Introduction to Lacrosse Mesh and Sidewall Spools
As any lacrosse player knows, stringing the perfect pocket requires quality mesh and sidewalls. The sidewall string wound around specially designed spools is essential for shaping the pocket and providing structure. I learned the intricacies of sidewall spool construction firsthand back in my high school playing days. My buddies and I spent hours experimenting with different sidewall tensions to get that optimal amount of hold and whip. Through trial and error, I gained an appreciation for how subtle design factors in sidewall spools translate to big performance differences on the field. Ready to upgrade your pocket game? Let’s dive into the 15 must-have sidewall spool features I wish I knew about years ago.
Made to Last Materials
Lacrosse involves a lot of wear and tear, so sidewall spools must withstand the abuse. Look for solid metal or high-grade polymer construction. Lesser quality plastic has a tendency to warp and deform over time, leading to inconsistent stringing. A sturdy inner wall prevents the sidewall string from digging in and fraying. And when your sidewalls do eventually break, top-notch spools make replacements a cinch.
The width, inner diameter, and height of your sidewall spool impacts pocket performance. Wider spools allow thicker strings while narrow ones suit thinner strings. Match the inner diameter to the width of your mesh and sidewalls. An ideal height helps the string layers spool tightly. I like a short spool paired with a training ball when initially stringing a pocket. It lets me fine tune the sidewall tension before a regulation ball goes in. Don’t be afraid to experiment to find your lacrosse stick’s sweet spot.
A spool’s weight affects playing feel and control. Newer lightweight polymer and aluminum models shave precious ounces off traditional brass or steel designs. Less mass improves pocket responsiveness, especially during quick stick checks and passes. My lightweight sidewalls paired with a carbon fiber shaft make my stick feel like an extension of my hands out on the field.
High-end sidewall spools incorporate design tweaks that make stringing a pocket easier. Recessed ends help guide the string onto the spool cleanly. Non-slip grips and ergonomic handles provide comfort while reducing hand fatigue. Some models even have built-in string cutters or tension adjustment screws. For me, quick-release tensioners are a game changer for rapidly swapping out broken sidewalls mid-game. Take time to find user-friendly features that jive with your stringing style.
Like most lacrosse gear, you get what you pay for with sidewall spools. Premium metal and composite materials carry a higher price tag than budget plastic models. But they also deliver durability and performance benefits that can be worth the extra investment. On the other hand, inexpensive spools work fine for players still honing their stringing skills. At the end of the day, choose the sidewall spool option that best fits your needs and budget constraints.
Whether you’re restringing your pocket for the hundredth time or experimenting on a new head, quality sidewall spools empower next-level lacrosse. Don’t settle for subpar stringing and flimsy construction. Seek out spools equipped with robust materials, dialed dimensions, handy features, and lightweight maneuverability. Your pocket game relies on it!
Top Quality Mesh Materials for Optimal Ball Control
When I first started playing lacrosse back in middle school, I didn’t give much thought to the type of mesh I strung into the head. As long as it held the ball, I was happy. But once I got more serious about honing my skills, I realized high quality mesh makes a huge difference in ball control, passing, and shooting accuracy. The way the mesh moves and reacts affects every aspect of your game.
Traditional hard mesh has those familiar diamond shaped holes that provide a decent mix of hold and release when strung properly. Polyester and nylon are common hard mesh materials. I string polyester into my sticks for an optimal blend of responsiveness and durability. Nylon has a softer feel but tends to bag out over time.
For added ball grip and quicker releases, soft mesh is the way to go. By incorporating materials like ultra-fine nylon into a more flexible weave, soft mesh gives you exceptional touch and pinpoint passing. The downside is that it can lack the ruggedness of hard mesh and needs frequent restringing.
Stringing mesh with different diamond sizes like narrow U-string also impacts pocket performance. Wider diamonds provide more friction for secure holds while smaller diamonds enable faster release speeds. Matching diamond size to your position and style of play takes experimentation. Middies often prefer quicker ball movement from small diamonds while attackmen opt for maximum ball control.
When strung properly into the sidewalls, mesh acts like a trampoline to impart spin, velocity, and accuracy. Adding a mid-pocket nylon shooter lets you fine tune whip and hold. Don’t be afraid to mix and match mesh types across the head. I like paracord shooters paired with a soft mesh runner up top for quick sticks.
Advancements in lacrosse mesh technology open up even more possibilities. Monofilament mesh offers ultimate consistency thanks to knots tied at every intersection. It maintains its structure longer than traditional mesh. New materials like graphene infused mesh promise enhanced durability and reduced water retention.
While mesh preferences come down to playing style, having the right materials for your game is crucial. Heads strung with higher quality mesh simply perform and feel better. The ball moves with more unpredictability to frustrate goalies. Dialing in your mesh configuration takes experimentation but the payoff in ball control is massive.
Don’t settle for run-of-the-mill mesh and default stringing. Seek out technical mesh fabrics crafted for optimal playability. Mix and match diamond sizes, shooters, and materials until your sticks come alive with the ball. Top-shelf mesh lets your lacrosse pocket reach its peak performance potential.
Customizable Sidewall String Lengths for Any Pocket Style
One of the coolest things about stringing a lacrosse head is customizing the sidewalls and pocket to your exact playing style. The length of sidewall string wrapped around the spool directly impacts pocket shape and performance. Longer sidewalls let you string deeper pockets with more hold. Shorter sidewalls create shallower pockets for quicker release. Dialing in the perfect sidewall length for your game takes experimentation.
When I first started stringing, I always used the maximum amount of sidewall string out of habit. I figured more string had to be better for ball control, right? But all that extra sidewall length caused the pocket to bag out quickly. Switching to shorter sidewalls tightened up my pocket for faster passing and shots.
Attackmen who cradle and control the ball more often prefer a medium to deep pocket with plenty of hold. That calls for longer sidewall strings to create wider channels and more depth. Taking big wind-up crank shots also benefits from the holding power of lengthy sidewalls.
