Drop Tunings on 5's and 6's

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by TimmyDX, Jul 28, 2009.

  1. Okay so my band has been jamming and writing a bit in drop A# (As in A# F A# D# on a 4 string) at the moment and ive been thinking for a while before that about getting a 5 or 6 string both to have the A# on the heavier string but also for some higher up strings for melodies and stuff with delay/modulation.

    Because i've only ever touched a 5 string in a store tuned to standard i want to know how you go about tuning a 5 or 6 string that low, because while dropping the low B down half a step to A# doesn't seem so bad, dropping the low E down to an F seems silly and also like it would be in the wrong octave (Sorry about the wording here if its confusing/********)

    To make the question clear cut Does anyone here drop tune a 5 or 6 string to drop A# as above, and even if not how does anyone who does anything similar do that? Because as its probably obvious from the above im completely clueless

  2. jefkritz


    Oct 20, 2007
    iowa city, IA
    i've never done it myself, but it would be dirt simple to get A# F A# D#. tune the B string down 1/2 a step and every other string UP a 1/2 step.

    i know, i know, tuning up is not 'down tuning.' but otherwise your 'e' string would be the lowest string and waaaaay lower than you even meant to tune down.

    in this case you might tune the G string to G# or really to whatever you want.
  3. FunkMetalBass


    Aug 5, 2005
    Phoenix, Arizona 85029
    Endorsing Artist: J.C. Basses
    If you use a medium-/light gauge set of strings, tuning each of your strings up a half step (and the B-string down a half step) is no big deal.

    I don't know how complicated your lines are, but can you possibly tune A# D# G# C# F# and just transpose? Or is it completely necessary that you keep the A# F# A# D# part of the tuning?
  4. hey thanks for the replies, ive always been scared of tuning up but im sure its not a big deal haha, transposing isn't out of the question, some parts are a little tricky but ill try tuning up first

    thanks again