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Elixir strings on a fretless

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Aaron Saunders, Mar 12, 2003.


  1. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    I've been feeling the need for a new bass, and I REALLY want a fretless, but one of the things that's holding me back is the constant need for fretboard maintainance. I'm trying to keep the over all cost down, so I'll probably end up with a Dean Rhapsody HBF fretless. It has an ebinol fingerboard, which I understand is rather resistant to wear, but I'd like some added protection other than just using flats. Would the coating on Elixir strings help to minimize fretboard wear, or would it just be more cost effective to buy regular old flats? How often would I have to do maintainance on the fretboard if I was using Elixirs instead of nickle wrapped flats? Also, would I have to have a higher action in relation to a fretted, or could I go even lower?


    EDIT: On a side note...the bass itself is hollow body (Rhapsody Hollow Body Fretless -- HBF) so how would the acoustic volume on the elixirs be in relation to other strings?
     
  2. Acoustic Volume with Elixir's is much better then with flat or ground wounds.

    Elixir's will save your fretboard, just like they save my frets.

    Action hieght is a matter of personal preferrance.
    I like mine low.

    Try a set.

    If you like more of a "flat wound" feel, try the Polywebs.
     
  3. boogiebass

    boogiebass

    Aug 16, 2000
    I use the Nano's on my Roscoe 6 fretless and am very happy with both the sound and feel.
     
  4. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Yes, you can have the action even lower with a fretless - since there are no frets, you can take the strings that much lower without causing clacking.

    "but one of the things that's holding me back is the constant need for fretboard maintainance"

    Uh... fretboard maintenance? How do you mean?

    If you're talking about the strings eating the board - personally, I don't worry about it. In fact, I'm using Rotosound steel rounds on my unprotected board! They have marked the board - under the strings, you can see where they've indented their roundwound pattern on the board - but it hasn't effected the playability in the slightest.

    And, especially since I exercise a light touch with my fretting hand - I can't see it getting to the stage where it could affect the playability for a long time! Probably, by which time I'll have got a new bass anyway.
     
  5. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    I was worried about strings digging into the fretboard and having to recoat the thing every month.
     
  6. I've been playing fretless basses for over twenty years and have never had to do anything to a 'board other than oil it. I prefer ebony, but have also owned rosewood and maple 'boarded instruments.

    I am using Elixers (don't remember if Nanos or what)
    on my Carvin LB75F, and Ken Smith Tapered Nickels on my DP Custom and Warwick Thumb 6. The Smiths don't do any more damage than the Elixers. The Smiths are a good bit brighter than the Elixers, and I like being able to have two such different sounding sets of strings available to use when I want a change. You will find that your touch on fretless will probably become softer than on fretted.

    And as for an ebinol board; I prefer wood, but with a composite you should certainly never have to do anythin to it.
     
  7. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Heck, don't worry about that! Every month?

    Like I said, I'm using Rotosound steel roundwounds on my uncoated fretless (and these are some of the *the* roughest strings) and I reckon it'll be rather a long time before the strings' effect on the fingerboard is gonna be a problem.
     
  8. ConU

    ConU

    Mar 5, 2003
    La Belle Province
    I also use rotosounds on my uncoated jazz fretless,does no damage...I also use rotosounds on my fretted six...very little damage,or effect to playability.I've never had to get frets dressed or a fingerboard sanded...it's a fallacy for techs!!!!:D
     
  9. ebozzz

    ebozzz Supporting Member

    May 17, 2001
    Denver, Colorado
    I've never tried the Elixers but I currently have a set of coated D'Addario EXP 165s on my fretless. I love them! Has anyone tried both the Elixers and the EXPs that can give a comparison?
     
  10. boogiebass

    boogiebass

    Aug 16, 2000
    I've been wanting to try the EXP's! Do they make a sixer set?
     
  11. ebozzz

    ebozzz Supporting Member

    May 17, 2001
    Denver, Colorado
    No 6-string sets yet.