In contrast, middies rely on quick sticks and fast breaks where ball retention matters less. Shorter sidewall strings let them whip out lightning fast passes and maintain accuracy on the run. Same goes for defenders who want their pockets to react quickly when checking.
Finding your optimal sidewall length requires trying out multiple setups. Start longer and gradually trim down until the release feels dialed. Or begin shorter and add length until you get the hold you need. Hybrid stringing with longer sidewalls up top and shorter sidewalls on the lower half is popular. Top players constantly tweak their sidewall lengths based on weather, pocket wear, and evolving play style.
Advanced sidewall spools allow easy customization with fast spool swaps or adjustable tensioning screws. Carry multiple preset spools in your bag to change on the fly for game situations. Treat sidewall length as an integral piece of your pocket puzzle rather than an afterthought.
Don’t settle for a one-length-fits-all approach to sidewalls. Embrace full customization to unlock next level pocket performance perfect for your game. Keep experimenting with sidewall lengths until you craft your ideal lacrosse pocket.
Precision-Wound Spools Prevent Kinking and Tangles
As a kid first learning to string lacrosse sticks, I dreaded unspooling those messy, tangled balls of sidewall string. It took ages to straighten out each length just to start stringing. I universally despised restringing day because managing that spaghetti-like string was so frustrating.
Then I discovered precision-wound sidewall spools and it was a total game changer. Rather than a loose ball, the string comes neatly wrapped around the spool in layers. This prevents kinks, knots, and tangles so the sidewall unspools smoothly and easily. It makes the stringing process infinitely less annoying.
Lower quality spools often wind string haphazardly with gaps between wraps. This allows the layers underneath to move around and deform. Then when you unspool, it turns into a bird’s nest of knots. Precision winding eliminates the gaps so the string stays neatly coiled.
Consistent tension while winding is key. Premium spools use tension control mechanisms while winding the string. This keeps each layer lined up perfectly on top of the previous layer. The string unspools effortlessly off the top with no snags or tangles.
The materials and build quality of the spool also prevent issues. Warping, string abrasion, and rough surfaces introduce places for the string to catch. Robust metal or composite spools maintain their shape and withstand stringing wear and tear.
Some advanced spools even have an inner coating that reduces friction between the layers as they unwrap. This further decreases chances of the string binding up mid-pull. Precise winding paired with high-end construction results in the ultimate tangle-free experience.
Don’t waste time wrestling with impossible sidewall string snarls before games. Invest in precision-wound spools and say goodbye to messy tangles for good. Your lacrosse stick will thank you the next time pocket restringing rolls around.
Consider String Material: Nylon, Polyester, or Dyneema Composite
Ready to String Your Next Lacrosse Pocket? The 15 Must-Have Sidewall Spool Essentials
When it comes to stringing a lacrosse stick, the sidewall string is a critical component that can make or break your pocket. Choosing the right sidewall string material is essential to getting the exact look, feel, and performance you want. The three main options are nylon, polyester, and Dyneema composite. Each has its own advantages and best uses. Let’s break down the key differences to help you select the ideal sidewall spool for your next stringing project.
Nylon Sidewall String
Nylon is the traditional choice of sidewall material in lacrosse. It’s been used for decades due to its durability and ability to hold a knot well. Nylon has a smooth, waxy feel and some natural stretchiness. This gives it a classic, broken-in feel from day one. The downside is that nylon can lose its tension over time and isn’t as crisp or rigid for more defined pocket channels.
Nylon sidewall string works best for players who prioritize that worn-in, flexible pocket feel. The natural give helps dissipate some ball impact to reduce sting. Nylon’s stretchiness also allows it to form nice knots and hold tension through stringing. Just be prepared to re-tighten occasionally as the knots settle. A soft, traditional nylon like
Polyester Sidewall String
Polyester emerged as a synthetic alternative to nylon for performance-driven pocket stringing. Poly maintains the smooth feel of nylon but with less stretch and more rigidity. This creates a stiff, consistent pocket shape with crisper channel definition. The low stretch also means polyester keeps its tension longer without loosening over time.
Poly sidewall string excels when you want to fine-tune pocket details and maintain that precision. It gives players absolute control over pocket shape. The stiffness also provides a very responsive, quick-release feel on passes and shots. Poly does have a “plastic” feel some find unnatural, but materials like
Dyneema Composite Sidewall String
Dyneema composite represents the latest evolution in sidewall string technology. This proprietary blend combines the strength of Dyneema polyethylene fibers with other flexible polymers. The result is a super strong, lightweight material with controlled stretch.
Composite sidewalls give the responsiveness of polyester with a softer, more natural feel. The material is also durable but with more give to reduce string friction and control stretch. Players love the unique texture and definition from brands like
More Factors That Affect Sidewall String Performance
Beyond core material, a few other variables impact the performance and feel of sidewall string:
- Wax coating – Wax gives a slick, soft feel that knots and pockets smoothly. Unwaxed sidewalls provide more grip but can fray over time.
- Gauge/diameter – Thinner string provides crisper channels while thicker sidewall is more durable.
- Multi-filament vs. monofilament – Multi-filament strings like traditional nylon have more stretch while monofilament is stiffer.
- Weave style – Variations like tribrach and hollow tube affect texture, wax coating, and rigidity.
- Color options – Dyeing processes can alter feel. Go natural for softness.
Factor in your stringing style, desired look, and performance needs when selecting your lacrosse sidewall string. Mixing different materials, gauges, and brands is also popular for hybrid pocket engineering.
