Check out the review of the unique TOURNA CUBE Precision Stringing Machine
ERROR: There is no book with ID tourna_cube_review
Big Hitter Blue
2007 Racquet Sports Industry Independent String Test
In The Lab:
On The Court:
Our playtest team gave Unique Big Hitter Blue 17 fantastic scores in three categories important to big hitters. Big Hitter Blue 17’s scores for Spin Potential put it in third place of the 116 strings we’ve playtested for publication. Its scores were also good enough for fourth-place finishes in both Durability and Resistance to Movement. It’s interesting to note that another Unique string, Tourna Poly Big Hitter, is still in first place in Resistance to Movement, and is in second place in Durability. (See the May 2004 issue of RSI for the full playtest report on Tourna Poly Big Hitter.)
Big Hitter Blue’s playing characteristics won’t be for everyone, but if you’ve tried other poly strings containing ether and found you like the way they play better than you like the price, Big Hitter Blue may be just the ticket, costing about half that of its most direct competitor on the market.
Big Hitter Silver
2004 Racquet Sports Industry Independent String Test
In The Lab:
On The Court:
It is not unusual for our playtesters to be divided about the merits of any given string, especially when that string is a poly. What is surprising, therefore, is not that some playtesters loved Tourna Poly while some hated it, but that those who loved it really loved it. In fact, they rated it number one of the 80-some strings we’ve playtested in resistance to movement, and second overall in durability (first place went to a Kevlar string). Control ratings were above average, while power, tension retention, and overall ratings were all well above average.
2010 Racquet Sports Industry Independent String Test
In The Lab:
Being soft, Tourna Quasi-Gut is a pleasure to string, although as with other polyurethane strings you have to be judicious when pulling the crosses to avoid friction burn.
On The Court:
“Wow! In 20 years I have not experienced a string quite like this. It combines the best qualities of a polyester and multifilament nylon.” 5.0 male all-court player using Wilson K Tour strung at 66 pounds CP (Luxilon TIMO 18)
“All day comfort. Big topspin from the baseline. Touch and placement are effortless. Very solid feel at impact. Great control.” 4.5 male all-court player using Wilson nTour strung at 58 pounds CP (Head Sonic Pro 16)
“As a polyester player, I expected this string to be too powerful. Not so. The control is great and the feel is crisp. Very little string movement. Adequate spin, especially on kickers.” 4.5 male all-court player using Prince EXO3 Rebel (hole inserts) strung at 62 pounds LO (MSV Focus Hex/Prince Synthetic Gut Multifilament 17L/17)
“Excellent playability. Firm and responsive. Great control from the baseline and net.” 4.0 male baseliner with heavy spin using Wilson nTour strung at 58 pounds CP (Signum Pro Poly Plasma 18)
“This string has the control, power, comfort, and general responsiveness of natural gut.” 4.5 male all-court player using Volkl Power Bridge 1 strung at 58 pounds CP (Forten Dynamix 16)
“I am returning to the game from a hand injury. This string is exactly what the doctor ordered. Quiet and vibration free. Easy power.” 5.0 male all-court player using Head Flexpoint Radical MP strung at 53 pounds CP (Polyester 16)
“Good control despite the higher power level. Handles high tension very well. Decent bite and very little string movement.” 4.0 male all-court player using Prince O3 Speedport Pro White MP strung at 74 pounds CP (Wilson Sensation/Prince Synthetic Gut w/Duraflex 17/18)
“Wow! Now I understand what is meant by the term ‘controlled explosion.’ These strings are very ‘gut like.’ Comfort and touch are outstanding. This could easily become my string of choice.” 4.5 male all-court player using Wilson nPro strung at 60 pounds LO (Wilson Sensation 16)
“This is one of the best strings I have ever tested. One can’t help but notice the blend cocktail of power, comfort, and control.” 5.0 male all-court player using Head Liquidmetal 4 strung at 58 pounds LO (Luxilon Original 16)
