Dunlop Flats on a Hofner Club...short scale or medium?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by qwench, Jun 20, 2020.

  1. Hey All,

    I am using Dunlop SB Nickels and 40-100 gauge Dunlop Flats on all my long scale basses and I was just about to buy the Dunlop Flats to string up on my Hofner Club (Icon) but wasn't sure if the medium scale length would be the correct choice or if the shorts would fit.

    I know this discussion has occurred on here...based on that...I was leaning toward the medium version (DBFS40100M - Dunlop Flats Medium Scale 40-100 gauge) over the short scale.

    I thought I would check with the TB community first to see if anyone has strung up a Hofner or Hofner style bass with the fairly recently introduced Dunlop flats in short or medium scale??
  2. Gorn


    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    You'd probably need the medium scale but I think you may have problems getting the strings in the tuner holes. The ends have to be very thin.
    REV and qwench like this.
  3. Dunlop "medium scale" = 34" winding length (ball end to silk)
    Dunlop "short scale" = 32" winding length (ball end to silk)

    All you need to do is measure the distance on your bass from where the ball end sits to where the string clears the nut and see which winding length is the right one.
    digmeout and qwench like this.
  4. Thanks folks...I think mediums would be the choice but as Gorn mentioned...the tuner holes might well be an issue.

    I might just stick with the La Bellas Beatle Bass Flats but go with the lighter gauge version (mine are the .050-.100's - the lighter ones are .039-.096)
    fermata likes this.
  5. HaphAsSard


    Dec 1, 2013
    Where did you find the winding length info, by the way?

    TB member @Erik Leth put the BEAD part of a 5-string Dunlop flatwound set (DBFS40120M) on his Höfner Contemporary Beatle Bass, tuned up to standard EADG, and reported being pleased with the result.
    The relevant part, to this thread, is that the Dunlop medium-scale flats "fit perfectly in length". If I'm not mistaken, the CT Hoffies also have tiny tuners.

    5-string set on hoffner bass
    qwench likes this.
  6. Jason at Fret Nation.
  7. HaphAsSard


    Dec 1, 2013
    Oh, OK. I wondered, because Jason's general "winding length by manufacturer" page still only mentions long-scale Dunlops (37.25"):
    Electric Bass String Winding Lengths by Manufacturer from
    I see now that this product page does say their shorties are 32" long:
    Dunlop Flatwound Electric Bass Strings Short Scale Set - 5-String 45-125 DBFS45125S
    A past thread showed Dunlop mediums being actually even shorter than 34" ball to silk:
  8. I emailed Jason a short while ago when I noticed his webpage didn't have the info on the Dunlop short and medium-scale winding lengths. That's when he provided me with the info and said he was going to update the page when he had a chance to do so.
  9. HaphAsSard


    Dec 1, 2013
    Gotcha. Thanks.
  10. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    Yes, on the classic Höfners, the distance between the bridge saddles and the ball anchor in the tailpiece is longer than many other short scale guitars, especially those that use a Fender or Gibson derived bridge on a 30-31 inch scale. Even though the medium scale may be more appropriate, as stated above, measure, measure, measure. Measure the distance from the ball anchor to the tuner side of the nut, then measure the distance from the ball anchor to the middle of the E string tuning post (on 4-string basses; measure the B string on 5-string basses). Then find a set of strings that has a wound length or speaking length between these two measurements.

    That is one reason I use D'Addario strings on my Ibanez BTB845V, XL BT170 plus a 130: not only do they sound great, but also the Ibanez speaking length for regular long scale is 37.1 inches. D'Addario XL's are O.E.M. on many Ibanez basses, so not only is the bass voiced to optimize these strings, the B string goes right up with the taper starting just before the B string tuner post. Strings with a 37 1/2 speaking length are just too long.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2020
  11. Jeff Hughes

    Jeff Hughes

    May 3, 2020
    Just throw an old long scale string on there and see what happens. I think the tailpiece requires a longer string from my memories of a Hofner bass. The tuning peg hole is a problem too since it needs to be skinny to fit through.
    qwench likes this.
  12. GIBrat51

    GIBrat51 Innocent as the day is long Supporting Member

    Lefty Duke 2.JPG Dano Longhorn (2).JPG Frankie 2.JPG Yeah, I'd say the medium scale strings are probably the way to go. But, as for the "tiny hole in the tuner" thing? I can't speak to the Hofner's tuners; I don't own one, and all the basses I own that take medium scale strings - even my violin basses - have bass tuners on them. However...
    I do own basses with actual guitar tuners. This Kramer Duke wears short scale 45-108 GHS Bass Boomers, and the Schaller guitar tuners have no problem with them. In fact, I have another Duke that has goodness-knows-what rounds on it - long scale 45-105 ones. The speaking part of those strings fit thru those guitar tuners just fine. This Danelectro Longhorn came from the factory with D'Addario 45-105 rounds; the leader on every string has no problem fitting thru those guitar tuner's holes...
    And, after looking at all of my guitar's tuners? Other than having to be careful with the number of winds around them, I can't see any tuners that would have a problem with a "normal" gauge bass string's leader. Even the little vintage 12-string tuners on this Frankenstein Epiphone EA-250 would accommodate them with no problem. Hell, the tuners on my mandolin would work with them... So, if a Hofner's tuners do have a problem? Then they are a very special case, IMO...:whistle:
    qwench likes this.
  13. JRT64


    Jul 13, 2020
    I have a set of Dunlop flats on my Hofner Ignition. Medium gauge 40-100. They sound excellent, and feel nice and supple yet not floppy at all. And I had no problem getting them to fit in the tuner posts. It will be interesting to see if they get thumpier as they break in. But so far I am a happy camper.
    J-Mags likes this.
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    That's a good way to break a tuning peg. Ask me how I know...
  15. LaBella Deep Talking Beatle Bass Flats fit perfectly on a Club.
  16. JRT64


    Jul 13, 2020
    I said medium gauge in my earlier post but I meant medium scale. Regular short scale strings won't fit on a Hofner because of the length between the tailpiece and the bridge. Medium scale strings are needed unless you use Hofner/Pyramid strings which are branded as short scale, but are long enough to fit. Most medium scale sets will work as long as they are not too high in tension. I wouldn't use anything heavier than the 50-100 LaBella set. The Dunlop flats I currently use are 40-100 and work nicely. Both my Ignition and HCT like them. I did have to shave a just a slight amount of the silk off the end of the E strings to fit in the tuner holes, but it wasn't hard, and it fit fine afterward and I love the tone.
    qwench likes this.
  17. LaBella Deep Talking Beatle Bass Flats are not standard short scale strings, but special lengths for Hofner instruments.
    "Beatle" Bass set is made up of special lengths and gauges. Each handmade flat wound stainless steel string is calibrated to fit the three different bridge types made by Hofner.

    • Stainless Steel Flat Wound
    • Deep, authentic "Beatles" tone typical of La Bella flat wound bass strings
    • Fits Hofner "Beatle" basses and similar models that require 34" distance from ball-end to silk. Please do not substitute this set for a medium scale set.
    • Tension: Standard
    • String Gauges: .050, .065, .080, .100
    • Made in the USA with American Wire
    • Packaged using MAP Technology (Modified Atmosphere Packaging) to prevent tarnishing and ensure freshness
    Please do not use this set to replace any of our medium scale bass sets as they will not fit medium scale basses due to the string construction. La Bella makes medium scale bass sets for all of our bass strings.