We picked 12 reader tips for publication this month! And we're giving the authors e-Lacrosse Rage II Videos! Winners contact us if we miss you. Some e-mails cannot be returned to the addresses used originally.
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!
Submitted by Andy
I developed a new dyeing method. I put the stick in a large bucket of water and freeze it. When the water is all frozen I take it outside and pour boiling water mixed with dye in it over the ice. The effect is a lightning pattern with many bolts at the top and fewer at the bottom.
Get a Grip Submitted by Kif of Fairfax, VA
As a copious stick buyer and a bargain hunter, I have over 15 sticks in my possession. I found an easy way to pinch these as I was doing it quite often. I simply use a Quick-Grip clamp (21.99, northerntool.com) to pinch the head using small increments to my desired legal or illegal width, then put in Cable-Ties used in the Krasty Pocket, (.99, northerntool.com) to maximum tightness. When I take off the Quick-Grip, the ties get taught and don't let the head go back to its original pinch. It's a fast and easy way to determine pinch for any head, and the Quick-Grip is useful for everything.
Personalize Your Endcap Submitted by Neil of Ontario, Canada
I always keep up with your Stick Tech section and I have read that people don't like the end caps on their sticks. A friend of mine showed me something that I thought works great. You can use old-style 12 oz metal bottle caps as end caps for your sticks.
You just have to make sure that you wrap enough tape around your stick to cover the sides of the caps.
When you put the caps on the end of the stick, you may have to slowly work it into shape. In the end it is worth while because you can't feel the cap on the end and you get to express yourself by choosing your own caps.
Here are a couple of caps on the ends of my sticks.
We Don't Need No Stinking Shooting Strings! 1. Submitted by Jeff
I know this is not a Hype. But I just got to show it to you all at E - Lacrosse maybe you can put it in reader tips. I'm fifteen and have been stringing for about two years and I wanted to display my school spirit so I dyed my X2 and strung it, I immediately like it. It has no whip at all and has the most powerful throw. I am a long pole middie at Easton high school and this is my String job, The Power Pocket - Shooting strings not required.
2. Submitted by Kyle
I am sending this even though it is not a hype stick because how a stick is strung has little to do with the type of head. Because I am a UConn student and lacrosse player I do not have the financial ability to buy another unneeded head. On another note, the UConn lacrosse team would greatly appreciate any donations for our fundraising raffle. Interested parties can contact me at CliffACS@aol.com
NOTE: While these pockets are cool and good tips, we did not enter these two guys in the HYPE STRINGING CONTEST because we disagree with Kyle. This particular contest was to come up with concept pockets that took advantage of the HYPE's new configuration. That contest is closed now and we'll have winners in March!
Pinching, Whip Removal and the Virtue of White Pockets Submitted by Eric
Another way to pinch a stick is to tie it up to the shape that you'll want it to be later (maybe just a tad tighter to be safe). Then borrow your mom's/sister's hair dryer. Turn the heat all the way up and just sit there while making sure the heat gets on every part of the stick. Stop heating when you can touch the stick and feel heat. Let it sit for a while in a place at room temperature. It shouldn't take long to get it back to the normal temperature. After you have done this, take off the ties and you're ready to go. I also like this method because I had a very good pocket that I like very much, and I didn't have to unstring it and then string it again. It is so lovely.
…And regarding that really annoying whip on a whole lot of soft mesh sticks. I have always liked soft mesh and I think it's a better combination with the Proton than Chips and Dip (I'm not pulling your leg). If you want to rid soft mesh of that extreme whip, simply make sure that when you string it, the sidewall strings near the scoop are extremely tight so it almost creates built in shooting strings. I know this works because one time my cousins came over to my house and all I had was like 3 sticks, and I was out of shooting strings, so I strung the pocket really fast and crappy, but I made sure it was tight at the top and moderately loose at the bottom. They had to problem throwing and the ball didn't even hit the scoop. It works like a charm.