“This is one of the best multifilaments I have ever used. Where do I sign?” 4.0 male baseliner with heavy spin using Babolat Pure Drive Roddick strung at 63 pounds LO (Luxilon Alu Power Fluoro 17)
“Excellent feel. Surprisingly good durability for a nylon multifilament. Very responsive.” 4.0 male serve-and-volley player using Wilson K Six One (68 holes) strung at 60 pounds LO (Wilson NXT 16)
“Excellent bite and resistance to movement. This string has much higher durability than is common for the breed. It provides some of the advantages of polyester without the stiffness.” 4.5 male all-court player using Head MicroGEL Prestige Pro MP strung at 55 pounds CP (Luxilon Alu Power Rough/Head UltraTour 16L/17)
Big Hitter Blue Rough
2011 Racquet Sports Industry Independent String Test
Out of 149 strings tested to date (Feb, 2011)
In The Lab:
On The Court:
“Excellent combination of feel, power, and spin. This is a topnotch polyester.” 4.5 male all-court player using Head Liquidmetal Radical MP strung at 55 pounds LO (Babolat RPM Blast 16)
“This is comfortable polyester with very pronounced spin.” 5.0 male baseliner with heavy spin using Wilson K Blade strung at 54 pounds CP (Wilson NXT 17)
“This string comes alive on big swings. The combination of comfort, control, and power is impressive. Polyester has come a long way.” 4.5 male all-court player using Wilson K Six One (68 Holes) strung at 54 pounds CP (Gamma Zo Magic 16)
People actually noticed my increased spin and control from off the court! This poly excels in every category.” 4.0 male baseliner with heavy spin using Wilson K Four strung at 59 pounds CP (Gamma Live Wire 17)“This is a high-end polyester with excellent bite, power, and control.” 4.0 male baseliner with heavy spin using Prince Triple Threat Hornet strung at 60 pounds CP (Tecnifibre Black Code 17)
“Great feel, spin, and control!” 5.0 female baseliner with heavy spin using Wilson BLX Pro Open strung at 57 pounds CP (Gamma Live Wire 16)
“This is one of the best strings I have ever tested. The balance between comfort and durability is perfect. The control and spin are impressive. This is not a niche poly. It complements a wide range of playing styles.” 5.0 male all-court player using Wilson BLX Six One Tour strung at 52 pounds LO (Wilson NXT 17)
“This string has a potent combination of power and spin.” 5.0 male all-court player using Dunlop Aerogel 4D 5 Hundred Tour strung at 60 pounds CP (Head Sonic Pro 16)
Excellent spin and control. Outstanding tension maintenance. As a multifilament nylon user, I find this poly to be very playable.” 4.5 male all-court player using Wilson nPro strung at 53 pounds LO (Wilson NXT 16)
This string has pronounced dwell time, which provides a cupping effect. The playability, control, and power are unusually good.” 4.5 male baseliner with moderate spin using Babolat Pure Drive strung at 60 pounds CP (Babolat VS Touch 16)
Stringing is effortless. Incredible touch for a polyester. More than sufficient power, spin, and control. I would recommend this to anyone I’m not playing against.” 4.0 male serve-and-volley player using Head Youtek Speed MP 70 Holes strung at 52 pounds CP (Genesis Hexonic 17)
Topspin and slice players will get a lot out of this string. Hitting out is easy because the ball comes down very dramatically. Kick serves bounce to the moon.” female all-court player using Wilson K Six One 68 Holes strung at pounds CP (Head Sonic Pro )
“Solid feel from the backcourt. Great spin control on serves. Players curious about polyester should start here.” 4.5 male all-court player using Wilson Khamsin Five FX strung at 62 pounds CP (Luxilon Original Rough 16)
“Great tension maintenance for a poly. Crisp but not boardy. This string has more touch than its peers.” 4.5 male baseliner with moderate spin using Head MicroGEL Prestige MP strung at 55 pounds CP (Head Sonic Pro 17)
Tourna Quasi Gut Armor is a multifilament made from thousands of twisted nylon filaments impregnated and coated with polyurethane, making it an update to the original Tourna Quasi Gut. Quasi Gut Armor includes two additional strands of heat-treated co-poly ribbons in the outer layer to increase durability.
