the session Dr, Goodman was given the opportunity to “stretch” both a very stiff string and a very “stretchy” string, something that he, and many others, have not done. Needless to say he was amazed at the difference.
Dr, Goodman’s visit was a great opportunity to have a real conversation about tennis equipment. Please let me have your comments!
Once in a while words “fit”! Clash fits this new Wilson racquet because it disrupts the trend of “everything stiff”. Luckily this trend is dying and Wilson has, in my view, done a masterful job of expediting that demise with this concept.
Not only does this racquet look good it just feels good in the hand. It is light, maybe too light, but the brain detects something different about this racquet. We all know racquets are all about “the brain”!
In this review you may notice the addition of a couple of specifications. One is “Racquet – In Plane Stiffness”. This is the racquets resistance to”squeezing the sides together. The higher the number the more resistant (stiffer) the racquet is. Another addition to the review is the three (3) weights taken at the sides of the head and at the very bottom (butt cap) of the racquet. This very helpful when matching or customizing a racquet. so I thought we would include it.
Before this racquet is strung it has a noticeable “softness” which is expected given the 52 stiffness (Wilson is not using the defacto device, RDC, for their stiffness rating). However, after stringing, the racquet takes on a different “feel”. It is like the string is pulling all the material components together! I intend to hit with this racquet tomorrow so as right now I have no idea how it will feel.
To get the maximum from this racquet our demo is strung with Luxilon Natural Gut, 125 and the new Wilson Sensation Plus multi-filament with a “wear” wrap. This should be a great setup, so if you want to hit with the latest technology this is it!
For each racquet we do an “Accuracy Index”. This tells us how accurately the ball will come off the string bed when hit at different locations on the string bed. This racquet has an index of 97, which is very good, in the areas of the string bed that show the most failure (breakage). The overall string bed index of 94 is quite good and tells us that the string bed should produce as much accuracy as the players skill allows!
Take look at the following specifications to see if you agree with the player evaluations you may have read.
|Racquet Model||Clash 100|
|Reference Tension||58 lbs - 26.3 kg|
|String||Luxilon 125 Gut =M
Wilson Sensation Plus =X
|Machine Used||True Tension Professional|
|Racquet Flex, RDC||51 - After stringing|
|Racquet Flex, FlexFour||27|
|Racquet - In Plane Stiffness||317 lbs/Inch|
|Head Area, cm2||646.0|
|Head Area, Sq. Inch||100.1|
|Number of Main Strings||16|
|Number of Cross Strings||19|
|Main String Grid||7.50|
|Cross String Grid||10.37|
|Density (% of head filled with string)||.779|
|Average Cross String Space||.547|
|Average Main String Space||.469|
|Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT||37|
|Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in||206.94|
|First Moment, Nm||.764|
|Swing Weight, Kg/cm2||306|
|Swing Weight, Ounces||10.79|
|Swing Weight Calculated||320.4|
|Head Weight, %||47.0%|
|Center of Percussion||21.5|
|Dwell Time, ms||8.50|
|Efective Stiffness - lbs||26.7|
In dictionary terms it is:
“the amount of extension of an object under stress.”
In tennis terms, it means the same thing when talking about tennis racquet strings.
How much does a string stretch under the reference tension load or otherwise stretched (impact)? The proliferation of wrist, arm and shoulder injury has brought attention to the property of “stiffness.” The problem is that your stiffness may be different than my stiffness, so there needs to be an “index” associated with each string, in my opinion. I have that data on over 500 tennis strings, but that is just me.
The images show the results of high elongation (left) and low elongation (right) string upon breaking.
Several years ago a player asked me “where is the string that is missing?” Well, it is not missing. The ends you see should be connected!
If the string has little elongation when it breaks there is nothing “pulling” it apart like the high elongation string. So each time you hit the ball, the string either elongates a bunch or it doesn’t.
In the case of the high elongation string, on the left, it absorbs a good portion of the “shock” associated with a hard hit, whereas the low elongation string, on the right, lets your body do the absorbing to a great extent.
So, it is reasonable to use very low reference tensions for low elongation string (35 to 45 pounds; 16 to 20.5 Kg) and higher tensions (45 to 60 pounds; 20.5 to 27.2 Kg) for high elongation strings.
You may ask, “how do I know how stiff a string is?” If you see the word “polyester or co-polyester” it is likely that string wil be stiff compared to natural gut, most nylon based multi-filament construction, and PEEK (Zyex) material. In my opinion, there is no “bad” string just “bad” applications. If in doubt…ask!
Having one celebrity in the shop is quite rare but two…that is amazing!
The World Headquarters was visited by Bill and Aleks (aka GBS)! What is also amazing is that they came in separate cars so they did have a choice! If you are in the area stop by. You may see a celabrity! Probably not but you will see the latest racquets!
Jennifer walked into the World Headquarters of Racquet Quest the other day and asked to have her racquets strung. Nothing unusual about that, of course.
I looked a the racquets in her hand and thought to myself…” Well, where are they?”
In her hands were two (2) Head You Tek IG Prestige Mid racquets! If you don’t remember these, they are the pinnacle of the Head Performace series racquets. The head size is 93 square inches; the weight is 350 grams (12.35 ounces), with a swing weight of 309 kg/cm2 (10.9 ounces), and a racquet flex of 64 RDC units.
This is a great racquet for sure, but I don’t see many anymore in the good condition as these are. One needed a grommet set, but that was all.
The reason I mention this is to reassure tennis players that they are capable of using racquets they normally scoff at including a comment “I am not good enough to use that!” A lot depends on what you want to do with the racquet. In Jennifer’s case, she wants to get to the net as quickly as possible, and the nice recoil weight of 146.1 makes this a good racquet at the net! The low swing weight enhances the “mobility” of the racquet which also means this is not a particularly “powerful” racquet.
The new Head Graphene Touch Prestige Mid is still 93 square inches but now has a 16×19 string pattern.
If you are interested in hitting with a Head Graphene Touch Prestige Mid, our demo is strung with Babolat VS Touch natural gut which represents the purest combination I can think of!
Thank you, Jennifer, for giving me an example of what tennis players are capable of!