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You bought that pricey racquet, and it’s served you well, but now what are you going to do?
When you buy cheap racquets you can sort of just replace them if you don’t want to bother restringing them.
It’s wasteful, but it’s an option.
When you shell out the big bucks for a quality racquet you have to replace it with the right strings, at the right weighted pressure, and provide the right amount of bounce to it.
Do you have time to do it by hand?
We don’t, and we’re willing to bet you have better ways to spend your time.
Nevertheless, it’s still a necessary evil and something you need to do so your tennis game can stay strong.
For that, we’ve developed a list of the best tennis stringing machine models on the market. Nothing compares to these top five.
If you’re not keen on how to use one, don’t worry; we’ve covered all that and more in the attached buying guide and FAQ section below.
Our Reviews Of The Best Stringing Machine
#1 Gamma Progression Tennis Racquet Stringing Machine
At every single way you look at it, Gamma made the best tennis stringing machine.
As a matter of fact, it’s also the best badminton and squash stringing machine; this is designed to do it all.
Equipped with a pathfinder awl and straight awl, hex wrenches, pliers and a diagonal cutter, you get everything you need with this stringing machine right out of the box.
No need to bring your own tools, all you’re going to need is a bench or a tabletop that you can stash this on.
These machines aren’t made to be light, but Gamma kept it as lightweight as possible at just under 25 lbs.
From the dynamic use of the stringing clamps to the arm wand, everything is adjustable, and it’s all built to last.
Gamma has so many models in this lineup, but none of them truly hit home like this one.
The drop weight transitioning system allows you to string in high weight tension ratings up to 90 lbs, while the ratchet gripper is diamond-coated to last through hell or high water.
While the Progression is missing a few things from the other units in the lineup (such as the six-point quick string system), it’s at a great financial price cut.
Some of these units cost 4-5x what this one does, so this is without a doubt the best bang for your buck, and the overall best racquet stringer that you could ever ask for.
#2 Gamma X-Stringer Tabletop Stringing Machine
Tennis stringing machine reviews always compare Gamma models against other brands, and when you know Gamma as intimately as we do, you totally understand why.
They set such a high standard that it’s impossible to follow, which is why they were able to gain the top two spots on this list.
Much like the Progression model, you only have to spend between 45-50 minutes to string your racquet.
That might seem like a long time, but compare that to two or more hours for single point systems.
Drop weight tensioning allows you to string these up to 90 lbs of total weight, while also ensuring the pattern remains perfectly intact.
While it’s not the first choice of material, the composite limbs on the swivel wand and clamps give you plenty of power, but they might not last as long as steel clamps.
That’s okay though, because you’re backed by a limited lifetime warranty on most of this entire unit.
There’s enough give to position this in a 360° format to give you more working space. You’re going to need it when you put the inclusive tool kit to good use.
You’ll get a hex wrench, pathfinder awl, straight awl, pliers and more with your purchase, so you don’t have to bring your own tools to the table.
It’s an average weight and an average size, but the results are nothing short of fantastic.
#3 Klippermate Tennis Racquet Stringing Machine
Now that we’re straying away from Gamma, the Klippermate tennis racquet stringing machine has its time to shine.
This is completely ready to use right out of the box, just pull it out, look at the included instructions, and you’re off to the races.
Everything you need is in this pack for a reasonable price: you get your tools and varying stringing methods to get the best possible string pattern for your racquet.
Stringing time on this is a bit longer since it’s a slightly smaller machine than the others we’ve seen so far.
Klippermate includes an unlimited lifetime warranty on parts and labor, so you’ll have nothing to worry about from the moment you decide to purchase this stringer.
They’ll also include three different strings along with your purchase, each of a different caliber to test out on your racquets and figure out what works best for you.
#4 Tourna 300-CS Crank Stringing Machine
Now we’re getting into the big leagues.
When it comes to cost and convenience, this doesn’t reign supreme like our top pick does, but if you’re really looking to have the ultimate tennis arsenal, you can’t get any higher and more posh than this.
Tourna’s 300-CS uses six different points to deliver a quicker solution to stringing your racquet while balancing it on a self-leveling stand.
This unit is a whopping 68 pounds, so you’re not going to be lugging it around with you or just putting it on a tabletop.
This should sit in your workshop or in a designated spot in your garage so you can restring your racquet when you need to.
Everything about it is adjustable from the height to the drop point, so you’re getting a fully customizable experience no matter which way you swing it.
These stringers have been used since the 90s and are still kicking today.
While it may not be your most cost-effective solution, it could definitely be the last stringing machine that you’ll ever need to purchase.
If you’re planning on playing tennis for the long haul, consider the investment and make an informed decision by checking out the buying guide below.
#5 MiStringer Portable Stringing Machine
Last but not least, there’s a tennis racquet stringer that’s literally designed to fit in your racquet sleeve with you when you go to the court.
Hopefully you won’t have to string it while you’re on the court, but it’s an option.
This thing weighs six pounds, so there’s no way that you can’t find a spot to stash it in your home or bring it with you on your next tennis weekend.
Using a six-point clamp system, you’ll be able to hold this in place while you run the strings through.
As you might imagine, it’s not going to be the fastest racquet you’ve ever strung due to it’s more cramped style, but it gets the job done nonetheless.
There’s not much more to it than that; it’s effective, solidly built, and takes up so little real estate in your home.
Stringing Machine FAQ
What to Look for When Buying a Tennis Racquet Stringing Machine
Preferably clamps should be made out of steel or graphite.
The stronger the material, the better. Graphite clamps are okay, though they’ll see degradation over time and won’t last anywhere near as long as steel.
Then you get into diamond-coated clamps, which are just over the top.