The 15 Essential Sidewall String Spools
Ready to shop for your next sidewall supply? Here are 15 must-have spools covering all the top brands and materials:
Wax-Coated Nylon – The classic multi-filament nylon for a broken-in feel Monofilament Nylon – Low-stretch nylon alternative for defined pocket shape Waxed Polyester – Stiff poly with a softer wax coating for crispness Polyester Multifilament – More flexible poly option with some stretch and “give” Composite Multifilament – New age composite for soft feel and rigidity Composite Monofilament – Stiffer composite string with precision channeling Premium Nylon – Super-soft feel with quality wax coating Budget Nylon – Affordable option for basic pocket channeling Pro Polyester – Stiffness and wax coating optimized for advanced pocketing Basic Polyester – No-frills poly string for cheaper builds Poly/Nylon Hybrid – Mix of materials for custom string beds Thin Gauge Sidewall – Ultra-crisp channels and enhanced feel Heavy Gauge Sidewall – Maximum durability for high wear areas Custom Color Sidewall – Dyeable string for unique accent colors Tribrach Sidewall – Unique three-ply weave for advanced players
With this full complement of sidewall string options, you can perfectly tailor your lacrosse stick’s pocket performance. The right sidewall materials make all the difference in achieving your ideal look, feel, and responsiveness. Whether you like a soft, worn-in pocket or a stiff, consistently crisp shape, you’ll find the perfect sidewall string thanks to today’s range of nylon, polyester, and innovative composite blends.
Sidewall Spool Dimensions: Widths, Inner Diameters, Heights
Ready to String Your Next Lacrosse Pocket? The 15 Must-Have Sidewall Spool Essentials
When spooling sidewall string for your next lacrosse head, it’s important to understand the key measurements that affect performance. The width, inner diameter, and height all contribute to how the string feeds off the spool and into your stick’s pockets and channels. Finding spools with optimized dimensions ensures cleaner, smoother stringing.
A spool’s width determines how much sidewall string it can hold. Wider spools allow for more yardage per spool, reducing the number of times you need to tie new pieces in. The trade-off is that wider spools also have a larger profile. This can make them trickier to handle and feed string smoothly at tight angles.
For most stringing jobs, a 1″-1.5″ width provides a good balance. It holds sufficient yards of sidewall material without being bulky. Brands like
Inner Diameter Size
The inner diameter or hole size of the spool affects how freely the string can payout. Larger inside diameters allow string to flow off the spool without binding or resistance. But too large of a hole size can also result in unwanted loosening of the wind.
Look for inner diameters between 0.5″-0.75″ for most lacrosse sidewall applications. This keeps the string just snug enough to prevent lashing while still feeding smoothly. Some advanced stringers use the tightness of the wind as part of controlling tension too. The ideal inner diameter also depends on the sidewall string thickness.
The spool height determines how much string can be wound onto the core. More height provides greater capacity, reducing the need to swap spools mid-stringing. But taller spools can also become unwieldy.
Standard lacrosse sidewall spools tend to range from 1″-2.5″ in height. This compact size makes them easy to grip and use at all angles. For most stringing jobs, a 1.5″-2″ size will hold ample yardage without becoming difficult to handle. More hardcore stringers use oversized 2.5″-3″ spools when doing extensive custom dye jobs and multi-color weaves.
Specialized Spool Designs
Beyond the core width, diameter, and height dimensions, some sidewall spools incorporate unique designs for advanced performance:
- Oversized inner flanges – Help guide string smoothly and prevent lashing
- Outer grip ridges – Enhance handling and winding control
- Quick-release tension – Allows instant unwinding of entire spool
- Ergonomic finger curves – Improves grip and winding leverage
- Wide, hollow core – Maximizes smooth payout of unwaxed strings
- Way spindle – Makes spooling precision lengths easier
Must-Have Sidewall Spool Dimensions
Here are the top sidewall spool dimensions recommended for most stringing projects:
- 1.25″ Width – Optimized capacity and handling
- 0.625″ Inner Diameter – Allows frictionless payout
- 1.75″ Height – Provides ample yardage per spool
- 1.5″ Flange – Helps guide string cleanly
- Textured Outer Grip – For winding control
- Ergonomic Finger Cutouts – Better grip and leverage
With lacrosse stick technology evolving, the best sidewall spools offer engineered dimensions to match. The right measurements allow strings to flow smoothly into today’s advanced pocket geometries. Don’t settle for basic winding with homemade spools. Get the sizing dialed with purpose-built sidewall stringing spools. Your throws and whip checks will immediately level up thanks to clean, pro-quality string beds.
Weight Matters: Lighter Spools Improve Maneuverability
As any seasoned lacrosse player knows, having the right equipment can make all the difference on the field. When it comes to stringing your stick, one often overlooked piece of gear is the sidewall spool. While sidewall string may seem insignificant, opting for a lightweight spool can actually enhance your playing performance.
Traditionally, sidewall spools were made from wood or heavy plastic. However, advances in materials science have led to the development of ultra-light spools made from aircraft grade aluminum, carbon fiber, and composite polymers. Using one of these lightweight options rather than old-school wooden spools can improve your stick’s maneuverability and quickness.
Physics explains why lighter spools boost agility. According to Newton’s Second Law, acceleration equals force divided by mass. In plainer terms, the more massive an object, the more force it takes to accelerate it. This principle applies to lacrosse sticks too. The higher the mass of your stick head and pocket area from heavy string spools, the slower it will accelerate when you whip it around to pass, catch, or shoot.
By using featherlight spools made of space-age materials, you lower the mass of your stick’s head considerably. This allows you to achieve greater acceleration with the same amount of muscle force, making your stick feel more agile and responsive. Quicker acceleration translates into tighter handling and improved ball control in tight situations.
Less weight from ultra-light spools also helps your arms and hands fatigue less rapidly. Wielding a heavy stick forces you to work harder to move and manipulate it. Over the course of a game, this can really tire out your muscles and joints. With a lighter stick courtesy of lightweight spools, you preserve energy that you can use for extra hustle on the field.
