Get the Same String Length Every Time

More of a tip than a trick, and I’m sure others have thought of this as well, but I didn’t find anything when I Googled it, so here it is:

I’m sure we’ve all had the same thing happen; your string is the perfect length, but it’s time to change it for a fresh one. You put on the new one and tie a knot, only to find that you made it just a little bit too long or too short. Of course you can always pick the knot and retry, but that can be a pain.
Then, it dawned on me, why not just leave the old string on while I tie the knot on the new one. It’s so simple I can’t believe I never thought of it before. This is especially helpful if you use nylon string which can be a bit “bouncy” when it’s fresh.
You just leave the old string on the yoyo and put the new one on with it. Let it hang to see where to tie your knot, and voila, perfect match.


next time i wear out an old string i’m gonna try this

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But the string gain length with age due to stretching doesn’t it? I never checked if it’s neglectable though.

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I have a “reference string” against which I measure new strings. Measuring and cutting a bunch of strings in advance is easier and faster if I don’t have to put each one on a yoyo first.

Also, it bears mentioning that pre-stretching a string before measuring and cutting it is essential if you want consistency.

That’s why I let it hang to pull the string taut while I tie the new one. Should be about what it stretches to. Though I’ve only done this once so far.

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I was referring to the new string; it needs to be pre-stretched or else it will acquire 2-3" of new length over time. Obviously the reference string needs to be taut if it is going to be the basis for the length of the new one, but a mere minute of gravity tension will not pre-stretch a new string.

Both strings are taut when you tie it. Unless you’re saying a string will stretch further than it stretches? I’ve done this once so far and it worked out nicely. Just thought I’d share.

In my experience (and the research of others here, like @codinghorror I believe), a string will stretch an additional 2-3" over time during play if you don’t pull some really hard stretches on the string prior to lining it up against the old/reference string and cutting it to length. Yes, they both need to be taut during the measuring and cutting, but there’s an extra step to be performed on the new string before that.

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Yep - I contributed in that experiment, and, for mine at least, the strings were measured at rest, without any tension. If the string is already taut when you tie the knot, it’s not going stretch much more, if at all. 3 days in on my new string and it’s just how I like it. I used to do the “pull my string as much as I could to prestetch it before stringing and tying the knot” method with not so consistent results.

That’s interesting! My results have pretty much been the opposite. Consistent results were only achieved after a good strong pre-stretch pull or three.

Amazing tip, someone told me this after like 6 years of playing 3a and having to deal with mismatched string lengths and I was so annoyed lol