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15-year old strings that have never been used- will they sound like new?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by squarewave, Oct 14, 2005.


  1. squarewave

    squarewave Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2004
    Iowa City, Iowa USA
    Hi- A potentially embarrasing question follows.

    I have some Dean Markley Blue Steel strings, still in the wrapper, that were purchased 15 yrs. ago. Is there a shelf life on strings? I suspect there is not, but don't want to waste my time if they won't be bright sounding.

    Jeff
     
  2. trog

    trog

    Nov 8, 2003
    Scotland
    Stick them on and find out?

    I imagine they'd be fine as long as they've been in a sealed packet.
     
  3. squarewave

    squarewave Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2004
    Iowa City, Iowa USA
    Thanks for the reply.

    I'm too short on time to goof with them if they won't sound as new.

    They are in the paper envelopes, but not shrink wrapped.
     
  4. Ray-man

    Ray-man Guest

    Sep 10, 2005
    Yeah, blow the dust off and give 'em a whirl. They haven't been stretched - that's the key. Once you stretch 'em, it's a downward slope to the trash heap.
     
  5. squarewave

    squarewave Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2004
    Iowa City, Iowa USA
    Thanks. I wondered if oxidation affected the life, but it certainly makes sense that the actual stretching (and re-stretching via vibration) would be the predominant mechanism by which they "wear out". Thanks again. I'll string it up and save my money.

    Jeff
     
  6. Unchain

    Unchain I've seen footage.

    Jun 20, 2005
    Tucson, AZ
    They shouldn't be bad, so long as they were in the envelopes.
     
  7. NV43345

    NV43345

    Apr 1, 2003
    The Rotosound rep told me Strings have a shelf life of 3 years.
    If I were you, I would put them on & try them out. :)
     
  8. WillBuckingham

    WillBuckingham

    Mar 30, 2005
    I've had strings start to rust after sitting for maybe a month or two (sitting in their paper sleaves). That was in oh-so-humid New Orleans though.
     
  9. metalguy2

    metalguy2

    Dec 26, 2004
    Boston
    I think your strings might be garbage..
     
  10. squarewave

    squarewave Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2004
    Iowa City, Iowa USA
    Thank you for all of the replies.


    They are likely better than the 16-yr old strings that they would replace, but I think I'll bite the bullet and buy some new ones. I guess a guy should change strings every 15 years or so, whether they need to be changed or not ;)
     
  11. Is your time really worth that much, so you can't try the strings on your bass to see if they are any good?
     
  12. squarewave

    squarewave Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2004
    Iowa City, Iowa USA
    I've already spent more time talking about the strings than it would take to try them out. I'll string them up this weekend and report back.
     
  13. 15 years? You are joking right? I change mine every 2 weeks... :eek:
     
  14. In 1970, I bought a Gibson Mastertone banjo brand new.

    This year, I changed the strings for the 1st time. Didn't sound any different...

    I have several sets of brand new strings that are moisture protected: TI Power Bass Magnecore, GHS Progressive 52, and some spare TI Flats. It will be interesting to see how they install...
     
  15. Unchain

    Unchain I've seen footage.

    Jun 20, 2005
    Tucson, AZ
    It's nice to have that much cash. :rolleyes:
     
  16. £13 every 2 weeks? I would rather spend that money on strings than go and blow it on booze every friday like half the people I know. Its not that much...

    I just like the tone of new Rotosounds!
     
  17. Jonki

    Jonki I will not slap my Bee!

    Oct 14, 2003
    Arendal, Norway
    i never change my strings, unless if they broken.
    for me, more i play, better tone i get
     
  18. Figjam

    Figjam

    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    I believe they have a shelf life of 3 years max. They probably arent good.
     
  19. whackdoodle

    whackdoodle

    Nov 2, 2005
    bgavin said...

    In 1970, I bought a Gibson Mastertone banjo brand new.

    This year, I changed the strings for the 1st time. Didn't sound any different...


    /I gotta tell ya, that made me laugh out loud.
     
  20. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Shelf life, schmelf life. I've got a set of LaBella flats on one of my basses that have close to 7 years on them. By this shelf life stuff, I should already be on my third set. But they just keep sounding better and better.