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Dead E string on P bass

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Insomnia_Junkie, Aug 17, 2007.

  1. I've had my P bass for a few months now (ebay) and it just seems that the e string isnt as resonant as the others. What I thought was weird was it isnt any specific frets its the whole string. Now the string isnt totally dead but you can still kinda notice a difference when playing chords, any ideas?
  2. Foxworthy925

    Foxworthy925 Guest

    Feb 24, 2007
    Bay Area, CA
    change strings
  3. Flizzy21


    May 13, 2007
    I had the same problem on both my P bass and J bass. If changing strings doesn't fix the problem then take the pickups out and just inspect the botom of them, on both of my basses the entire pickup was cracked under the casing right at the E string (I know Its weird, as far as Im concerned its a conspiracy). When I changed the pickups on both of them it completely fixed it.
  4. Check to see that your nut is slotted correctly if the string has too much space in the slot it could be rattling around too much and deadening out?
  5. cnltb


    May 28, 2005
    I have often noticed the E and A strings to be comparatively dull. Compared to the D and G.
    Maybe the bickup position of the bottom half of the P splitcoil has something to do with that also...???
    Just a guess
  6. are they dull when playing acoustically? (not plugged into amp) Chances are they are dead and need replacement. Get a new set of strings. Clean them often with a clean rag. Everybody has different oils and acids in their sweat, so some peoples strings may go dead quicker than others. I use DR-Hi beams and they last about 4-6 months. So far the best string for lasting along time are Elixrs. Im not a fan of them, but they stay nice and bright for a long time.
  7. Altitude

    Altitude An ounce of perception, a pound of obscure. Supporting Member

    Mar 9, 2005
    Denver, nee Austin
    This is normal. All else constant, the lower strings go dead first, because there are larger cavities in the windings to catch dirt, sweat, dust, and skin.

    The best remedy is a new set of strings. For the other 99.99% of us who can't afford new strings as often as necessary, the next best remedy is a soak for a day or two in denatured alcohol - get it at Home Depot in the paint section. Put some in a deep tupperware container, roll up your strings, and set them in it for a while. They come out sounding just like new. Really.

    I usually keep two sets of strings around per bass, and rotate them on and off as needed this way.

    Best luck!
  8. Thanks guys for your input. I threw some new strings on it, but it's still a little dull, now it rattles, so my best guess is that the nut spaces are a little to large on the E and A strings. So what can I use to remedy it? Should I just replace the whole nut, or is there something I can use to make them smaller?
  9. Jo6Pak


    May 2, 2007
    Unless you replaced the strings with the same gauge/type/brand, you may need to adjust the truss rod to account for different tensions of the new ones. By 'rattles', I assume you mean buzzing...
  10. Altitude

    Altitude An ounce of perception, a pound of obscure. Supporting Member

    Mar 9, 2005
    Denver, nee Austin
    Nothing that you are describing suggests a problem with your nut - I don't recommend you do anything with it. You say you hear a "rattle" - by that do you mean a buzz on the frets, or something actually rattling on or inside your bass or neck?
  11. Whenever I hit the E and A strings i hear a rattle more then a buzz. It only happens when I hit the open strings whenever I fret them it doesn't.
  12. Maybe a new set of strings and a set up by a professional. It sounds like thats what it needs. Can you take a video clip and post it somewhere?? that might help us here give you a diagnosis before you spend about $150 or so.
  13. Altitude

    Altitude An ounce of perception, a pound of obscure. Supporting Member

    Mar 9, 2005
    Denver, nee Austin
    That sounds like an uneven fret, but it also sounds like a different problem than you originally posted about.

    Whatever it happens to be, I'm going out on a limb to say that it might be beyond your technical experience to fix yourself. No offense. As the ^ poster said, you might want to have a guitar tech take a quick look at it to see if he can pinpoint the problem.

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