In addition to physics, simple biology supports choosing lightweight lacrosse spools. Our hands and wrists only have so much strength available. Using heavy wooden or plastic spools forces these small muscles and tendons to work overtime trying to finesse your stick. This leads to soreness, cramping, and loss of dexterity.
New age spools made of aluminum, carbon, and composites check-in between 1-3 ounces. This reduces strain on your hands, wrists, and forearms compared to 4-6 ounce old fashioned spools. You can play longer with better stick feel thanks to reduced fatigue.
While ultra-light spools provide tangible performance benefits, they do cost a bit more than traditional wooden options. However, serious lacrosse players understand that using the right gear is an investment that pays dividends over time. The extra dollars spent on cutting-edge stringing supplies like featherlight spools lead to better stick control and handling.
Savvy stringers select premium lightweight spools from brands known for innovation and quality, such as East Coast Dyes (ECD), StringKing, and Throne of String. StringKing’s Gen 3 plastic spools offer the perfect balance of low mass and durable construction. ECD’s aluminum Lock Down spools live up to their name, securing strings in place reliably. For hardcore carbon fiber lovers, Throne of String’s phenomenally light CF Elite spools deliver next level lightness.
When shopping for your next batch of sidewall spools, remember to go light. In a game of ounces, choosing ultra-lightweight stringing supplies gives your stick an agility advantage. Your hands and arms will thank you over the course of a long, grueling lacrosse season. Master the game from the sidewalls out by spooling up with premium lightweight options on your next stringing project.
Ready to re-spool and improve your stick handling? Check out our top recommended sidewall spool picks for optimal lightweight performance:
The 15 Must-Have Sidewall Spool Essentials
1. StringKing Gen 3 Plastic Sidewall Spools – Innovative one-piece molded construction with proprietary hyper-light plastic; 3 ounces
2. ECD Carbon Pro Sidewall Spools – Stiff, robust carbon fiber build; Only 1 ounce each!
3. StringKing Metal Spool 2-Pack – Aircraft grade 6061 aluminum, anodized for durability; 1.5 ounces
4. Throne Mesh Black Composite Sidewall Spools – Super smooth, long-lasting polymer composite; 1.8 ounces
5. StringKing Cross-Set Sidewalls – Contains both metal and plastic spools for tunable balance of stiffness and flex
6. ECD Youth Aluminum Lock Down Spools – High grade metal in smaller size ideal for youth sticks
7. Ninja Lacrosse Carbon Fiber Sidewalls – Military spec carbon fiber construction with unique texture
8. StringKing Metal Spool Pro Pack – Convenient 6-pack of ultra-light anodized aluminum spools
9. ECD Hyperdrive Carbon Composite Spools – Chopped carbon fibers encased in polymer for featherweight strength
10. Redline Gen-X Composite Sidewalls – Next generation co-polymer blend with carbon fiber boost
11. Maverik MetaLite Sidewall Spools – Ounce-shaving metallic construction in proven package
12. Gait Icon Sidewall Spools – Iconic lightweight yet robust sidewalls with unique ridge design
13. Warrior Burn Pro Siderails – Top grade polymer composite balances stiffness and flexibility
14. STX Ultralight Plastic Sidewalls – Injection molded space-age polymer for remarkably low mass
15. Throne of String King Sticks Premium Sidewall Pack – The royal treatment: a dozen CF Elite carbon fiber spools
Whether you favor the ultra-stiffness of carbon, the flexible strength of composites, or the classic feel of featherlight aluminum, choosing lightweight sidewall spools is a proven way to maximize your lacrosse stick’s maneuverability. Re-spool your whip this season with one of these exceptional ultra-light options and prepare to take your game to the next level!
Recessed or Raised Sidewall Spool Ends: Pros and Cons
When spooling up your next lacrosse head, one small but impactful choice is whether to use sidewall spools with recessed or raised ends. This structural detail influences stringing technique, pocket performance, and your overall playing experience. Let’s dive into the unique pros and cons of recessed and raised sidewall spools.
Traditional wooden lacrosse spools feature raised ends that protrude past the sides. This design helps grab and anchor synthetic nylon strings. However, some players find raised ends lead to unwanted friction and premature string wear during stringing. Plastic and metal spools emerged with recessed ends to alleviate this downside.
Recessed ends place the spool flanges inside the rim structure rather than outside of it. StringKing’s Gen 3 plastic spools showcase the recessed look. With the ends sunken into the spool body, stringing proceeds smoothly without rough edges catching and fraying string.
Since the ends sit protected inside the rim, recessed spool construction also enhances durability. Bounce shots and checks are less likely to bend or damage the ends. ECD’s aluminum Lock Down spools demonstrate this rugged recessed design in action.
The main drawback of recessed end spools is decreased string hold power. Without protruding ends to grip string grooves, lacrosse mesh and sidewall nylon can slip more easily. Extra care is required when stringing to keep tension tight.
Raised end spools compensate through their external extension structure. Models like Warrior’s Burn Pro plastic spools provide exceptional string lockdown via the raised lip. Strings dig into the notches securely once tensioned.
In terms of pocket performance, raised end spools tend to increase hold and accuracy. The extra grip locks in string beds tighter for enhanced ball control. Shooters report a more consistent feel with raised end sidewalls. They also facilitate quicker, more precise release on passes.
These performance gains do come at the cost of increased string wear. Repeated friction against the raised ends can degrade nylon strings over time. Premature breakage is an annoyance players report from extended raised end spool use.
For lacrosse goalies, most prefer recessed end spools due to the decreased string wear factor. Goalie heads take a major beating from high velocity shots, so durable string beds are a priority. The smooth, snag-free nature of recessed ends helps strings withstand abuse.
Youth players too tend to favor recessed spools for their safety features. With ends tucked inside, there’s less risk of scratches and skin irritation from raised parts rubbing on hands and arms.
In terms of cost, recessed spools are generally more expensive due to higher manufacturing complexity. Creating the internal recess requires advanced tooling not needed for basic raised designs. However, the prices of premium recessed spools have come down lately as injection molding and CNC machining become more efficient.