Tourna tells us that Quasi Gut Armor is a powerful, natural-gut-like multifilament that is durable enough to hybrid with today’s co-polys, but soft enough to provide relief from the stiffness a full bed of co-poly can deliver.
Quasi Gut Armor is designed for players looking for a durable and comfortable multifilament, for use either on its own or in a hybrid with poly.
Quasi Gut Armor is available in 16 and 17 gauges in natural with a blue spiral.
We tested the 16-gauge Quasi Gut Armor. The coil measured 41 feet 7 inches. The diameter measured 1.30-1.32 mm prior to stringing, and 1.26-1.28 mm after stringing. We recorded a stringbed stiffness of 82 RDC units immediately after stringing at 60 pounds in a Wilson Pro Staff 6.1 95 (16 x 18 pattern) on a constant pull machine.
After 24 hours (no playing), stringbed stiffness measured 75 RDC units, representing a 9 percent tension loss. Our control string, Prince Synthetic Gut Original Gold 16, measured 78 RDC units immediately after stringing and 71 RDC units after 24 hours, representing a 9 percent tension loss. Quasi Gut Armor 16 added 14 grams to the weight of our unstrung frame.
The string was tested for five weeks by 35 USRSA play testers, with NTRP ratings from 3.5 to 6. These are blind tests, with play testers receiving unmarked strings in unmarked packages. Average number of hours play tested was 26.7.
During installation, Quasi Gut Armor is wonderful to handle. You do have to be a bit more persistent with blocked holes, but the blue spiral looks sharp, and is reminiscent of the old Victor Imperial natural gut.
Judging by the comments, some of the play testers were grateful to take a nylon break from the typical poly we test. Still, the string has to perform on the court, and perform it did. Quasi Gut Armor received the second highest rating for Comfort of the 175 strings we’ve play-tested for publication to date — meaning the only string that bettered it in this category is a natural gut. Quasi Gut Armor also placed third overall in Touch/Feel, ninth in Playability, and tenth in Power. Quasi Gut Armor also rated well above average in Control. As a result, Tourna Quasi Gut Armor rated well above average overall.
It’s impressive anytime a string places highly overall in Comfort, but for Quasi Gut Armor — a nylon string with a touch of poly — to place second only to natural gut for Comfort, is astonishing. Back that up with three additional top-ten rankings in other categories, and you’re looking at a string that deserves serious consideration.
According to Tourna, Mega Tac is the tackiest overgrip ever made, period. An exclusive polyurethane coating creates an ultra tacky surface that literally clings to your hand. Tourna also promises a very long tack time, with Tourna reporting tackiness for up to 14 hours.
Tourna designed Mega Tac for players who prefer a durable, tacky grip, that works even in cold weather.
Mega Tac is available in Tourna’s trademarked light blue color, white, and black. The length is listed as XL (100 cm x 2.9 cm). The grips come in packs that include finishing tape.
Tested by 30 USRSA playtesters (28 males, 2 females), with NTRP ratings from 3.5 to 6.0. Average number of hours playtested was 22.3. Prior to testing, we asked about grip preferences: 28 said they preferred a tacky grip; 2 said they preferred a dry grip. Testers were sent unmarked grips, so they were not aware of the brand or model of the overgrip.
Installing Mega Tac is straightforward. Neither end is tapered, so if you go for that look you need to trim it yourself. There is also no adhesive starter tab, but if you start with a square end, it’s easy to hold the grip in place for the first wrap. Mega Tac stretches nicely to avoid puckering in the transition from the butt cap to the grip, and we didn’t notice any narrowing as we pulled it into place. The finishing tape adhered well and we had no problems with overgrips unraveling at the top.
