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Gamma X-ES Review

Here's my review on Gamma X-ES electric constant pull stringing machine.

Overview:

It was really frustrating regularly breaking strings and having to go all the way down to Queensway to get my racquets strung. I use very thin gauge strings 17 to 18 gauge and I tend to hit with more spin so I break them pretty fast. I prefer more open pattern racquets and my current Yonex RDS 001 MP (My review on the Yonex RDS 001 here) has an open 16x19 string pattern. My string of choice is the Toalson Ultimate 115, previously called Toalson Apex and they break pretty fast. For me the Toalson strings usually lasts around 10 to 15 sessions - around roughly a month, before they break. I visit Queensway pretty often to get my racquets as well as my friend’s racquet done.

We have a large base of tennis players playing in the Regentville condo, so its not usual to get piggy back requests to get their racquets strung as well. The main frustrating point for me was the times when you will have to wait to get your racquets strung. First priority will be given to the customer who purchases a new racquet compared to customers who just sent their racquets for stringing. I normally have two of the same racquets so I don't have issues about being not able to play if one of my strings break, but going all the way to Queensway to Hougang takes at least an hour to reach by Public Transport. If I take a cab, it will cost me around SGD$11 per trip. It its going and return from Hougang to Queensway around $22 to $23 which is the price of another string job for me. Both ways for me, I will end up spending either more time or money getting my strings done.

I was quite fascinated from an early age on how to string a racquet, using a combination of racquet tensions as well as hybrids and learning different stringing techniques as well as knotting. I decided to finally get a stringing machine of my own. I thought since I am breaking strings as well as getting requests for team members to help them string their racquets to purchase my very own tennis stringing machine. It’s more of a learning thing and passion for the game rather than investing in a tennis stringing machine for the commercial aspect (i.e making money from stringing)

I was contemplating between a drop weight, crank or constant pull machine. Most tennis stores now seems to have adopted to the more modern constant pull machines and I decided that's the way to go for me. I did some research and found that a good machine that provides constant pull stringing at a reasonable cost was the Gamma X-ES. A great resource for selecting tennis stringing machines can be found here. The Gamma X-ES got pretty good reviews and has a 5 year warranty attached to it. Spare parts seems to be also readily available. I though since l Gamma was willing to give a 5 warranty, it must be pretty good to be able to stand by their brand for that long.

The going rate for the Gamma X-ES stringing machine is between USD$949 to USD$1499.90. I have also seen some going for USD$899 (all prices quoted found online). Since the Gamma X-ES is a table top machine, most of the prices here are quote without the additional Gamma table top stand which can be purchased separately for around USD$99. But in most cases, stringing machines are only shipped within continental United States. So its highly unlikely that I will find a company willing to ship such a large and heavy item all the way down to Singapore.

I made several inquires and found out that it will cost like a couple of hundreds extra to ship a stringing machine to Singapore by sea. The other thing was I was afraid the electronics for the constant pull mechanism might get damaged during the long journey here to Singapore by sea.

If I were to purchase the Gamma X-ES stringing machine from overseas, I would not be able to enjoy the 5 year warranty attached to it, as well as any servicing required thereafter from a local agent or distributor. I eventually gave up on the idea of shipping the machine from overseas. Shipping a stringing machine from overseas is not as simple as purchasing a tennis racquet which was rather quite easy and less pricey as weight was an issue here with a stringing machine. The Gamma X-ES weight about 26KGs!

I thus decided to try to locate local distributors for tennis stringing machines here and I was surprised to find a local Gamma Sports distributor here in Singapore pretty close to my location. I called the distributor up and to my surprise he had the Gamma X-ES machine for sale here! The price was around the same or slightly more expensive to that of the US prices as I have to factor in shipping from the US to Singapore and that alone will be costly.