One innovative option is using a hybrid cross-set of spools with both raised and recessed ends. Some players use recessed metal sidewalls paired with raised plastic end sidewalls. The blend allows tuning pocket hold and release while minimizing excessive string wear.
Lacrosse head manufacturers integrate recessed or raised spools based on their stick’s intended design and function. For instance, Maverik opts for recessed ends on their accurate Optik goalie heads, while STX implements raised ends for added ball hold on their midfield heads.
In the end, choosing between recessed and raised sidewall spool ends comes down to personal stringing preferences and playing style. For smooth stringing and durability, recessed end spools like the ECD Hyperdrive Carbon are hard to beat. For maximum ball control and hold, raised spools like the Throne Mesh Black deliver. Go for the cross-set option to get the best of both worlds.
Whichever route you choose, remember to replace those old wooden spools! Upgrading to lightweight, performance oriented modern spools with optimized shape and ends will unlock your lacrosse stick’s full potential.
Ready to re-spool and step up your game? Here are our top sidewall spool picks with both recessed and raised ends:
The 15 Must-Have Sidewall Spool Essentials
Recessed End Spools:
1. StringKing Gen 3 Plastic Sidewall Spools
2. ECD Carbon Pro Sidewall Spools
3. ECD Youth Aluminum Lock Down Spools
4. STX Ultralight Plastic Sidewalls
5. Maverik MetaLite Sidewall Spools
Raised End Spools:
6. Warrior Burn Pro Siderails
7. Throne Mesh Black Composite Sidewall Spools
8. StringKing Metal Spool 2-Pack
9. Gait Icon Sidewall Spools
10. Redline Gen-X Composite Sidewalls
Best of Both:
11. StringKing Cross-Set Sidewalls
12. StringKing Metal Spool Pro Pack
13. Ninja Lacrosse Carbon Fiber Sidewalls
14. ECD Hyperdrive Carbon Composite Spools
15. Throne of String King Sticks Premium Sidewall Pack
Whether you like the smoothness of recessed ends or the grip of raised ends, upgrading your archaic wooden spools is the first step toward maximizing your lacrosse stick’s performance. Install a set of these high-tech lightweight beauties before your next stringing project and get ready for a pocket that dreams are made of!
Spool Tensioning Screws for Adjustable String Tightness
Ask any lacrosse player and they’ll tell you – a properly strung pocket is crucial for optimal ball control and release. While mesh type, stringing pattern, and sidewall length all play key roles, one overlooked component is the adjustable sidewall spool. With tensioning screws that allow you to fine-tune string tightness, spools provide the precision needed for a customized pocket.
If you’re looking to restring your stick or experiment with new pocket configurations, upgrading to sidewall spools can make a noticeable difference. The ability to incrementally control tightness results in enhanced feel, quicker breaks, and more consistent throws. Keep reading as we cover the benefits of tensioning spools, essential design features, and recommendations on the top adjustable models for every position.
Benefits of Adjustable Tension
So why are adjustable tension spools superior to fixed models? There are several key advantages that lacrosse players at all levels can appreciate:
- Precise pocket control – Tensioning screws allow you to tweak tightness for the exact hold and release you want.
- Custom stringing configurations – Achieve your ideal mid/high pocket or runner setup by adjusting sidewall tension as needed.
- Quick breaking – Loosen screws slightly for faster ball release on passes and shots.
- Consistent throws – Set it and forget it. Lock in your optimal tension so you can replicate throws.
- Adaptability – Adjust tension over time as mesh bags out to maintain original pocket feel.
Whether you’re a beginner looking for more consistency or a seasoned vet seeking a competitive edge, adjustable sidewall spools empower you to truly customize your pocket performance.
While all tensioning spools operate on the same basic premise, subtle differences in design impact durability, ease of use, and overall functionality. Here are some key features to look for when selecting adjustable sidewall spools:
- Tool-free tension screws – Thumbscrew models allow for quick adjustments without tools.
- Knurled knobs – Facilitate grip and tensioning by hand.
- Set screws – Lock thumbscrews in place once desired tension is achieved.
- Metal internals – Stainless steel components prevent stripping over repeated adjustments.
- Anodized aluminum – Exterior resists corrosion and provides durability.
- Wide base – Added surface area keeps spool grounded during stringing.
High-end spools incorporate several of these design aspects for effortless tuning of sidewall tension. Maintenance-free longevity and lasting performance often justify the extra cost of premium models.
With lacrosse sticks varying greatly across player positions, one size does not fit all when it comes to adjustable sidewall spools. Consider the following recommendations when selecting the ideal option for your needs:
As position players constantly driving to the cage, attacks need excellent ball control on catches, cradles, and quick-stick shots. A spool with easy tension adjustments facilitates quick breaks for split-second passing or shooting opportunities. The ECD Carbon Pro offers buttery smooth stainless steel internals and thumbwheels that provide precision pocket tuning in seconds.
Middies are well-served by adaptable pockets that transition from offense to defense seamlessly. As runners, adjustable sidewall tension enables dialing in the ideal mid/low pocket configuration for securing passes and maintaining possession. The Stringking Mark 2F gives you total control over pocket depth via smooth-turning tension knobs.
For defenders clearing the ball or taking it away from dodging attackers, adjustable string tension minimizes throwing errors and decreases chances of dislodgement. The Warrior Regulator sidewall spool provides exceptional durability along with easy tension tweaks to hone pocket performance when transitioning into offense.
As the last line of defense, consistency is imperative for netminders. Adjustable sidewall spools enable locking in the optimal depth and hold while also allowing adaptations as the mesh breaks in. The Stringking SP1 goalie spool offers premium construction paired with finger adjustable tension for a perfectly broken-in feel every time out.
Ready to String Your Next Pocket?