…And lastly, I have always loved died mesh myself, but have recently discovered that dying mesh isn't the best thing to do. I had a soft mesh pocket that was way too soft for my liking, so I died it blue. I like it now because it isn't too hard or too soft, but almost like dura-mesh. But the down side is, with a dyed stick the ball is more visible to the defense. This can work against you if you try to fake a pass but then the defender can see that ball in your stick. Also, good goalies keep a strong eye on the ball and if they can't see that you have the ball they won't have that advantage over you. So, my advice is to keep the mesh white, but if you really want it to be harder than use some hair spray, or dip it in water that has a lot of styling gel mixed with it. God Bless.
Black Tape Warning
Submitted by Greg
I play hockey, and word around the rink is that black tape has a dye in it that can destroy the palms in gloves. I'm sure the same applies to lacrosse gloves so watch what you use on your shafts!
Submitted by Tommy from San Diego, CA
I found that sometimes when dying a white head black it comes out kind of purple. If you dye the head another dark color (dark green or dark blue for example) before dying it black it will turn out black.
Submitted by James
First off, I love the site! My tip - One way to make a stick throw perfectly is to wet the mesh, pull the throw strings tight, leave them untied while you throw against a wall or with a friend for a while. They will gradually become looser and have less whip. When fine-tuned to your desire tie them off.
Exposing Your Inner String
Submitted by Jordan of Calgary, Alberta, Canada
I learned this tip at a lacrosse tournament in Red Deer, Alberta, Canada. Nowadays in most sticks you can only use nylon to string your sidewall strings because the holes in the side of the head are two small. Nylon is ok and all but wears out very quickly. I wanted to use a thick sidewall string. Well now there is a way.
All you have to do is peel the shell of the thick sidewall down about 4 inches, so all you see are the strands of thread on the inside.
Cut those strands off and push the shell back over them to its normal position. This will make it thin enough to pull through the holes.
You might have to use a little bit of force but it is worth it. These strings will last 4 times the length of the nylon. Remember to burn the tip off at the top like you would usually do to make it even easier to thread through the stick. I hope this helps everyone make their pockets last longer.
Submitted by Rich of Baltimore, Maryland
Your stick tech articles and input from other readers are outstanding! Since reading them I have found many ways to improve my stick and game. I also tried a couple of things myself that I thought might help others. I was looking for a feel that is just between a hard and soft mesh. Someone else contributed the idea of spray painting each side (great idea). However, I have a stick that I didn't want to paint, so I went to the craft store and bought a box of paraffin wax. I then used a coffee can (didn't want to ruin a good saucepan) to melt the wax over medium low heat. When the wax liquefied slightly I took a 1/2 inch paint brush and brushed the wax over both sides of the mesh. It hardened up the mesh a little, but not too much to where it still had enough give. With a wax coating like this, you won't have to worry about adjusting your stick if it starts to rain either. Just
don't leave the stick in a hot car for too long.
A Secret of the Whip Revealed
Submitted by Steve
I think you guys have a great website. Since finding the site I've turned into a hybrid pocket junkie. I've turned into the guy on the team everyone looks to for help with their pockets. With lots of experience adjusting mostly mesh pockets it has come to my attention that it is not the shooting strings or sidewall that mainly determine a pocket's whip, but rather the bottom of the mesh. When you have strung the sidewalls, and are getting ready to tie off the bottom of the mesh stop. Tie off your sidewalls and grab another piece of string. I always see kids tie the bottom with the same piece as the sidewall. This affects the whip more than they know. The more you pull the mesh down to tie it off on the bottom, the less the whip will occur. The more slack you leave, the more whip will happen. Yes, the shooting strings and sidewall do affect whip, but the bottom of the pocket affects it the most.
Thanks to all for participating. Keep sending your tips and we'll pick some more in a few months! Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org! Please include your name and a permanent e-mail address.