Reader Tips I / Reader Tips II / Reader Tips III / Reader Tips IV / Reader Tips V / Reader Tips VI / Reader Tips VII / Reader Tips VIII / Reader Tips IX / Stick Tech

We picked ten reader tips for publication this month! And we're giving the authors E-Lacrosse Tech Team 2000 reversible Tanks!

WARNING: Ovens, lighters, matches, knives, and other tools called for in this tips section can be dangerous when not properly used. If you intend on trying any of these tips at home, you must tell your parents exactly what your plans are before proceding. Improper use of some of the tools suggested can result in cutting, burning or staining yourself or your family's property. So ask FIRST, and be careful!

(in no particular order)

Submitted by Jon

If you have an old stick that scrapes away at the nylon or leathers when you go for a ground ball, I've found a way to stop it. Just take ordinary Shoe Goo and put a little on. This way, they are protected fairley well.

Submitted by Jordan Raphel

I have found that sometimes in goalie sticks with big pockets the ball moves around a lot when craddeling. I put a ball in my stick and found out where it usually rests. Then I strung a hockey lace around where the ball sits, kind of like a V but it actually makes a complete circle. Make it a little larger then the ball and adjust the tightness the way you like it. It really helps me as a goalie who craddles a lot to know where the ball is.

Submitted by Chris from Indiana

I have found that the hockey laces on my stick work as great shooters (as most of you know) but are kind of boring. To solve this, I bought some of the tube-like shoe strings you can find at any sporting good store and weaved those in. These laces come in almost any color so that you can get your school's colors in your head and they are a tad bit thicker than the hockey laces creating more whip.

Submitted by Kevin Tait of Eastpointe MI

I've been stringing sticks for about four years now and I've found a few secrets. First off, when stringing a traditional stick, start off with the leathers loose. Have the outside leathers a little tighter than the inside leathers, giving it the shape of a pocket before you even put the nylon string in. When stringing the nylon, use your fingers to hold the leathers apart the distance you need. This allows you to have a shallow pocket before you break the stick in. Another trick that I picked up from stringing sticks for Warrior, is for the more advanced player. I personally like to have the ball sit right under my shooting strings. So when I string my stick, I make the diamonds where I want my pocket bigger than the diamonds at the bottom of the stick. This gives you more control, especially when playing with a shallow pocket.

Submitted by Tom Langan

A tip for string the top of a mesh pocket: Using a piece of nylon for the top string, fold it in half. Pass the folded end through one of the holes and pass the "loose ends" through the loop. This is an easy way to allow for a double string across the top for added strength.

Submitted by unknown

I have found that another easy way to bake a head is to put it in your clothes dryer. A lot of newer dryers have one of those racks that you use to dry sneakers and stuff like that that you don't want to spin. If you bend the stick and tie it with nylons to the width you want it, and then put it on that rack and turn on the dryer at normal heat for about 10 minutes, it bends it nicely and quickly. I've done it to 2 of my heads so far and it has worked both times without any problems.

If you're having trouble with lip and whip in you mesh pockets, I found a solution. I weave a piece of side wall string in the first row of mesh right under the top leather lace. I weave it REALLY tight. Then in the row right under it, I weave in a hockey lace that's not as tight as the nylon and it pretty loose. Then I skip 2 rows and I put in another hockey lace that is very loose. Then I put in my inverted V with the point at the row under the very last string and that's how I fix my whip. I also find that an STX Proton seems to be the only stick that I have played with so far that never has any whip even with a super deep pocket and no shooting strings. It's also very accurate.

Submitted by Brian Wilson

I have found that when cutting the leathers using a FLAT FACED finger nail clipper works fabulously. Make sure that the face is not curved because then the whole ends up too close to the edge of the leather and might tear the whole way through.

When stringing mesh, if you don't stretch the mesh out before you string it, but pound it after it is strung, it will be more channeled than it would be if you pre-stretched it.

Submitted by Charles Dresser

If you like the way hockey laces throw, but the ball is still hitting of the plastic, there is a good fix. If you cut the two ends of the hockey lace you will see that it is hollow. So, if just slide a nylon throwing string through and string it up it will work quite well.

Submitted by Peter Lorimerof New Haven, CT

If you want to pinch your stick, but you are worried about melting the plastic by baking it, take the head and place it upside down in between a wall and a large heavy object (like a bed or a couch.) Leave it there for 3 or 4 days and it will stay pinched.

Submitted by Jeff Yu of St. Louis, MO

For goaltenders, wrap pieces of tape around your shaft as guide marks for where your hands are most comfortable when you are in your "ready position" for a shot. This allows you to take your mind off of where you should place your hands during play so you can focus on ball movement and prepare for shots more quickly.

Thanks to all for participating. Keep sending your tips and we'll pick another ten in a few months! Send them to!