Finally, even as tacky as it is to handle, Mega Tac separated from itself and the replacement grip with no drama or residue during removal after the test.
Compared against some of the iconic overgrips on the market, Mega Tac really impressed our playtest team. They rated Mega Tac first overall in the Durability, Proper Tackiness, Retains Tackiness, and Tacky and Absorbent categories. Mega Tac also gained a second-place rating in the Absorption category, and third-place ratings in both the Initial Feel and Feel Over Time categories. As a result, Tourna Mega Tac is the highest-rated overgrip we’ve tested, by a large margin.
When you first start playing with Mega Tac, you may have to focus more on changing your grip position; it’s that tacky. After a few hours, though, Mega Tac seems to settle in to a still-high but easily manageable level of tackiness, and remains that way for hours. Compared to a conventional white grip, Mega Tac seemed cleaner, less worn, and much tackier after many hours of play.
Not surprisingly, nine playtesters told us that Mega Tac was too tacky. Eighteen reported that overall they prefer the overgrip they currently use. Otherwise, a clear majority reported satisfaction with Mega Tac’s length, width, compression, stretch, absorbency, and thickness.
When we say that Tourna Mega Tac is a really tacky grip, we mean that as a compliment. Tourna acknowledges that a product this extreme can be polarizing to players, and we saw some of that in the playtest results, but the amazing characteristics of Mega Tac obviously impressed the members of our playtest team.
Tourna says that Mega Tac grips you back, but really, you have to try it to believe it.
|Not Tacky Enough
|Not Long Enough
|Too Much Compression
|Not Enough Compression
|Not Stretchy Enough
|Not Absorbent Enough
|Not Thick Enough
|Durability (1st overall)
|Initial Feel (3rd — tie)
|Feel Over Time (3rd overall)
|Proper Tackiness (1st overall)
|Absorption (2nd overall)
|Retains Tackiness (1st overall)
|Tacky and Absorbent (1st overall)
Length – 40 inches (102 cm)
Width – 1.125 inches (2.85 cm)
Weight – 6 grams
Thickness – Added 3/32 inches (.09375 inches) to a 4¼-inch grip
KEY: Respondents ranked overgrip from a possible low of 1 to a high of 5. Values represent rating averages.
Tourna Big Hitter Black 7 is a six-sided geometric monofilament polyester (in this case, a co-polyester). According to Tourna, Big Hitter Black 7 is an ultra-playable string that bridges the gap between co-polys and multi-filaments. Designed to be extremely elastic, Big Hitter Black 7’s sharp edges grab the ball while the heat treated hyper-elastic materials hold it there until ready for launch. The increased dwell time and spin allow advanced players to hit a “heavy” ball with accuracy, without sacrificing comfort or durability. Tourna rates Big Hitter Black 7 as having a midrange power response. Tourna says that tension will remain stable until it’s time to restring, after some initial loss immediately after stringing, a characteristic of its Big Hitter line.
Big Hitter Black 7 is aimed at advanced big hitters looking for a softer poly that can generate spin and control, yet is durable enough for hard training and tournament play.
Big Hitter Black is available in 15L (1.28mm-1.30mm), 16g (1.25-1.27mm) and 17g (1.20mm-1.22mm) in black only.
We tested the 17-gauge Big Hitter Black. The coil measured 40 feet. The diameter measured 1.21-1.24 mm prior to stringing, and 1.16-1.18 mm after stringing. We recorded a stringbed stiffness of 74 RDC units immediately after stringing at 60 pounds in a Wilson Pro Staff 6.1 95 (16 x 18 pattern) on a constant pull machine.
After 24 hours (no playing), stringbed stiffness measured 68 RDC units, representing a 8 percent tension loss. Our control string, Prince Synthetic Gut Original Gold 16, measured 78 RDC units immediately after stringing and 71 RDC units after 24 hours, representing a 9 percent tension loss. In lab testing, Prince Synthetic Gut Original has a stiffness of 217 and a tension loss of 11.67 pounds, while Tourna Big Hitter Black 7 has a stiffness of 196 and a tension loss of 21.66 pounds. Big Hitter Black added 16 grams to the weight of our unstrung frame.
