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How soon do you change strings before something important?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by catcauphonic, Mar 22, 2014.


  1. catcauphonic

    catcauphonic High Freak of the Low Frequencies

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle WA
    I'm not asking how often you change strings, but specifically how fresh do you like them when you have a gig or a recording session coming up?

    Do you like the 'new string zing' and change them the day of or before you are doing something? Or do you prefer them broken in for a long period?? Perhaps you're somewhere in the middle ... if so, what is your preferential time frame?

    (Could be strings in general, or if you have different break-in period for different ones .. please specify.)
     
  2. Humbled

    Humbled Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2013
    Location:
    East of the Sun
    Two weeks. General rule, mellowing time, before I'm going to be happy enough with nickel-rounds before something "important".

    But that's just me.
     
  3. Stone Soup

    Stone Soup

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2012
    Playing them in for a few days is usually good for me.
     
  4. TrevorOfDoom

    TrevorOfDoom Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    for gigs, I don't care. I change 'em about every year and a half or so.

    for recording, I've got broken in flats, and if roundwounds are needed I'll change 'em no sooner than 2 days in advance.
     
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  6. catcauphonic

    catcauphonic High Freak of the Low Frequencies

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle WA
    Personally, I do like that new string zing that comes right out of the package. The Spector I'm playing has sustain for days .. even with strings that are near dead! I find new ones make my bassline writing a little different in a way that uses more hammer ons and long ringing notes. I'm still on my personal fave string quest, so I've been changing them more often than need be so far.
     
  7. jmverdugo

    jmverdugo

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2012
    Changing strings? I'm sorry I don't know what you are talking about... ;)
     
  8. maturanesa

    maturanesa

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2010
    Location:
    Buenos Aires, Argentina
  9. mcarp555

    mcarp555

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2013
    Location:
    East Midlands, United Kingdom
    I don't like the sound of new strings. My P-bass still has strings I put on it in the 80's (roundwounds). Tunes and intonates just fine.
     
  10. scottfeldstein

    scottfeldstein Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    Location:
    West Bend, Wisconsin
    I just try to avoid same-day changes. Optimal is a few days to a week. I like the new string zingy brightness, but I want to make sure they're going to stay in tune. Tuning them a half step sharp for a day can speed up the break in time.
     
  11. aproud1

    aproud1 Don't surround yourself with yourself. Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2007
    Location:
    Cincy, OH
    few days for a gig, 1 - 2 weeks for recording.
     
  12. Thisguy

    Thisguy

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2013
    Location:
    Abilene TX
    Two days. Gives me a couple days break in to get them where I like'em.
     
  13. rfslick

    rfslick

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2008
    Location:
    Benicia, CA. USA
    I like fresh round wounds every 6 months.
    Two things I've learned recently after 45 years:
    Put a bend in the string ahead of where you cut it off, to prevent unraveling when you cut it.
    Do not stretch your strings. Install them, bring them up to tune and play them for ten minutes, then repeat. Stretching them prematurely removes life from them.
     
  14. MegaSwing

    MegaSwing Your Obedient Bassist® Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2002
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD USA
    Couple days, just to get the harshness out of them.
     
  15. scottfeldstein

    scottfeldstein Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    Location:
    West Bend, Wisconsin
    Interesting! I'll buy that. But then, I change mine every few months. Not sure how much it would affect me.
     
  16. SBassman

    SBassman

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2003
    Location:
    Northeast, US
    Disclosures:
    PiccoBass Dealer
    I don't, either. :D
     
  17. Baird6869

    Baird6869 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Disclosures:
    I love the night life, I got to boogie....
    I love new stainless strings and would change them the day of every gig if I could afford it.

    For recording, I prefer the strings to have a good week or two of use on them.
     
  18. bluesdogblues

    bluesdogblues

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    I go the Greats; JJ, DD, JO route. LB Flatwound and never change it. Feels good, sounds good, everyone satisfied, including my wallet :)

    #specifically how fresh do you like them when you have a gig or a recording session coming up?
    I like them to be just as they are since first time I put them on + their natural aging.

    #Do you like the 'new string zing' and change them the day of or before you are doing something?
    I hate 'new string zing'..so, no.

    #Or do you prefer them broken in for a long period?? Perhaps you're somewhere in the middle ... if so, what is your preferential time frame?
    I wish I can keep my backup set of LB strings in it's boxes as long as possible.
     
  19. Duckwater

    Duckwater

    Joined:
    May 10, 2010
    Location:
    USA, Washington
    With flats I like them as old as possible, but I dig them when they're brand new as well. I could record with flats right after stringing them up no problem.

    With rounds I prefer them to be as fresh and flexible as possible for their responsiveness and ease of playing, though I hang onto my sets that still sound good. I like at least a few days to play in roundwounds but it's not a big deal.
     
  20. rfslick

    rfslick

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2008
    Location:
    Benicia, CA. USA
    Agreed. But stretching them still removes some of their life.
     
  21. Baird6869

    Baird6869 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Disclosures:
    I love the night life, I got to boogie....
    What type of stretching are you referring to?

    I personally install my new strings, tune to 440, play for a few minutes and do a few string bends, retune, play for a few more minutes, retune, and I am done. Bass strings stretch enough to hold a tuning after a few minutes of playing IME.
     

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