Editor’s Note: Welcome back to Tuesday Tie Up from Epoch Lacrosse! Each week, we feature a guest lacrosse personality to help you see how the big guns string their heads. You’re sure to learn a thing or two, so pay attention! We’ll let Epoch take it from here…
Tim Roche, or Salty Strings as he’s better known online, started stringing lacrosse sticks way before most of us, all the way back around age 10. Since then, Tim’s style has matured quite a bit. His first stringing gig was tying up heads at Imagination Sports in Massachusetts and now Tim makes his fingers useful at Comlax on Long Island. He credits these paying gigs for enabling him to learn a good deal from other stringers and customers, while exposing him to new possibilities.
While traditionals will never lose their place as Tim’s favorite, he has recently begun to move away from the standard materials (mesh and leather) to try and create something new and different. This effort comes with the hope that people are reminded there is more than one way to skin a cat, some patience and a few yards of string is all you need to get a stick game ready.
We are going to take a look at some of Tim’s preferences and outside of the box techniques, starting with this brown 6-diamond traditional (featured).
Six Diamond Traditionals
Six diamonds are Tim’s favorite due to the flexibility of the pocket. It is shifty enough to move with the ball when needed, but firm enough to hold it’s shape.
The six diamond pockets also tend to be less whippy than larger diamond traditionals and have more hold than trads with smaller diamonds. Maintenance with these are minimal as far as trads go, needing only the occasional adjustment to the leathers at the bottom and tightening of the top shooter.
The Paracord pockets were two of the hardest sticks Tim claims he ever had to string. Each head contains about 100 feet of crosslace, flatlace and sidewall.
The different combinations of these strings allow you to achieve a variety of feels with the same techniques.
More sidewall and crosslace for those that use a firmer pocket similar to hard mesh, more flatlace for those that like a softer more pliable feel.
The whole pocket is strung beforehand on a wooden jig, then attached to the head as you would a piece of mesh.
The Eagles Nest came out looking pretty clean with all of the knots tight and “diamonds” small, so he could add an extra row or two, utilizing The Hawk’s extra top holes. Since Tim used only crosslace on the sides it seemed to add a certain degree of stiffness to the pocket.
This definitely gave the head extra hold with some serious side channeling. Next time around he plans to use flatlace in order to soften the pocket a bit and shorten the break-in period.
9 Diamond Fisher Pita
The last is definitely one of the coolest looking pockets Tim has ever tied up. It’s a tightly strung, 9-diamond, flatlace fisher mesh with traditional half diamond sides to channel it. The flatlace gives the pocket an extremely soft feel and the sidewalls give it room to move adding to the hold.
It is strung beforehand, usually tied to a shaft that is clamped to a table. The pita center track brings the symmetry of this head perfectly together.
Let us know what you think of these expertly strung Hawks and tell us if you’ve tried any of Tim’s awesome techniques!
Live. Play. Be.