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E string is too long for Fender Jazz

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by seracis, Apr 18, 2009.

  1. seracis


    Sep 25, 2003
    Tulsa, OK
    I am really getting frustrated. I can not seem to find strings to fit my MIM fretless jazz. I have had the same set on it for about 4 years because every set of strings that I buy seems to be the wrong length. Obviously, I have a 34" scale and I would assume that unless otherwise noted, the strings are for a typical 34" scale, right? I have a set of DR Hi-Beam flats and I just bought a set of Fender 9050ML's today. According to another website, the standard length of the wound section is approx. 36.5" for a standard or long scale (34"). For a 35" scale, the wound length is around 38". I also own a Spector 5 string with a 35" scale. I have 3 sets of strings for it, (Rotosound, DR blacks, EB super slinkies) all of which measure 38" of wound string. The old strings on my jazz measure 36.5" of wound string, but the Fenders and DR flats are 38".

    Basically, only the E string is a problem. I can't be the only one with this problem, or can I? I've searched but I didn't find a specific answer. Can someone else with a Fender please advise me as to what to do? Also, can you humor me and measure the distance from the center of the E tuning peg to the far side of the bridge where the ferrule meets up? Thanks in advance.
  2. PaulNYC


    Apr 2, 2009
    New York, NY
    i got paid for a gig once.
    have you seen this link?
  3. seracis


    Sep 25, 2003
    Tulsa, OK
    I had not. But after reading it, I learned nothing new. It did not address my issue. Would a picture help?
  4. So pull the string up to the tuning post, and cut it. Leave enough to wind around the post and tune properly.
    Too long is what you want. you can cut to taste. Too short? Then you have a problem.

  5. FronTowardEnemy

    FronTowardEnemy It is better to go unnoticed, than to suck Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2006
    Plainfield Illinois
    If the E string is too long than cut it.
  6. Eminor3rd

    Eminor3rd BLAAAAARRGGHH!!

    Feb 10, 2008
    Cut the string. Cut all the strings. You only need about 2 inches of string past the post length.
  7. FronTowardEnemy

    FronTowardEnemy It is better to go unnoticed, than to suck Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2006
    Plainfield Illinois
    I was a min late.
  8. seracis


    Sep 25, 2003
    Tulsa, OK
    Here are pics of the problem. The first is the DR. Second is the DR trying to wrap the peg. Third is the Fender string. Fourth, Fender trying to wrap. Fifth is existing string.





  9. Lobsterdeth


    Jan 6, 2008
    That happens to both my p-bass and j-bass.

    I just cut the string, stick it in, wind it and I'm done.

    I've used Fender strings for a while, so I really don't see why you're having any problems with that.
  10. dystopiate


    Feb 21, 2008
    New York City
    Endorsing Artist: Spector, Aguilar
    If it makes you feel any better, I can see what the problem is. Sadly, I have nothing useful to offer in the way of a solution outside of, "buy some D'Addarios."

    I've never used strings that taper that far past the nut, or that taper that significantly. I do recall once having trouble putting a Smith .125 on a 34" scale fretless and just scrapping it.

    I'd be interested to see if anyone has a solution to this problem.
  11. So, to make it clear to everyone (and me) - the TAPER is too far past the nut, and thus you can't get it to stick in the tuner hole if you cut the string to the proper length first? Right?

    Can you cut it to the point it will fit, and then just super-wrap the tuner post with that heavy string? Otherwise a new set of tuners might be your only option - but others must be having this issue as well...
  12. seracis


    Sep 25, 2003
    Tulsa, OK
    The issue is that the string will not wrap around the tuner due to the fact that the taper is past the tuning peg. The string will not bend that sharply. Simply put, why are these strings longer (the wound section, not overall) than what I have? You would think that FENDER would make strings that fit their basses. If I had widdled my own bass out of a big chunk of wood, I'd expect some problems.