The string was tested for five weeks by 33 USRSA playtesters, with NTRP ratings from 3.5 to 6.0. These are blind tests, with playtesters receiving unmarked strings in unmarked packages. Average number of hours playtested was 23.2.
Tourna recommends stringing 5% lower than with nylon, so that’s what we recommended to the members of our playtest team.
There is no doubt that Big Hitter Black 7 is a geometric string from the moment you take it out of the package. The edges feel to be the sharpest we’ve ever felt. Because of this, your fingers catch on the mains when weaving the crosses, and pulling the crosses actually shaves tiny parts of the edges off the mains.
Tourna Big Hitter Black 7 certainly looks to be a “spin” string, and whether due to its edges, its gauge, its composition, or some combination thereof, it impressed our playtest team. They rated Tourna Big Hitter Black 7 the best string for Spin Potential of the 163 strings we’ve playtested to date for publication. But that’s just the frosting on the cake: Our playtesters also rated Big Hitter Black 7 as having excellent Power and Resistance to Movement. Rounding things out, our playtest team members rated Big Hitter Black 7 well above average in Durability, Control, Playability, Tension Retention, and Touch/Feel.
Two members of the playtest team broke the sample during the playtest period, one each at five hours and 12 hours.
With our playtesters rating Big Hitter Black 7 well above average or better in eight out of nine categories, it’s fitting that Big Hitter Black 7’s overall average score is the tenth highest of all time. If you have customers looking for more spin, the combination of the geometric cross-section and the on-court performance will convince them that you know your stuff.
Tourna Big Red is a monofilament poly. According to Tourna, Big Red is a soft, comfortable, playable poly that is easy on the arm. Tourna designed Big Red as a control-oriented string with outstanding feel, with medium power to give players excellent accuracy and directional control. Additionally, Tourna tells us that Big Red has great tension maintenance and durability.
Tourna Big Red is intended for intermediate to advanced players.
Big Red is available in 16 and 17 gauges in Red only.
We tested the 16-gauge Big Red. The coil measured 41 feet 10 inches. The diameter measured 1.27 mm prior to stringing, and 1.26 mm after stringing. We recorded a string bed stiffness of 74 RDC units immediately after stringing at 60 pounds in a Wilson Pro Staff 6.1 95 (16 x 18 pattern) on a constant pull machine.
After 24 hours (no playing), string bed stiffness measured 69 RDC units, representing a 6.8 percent tension loss. Our control string, Prince Synthetic Gut Original Gold 16, measured 84 RDC units immediately after stringing and 77 RDC units after 24 hours, representing an 8.3 percent tension loss. In lab testing, Prince Synthetic Gut Original has a stiffness of 217 and a tension loss of 11.67 pounds, while Tourna Big Red 16 has a stiffness of 194 and a tension loss of 16.32 pounds. Big Red 16 added 16.3 grams to the weight of our unstrung frame.
The string was tested for five weeks by 31 USRSA playtesters, with NTRP ratings from 3.5 to 5.5. These are blind tests, with playtesters receiving unmarked strings in unmarked packages. Average number of hours playtested was 23.4.
Tourna Big Red feels stiff out of the package, which is not unusual for a poly. Coil memory made it a bit unruly on the mains, but installing the crosses was nice, as the mains offered just the right deflection during weaving. Even before getting the lab test results, it became obvious that Big Red wasn’t as stiff as it seemed, because we had to trim the end twice while negotiating a blocked hole. Finally, Big Red offers great feedback when cinching down knots.
Our play test team found Durability to be excellent in Tourna Big Red, and Resistance to Movement and Control each to be well above average.
Big Red’s higher-than-normal installed weight implies a denser material, which might help explain its great durability and truly impressive measured tension maintenance. These characteristics at this price point should be exceptionally attractive to budget-conscious players.