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Stringing Machines
January 10, 2011
3:15 pm
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colin0909
Manchester
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Hi guy's

I was wondering how many of you had bought a stringing machine and tried out stringing your own rackets.

 

I only play September through to April and between my 2 rackets I have had 7 restrings in a full season, i'm not using the thinest string gauges but have them strung to 23/24lbs. At £17 a restring in one season it adds up and with some of the other guys in the club I play at who regularly bust their strings i'm wondering whther to invest.

 

I have seen entry level machines for £200 new and then reels of yonex are about £70 for 20 rackets, so after 2 years of going through strings at my current rate it would pay for itself… if I charged £10 to other guys at my club I think it would pay for itself in a year which means I could afford a better spec machine.

 

BUT

If the reality is its a pain in the neck, fiddly, frustrating and i'm likely to break some rackets while I learn it may not be worth it.

 

Any responses are greatly appreciated.

 

P.S – I had a 1 on 1 coaching and Racket demo with Paul on Friday night. He is truly excellent and I highly recommend anyone who is considering 1 on 1 coaching with him does it. I like the majority of people here have probably grabbed a racket and if youre luck had a few tips from an elderly member of the club.

I learned a great deal in the time we had together and will definately go back for some more sessions, I only wish I had met someone like Paul when I started the game when I was young and fit and 2 stone lighter, I might not have had the 5 year break I did.

 

Thanks in advance

 

Colin

 

January 10, 2011
11:55 pm
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Matthew Seeley
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Colin!

 

Its good to hear that Paul has got yet another satisfied customer 🙂

 

Just wanted to say that I own my own Stringing machine. I bought a machine called the Pro's Pro Shuttle Express. It was about £180. It only does badminton rackets. I have never damaged a racket, and never broken a racket (except one that had a very big crack in it, strung too tight, given the frame was compromised – not my fault!). I get reels of yonex string – 200  metres, for about £63. This works out as just over £3 per go.

 

I got my machine about 18 months ago. I have strung in the region of 150 rackets.

 

The reason I bought my own, was that I liked a certain string, which broke about once a month (given I play a LOT). I am more than willing to pay £3 a month to have my favourite string and enjoy badminton a little bit more. It takes me about 35 minutes to string my rackets when I have done lots recently, and takes a little longer when I haven't done one for a while.

 

I believe at higher tensions than you are talking about, things can become a bit fiddly as you try not to damage the string in any way. I would recommend getting an experienced stringer to give you a lesson or two in how to do it well/properly. I paid my stringer £75 for a lesson. It was a very good deal as he is a very good stringer, and now, my results are the same as his! I found a made a few mistakes when I first started – broke some strings when trying to tie knots, or miss weaved some cross strings without noticing till a bit later etc. However, after you make a mistake, you will never make it again!

 

I personally think it is well worthwhile! Certainly given that I enjoy my badminton more, because I can play the way I want, and no more waiting for a week whilst it comes back from the shop, who did a shoddy job (i have had this happen too often 🙁 ). Remember, there are some excellent stringers around, but there are also some very poor ones! I think the key to being a good stringer is consistency! If it comes out the same every time you do it a certain way (i.e. a certain string on a certain racket at a certain tension) then that is good! Some stringers don't deliver this 🙁

 

I hope that helps you reach a decision!

 

Matt

January 17, 2011
4:12 pm
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colin0909
Manchester
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Many Thaks Matthew,

I'll let you know what I decide, I have a few guys at the club i'm going to talk to and see if anyone would be interested.if I can get some interest once I am competent and doing a good job its a great idea… although I wont be shouting from the rooftops as i dont want to be inundated with peoples rackets.

 

thanks for taking the time to respond.

 

Colin

January 17, 2011
5:19 pm
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Paul Stewart
Cheshire, UK
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Colin

Many thanks for the compliment – it was a really fun session. Just watching your face testing all of those racquets…and you learn so fast.

There are plenty of ways you can screw up a racquet if you're not properly trained to string, especially because players are demanding higher tensions.

Ideally, it's not just learning to string a racquet, it's about understanding about string, what it does, how it can be affected by different things and also being able to advise based on what a player tells you e.g. how often they play, type of shuttles used, conditions of the halls they regularly play in and standard of play – all are subjective.

I'm a member of UKRSA (UK Racquet Stringers Association). It's run by a professional racquet stringer that is seen at many tournaments, although badminton is still the lesser racquet sport. He regularly runs sessions and can advise on stringing machines.

Colin, if you're serious about stringing your own racquets, then perhaps it's worth a chat with UKRSA. Also talk to your team mates and see if they are interested in giving you the business.

You could also talk to your local stringer and ask them what they would charge if you provided the string. This may cut the cost down although you'd need to pay for string up front.

Hope this helps. you can always contact me to discuss.

Paul

February 20, 2011
12:13 pm
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Simon
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I'm considering buying a stringing machine for all the same reasons as Colin, and have almost all the same queries.

One extra point though, is it worth the extra money to get an electronic machine rather than manual ?

I can get a manual one for about £250 and an electronic one for around £450, both come with tuition from a “master stringer”

I'll be doing friends and my own stringing so not very many.

Advice appreciated as always

 

Simon

February 27, 2011
8:57 pm
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Paul Stewart
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Simon

I've been in a fortunate position  to test a few stringing machines. I was guest presenter last year at the UKRSA badminton seminar. From being at this event I managed to talk to many of the UK's top stringers. One of the stringers was the stringer at UK Nationals tournament.

I also got to practice on a number of stringing machines including Yonex ES5 Pro stringing machine which sells for about £6500. This is the machine all the top players have their racquets strung on at All Englands and other Yonex tournaments around the world.

From my 20+ years experience it's still a tough call which type of machine to recommend. But, if I had to be pushed then I'd go for manual over electric, especially an older machine because you don't know enough about the electric motor to know whether it will last or cause problems.

Make sure that you have a few lessons and test on a few of your older racquets before going for the more expensive variety. Follow recommended stringing patterns whenever you can because otherwise you could invalidate the warranty on a racquet.

Also, make sure you check a racquet thoroughly for cracks and broken grommetts, replacing the grommetts when required. Do not string a racquet when you know there are broken grommetts as it's inevitable they will cause a string break.

Again, check out UKRSA because I believe they're worth a try. If you decide to take their full course, you'll understand how much there is to learn about being a good racquet stringer.

Good luck to you.

Paul

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