1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

breath new life in to old strings

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by phanton_bass, Jan 21, 2001.

  1. phanton_bass


    Jan 21, 2001
    this is a very good money saveing tip,
    when your string are starting to lost there sound they once had, take them off and put them in to some boiling water for 20 minutes and the will sound as good as new, neat!!
  2. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    Been doing this one forever phantom, and you're absolutley right. It works great for zipping a little life back into them. Try adding a little concentrated lemon juice to the water. It gets in and removes even more of the oil and dirt. You just have to be careful if you are one of those people with real acidic sweat, as your strings may rust. I haven't had this problem, but a buddy of mine has.

  3. Ty McNeely

    Ty McNeely

    Mar 27, 2000
    I've heard that a good solution to the acidic sweat thing is to dip your fingers in baking soda right before playing. This may not be very effective for bassists because it will get the strings dirty faster, but a VERY good guitar friend of mine said that when he played for extended periods of time he always carried a bag of it around with him and right before he went on just stuck his fingers in there.

    BTW, the point of it is that it neutralizes the acid in your sweat.
  4. maxoges


    Aug 23, 2000
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Hah I just boiled my strings the other day. But first i soaked them in washing deturgent (powder you wash clothes with Unsure about the correct term) about 20 min. =D
  5. APouncer


    Nov 3, 2000
    Lancashire, UK
    Try boiling them with a little vinegar and carefully spoon off the top crusty layer that will be left. Throw away the water and apply the smooth paste to some toasted bread for a tasty snack. Alternatively, just place strings (one at a time) in a microwave for a quicker, cleaner alternative!
  6. michael


    Mar 10, 2000
    Try boiling your fingers in a little vinegar water. Hurts like heck the first few times but if you keep it up it becomes barely noticeable. And yes, save the crud as above.
  7. yawnsie


    Apr 11, 2000
    I posted a thread on this a while ago, and was told that boiled strings can cause problems with the intonation on your bass, although I think that may be to do with the neck losing tension when you take all your strings off at one. I might be wrong, but it might be worth bearing this in mind. :)
  8. Luis Fabara

    Luis Fabara

    Aug 13, 2000
    Ecuador (South America)
    Audio Pro - Ecuador
    Uhmm Cleaner?? That is if you consider a exploding microwave to be "clean"

    Do Not introduce Metal Objects into the Microwave.
    Unless you get a cat inside it too... (That´s a Cool Effect) hehehehe.
  9. michael


    Mar 10, 2000
    I'm going to try the microwave. As soon as my wife leaves the house.
  10. Well to move away from the boiling routine and the cat frying... :p

    I am the worst person in the kitchen, i burn toast......... and 2 minute noodles? well don't ask!

    The other effective way is to take each string off, go outside and find a large piece of flat board (i used a old basketball backboard we had in the shed) and whipped the crap out of it using the string. It gets rid of all the crap etc.

    Then i spray some general purpose polish (Mr Sheen to us aussies) and wipe the string down with a cloth. Put it back on and take the next string off.

    That way, you clean the string, and keep the tension of the neck. Also clean the fretboard just as good house keeping. This rejuvenates the strings for about another month.


    Oh BTW it doesn't ruin the string. I have cheap strings too and they don't unwind..
  11. Yeah, it works well, but I find it easier to break strings after i boil them. (only the G string, and I was using a heavy pick)
  12. A set of bass strings last long enough to replace them every time with a set of new ones. Cut back on the Big Macs for a week and buy some new strings. Unless your really low on cash it just seems like a lot of effort to get a couple more weeks of playing out a set of strings when wiping them down and playing with clean hands will give you the same or better results. However if it works for you keep on rockin'.
  13. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Stay away from boiling!!!
    Put them in alcohol or a similar solvent, better result and no stress on the strings.

    BTW: This has already been discussed dozens of times...
  14. SlapDaddy


    Mar 28, 2000
    Yea, I boil mine too, but I read something I thought sounded great, which was to use a piece of conduit the length of the strings and 'soak' them in vinager and wd-40.
  15. nekro


    Jan 23, 2001

    I have been boiling my strings for the last cople of years and it really gives the strings back some life. But I must agree that it does lessen the life of the strings. Boiling water dosn't treat the metal very well and if you play slap alot like I do, I would recommend wearing a chainmail glove.. especially for that G string.. always goes really easy :)
  16. AssMan


    Dec 2, 2000
    Minnesota, USA
    Hell I just wet the strings down with a wet sponge that has the scrubber thing on one side, then dry them off. It's pretty messy and it'll do hell to your fretboard if it doesn't have any finish on it like most. It can also be bad if your neck pocket and electronics aren't sealed. I fixed all these problems by putting a clearcoat on the affected areas. For the electronics, I put thin rubber O rings where the metal ones were and they do the trick. This works great if you're too lazy to take the strings off. I also don't have a quick change bridge and if you take the strings out more than 3 times the tops of the strings start to unwind and break. Good strings aren't supposed to that but they do. Still use as little water as you can to get the job done.
  17. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Hm, nobody here who works with metal?

    NOBODY cleans metal parts with water...

    Use some solvent (unfortunately I don't know what the stuff is called in English), it beats the crap out of this boiling madness...
  18. virtual.ray


    Oct 25, 2000
    Windex anyone?

Share This Page