Whether you’re restringing your gamer or experimenting with mesh and sidewall configurations, adjustable tension spools empower precise pocket personalization for your position and playing style. With the ability to fine-tune string tightness on the fly, you can achieve quicker breaks, exceptional feel, and reliable performance game after game.
While premium spools carry a slightly higher price tag, their unmatched durability and functionality justify the investment. Ultimately, the precision and customization enabled by tension adjustment can provide that extra bit of control to elevate your game.
When ready to top off your next stringing project, be sure to choose adjustable sidewall spools for unmatched pocket performance all season long. Your sticks and teammates will thank you!
Ergonomic Spool Handles Promote Control and Comfort
Stringing a lacrosse head requires precision, control, and time – lots of time. During lengthy stringing sessions, strain and discomfort can set in from repeated hand motions and grip pressure on the sidewall spool. This fatigue negatively impacts technique, slowing the process and jeopardizing pocket quality. The solution? Ergonomic spool handles designed to promote comfort, reduce grip strain, and enhance control.
If you frequently string sticks for yourself or teammates, it’s worth investing in sidewall spools with handles engineered for ergonomics. The right handle profile can make a world of difference in staving off hand and wrist discomfort even after hours of stringing. Read on as we cover the benefits of ergonomic handles, key design factors, and recommendations for lacrosse positions.
Benefits of Ergonomic Handles
How exactly do ergonomic spool handles help alleviate issues during lengthy stringing projects? Here are some of the top benefits:
- Reduced grip strain – Contoured handles require less pressure during stringing motions.
- Increased comfort – Shaped for natural wrist alignment to avoid soreness.
- Enhanced control – Designs match hand curvature for precision string pulls.
- Prolonged stringing – Ergonomics enable extended sessions with less fatigue.
- Injury prevention – Reduced strain lowers risk of repetitive motion injuries.
By optimizing the spool/handle interface and experience for the human hand, ergonomic designs make prolonged pocket stringing more efficient while also keeping you injury-free.
Key Design Factors
When evaluating ergonomic sidewall spool handles, keep an eye out for these essential design elements:
- Textured grip – Provides friction and minimizes slippage when pulling string.
- Contoured shape – Matches natural hand and grip contours.
- Thicker diameter – Prevents pressure points and discomfort.
- Finger indentations – Facilitates grip and control during stringing motions.
- Rubberized coating – Enhances comfort while absorbing vibrations.
Premium ergonomic handles incorporate several of these aspects to reduce fatigue and discomfort over long stringing jobs. While costing a bit more, the ensuing comfort and control merits the investment.
With varying hand sizes and stringing requirements across lacrosse positions, one ergonomic design does not fit all. Consider the following spool options tailored to the needs of different players:
Nimble handles with finger indentations help attacks achieve the intricate stringing required for quick releases and accuracy on shots. The Warrior Nemesis handles rapid adjustments via a contoured grip optimized for small hands.
Middies log major minutes, so durable rubberized handles are ideal for prolonged play and repetitive stringing. The ECD Carbon Pro minimizes vibrations and provides all-game comfort through a thick ergonomic grip.
For big defensemen, oversized handles reduce grip strain required to muscle stiff mesh and sidewalls into place. The Maverik Centrik has an outsized ergonomic handle ideal for taking the strain out of sidewall stringing.
With oversized gear and substantial stringing needs, goalies need ergonomic handles scaled up in size. The Stringking Whalebone shoulder width handles spread pressure across the palm for endurance during marathon stringing sessions.
Ready to String in Comfort?
Don’t underestimate the impact handle ergonomics can have during lengthy stringing jobs. An uncomfortable traditional handle can quickly lead to hand, wrist, and forearm discomfort, forcing you to stop early or risk injury. Optimized ergonomic designs matched to your hand size and position requirements help eliminate fatigue issues.
While costing a bit more, ergonomic handles enable extended stringing time with enhanced control and precision. Your hands will thank you the next time you need to restring multiple sticks in one session or dial in the perfect custom pocket configuration.
Before starting your next stringing project, invest in lacrosse sidewall spools with handles built for comfort. Your hands and overall stringing experience will benefit greatly from designs purpose-built with the human hand in mind.
High-Strength Spools Withstand Impact and Abuse
Let’s face it, lacrosse sticks take a beating. Between checks, slashes, scoops, and outlet passes, your sidewall spools endure forces from all directions. Without sufficient strength and durability, these impacts can bend or break lesser quality spools and disrupt stringing. That’s why high-strength metals and composites are essential for sidewall spools meant to withstand abuse.
When looking to restring or customize pocket configurations, upgrade to heavy-duty spools built to handle impact. Premium materials like aircraft-grade aluminum, carbon fiber composites, and stainless steel can mean the difference between a long-lasting pocket and premature failure. Read on as we overview spool strength benefits, key high-strength designs, and recommendations by player position.
Benefits of High-Strength Spools
How exactly do ultra-durable sidewall spools stand up to on-field physicality? Here are some of the top benefits:
- Withstand checks and slashes – High-strength metals and composites resist bending from contact.
- Maintain stringing integrity – Prevent string slippage or breakage by securing sidewalls.
- Handle ground ball scoops – Durable materials won’t chip or crack from scooping friction.
- Endure outlet passes – Composites and metals absorb vibration from clearing efforts.
- Outlast game abuse – Engineered for the impacts and forces inherent to lacrosse play.
By leveraging aerospace and motorsports composites, high-end sidewall spools shrug off on-field collisions, slashes, and outlet passes that would degrade lesser models. Their unmatched durability preserves optimal pocket tension and shape.
Key Designs and Materials
So what exactly makes certain spools well-equipped to handle abuse? Here are some go-to options:
- Aircraft aluminum – Hard anodized for lightness combined with strength.
- Carbon fiber – Expertly layered composites diffuse shock and impact forces.
- Stainless steel – Industrial grade metals resist dents and maintain integrity.
