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(Epoxied) fretless fingerboard wear: RS66's vs. EXL170's

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by deckard, Aug 16, 2007.

  1. deckard


    Apr 4, 2003
    I currently play Roto RS66's on my H.G.Thor-epoxied fingerboard.

    Does anyone find D'Addario EXL170's to be any more "kind" to their fretless fingerboard (epoxied or not) than regular stainless steel strings?

    Or are they both equally brutal?

    I'm wondering if that may be one of the reasons guys like Manring, Willis and Egan use the nickelplated steels...

  2. joeman583


    Apr 8, 2006
    I personally love the Rotosounds but yes they can eat up your fingerboard after a period of time. Its good that your fingerboard is epoxied. That will sustain the life of your fingerboard longer than a fingerboard that has not been applied with epoxy. As for the strings, yes the D'Addario EXL170's will be easier on the fingerboard most likely because of the nickel-plating wrap on the strings. The Rotos I assume you are using are the Stainless Steel roundwounds. The EXL170 D'Addarios should be and will be less brutal.

    Jaco (Im sure you already knew) used an epoxy on his fretless Jazz Bass fingerboard, because of how rough the Rotos were. I assume he would apply more epoxy when needed though. Anyhow I hoped this helped you. I only know this because I use nickel roundwounds on my fretless (which has an epoxy finish) and I haven't had any problems.
  3. deckard


    Apr 4, 2003
    Thanks much for the reply, joeman583!!

    That's what I needed/hoped to hear... esp. from another epoxied-fretless guy.

    Yes, the RS66's are roundwound stainless steel, same as Jaco used, apparently.

    I love the sound of those strings and that is all I have used since the mid-70's.

    But having spent a good chunk of change (and "wait time") on having my fingerboard epoxied, I want to keep it in good shape as long as possible, affecting the tone as little as possible, if you know what I mean and I bet you do. ;)

    If I may ask, who did the epoxy job on your fingerboard?

  4. gjooro


    Mar 27, 2006
    DR sunbeams
    very kind strings
    RS eat fretboard for breakfast... Jaco played fretless only at gigs, he practiced on fretted because strings chew FB
  5. joeman583


    Apr 8, 2006
    Bill Foley at the German Village Music Hause in Columbus Ohio, since that is where I am from. He is somewhat known in the guitar technician world. He is also my friend. He applied a new finish of epoxy about once every year when I used Rotos on my fretless. After awhile I just started using Nickel roundwounds or flatwounds on my fretless though to decrease the wear and tear on the fingerboard. Its been great ever since.
  6. I used Rotos for years, but went to nickel Slinkys for the finger comfort more than the FB. 66s felt like playing on a flexible round file. More finger noise too. Didn't see too many coated FB in the old days. Back then I never knew Jaco's was epoxied.

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