Loading... Please wait...
  • My Account

Choosing the Perfect Racquet Stringing Machine

Written by

If you have any questions or require any help at all with stringing machines, regardless of how technical, please contact us. We'll be more than happy to help and provide the right advice.

An Introduction to Stringing Machines

Selecting the best racquet stringing machine can be a difficult process. Similar to the string market, there are many stringing machine brands available and to complicate things further; there are machines at all sorts of prices. Our own stringers at Racquet Depot UK have formulated this article, which should make your decision much easier.


Stringing Machine Brands

Major worldwide machine brands include BabolatGammaPrincePro's ProTecnifibreWilsonWise and Yonex. Prices start from £200 and can be as expensive as £7000. Out of these brands, there will be several machines that will be at your budget and made for the number of racquets you specifically plan on restringing each month.


Types of Stringing Machines

There are three categories of stringing machines:

  • Drop-weight stringing machines
  • Crank stringing machines
  • Electronic stringing machines

After this classification, machines can then have additional features over others, whether this is to do with the tension mechanism or elsewhere on the machine. Refer to the Pro's Pro comparison table below for the differences at a glance:


Pro's Pro Machines

Challenger III

PilotXP Plus

TX700

SX01

V800

Accommodate Any Racquet

360 Degree Turntable

Four Frame Supports

Two Throat Frame Supports

Swivel Clamp Bases

Tool Tray

Tension Mechanism

Drop-weight 1

Crank 2

Electronic 3

Electronic 3

Electronic 3

Auto Tension Lock

-

Tension Range

11 - 89 LB

11 - 89 LB

11 - 89 LB

11 - 89 LB

11 - 89 LB

Tension Metric

LB

LB or KG

LB or KG

LB or KG

LB or KG

String Gripper

Linear Design 2

Linear 2

Drum 1

Drum 1

Linear with Diablo 3

True Constant Pull

-

-

Tension Accuracy

Good

Better

Best

Best

Best

Additional Time Tensioning Per Racquet

8 - 16 Minutes

4 - 8 Minutes

5 Minutes

3 Minutes

Quickest

Tennis / Squash Clamps Included

Badminton Clamps Included

+ £32

+ £32

N/A

Basic Stringing Tools Included

+ £16

+ £16

+ £16

Additional Features

-

-

-

Automatic Clamp Bases

Linear Gripper, Pre-stretch & String Type Gripper Adjustment

Extended Manual

Weight

25 KG

28 KG / 35 KG

25 KG

25 KG

45 KG

Warranty (1 Year Standard)

Up to 5 Years

Up to 5 Years

Up to 5 Years

Up to 5 Years

Up to 5 Years

Designed for X Racquets Per Week

0 - 10 Racquets

0 - 15 Racquets

0 - 15 Racquets

0 - 15 Racquets

0 - 50 Racquets

Price, including 20% VAT

£265 / £270

£360 / £480

£560

£600

£1300

1 Rating: Good      2 Rating: Better      3 Rating: Best


When comparing Pro's Pro machines to Prince and Gamma in their respective tension mechanism type, there are no notable feature differences.

The more expensive machines from brands such as Babolat, Tecnifibre and Wilson will feature a few extra features that include turntable tilting, automatic stand height adjustment, touch screens and improved parts in some areas, such as diamond dusted clamps, as well as the mechanics to cope to with hundreds of racquets every year.

All stringing machines sold by ourselves, with the exception of the Pro Stringer, have six point mounting on the racquet. This means the racquet is firmly secured. Therefore, the comparison is mainly the tensioning mechanism.


Drop Weight Stringing Machines

Drop weight machines are priced low, built to last many many years due to the tensioning concept and the most maintenance free. They are, however, slower to operate and not as accurate as crank or electronic stringing machines.

If you are on a budget and not stringing more than a few racquets per week, we would recommend either the Pro's Pro Challenger I or Challenger II stringing machine. Both machines are the same with the exception of the Challenger I having one extra feature: a ratchet system. This allows tensioning to be simplified slightly by using one hand over two and will save a few minutes per restring.

If you spend the extra 10 minutes per racquet ensuring the horizontal bar is as horizontal as possible, you can achieve tension results very similar to crank or electronic machines.


Crank Stringing Machines

Look towards a crank operated stringing machine if you are looking for a simplistic and fast way to tension strings, in addition to great accuracy at the same time.

Consider the Pro’s Pro Pilot or XP Plus stringing machine which are both crank machines. The only difference is the Pilot machine has a baseplate designed to go on a table (table-top machine), whereas the XP Plus machine has a stand, instead of the baseplate and is therefore a free-standing machine.


Electronic Stringing Machines

Electronic machines are very quick to use and exceptionally accurate, as well.

The best priced electronic stringing machine, the TX700 machine from Pro's Pro, has a circular drum tension where the string has to be wrapped all the way around the drum before being placed in the gripper. More expensive machines will have linear string grippers, with some including a diablo. A diablo is situated just before the gripper. The string is wrapped around the diablo, before being placed in the string gripper. The benefit is less stress on both the gripper and string.


Time will be saved and most electronic machines, provided they are fully calibrated regularly, should be accurate to within 0.5lb.


In addition to the above, electronic stringing machines also feature constant pull technology. With manual machines, they feature a lockout as when the tension is reached, the tension mechanism stops pulling. The problem with this though is that string stretches and therefore the tension is reduced with drop-weight and crank stringing machines.

All electronic stringing machines stocked by ourselves are constant pull machines. This therefore means that the machine will check as to whether there is any tension loss, after the string is tensioned. If there is tension loss, the stringing machine will pull further tension to compensate.


Recommendations on Stringing Machines

We will recommend several machines on an impartial basis. There is no machine that will be suitable for everyone and therefore it is dependent on your specific situation:

  • If you are stringing a low number of racquets and on a budget, we recommend the Pro's Pro Challenger I.
  • If you are stringing badminton racquets only, we recommend the Pro's Pro Shuttle.
  • If you are looking for the best stringing machine under £600, we would recommend the Pro's Pro TX700. This is our top selling machine.
  • If you have an existing stringing machine and looking to upgrade the tensioning mechanism, we would recommend the Wise 2086.
  • If you are a player regularly on the move from tournament to tournament, we recommend the Pro Stringer; the lightest and most portable stringing machine in the world.
  • If you are on a budget of £1000 and expecting to string a fair number of racquets, we recommend the Penta 3600 + Wise 2086.
  • If you are considering either a Babolat, Tecnifibre, Wilson or Yonex stringing machine, we recommend the Wilson Baiardo.

Pro's Pro is a reliable brand and remains our top selling stringing machine brand by far. Unlike other brands, there are not several companies in the supply chain. We continue to endorse Pro's Pro and this brand remains the largest stringing machine brand in Europe.


How do I Learn How to String a Racquet?

The manual provided with all stringing machines will teach you how to use the tension mechanism but not the technique in stringing a racquet. This is the harder part and we would direct you to several sources:

  • Purchase the stringing DVD we have available.
  • There are some videos on YouTube that have a guide on stringing at a basic level.
  • UKRSA (United Kingdom Racquet Stringers' Association) Course. This is ran by Liam Nolan at multiple locations around the United Kingdom.
  • If you are in the Emsworth area, you can collect your stringing machine from our warehouse and one of our stringers from Racquet Depot UK can teach you how to string and use the machine you decide upon (surcharge applies).


Further Questions

We hope you found this information useful but as always, we are here to answer any questions you may have through the usual contact channels. If you have a quick question, do post below. 




All prices are in USD Copyright © 2018 Racquet Depot UK.