The main important thing was that I will get warranty and support for 5 years from the local Gamma distributor based here in Singapore. The Gamma X-ES stringing machine also came by default with the stand. The Gamma X-ES however came in a box and you will have to assembly the machine yourself. This was pretty tricky especially the part when you will have to mount the machine to the stand. There are actually no grooves that fit the stand. You will have to unscrew the base of the machine with an ellen key to expose the grooves and then proceed to mount the Gamma X-ES stringing machine to the stand. With the exception of mounting the machine to the stand, assembly of the machine was pretty simple you'll just have to just the clamps as initially the clamps were not gripping the strings tightly enough causing slippage. After tightening the clamps everything was working fine.

The distributor also taught us a couple of stringing techniques as well as different kinds of knotting. Initially it took us sometime to learn but after stringing a couple of racquets its pretty much routine now. Serene is very good at it and we have strung a couple of racquets for our Regentville tennis team members. Many now are referring their friends to us. Both Serene and me have full time jobs, so stringing is pretty much a pass time for us. We might however do a couple of tennis stringing in the Hougang area in the future but that all depends on whether we have the time to start a stringing service. Right now, we're just pretty much contented stringing tennis racquets for the Regentville tennis players and their friends.

Conclusion:

Stringing with the Gamma X-ES stringing machine is very easy and due to the electric constant pull, you'll get a perfect and consistent string tension all the time. So far, according to what I’ve heard from other reviews as well as the Gamma distributor, there has been not much issues with the machine losing it's tension but the machine has to be checked and calibrated after a couple of years just to be on the safe side.

Aligning the racquet on the Gamma X-ES stringing machine takes some time to get it properly aligned and clamped. According to some reviews I read, some tennis stringing machines are so easy to align and secure. Anyway, I like to take my time doing this to ensure that the racquet is sitting firmly on the machine. This process should not be rushed, as an improperly secured racquet might result in inconsistent string tension as well as well the possibility of cracking the frame from the racquet moving about. Getting the racquet placed securely is imperative in get consistent stringing results as well as NOT having the possibility of damaging the frame or grommets. It cannot be rushed, so ultimately this is a good thing as it makes you more cautious and alert to the potential dangers.

I also like the foot pedal for hands free operating. This is important if you need to hold on to the sides of the grommets towards the end when you are doing the crosses as the grommets might just pop up and damage the frame. Using your foot also enables you to do lots of other things like securing the strings as well as making sure that the turntable does not move too much when tightening. It's a very useful and convenient feature to have.

The sides of the machines has two deep drawers to place all your tools since as your Gamma Pathfinder Awl, Awl, Pliers, Razor Cutter and other tools kept neatly for storage. There is also enough room to store the foot pedal there. The drawers also come with a catch so that it will not just slide out easily and spill all your tools if you're moving your stringing machine about. After all this was meant to be a table top machine easily to move around for travel and storage purposes. Having a security catch for the drawer was a very intelligent design on the part of Gamma.

There is also a deep trench below the turntable to store all your tools while stringing so it's easily accessible. The cutting block at the side of the machine is pretty neat so that can easily trim your strings. But here I felt Gamma could have used better materials rather than cheap plastic which gets easily scratched and chipped.

Price wise, I think the Gamma X-ES is pretty reasonable. The 5 year local warranty, as well as the availability to easily get spare parts was the other major consideration why I choose to purchase this machine. It's a great machine at an affordable price that gives professional results. I sincerely hope that my review on the Gamma X-ES string machine has been useful in helping in your tennis racquet stringing machine research.

Hi I'm a novice tennis player living in Sembawang. I'm really interested in the game but unfortunately there isn't anyone my level that i can practice with. ive had beginner tennis lessons. Do you know of any groups of people near sembawang who play and that i can join?

hi,

maybe you can try www.tfntennis.com . they have tennis session all around singapore.

Hi,

Interested in such machine, kind to share about the local distributor location?

Adrian

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About me

  • I'm Nawin from regentville
  • Residing in Hougang Singapore
  • Racquets: X2 Prince EXO3 Graphite 100 (Main) X3 Wilson K Blade Tour 93 (Backup) Strings: Toalson Ultimate 115 Strung @ 48-50 pounds. Plays: Right Handed (Single Backhand). Shoes: mi Adidas Barricade V Apparel: Lacoste & Adidas Favourite Players: Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic

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