Learning how to string a tennis racket is no easy task. However, if you are keen on learning this trade, then investing in a great stringing machine is something worth doing. With several tennis stringing machines out there, finding the right one can be a difficult task. Knowing what you need to look out for in a used tennis stringing machine will come in handy in ensuring that you get the desired results.
What to look for
You need to look out for three main things when looking for the ideal tennis stringing machine.
The Mounting System
Most tennis stringing machines either have a 2 point system or a 6 point system. The mounting system is basically the points that hold the tennis racket in place as you are pulling tension. Most people admit that a 6 point system gives the best results. However, there are many 2 point systems out there that will get the job done.
The Tension Levels
The tension level is the heart of a great tennis stringing system. One can distinguish the kind of machine that has been used to string a tennis racket based on the tension levels. There are three main tennis stringing machines based on the tension levels required. They are:
Drop Weight Stringing Machine: The tension level on this machine is determined by gravity. Drop weights, like the Klippermate Stringing Machine, are great for restringing at home. Since gravity drives this machine's tension, you may get different outcomes in high and low altitudes. Although the machine may seem basic, it is pocket-friendly if you are working with a tight budget. It is also ideal as a first machine to help you learn how to string your racket.
Crank Stringing Machine: Crank stringing machines, like the Tourna 300-CS Stringing Machine, uses a spring-loaded mechanism. The machine is ideal if you are looking for more accurate tensions. These machines is fairly priced and get the job done quicker.
This machine uses an intricate, complicated system to determine tension. Using this stringing machine is ideal if you are looking for consistent tension. If the price is not an issue and it happens that you do a lot of tennis stringing, this is the ideal machine to use. In addition to quick profile access before stringing, you also have the option of ending up with softer strings.
Tabletop versus Stand-alone unit
As the name suggests, the tabletop stringing machines need to be elevated to the desired height. You can either place them on a table or any flat surface that you deem fit to work on. The tabletop unit is cost-effective and ideal to use if you have plenty of storage space. In contrast, the stand-alone unit is pricier but ensures that you can save on space. Since you do not have to worry about adjusting the height, you are sure that you are assured of more professional outcomes at the end of the day.
What to look for or consider before buying a used tennis stringing machine?
- Does the stringing machine still work? This may seem obvious, but it's hard to ask because many of us are comfortable. We suggest that you ask if you can test the stringing machine out before you purchase it. If they refuse, then you know that is a red flag.
- Are you buying from a source that you trust? Next Door and Facebook Market Place have been growing in popularity because you can search in your local area, which is always comforting. eBay is also a good option that we recommend, but we always suggest that you buy for someone that has good rankings.
- Does the price make sense? Meaning, if you do not need to restring your racquet often because you hardly play, it may make sense to let your local tennis racquet store restring your racquet. It is worth having them do it because it takes you time to learn the skill and time to do it. If you are a beginner tennis player and only restringing your racquet twice a year, then it may be better for a professional to do it. However, if you play a lot of matches, or if you practice a lot with a partner or tennis ball machine partner than purchasing a new or used tennis stringing machine becomes economical and practical.
Where can you Buy a Used Tennis Stringing Machine?
Platforms like Craigslist, Facebook, and Quora have groups specific to tennis stringing in local areas, and it is a great place to start when looking for used tennis stringing machines.
To avoid being duped, however, you may want to start networking with people you trust. There is a high chance that you will get what you are looking for when you let your family and friends know that you are looking for a great stringing machine.
Pros and Cons of Used and New Machine
Benefits of buying used tennis stringing machine include:
Ins and Outs: The advantage of buying a used machine is that you know what to expect. It is hard for you to deal with the unexpected since the previous owner had it for a considerable time.
Cost: If you do not have the cash to buy a new one, then the price is a major factor when buying used stringing machines. You are bound to get a good deal if you buy it at 50% value of a new one. Consider buying a used one if you are looking for more budget-friendly options.
Shelf Life: Most Stringing machines are designed to last. The shelf life for most machines is 25 to 30 years, and as long as the machine is slightly used, you are sure that it may last you a long time. It is also easy to find replacement parts for most of the stringing machines.
Disadvantages of buying used tennis stringing machine include:
Wear and Tear: If the previous owner did not take good care of the machine, you might deal with a lot of wear and tear. It is wise to find out if the machine was used for personal or commercial use. The last thing that you need is having to deal with worn-out clamps.
Functional Condition: Apart from wear and tear, the machine's functional condition is something that may be wanting. Some people may be eager to dispose of machines that are not working properly. Although the machine may not work as it did when new, assessing functionality is fundamental.
New Owner Privileges: Perhaps the biggest disadvantage of buying used machines is that you do not get the tools that came with the machine when the owner originally purchased it. It is also hard to get warranties as well as guarantees when buying a used machine. If you do not mind giving up those perks, then a used machine will come in handy.
Perhaps the most important factor to note when it comes to stringing a tennis racket is that it is more about the stringer than it is about the equipment. One can have a great machine and do a lousy job, and another person can have an inferior machine and do a splendid job. At the end of the day, it comes down to skill.
It takes time to get the perfect combination of perfect string and tension. Enjoy the process since it is also a test of your expertise as a tennis player. Stringing your tennis racket helps you to play better, become more confident in your favorite sport since you have the opportunity to customize your strings. In the long run, you enjoy quality, convenience, and fun that helps you improve your approaches, and you end up feeling better about yourself.