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TI Jazz Flats...What's their general lifespan ?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by fearceol, Mar 25, 2014.

  1. fearceol


    Nov 14, 2006
    I have had a set of TI flats on my bass for about seven years. Over the last couple of months, while practicing at home, it seemed like I could not hear the notes clearly, especially on the E string.

    Seven years is a decent amount of time to have them on. I was just wondering how long some of you get out of them before you decide to change them. Granted the amount of actual playing time is crucial, but I just want a rough idea. :)

    I have just put on a new set and they sound very clear. I realise that it will be a while before they break in. Only then will I know for sure that changing them was the solution.
  2. Gorn Captain

    Gorn Captain Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Well apparently, their general lifespan is 7 years.
  4. petrus61

    petrus61 Supporting Member

    One thing to keep in mind about TIJF's is that they have a silk wrap beneath the outer wrap. The silk will absorb gunk over time. It's part of what gives them their sound and contributes to an evolution of sorts in their tonal range when they hit a certain peak...after that its *plunk*.

    I figure they more than pay for themselves after two years, let alone seven.
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  6. fearceol


    Nov 14, 2006
    Thanks for the replies guys. :) Apparently the life span for my set was indeed, as JimmyM points out, seven years.

    My reason for asking was that I have read where people have had a set on for more than ten years. Granted, the life span will depend on various factors. I am not complaining, just curious, and will continue to use TI's.

    "petrus61'"...your post makes a lot of sense. Your description of "plunk" describes nicely what I was hearing.

    Judging by the poll linked by "3234718", I obviously got more than my money's worth.

    Anyway, I now have a new set on, so I'm good to go for another seven years. :bassist:

    Thanks again for the responses.
  7. Root 5

    Root 5

    Nov 25, 2001
    Lifespan is dependant on the tone you like. I happen to see it as a positive development when a set of flats lose their highs - becoming more thumpy. Others may hate it.

    For myself, if the intonation/tuning remain stable, I can get 15-yrs + out of flats.
  8. fearceol


    Nov 14, 2006
    My problem was that I could not distinguish the low notes on the E string. They seemed to sound like a muddy "plunk".....to use "petrus61's" term. :D
    The intonation/tuning remained stable on the old set.

    What confused me was that, after maybe ten plus years of use, people often describe TI's as...."still maintaining their smooth mellow sound"... In my case that did not happen, but as you say, it is all about the tone you want.

    Again, I am not complaining. I just wanted to compare notes with other users.
  9. tedsalt

    tedsalt Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2010
    The Mild Midwest
    Did you stretch them when you put them on? That might reduce their life ...
  10. fearceol


    Nov 14, 2006
    No. I dont believe that stretching helps.
  11. petrus61

    petrus61 Supporting Member

    Everyone is going to wear out strings at different paces. Some of it is amount of use and some of it is as simple as body chemistry. When I was using TI's regularly with probably 12hrs of playing time a week, I noticed that they would start to mellow at the three month mark. They still sounded balanced, perhaps even better because some of the high end had smoothed out. Everyone is different. There's also a chance that the small, round core had broken from normal stress. Normally when a string goes suddenly "dead", this is the culprit.
  12. Jeff Bonny

    Jeff Bonny

    Nov 20, 2000
    Vancouver, BC
    Hey, get the hell outta here you don't even like these strings!

    Remember you gave me a set in 2005 or so...maybe '06? I've had them on and off (mostly on) my warhorse Pbass since then and I just replaced them a couple of months ago when I got a refret done. They still sounded fine to me but with the locking Sperzels the many on/offs had chewed the ends pretty bad. Still have them in that bass's bag as spares though. I'd say you could count on 7 years.
  13. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Yeah, I said 7 years because the set fearcoel had lasted him 7 ;)

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