What factors of a bass give it that perfect string tension?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by svt1233, Dec 24, 2012.


  1. svt1233

    svt1233

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2012
    Say I like a certain string tension on one jazz bass than on another similar jazz bass with the same strings, height, and gauge? A certain rubbery bounciness
  2. Figjam

    Figjam Supporting Member

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    Aug 5, 2003
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    If string gauge and saddle height are the same, I would say the neck relief.
  3. raal

    raal

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    Feb 5, 2008
    Location:
    Minneapolis / St Paul
    if the test conditions are as you describe, this would have to do with characteristics related to the basses themselves.

    Rigidity of the neck and integrity of the neck joint come to mind.
  4. Mike M.

    Mike M.

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2010
    They're all differant. Once I tried some DR Lo Riders on my MIJ 70's P bass and the tension on the D and strings was the tightest I've ever felt to the point of being unplayable. Put those same strings on a Squire Affinity P bass and they were perfect. Tight, but not unplayable as when on the MIJ.

    Got an SR505 and Elixer Nanowebs are the perfect string for that bass. Thought I'd try those strings on my Fender AM STD 5 string Jazz bass....talk about rubbery! Way too loose.

    Takes a while to find the right strings for a particular bass.
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  6. svt1233

    svt1233

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2012
    This is true. I don't exactly have a luxury though to drop $30 on new (multiple) pairs of strings just to try different ones out, and only on one bass.
  7. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Groom Lake, NV
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    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Well, if it has the same strings and everything else is the same, then they should feel the same. It's predominantly the strings that would give you "that certain rubbery bounciness."

    If both basses have the same scale length, the same strings, and are tuned to the same notes, the tension in the strings will be identical.
  8. uOpt

    uOpt Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2008
    Location:
    Boston, MA, USA
    The floppyness of the neck plays a big role.

    Try striking a string and while it sustains turn the bass face down. How much flatter does the note get? (obviously depends on how heavy turners you have, too) Being too stiff isn't really that desirable.
  9. zortation

    zortation Supporting Member

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    Dec 26, 2011
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    Toronto, ON
    We have a winner. :hyper:
  10. svt1233

    svt1233

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    Jan 15, 2012
    The reason being I ask these questions is because I plan on doing some neck/body swapping on my favorite jazz basses and was wondering which qualities the final product would adapt from each
  11. uOpt

    uOpt Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2008
    Location:
    Boston, MA, USA
    What you should do (tm) :) is trying different neck relief (with same action) and report back whether that makes a difference to you.

    It doesn't for me. I can use different neck relief to get different action and of course lower action plays easier. But the buttery feel that some instruments have doesn't come from that.

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