shoes - Tennis Review shoes gear editor Justin diFeliciantonio and his technical advisers answer your equipment questions every Monday and Wednesday in the Mailbag. Click here to send in a question of your own.


My question is about string savers. Is it a good idea to place string savers in a full co-poly bed? I’ve been playing with Signum Pro Hyperion, a round monofilament string, for about a year now, and I couldn’t be happier with it. It has tremendous power, control, feel, and pretty decent spin potential, plus I find it’s really comfortable. The only drawback is its durability. The string lasts me about eight hours of playing time. So I’m wondering: Is it a good idea to insert string savers into the Signum? (Or are string savers useful only for natural gut?) More specifically, would the string savers make the string play stiffer and less arm friendly? Would they have an effect on the co-poly’s spin potential, as much spin is produced when the strings move and snap back upon impact? I string my own racquets at 52/50 lbs, and I play with the Wilson BLX Six.One Team, which has an 18 x 20 pattern.—Tom

Thanks for your question, Tom. String savers—small pieces of material, plastic or otherwise, placed in between the strings to reduce friction and breakage—would definitely extend the durability of your Pro Hyperion, though it’s hard to say by how much; much of it depends on your playing style and ability level. The short answer, though, to your question is: No, it’s not a good idea to combine string savers with polyester. Not only would it make a string like Pro Hyperion play less comfortably and arm-friendly, it might even reduce the stringbed’s power and spin potential.

As professional stringer Roman Prokes, of RPNY Tennis, explains, “We generally don't recommend string savers, because they really deaden and stiffen up the feel of the stringbed. The one exception is with natural gut, because it's such a lively string. To be honest, in the last four years I can’t remember once installing string savers into polyester. And I don’t think it’s a very good idea, as it’ll make the poly play even stiffer than it already does.”

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