They ensure the clamps aren’t going to incur any damage, no matter how many years you own this, but it’s an upfront cost you have to account for.
What is the max tension I can string a racquet to?
You realistically only need up to about 70 lbs of strung weight, but most high-end stringing machines will give you upwards of 85-90 lbs.
This is good, because it accounts for human error. These are machines that aid you, they’re not like the manufacturer machines that string these for you in the beginning.
You’re going to aim for 70 lbs and you’ll likely achieve a range from 63-72 lbs. It’s okay when that happens, it doesn’t have to be ridiculously precise, just within a couple of pounds in either direction.
Portability is nice, but it doesn’t necessarily dictate the cost.
There’s three main portability ratings that you can see based on the stringing machines we’ve reviewed here today.
There’s truly portable stringers that are around six pounds and fit in your racquet bag. There are tabletop units that are about 25 lbs. And then there are stationary stringing machines that are standalone an weight anywhere from 60-85 lbs.
How much does portability matter to you? Do you think you’ll be better off stringing on-the-go, or do you want to string it in a single spot in the comfort of your own home?
Considering that you might be stringing your racquet about six times a year from constant use, it’s possible you won’t be using it often enough for portability to be a major factor.
When doesn’t price factor in?
Stringing machines can get pretty expensive when you get to stationary models with extendable and customizable stands, and you can even end up shelling out the big bucks on a portable unit that fits in your racquet bag.
Price depends on a few factors including how many stringing points there are, durability, and the power of the clamps.
It’s not so much about whether it’s portable or stationary that defines the cost, it’s just about what it can do for you.
You’re always going to have to spend a decent amount of time stringing your racquet so you have to make sure the equipment is going to be reliable and help you out rather than hinder you.
This comes down to the total point system in the stringing method.
The more points (2, 6), the less time you have to spend. You’ll see six-point machines average about 35-45 minutes, while two-point machines will be between 45-55. These times are just a guide and with experience, your time per racquet will go down.
The time adds up very quickly; be wary on what you want to do in this regard. More points means a smoother transition, every time.
Warranties are extremely important and on machines like these, they tend to last a lifetime.
That’s not an exaggeration; they’ll come with unlimited lifetime warranties for parts, labor and promises on the durability.
Stringing machines are built to last, so companies are willing to put major stock in their product and ensure that it’s not going to give out on you.
In our opinion, if a company is willing to put out a lifetime warranty on a product, it’s at least worth a look.
How to String Your Racquet?
Unless you’ve done it by hand before (and this method is not recommended), you’re going to need the best stringing machine.
The reason we say if you’ve done it before is because we’re willing to bet that it wasn’t your racquet; you don’t want to risk messing it up now.
You’ve got to maintain a certain tension throughout or you’re just going to end up undoing and redoing the entire thing.
What is the Optimal tension for Beginners?
For beginners, you usually find your racquet around 65-70 lbs.
Some of the best tennis stringer machines allow you to get up to 90 lbs of tension, but that’s something that few people really need.
Your racquet tension is going to dictate the amount of power that you have when you crack it against the incoming ball. Higher tension equates to more control while lower tension equates to more power.
Too low a tension (with a normal racquet head) will result in much less control which usually isn’t what beginners are looking for.
65-70 lbs is a good range for beginners.
Are the Clamps That Hold the Strings Made Out of Plastic or Steel?
The best drop weight stringing machine models will have metal clamps.
Inexpensive models usually have graphite or cheap plastic composite clamps that just don’t do the trick.
If you want to get really posh, there are even stringing machines that have diamond-coated clamps that offer better tension retention during stringing.
These are, of course, not necessary in the slightest.
They’re nice and they do offer a stronger bit of grip, but they are by no means required to have on your stringing machine to get a tight fit.
The clamp material matters, but the brand that makes them also matters.
Anyone can find a way to cut these clamps and assemble them, but it’s a brand name that really takes accountability for quality.
Solid, age-old brand names in tennis don’t have the largest audience, but they have one of the most dedicated, and they know how important it is to make quality clamps for stringing machines.
Is it Hard to String a Racquet?
On your own with no mechanical intervention?
Yeah, it’s pretty hard. A drop weight stringing machine is basically one of the best investments you, a tennis player, will ever make on a sport.
Stringing by hand is not only tedious, but it makes your fingers numb to the touch and usually doesn’t come out well at all. Please don’t try it – you’ll be seriously disappointed.
You don’t just need a certain tightness all around; you need precise tightness on the strings all the way through.
You can’t dictate what exact point the ball is going to hit, but you can prepare every single point of contact for the ball.
What is the Best String Pattern?
Whether you’ve got a Gamma stringing machine or you went with another brand, each of them should be able to pull off the best string pattern known to tennis; the open string pattern, also known as the spin pattern.
This pattern allows the ball to sink in just a little deeper while still having a good weight to the strings, and creating a pillow for it to catapult out from.
You’re combating kinetic energy that’s been delivered from the serve of your opponent.
A little rubber ball with some nitrogen inside is coming at you fast, and it hasn’t lost much momentum by the time it reaches you on the other side of the net.
What are you going to do?
You need to be able to hit it first obviously, but you have to have the right stringing pattern to smack it back at them.
You’re going to use the spin pattern for ample power in your return.
Strung for a Stronger Game
Your portable stringing machine will be one of the smartest tennis investments you’ve made since you bought that tennis ball machine.
Now that you’ve got exactly what you needed, it’s time to take a look at that racquet and string it just like the manufacturer did to restore its former glory!
You’re already skilled, but it’s going to be nice to have that extra little bump in power and mobility when you restring your quality racquet.
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