How to string a "Skinny Goalie" pocket into an STX Eclipse
By Brad Hester
Figure 8 knot
Step 1 - Shape the mesh
This is important if you want the pocket and channel to be completely centered.
Fold the top row and a half back so that the mesh counts 16 diamonds across.
You also want to eliminate any other horizontal creases (caused by packaging) as best as you can.
Goalie mesh is more difficult to keep, so the best way to start it is symmetrically.
Fold the mesh at the middle so that 8 diamonds-per-row overlay each other all the way down.
Lay the mesh across your lap.
Grab each end and pull tight for a few seconds and repeat.
Step 2 - Attach the mesh to top
What you need:
Pre-place the two (25 inch) hockey laces along sides of crosse.
- both (25 inch) hockey laces
- one (20 inch) sidewall string
- one (60 inch) sidewall string
It is important that they are both in the correct holes.
Tie the two together loosely (you will need to untie them shortly).
Take one (20 inch) sidewall string, and weave it in and out of the top row.
This will be the anchor string to add strength to the top of the mesh, which will increase its life, and reduce ripping.
There are an even number of diamonds so it will be symmetrical.
Tie a knot at both ends.
The mesh is now ready to be attached fully to top.
Use the same hole as the hockey lace and sidewall lace to start. Take the (60 inch) sidewall string, and First go through the back of the first available hole on stick, And through the front of the second diamond, then through the loop.
With the string, go back through the same diamond then through the front of the stick.
Then go down through the loop and tighten.
Skip a diamond and a hole on the stick and repeat.
Since the top row is an even number of diamonds, the center hole on the stick will keep 2 diamonds.
Now the mesh is attached.
Step 3 - Attach mesh to sides
Untie the hockey laces and let them hang with the mesh.
Now start out by weaving the hockey laces down in and out of 14 diamonds, starting with the 3rd empty row down. Results on next page…
Loosely tie hockey laces again.
Take the last two (60 inch) sidewall strings and string only 2 diamonds (loosely) on each side, then pull tight at the same time…You want to string both sides as much at the same time as possible so that the channel stays in the center.
String the next 3 diamonds (loosely) on each side, then pull tight at the same time. The first 5 diamonds on each side should be strung without skipping. Next step is important.
Now that the first 5 diamonds are pulled tight, the next two diamonds that should be strung are as pictured. Skip a diamond but string the row that has 16 across and then the next diamond is skipped. The next diamond should be a part of the row that has 17 across.
Skip a diamond string a diamond, skip a diamond string a diamond, leaving 2 of the six that were left in the previous picture, and no stick holes left.
Same numbers as previous picture, pull tight and tie into first hole of throat.
The mesh should be completely attached to sides, but still tight and not quite stretched yet…
Use your knee to form the pocket and channel before adding a string to the bottom.
Step 4 - Close the bottom
The bottom-string should be strung through the second hole on the throat of crosse. Leave 3 diagonal diamonds open between the last sidewall diamond and the bottom-string diamond, and then weave across. You will have to skip the center diamond since it is an odd-numbered row (following page).
Skip the 9th (center) diamond to keep the symmetry.
Now untie the hockey laces and pull them tight. Tie a knot for each one outside of the bottom holes on the throat of the stick.
Step 5 - Add shooting strings
The top shooting string should be a thick sidewall shooting lace. It should be the tightest of all the shooting strings and a model from which the others are copied. Make sure that on each side it is anchored to the hockey lace that runs down the sides.
Modeled after the top shooting lace, the hockey shooting strings should be the loosest on the bottom and not as tight as the top string. Make sure that they are also anchored to the hockey laces that run down the sides. I would recommend adding 3 hockey shooting laces.
The pocket and channel should look a little something like this after one session of shooting. A goalie pocket needs to be constantly adjusted so that it always throws consistently. On the following page are things to remember.
As the pocket breaks in with more and more saves, it may change and become looser. You will want to:
- Make sure that the shooting laces go from loosest on bottom to tightest on top.
- Make sure that the hockey laces which run down the sides of the stick stay tight (these strings give the pocket its channel). You will need to periodically tighten these strings.
- Most importantly, remember that a good pocket will be as symmetrical as possible, so when you adjust one side, make sure you adjust the other, and make them the same.
The skinny channel is designed to reduce rebounds because when the ball hits the mesh, the tightness of the sidewalls will force the mesh to wrap under itself, keeping the ball in the stick.