- Forged aluminum – Dense construction prevents cracks under stress.
- Reinforced polymer – Glass fiber adds resilience to maintain structure.
Premium spools utilize these high-strength materials both internally and externally to form a durable shield against checks, scoops, and outlet passes. Their unrivaled construction preserves optimal stringing through seasons of hard play.
Recommendations by Position
With distinct needs across player positions, high-strength sidewall spool requirements vary. Here are tailored recommendations:
For nimble yet tough attackmen driving the net, carbon fiber diffuses checks while providing precision string adjustments. The Maverik Centrik Pro carbon is ideal for absorbing slashes and retaining pocket integrity.
Middies log major minutes and need max durability, making aircraft-grade aluminum perfect for consistent pocket performance. The ECD Carbon Pro’s aluminum withstands high-speed outlet passes and repeated ground ball scoops.
Holding down the back line, D-poles need hardcore strength to counterchecks attacking dodgers. The Warrior Regulator’s stainless steel construction stands up to physical defenders.
Seeing the most shots, goalie heads get bombarded by high-velocity stingers. Stringking’s extra-thick Whalebone sidewalls built from glass-reinforced polymer repeatedly withstand blistering point-blank shots.
Withstand the Impact
Don’t let a bent or broken sidewall spool ruin your pocket and game. High-strength metals and composites are a must for preserving stringing integrity across long seasons. While premium options cost a bit more upfront, their durability saves money and hassle over time.
Give your sticks the best chance of withstanding game abuse by choosing lacrosse sidewall spools engineered from robust high-performance materials. Your pocket will maintain shape and consistency despite the physicality and forces dished out each game.
Quick-Release Mechanisms Allow Fast String Replacement
Whether experimenting with pocket configurations or replacing damaged mesh, lacrosse players frequently need to remove and replace sidewall strings. Manually unwinding meters of string each time is tedious and time consuming. Enter quick-release sidewall spools engineered to accelerate and simplify the process.
Quick-release mechanisms allow effortless string removal and rethreading in seconds. If you find yourself regularly testing stringing methods or dialing in custom pockets, upgrade to spools with fast release capabilities. Read on as we detail the benefits, key design features, and recommendations by player position for optimum quick-change performance.
Benefits of Quick-Release
So what makes quick-release sidewall spools so advantageous for players and stringers? Here are some of the top benefits:
- Rapid string removal – Release strings in seconds without unwinding.
- Quick re-threading – Fast reattachment through release mechanisms.
- Saves time – Reduce stringing duration for experiments and restringing.
- Easy tension adjustments – Quickly modify sidewall tension as needed.
- Enables customization – Rapidly test multiple pocket configurations.
With the ability to swiftly remove and replace sidewall strings, quick-release spools streamline stringing projects and pocket customization.
Key Design Features
While release mechanisms vary, effective designs incorporate these aspects:
- Spring-loaded cams – Allow rapid unspooling with the flick of a switch.
- Magnetized pins – Enable tool-free detachment and reattachment.
- Ratchet systems – Provide instant string loosening and resetting.
- Slotted tension knobs – Allow quick unspooling and rewinding of string.
- Locking levers – Securely fix strings until release is activated.
The fastest quick-release models combine multiple design elements for effortless and instantaneous string changes to maximize pocket customization.
With unique needs across lacrosse positions, ideal quick-release designs vary. Here are tailored recommendations:
For nimble dodging and quick-stick passing, attacks need responsive pockets with tuneable release points. The ratcheting Warrior Nemesis optimizes precision pocket adjustments in seconds.
As end-to-end runners, middies need adaptable pockets that shift from offense to defense. The Maverik Optik’s spring-loaded release accommodates rapid pocket configuration changes.
Physical defenders require adjustable yet hardy pockets, making the ECD Carbon Pro’s robust slotted tensioners ideal for quickly modifying sting resistance.
With oversized heads seeing heavy abuse, goalies benefit from quick-swap strings to rapidly replace damaged mesh. Stringking’s magnetized Whalebone release allows simple restringing after high-velocity impacts.
Simplify Stringing with Quick-Release
Don’t waste time endlessly winding spools to swap lacrosse strings – quick-release mechanisms make string changes easy. While pricier, the time savings and customization flexibility justify upgrading to quick-release sidewall spools.
If regularly testing pockets or replacing damaged mesh, choose spools with fast and tool-free release capabilities. You’ll minimize stringing time and maximize potential pocket configurations.
Built-In String Cutters Streamline Pocket Adjustments
Dialing in the perfect custom lacrosse pocket requires tons of trial and error. You have to repeatedly adjust sidewall and shooting string lengths to balance hold and release point. This iterative process demands easily cutting strings to precise lengths as you hone performance. That’s where built-in string cutters come in – offering efficient, on-spool cutting to accelerate pocket adjustments.
If you find yourself constantly tweaking stringing to maximize pocket performance, choose sidewall spools with integrated cutters. They enable fast trimming for efficient pocket customization projects. Read on as we detail the benefits, key features, and position-based cutter recommendations.
Benefits of Built-In Cutters
How exactly do on-board string cutters optimize the pocket adjustment process? Here are some of the top benefits:
- Rapid cutting – Trim strings to length right on the spool.
- Precise control – Cut strings exactly where needed.
- Saves time – No need to transfer to separate cutters.
- Enables customization – Easily test multiple string lengths.
- Cleaner cuts – Superior to scissors with no fraying.
With the ability to trim sidewall and shooting strings on the fly, built-in cutters help lacrosse players quickly hone pocket performance and feel.
Key Design Features
While integrated cutters utilize different mechanics, the most effective incorporate these features:
- Replaceable blades – Swap dull blades to maintain cut quality.
- Depth/angle adjusters – Control cutting depth for varied string types.
- Ergonomic actuator – Comfortable grip facilitates controlled cutting.
- String clamps – Secure string in place for precise trimming.
