The slotted web stretcher is the most common web stretcher used in the UK. As a result, it may be more readily available and cheaper to buy than the other stretchers. It is most suitable for use with thinner webbing, such as nylon, as web stretchers with spikes can rip or tear this webbing when pressure is exerted.
However, the slotted web stretcher can only hold webbing of up to 50mm (2″) wide, half of what the gooseneck web stretcher can hold. If the webbing you are using is wider than this, for example for sofa or bed upholstery, the slotted web stretcher may not be the best option.
Gooseneck web stretchers
The gooseneck web stretcher is the largest and strongest of the types of web stretcher. As it can stretch webbing up to 101mm (4″) wide and has a handle to give the user more leverage when pulling webbing, it is most suitable for large webbing applications, such as sofas and beds. Gooseneck web stretchers can still stretch smaller webbing but not thin webbing.
As the gooseneck web stretcher has steel spikes to grip the webbing, it is not suited for thin webbing as it can tear it. As well as this, the gooseneck web stretcher is usually the most expensive of the tools so would need to be used often to justify the price.
Spiked web stretchers
The spiked web stretcher is, like the gooseneck web stretcher, only suitable for strong webbing that is unlikely to become damaged by the tool. However, as the spiked web stretcher is smaller it provides less pulling leverage and is therefore suited for smaller webbing applications such as chairs, or for more infrequent use.
The plastic version of the spiked web stretcher is much cheaper but also much weaker. It should only be used in small webbing applications where little pull force is needed, such as on dining chairs, and it is not suitable for very frequent use.