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10-string question for michael

Discussion in 'Ask Steve Lawson & Michael Manring' started by Taylor Livingston, Mar 6, 2003.


  1. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    hi. would you mind taking a look at this thread? it regards finding a bridge for a 10-string (doubled 5) bass.

    http://www.talkbass.com/forum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=76482

    as you can see, i've looked all over, e-mailed several people, and can't find what i need. i was wondering if you could offer some help on the subject. was the bridge for your zon 10-string custom made? if so, by whom? i know you're tight with hipshot, so i'm guessing it's them. thanks for any insight you can offer.

    addition on 3/8: do you use special gauges on this bass (non-standard sizes for the octaves)? some of the tunings you have listed for your zon 10 are pretty interesting; the main thing i'm excited about with this double course bass is the possibility of huge chords, so i'll be doing plenty of tuning to things other than octaves.

    what's the tuning range on the octave strings? obviously, the different gauges have different ranges. when tuning the pairs to something other than an octave, do you generally tune higher than an octave, or lower? i guess that's kind of a lot of questions; sorry for inundating you. feel free to not answer some stuff; i know you have a life.
     
  2. Michael Manring

    Michael Manring TalkBass Pro Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Thanks for your interest in my ten-string. I have been doing just what you describe – using non-octave altered tunings -- on that instrument for years and I've really had a lot of fun with it. If you'd like to hear what it sounds like you can have a listen to "The Fire Sermon" which is a solo piece on my CD The Book of Flame or ""My Fellow Astronauts" from the Attention Deficit CD, The Idiot King.

    The bridge on my bass was designed by Zon. It has separate adjustments for each of the ten strings for height, angle and intonation. This is very helpful, as different string gauges often need to be intonated differently. In addition, the bass is designed to allow you to use guitar strings for the high strings, giving access to many more gauges and choices. Normally, guitar strings are too short to fit on a standard 34" scale bass, but the Zon has a specially designed clamp at the headstock to accommodate this. The high strings are tuned at the bridge. This is a great system and I have experimented with a lot of different stringings for this instrument. I find that light gauge strings have a huge functional tuning range – over an octave in some instances, and I sincerely doubt that I will ever come close to exhausting the possibilities for this instrument.
     
  3. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    Thanks. I hope you don't mind any future questions regarding 10-string.

    What do you suggest about finding a bridge? Maybe an e-mail to hipshot is the next step, but I was hoping for something else, since I'm not sure i can afford something custom-made by them. Do you know of any places that sell hardware from whom i might be able to get a suitable bridge plate and double saddles?
     
  4. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    Is there any chance you could provide a picture (or pictures) of your ten-string, especially the bridge and and "clamp" part? I know the "basses" section of your site isn't up yet, but could I (and, presumably, other people who are interested) have a peek?
     
  5. Michael Manring

    Michael Manring TalkBass Pro Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Sorry, Conical. I looked around and I don't seem to have a decent picture of the ten-string. Guess it's time to buy a digital camera...
     
  6. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    Hi, Michael. My bass is getting nearer to being started on. I was wondering what spacing you use between the primary and octave strings, and which side of the primaries your octave strings are. I'm pretty much set on having the octaves on the treble side of their respective primary, but I just wondered how you have yours, and why.

    I'm thinking of 1/4" between the octave and primary strings, but I have seen spacings that were bigger. I want the strings to be close enough that I can fret both with a fingertip, but I think anything bigger than 1/4" would be too far apart; I'd have to fret with the flat part of my finger, which would make playing chords much harder. Thanks for the help; I look forward to being able to get one of your records that uses your 10-string.
     
  7. Michael Manring

    Michael Manring TalkBass Pro Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Conical,

    The high strings on my 10-string are on the top – i.e., they are the first strings you would hit on a downstroke. The bass wasn't built for me, so I didn't plan on having it set up this way. I think I could reverse the stringing, but I've never felt a need to do so. The spacing between the strings is about 1/8". I seldom try to isolate the high strings from the low strings entirely with playing technique, but I do sometimes attack the strings in a way to try to emphasize one or the other.
     
  8. wmaxwell

    wmaxwell

    May 9, 2003
    I built an 8 string (which you may have seen Michael) and initially strung it with the high octave strings on the "floor" side. It doesn't work. Pick or fingers, the octave strings hide behind their lower pitched mates.

    William
     
  9. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    Well, I wouldn't go so far as to say it doesn't work, but it's interesting that it didn't work for you. It certainly is the less popular style, but it's been done. The Rickenbacker 8-strings are strung in the "inverted" order. A lot of people who've had customs have done it this way. In fact Tb's own Xush should just have gotten his FBB #62 that's strung "inverted". Check out 12stringbass.com for info on the various ways of stringing. I'm thinking I'm going to go the "standard" route.
     
  10. wmaxwell

    wmaxwell

    May 9, 2003
    Interesting. I never knew Rick 8's were strung that way.

    On my setup the higher pitched of the pair "below" made it difficult to play both in the pair evenly. I kept missing the higher string. To me anyway, the higher pitch "above" the lower feels more natural.

    BTW, I believe allparts (allparts.com?) carries an 8 string bridge.

    William
     
  11. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    Hi, Michael. I was... kind of hoping... if I asked really nicely...you could... post a picture of your 10-string bridge and clamp? :D It would be a huge help. If not, that's okay. :)
     
  12. Michael Manring

    Michael Manring TalkBass Pro Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Sorry, Conical. I just haven't been able to find a decent picture of the 10-string for you. Still saving up for that digital camera!
     
  13. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    That's cool. Can't blame a guy for trying! ;)
     
  14. BaroqueBass

    BaroqueBass

    Jul 8, 2000
    Salem, OR
    eeek! Even if I get as good as Mike Manring I'll still have to save up for a digital camera?? :bawl: :bawl: ohh well, it's all for the love of music I guess. :)
     
  15. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
  16. Michael Manring

    Michael Manring TalkBass Pro Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Thanks Conical, but I'll have to pay my cat food bill first!