No one likes a failure but it does happen, especially, with tennis string.
This is the perfect fail if you are using natural gut string. You can see the natural fibers of the string have been unraveling and finally reached the point where the stranding could no longer handle the impact of a ball hitting that area.
Natural gut and some multi-filament synthetic strings will exhibit this failure mode. The great thing about natural gut is that it plays better longer than other string materials.
The problem is that it is quite difficult to quantify “better” but it is easy to quantify “broken”. I recommend, if you are using natural gut, play with it until it breaks or the “fraying” is so bad you know it won’t last another match.
The use of Sting Savers can extend the life of natural gut string and will not affect the “feel” of the racquet.
I have two (2) Head YT Prestige MP 25th Anniversary Edition racquets for sale. These are my personal racquets and both are 41/2 grip size.
These racquets are, of course, new, complete with header card, tags, and grip protection.
I continue to use this racquet but I no longer need so many. If you want a truly unique racquet, or two, this is the one.
$150.00 each plus shipping.
I am not talking about the “peeking” type of peek but instead the material PEEK. For all of you chemists it is Polyether ether ketone and it is being used as a material for tennis racquet string, which, of course, is what we care about!
I have been working with Ashaway Line & Twine Company for several months to understand how this material can be a viable alternative to very stiff string, and, even a cost effective string for those needing a more “forgiving” gut like impact. In fact the Ashaway MonoGut ZX Pro has a dynamic stiffness similar to natural gut! As most players know natural gut is the very best string for those wanting arm protection but it is sort of expensive.
At first glance PEEK string looks exactly like many polyester based string. But that is where the similarities end. PEEK has elongations of 10% to 12 % at sixty (60) pounds whereas polyesters will be about 4% to 6% elongation. Power Potential is directly related to elongation so the PEEK material should return more energy to the ball.
Player response to PEEK string has been very positive and I see it as a material that will increase durability, stability, and playability in tennis racquet strings. MonoGut ZX can be used as a 100% system, and, in fact, I would recommend using a PEEK material as 100% the first time. I have clients using MonoGut ZX Pro in a hybrid format with natural gut and this may be the ultimate setup!
As with any engineering material some care is required to assure the string is installed in the racquet properly. Through our long association with PEEK material we have developed the techniques that are required to assure a winning result.
So, if you are looking for playability, durability, and stability (tension maintenance) you should consider taking a PEEK!
We all do, right? Well as tennis players one of the best ways to have fun is to have your tennis racquet strung more often than you may be accustomed to.
We all have heard that old rule “string as many times a year as you play per week”. Well with todays string material that simply does not work! Every string begins to loose tension as soon as it is installed. So after a few hours your racquet will feel different, and, place the ball in a different location than you aimed for. That is the reason professional players change to a fresh racquet every 7 to 9 games. Do you think they know something you don’t?
String is complex. Many say it goes “dead” or “lost elasticity” or some other reason they are loosing the match or just not “feeling it”. In reality string looses tension but very little elasticity and hardly ever goes “dead”.
So what is the answer? To maximize playability have your racquet strung after 20 to 25 hours of play! Remember playing a match will put less strain on your strings than a hour hitting session! Also, do not subject your racquet to very high temperatures for extended periods, such as your car trunk or a court side table in direct sunlight.
So, for a weekly player that will be about ten (10) weeks, if it doesn’t break before that. That is a far cry from the old “rule”. So to have more fun, and win more, don’t play by the “rule”! Have your racquet strung after 20 to 25 hours and feel the difference. Of course choose a racquet technician that has diagnostic equipment to record original string bed stiffness v current string bed stiffness.
Even if the heat isn’t on yet in your area it is still important to consider your racquet strings and what can happen to them in the heat.
We know that most string is “plastic” and will naturally loose tension over time, however, if we consider that “plastic” string is made up of “molecules” we can understand why high temperatures can contribute to tension loss.
As temperatures increase the molecules are able to move more freely. Think of it as one of your muscles. That muscle will stretch “easier” at higher temperatures than at “frigid” temperatures. Or at least mine do.
So, do not leave your racquet in the car for any length of time. Don’t leave your racquet laying on a table in the sun for any length of time and generally try to keep it from extreme heat. I believe a “thermal” bag can help but please handle your racquet with consideration during the “hot” season.