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Over-tightening new strings for longevity...


Gruuve

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I just put new Ernie Ball Regulars on my Stingray5. The previous ones have probably been on there for 5+ years, and they weren't exactly "bright" anymore... :P

 

I over-tightened them up about 2 whole steps. I learned this trick from a guitarist friend of mine. I used to break strings left and right (enthusiastic popping :love:

 

Anyway, I was just curious if anyone else follows this same practice and get's the same results, or has anyone else done this and discontinued it because of some neck issue it eventually caused. Just curious...post your opinions or experiences!

 

Dave

Old bass players never die, they just buy lighter rigs.

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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YAHOOOO!!! More ammo in the war on string breakage. Thanks Dave!!

 

BTW - broke an E at rehearsal today.

"He is to music what Stevie Wonder is to photography." getz76

 

I have nothing nice to say so . . .

 

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When I change my strings, I put them all on to standard tuning, then, one by one, I give each string a pull stretching them out and retuning them. I do this until when I pull the string there is little or no effect on the tuning.

 

That might be a little better for the neck in the long run. Although if you are not careful and pull too hard, you can break a brand new string (I've done that a couple times :D ) So do whatever you think is best. This is just my personal preference.

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I have yet to break a string, but when I do, I know what to do. Thanks for the info and for sharing.

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Never broke a bass string. now the g**tar on the other hand,...

 

But when I put new strings on, I do what Mr. Phil does.

Put em on until the slack is out, tug on them outwards a couple times, tighten, repeat. do that to all strings then tune. tug them a couple more times then retune.

Seems to work. like I said, never broke a string and it stays in tune.

 

Now, from bridge design work and an engineering standpoint, I know that no matter how well a cable is made, they will always stretch. Thats why they pre-tension (or stretch) cables used in construction. it gets the slack out in the cable windings thus can get the full capabilities of hte cable.

and since bass strings are basically mini-cables, stressing them like that gets the slack out and helps the string IMNSHO. your mileage may vary.

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Originally posted by Afro_Man:

Doesn't doing that mean that your strings don't stay in tune as well?

Actually, IMHO, it's the opposite...stretching them does some "hardening" of the alloy, thus they stay in tune better.

 

Dave

Old bass players never die, they just buy lighter rigs.

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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Ahhhh, Mr Phil.

I think stretching is a pretty common practice. If it isn't by gum it oughta be! I've always done that - with my guitars too.

"He is to music what Stevie Wonder is to photography." getz76

 

I have nothing nice to say so . . .

 

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Originally posted by getz76Search for this on the forum.
I did several searches an this topic and came up blank. Could you give a specific example?

"He is to music what Stevie Wonder is to photography." getz76

 

I have nothing nice to say so . . .

 

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Thanks. Can't imagine what I did wrong the first time.

Most interesting but that thread just made the issue even more vague in my book. Perhaps the pulling of the string to get out the slack should not be called "stretching" but rather seating.

However, tuning 2 steps above and letting it sit - stretching. I can see where that would not be good for string or neck.

 

What I did get out of this is that there are different ways of re-stringing a bass.

"He is to music what Stevie Wonder is to photography." getz76

 

I have nothing nice to say so . . .

 

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I would not stretch the strings. That could cause the windings to pull loose from the center core of the string and would definitely reduce the life of the string.

 

Tuning the strings higher than usual doesn't seem like a good idea either.

 

Just put 'em on, tune 'em up and play.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

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Interesting commentary. You guys are making me reconsider this practice. I've always assumed that it doesn't do any damage to the neck, but then perhaps I haven't been through enough strings and years with this practice to truly know the answer to this question.

 

Thx,

Dave

Old bass players never die, they just buy lighter rigs.

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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I find it odd that so many people leave their strings on for so long. Its Two months max for me.

Two weeks to One month of wear and tear is optimum tone wise. I hate the tone in the 1st week. I tend to just play the hell out of my bass, for a couple days. Lots of slapping, popping, and bending. After two/maybe three days they're settled in.

 

My hands do sweat alot so maybe I change more than average bear.

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Hell...I go thru strings every couple of weeks too. I guess I also tend to sweat a lot when I play so the strings seem to go dead pretty quickly. Like Jimbroni said, the tone sucks for that first week or so. After that first week I try to keep rubbing them down with GHS Fast Fret to keep them lively, but I end up putting a fresh set of Rotosounds on each of my jazz basses just about every month. I never do anything special to them either. I put em on and just tune them properly and then go nuts. I have been playing for about 6 or 7 years now and I have yet to break a single string. *knock on wood* Maybe I just baby them too much...haha. Yeah...we have practice tonight and I have a feeling that one of my brand new strings is about to pop.
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