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Changing from a Low B to a High C, also Lighter Gauge Strings?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Ely, Oct 22, 2003.


  1. Ely

    Ely

    Jun 8, 2001
    Huntsville, AL
    I really don't know wether to put this in Strings or Setup, but here's the deal.

    I am tired of the Low-B on my new 5-String Bass. I never use it, it sounds muddy when played with other instruments, and I don't really like the big string getting in the way. I was thinking about going back to 4, but now I've decided I want to try out a High-C string. I was also wondering if changing the gauge of the strings would make it any easier to play. I haven't played a bass that was properly set up, and I was thinking about going for a lower action and lighter gauge strings.

    Ahem... sorry for rambling...

    I play in a rock/metal band. Major influences are Tool, Deftones, Mudvayne... I play a Peavey Grind Bass Neck-Thru 5 string on a Peavey Combo 300 w/ 15" speaker. I want a sound that will cut through the mix but can also sound mellow when I want. I also want easier fretting and lower action.

    Thanks in advance, and sorry for the rambling.
     
  2. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    not sure what to tell you in terms of string brand but to do this you are going to need a new nut ...
     
  3. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    Rock/metal, Tool, Deftones, and Mudvayne. And you're switching away from the low-B.


    ...

    Whatever floats your boat. So what's the question? Or were you just informing us of your decision?
     
  4. Ely

    Ely

    Jun 8, 2001
    Huntsville, AL
    I know it sounds weird, but I don't believe Tool or Deftones uses a Low B. Mudvayne uses waaaay below a B.

    Anyways. I was wanting suggestions for string brands, gauges, etc.
     
  5. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    Good lighter tension strings...Thomastik-Infeld. Check 'em out, they make more than just the jazz flats that seem to be what everyone else here is all about.
     
  6. Ely

    Ely

    Jun 8, 2001
    Huntsville, AL
    I've actually been thinking about TI. I've also been thinking about Flatwounds to see how I would like em. I hear that Jazz Flats are very nice, and I've been wanting to try them. Would I get completely drowned out? Anyways, thanks to everyone and if you could please give me more info on TI strings I would be very appreciative.
     
  7. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    You very rarely need a new nut in a case like this.
     
  8. I'll go one step further and say that you won't need a new nut. I did the same thing on the same bass and it works just fine.
     
  9. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    This thread is getting a bit aged however ... You'd only want to cut a new nut if you want proper intonation and don't want the possible / probable addition of string rattle and 'odd / strange' harmonics / ghost tones.

    The width of your typical B is say .130 and E runs .100 to .105. That leaves .030 to .025 additional space around your properly cut 5 string nut. The string rattles around in there a whole lot ...

    That rule applies to each string of course with a .080 A string sitting in the .100 to .105 E string cavity.

    Not good. Sure you could play around with it to get a feel for the new setup, but you'd be signing up a luthier for a new nut pretty quickly.

    I actually did something similar a while back, I took a 4 string MIM Jazz to BEAD to see if the low B would get me anything. I widened the nut to make room for the new set and put on the bottom 4 of a 5 string set. That took me to a MIM J 5.

    For an experiment I put the old 4 string set back on my modified MIM 4. That took me off to the luthier for a new graphite nut which set me back around $40 as I had him go through the setup while he was at it.