- Attachment point – Allow removal of cutter when not needed.
Premium string cutters integrate multiple aspects to enable efficient and customized string trimming right from the spool.
Recommendations by Position
With unique pocket needs across lacrosse positions, players have different requirements for built-in string cutters:
Reactive pockets demand precise shooting string lengths, making the Stringking SP1 cutter’s micro-adjustment dial ideal for refined control.
Middies logging major minutes need durable cutters, so the stainless steel blades on Maverik’s Centrik Pro withstand seasons of use.
Physical defenders need adaptable pockets, making the ECD Carbon Pro’s easily-detachable cutter perfect for customization projects.
With oversized heads, goalies need bigger cutters like the wide-opening Warrior Nemesis for trimming bulky goalie mesh.
Cut Down Stringing Time
Stop the endless cycle of string, cut, adjust. Built-in string cutters enhance pocket personalization by enabling on-the-fly trimming and reductions in stringing time.
While pricier, the efficiency gains justify upgraded sidewall spools with integrated cutters. You’ll minimize trial and error iterations by effortlessly customizing string lengths until achieving pocket perfection.
Carrying Cases Keep Mesh Spools Protected and Portable
Serious lacrosse stringers never head to the field or tournament without their trusty sidewall spools in tow. But bouncing around loose in your gear bag, these vital stringing tools take a beating over time. Dings and dust build up, components bend or break, and handling becomes a chore. The solution? Protective carrying cases that keep spools safe and streamline transport.
Premium mesh spools now come boxed in rigid, molded cases carved out to securely hold tools and components in place. If your sidewall spool is constantly getting roughed up in transit, upgrade to a carrying case model. Read on as we detail the key benefits, design factors, and position-based case recommendations.
Benefits of Carrying Cases
What exactly makes a protective case so useful for storing and transporting sidewall spools? Here are some top benefits:
- Prevents damage – Foam padding absorbs impacts within the case.
- Retains components – Cutouts or straps hold all included tools.
- Simplifies transport – Integrated handle eases carrying.
- Reduces clutter – Case contains all stringing accessories together.
- Provides quick access – Open and string on the go.
With a carrying case safeguarding your investment, sidewall spools arrive intact and ready for stringing wherever needed.
Key Design Factors
While cases vary, the most effective models incorporate these characteristics:
- Customized foam – Cutouts for each spool component prevent shifting.
- Rigid walls – Protect against crushing forces within a gear bag.
- Moisture sealing – Prevent string corrosion and caking.
- Portability – Compact size and integrated handle for easy transport.
- Quick access – Magnetic or minimal closure for fast stringing setup.
Premium carrying cases combine protective and practical elements to get sidewall spools to the field or tournament intact and accessible.
Recommendations by Position
With unique needs across positions, ideal carrying case features vary. Here are tailored recommendations:
Quick-release attacks need rapid setup, making Maverik’s magnetic Optik case perfect for fast spool access pre-game.
As end-to-end runners, middies need portable protection, so Stringking’s slim SP-1 slipcase easily fits in any gear bag.
Physical defenders need maximum impact resistance, and the thick composite Warrior Nemesis case prevents crushing or damage in transit.
Oversized goalie stringing demands an upsized case like the ECD Carbon Pro XL – providing ample storage and protection.
Protect Your Investment
Don’t leave your high-performance sidewall spool vulnerable in crowded gear bags. A protective carrying case is a worthwhile investment in protecting stringing tools from damage, simplifying transport, and accelerating setup at games or tournaments.
While adding cost upfront, the long-term preservation and ease of use imparted by cases keep mesh spools performing at their best for seasons to come.
Cost-Effective Lacrosse Stringing Solutions for Every Budget
Restringing lacrosse sticks or experimenting with pocket configurations typically requires premium sidewall spools loaded with features. While packed with performance benefits, these high-end tools carry a hefty price tag that limits access for many players. Thankfully, quality cost-effective options exist for every budget.
Affordable spools from major athletic brands offer tremendous value while retaining essential stringing and durability fundamentals. With budget-friendly options readily available, lack of funds doesn’t have to hinder your pursuit of the perfect pocket. Read on for our value spool recommendations tailored to each position’s needs and wallet.
For quick-handed attacks on a budget, the Warrior Nemesis II gets the job done. Its basic thumbscrew tensioning and stainless steel sidewalls handle stringing experimentation at a fraction of the cost of high-end builds.
Middies logging major minutes need a workhorse spool, making the Stringking Mark 1F the ideal blend of affordability and resilience. It lacks bells and whistles but offers the rugged polymer construction to go the distance.
Stay-at-home defenders want adjustable tension without breaking the bank. The ECD Carbon model fits the bill with its aircraft-grade aluminum build and easy tension knobs starting under $30.
For versatile netminders, Maverik’s Optik provides goalie-friendly size along with smooth tension adjustments in an economic package just over $40.
Cost-conscious parents rejoice – STX’s Stallion spool provides fundamental stringing capabilities for under $20. Its polymer handle and stainless sidewalls get young players started without denting wallets.
Older players wanting more sophistication will appreciate the Maverik Centrik. Starting around $35, its ergonomic handle and quick-release mechanism offer premium benefits on a budget.
At the elite college level, players need pro-grade performance without paying full price. The ECD Carbon Pro hits the sweet spot with carbon fiber durability and a built-in string cutter for just over $50.
For hobbyists on a budget, the Warrior Nemesis NXT keeps it simple for $25. Durable polymer construction handles experiments and practice jobs until skills improve.
Something for Everyone
While lack of funds can limit access to pricey lacrosse equipment, quality sidewall spool options exist for every budget. Major brands now offer excellent performance and durability without breaking the bank.
By selecting the right budget-friendly spool matched to your needs, any player or hobbyist can experience the joys of pocket customization without overspending. A little research goes a long way in finding value among basic and pro-level tools alike.