Guest blogger and Open level player Andy Gerst puts Volkl’s Cyclone string through its paces in this review.
A great new poly string being introduced to the market is the Volkl Cyclone string. It is a co-polymer polyester monofilament, designed to mimic the durability and control-oriented playability of a polyester while maintaining a bit more softness in order to provide more power and less stress on the arm. The Cyclone is also “gear-shaped” as opposed to the standard circular shape of the string, enabling it to provide more ball pocketing and added spin.
I strung up the Cyclone 16 gauge string in my Prince TT Warrior MP racquet at 56 lbs. I typically string my racquet in the high 50’s, but when stringing it up with a full bed of poly I drop the tension typically 2-3 lbs. As standard for a polyester string, it was a somewhat difficult task stringing it up. The added softness of the co-poly made it slightly easier to string than a standard poly, but the gear shape of the string also caused it to “burn” slightly as I pulled the crosses through when stringing.
The first impression I had when hitting with the Cyclone was the stiffness as well as the ball pocketing that I found. It had a really crisp, solid feel as I struck the ball, while still maintaining excellent control. Another characteristic that instantly stood out to me was the way the strings grabbed and pocketed the ball in the string bed at impact. While most polyester strings provide a dead and stiff feel off the string bed, with the Cyclone I could really feel the ball as it struck the strings, and upon release it had a tremendous amount of spin.
On groundstrokes and serves I was able to generate lots of power and spin, most likely due to the “gear shape” of the string and the added ball pocketing it felt like I was getting. Control was somewhat less than other polyesters, but the extra power and softer feel made the string more comfortable to play with than other polyesters.
At net Cyclone provided lots of bite to my volleys. I was able to really stick my volleys deep in the court, and was really impressed at how much I was able to feel the ball on the strings compared to other polyesters. My volleys also were knifing through the court with lots of underspin and bite.
Durability was slightly less than other polyesters that I have played with in the past. I am an open level player playing hard almost everyday, and the string broke in less than a week, which is longer than I get with my usual hybrid set up (2-3 days), but less than I would normally get out of a full bed of poly (1 ½-2 weeks). The string began to lose tension towards the end of its lifespan, about 5-6 days after stringing (fairly standard for a polyester).
All in all I really enjoyed playing with the Volkl Cyclone. I was impressed by the power and ball pocketing compared to other polyesters, as well as the slightly softer feel due to its co-polymer composition. In addition, at $5.95 a set the Cyclone is an excellent value string. In conclusion, I would highly recommend the Volkl Cyclone, and at $5.95 a set I would be hard pressed to find a better value for the money.