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How to find out which strings I have on my bass?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Vevy, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. Vevy

    Vevy

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    Jul 18, 2013
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    this is my first bass, and I'm learning since some months, so I am at the very beginning. Soon I will change the strings, but I'm wondering wich strings could be the best for me. A good starting point would be know the features of my current strings , but how can I determine the gauge and all the rest?
  2. millsbass5

    millsbass5

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2008
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    Just by a set of D'Addarrio, light gauge rounds. They're great quality, and, pretty cheap.
  3. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

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    If you like a bright sound and have roundwounds on the bass, then you're asking a good question that will get at least 30 different answers.

    You MIGHT be able to take photos of the silks on the strings and show them - there's a chance we can ID the strings, but there's usually no way to ID the gauge.

    If you have flatwounds and like a more classic sound, leave them alone. Flatwounds are forever unless one breaks.
  4. Queue

    Queue

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    Jul 5, 2013
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    Noob to noob...
    Did you buy your bass new? Check manufacturer website for default strings for your bass. Actually, I recently bought a used bass, and still emailed the manufacturer, who actually sent me a link to the recommended type and size strings.

    Another way to go would be to buy a cheap digital caliper ~$20 and measure to see what's on your bass now.

    I won't go into a lengthy discussion of the pros/cons of increasing/decreasing string gauge (and likely tension) and whether or not you may need to adjust the truss rod after doing so, but it is something that you should be aware of. You can search out most of that info here, or if you take your bass to get it restrung, a friendly tech may take the time to explain it to you.
  5. Jeremy James

    Jeremy James Supporting Member

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    The most commonly used gauge is 'light gauge' 45-105, if the bass is new I would almost guarantee that is the gauge.

    Do you really need to change them? A lot of bass players leave them on for longer than a few months, and sometimes years, depending on the tone you like. New strings are too bright for some, and prefer them well broken in.

    D'Addario XL's, JB-EXL170BT (Balanced Tension), are good because the string tension, and volume, is more even across the strings. The gauge is 45-107, slightly heavier 4th than std light gauge.

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