    I don't know if the wound part will fit into the tuner hole. Even if it did, it still won't wrap around the peg properly.
  13. Why not thread the E-string through a brass fitting similar to those computer motherboard "offsets" before threading the string through the bridge? That way you get the ball end moved half an inch away from the bridge. I'm not sure through if half an inch is enough based on the pictures sent.
  14. Lobsterdeth


    Jan 6, 2008
    Well, like I said, the same thing happens with my basses, I just wrap it around not tightly, but secured, and begin winding it until it tunes.

    I dunno, I've been doing it like that for years.
  15. Jefenator

    Jefenator Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2008
    I personally like to have enough wraps to cover most of the E string post. (Ideally forcing the tensioned part to the bottom of the post so you have a bit of angle approaching the nut.) 2" seems a bit short to me - I usually tug the E string out to the farthest tuner and cut it about there. Hopefully that far out it should be tapered. If it still doesn't fit in the center hole, I'd just use the slot (w/ maybe 1/2" sticking out the far end) and with a little technique you can wind it on and it will hold.

    Hope that makes sense and helps. :smug:
  16. seracis


    Sep 25, 2003
    Tulsa, OK
    In the 3rd and 4th pic, I am gripping the string where the taper begins. WAY past the tuning peg. IT WON'T WRAP AROUND THE PEG!
  17. Won't wrap? Hmm... odd. Make the tuner do the work. Hook it in there, and turn. The torque from the gear ratio of the tuner make it much easier to bend the string than you could ever do by hand.
  18. Jaco who?

    Jaco who?

    May 20, 2008
    Pretty much every string I've ever used on my MIM jazz has about 1/2 a turn or so of the fat part wrapped around the E tuner.
  19. funkmangriff


    Dec 29, 2007

    you just made my day

    strings too long

    i honestly can't see where your coming from when your on about taper and not being able to wrap around the peg. If the taper is going past the nut (so its over your first fret), this is what i think your going on about, then buy a new set of strings and take the other strings back for a refund because they are faulty.

    but honestly, i REALLY don't see where your coming from, if you really are stuck then just take your bass to the local music shop and ask them to show you how to change your strings!

    your pictures show me no reason as to why those strings wouldn't 'fit' on your bass
  20. Low Main

    Low Main Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2004
    Sorry folks, I think the OP has a legitimate gripe.

    The problem starts with the fact that the typical Fender E string (or B string) tuner is too close to the nut. A design deficiency that's been there forever.

    The same problem exists on other basses and with the G tuner on some 2+2 headstocks. The G tuner is also too close.

    The tuners that are closest to the nut should be at least 2.25 inches away from the nut in order for the tapered leader portion of the string to wrap properly around the tuner post, as the string was designed for that to happen.

    Wrapping the full thickness body of the string around the post is not ideal, and is definitely not a good thing with flats.

    Bass manufacturers seem to still be fairly clueless about this, and string makers definitely are.

    For example, GHS changed the winding length of all their bass strings from 36.5 to 38. It's a long story why they did that (and it's a knuckleheaded one, too). When I spoke to them about it they said, "whoa yeah you're right, that's a problem. we need to do something about it." They haven't done anything about it.

    They don't even know what the winding length of their strings is when you call and ask. They have to step out of the office and go measure them.

    When they made the change, they never notified their retailers that there was a change. And their packaging never listed the new winding length. No further comment necessary.

    Also, some string makers assume that all basses have a 4L tuner alignment like Fenders, so they increase the winding length of the A,D and G strings. So if you have a 2 + 2 headstock, you may end up wrapping a good bit of the body of the G string around the tuner post.

    Winding length = the length of the string that carries the full thickness outer wrap, as measured from the ball end.

    What someone suggested before will work: slide some spacers on to the string so you can move the ball end away from the bridge tail. I've done that before. I use small sections of metal tubing and old ball ends clipped from dead strings.

    If you go to a Badass bridge, that helps because the distance between the mounting screw holes and the bridge tail is greater than on a stock Fender bridge. So you're moving the ball end farther away from the nut and tuner post.

    Or, you can drill the body for string ferrules and mount the strings through the body. This also moves the ball end further back. Check out what Mike Lull does - he just installs string ferrules for the strings that mount on the tuner closest to the nut. Like the E or B.

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