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Full bends

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by conduit, Aug 4, 2005.

  1. conduit


    Jul 1, 2004
    I was wondering why I can't get a full bend done on my bass, even though I try to bend it with all my might. Has it something to do with my bass or the type of strings I use? I'm currently using Elixirs on an Ibanez SRX700.
  2. Suckbird

    Suckbird Banned

    May 4, 2004
    I can't do fullbends either, i dont do bends at all.
  3. Well obviously the size of the strings you're using is going to make a difference. Might want to look into that.
  4. Atshen


    Mar 13, 2003
    Grim Cold Québec
    As Geoff said, string gauge will make a difference. Lighter strings will bend easier, since there's less tension.

    Also, try using two or more fingers instead of just one. I usually use two, personnally.
  5. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    String gauge will make a huge difference, lighter gauge strings will be naturally easier to bend. Regardless of this it still takes a lot of strength. How long have you been playing.

    However, I use as many fingers as I can to bend.

    Also, I find it's easier to bend upwards towards your face, as opposed to pulling the strings down to the floor. You can bend all the strings upward except your E string, which will inherantly be the most difficult to bend because of tension and the motion.
  6. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    Yeah, but by "full bend" does he mean 'a whole step' in pitch? Wouldn't a 'second from the top' string (E in my case) bend up off of the neck too, if you pulled it up so far that it gained a whole step of pitch?

  7. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    I guess it depends on the bass, but my A string on a P-bass neck can bend up a whole step and be a bit from the edge of the fretboard.
  8. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    It does? I found maybe it did when I started playing, but these days I can make the strings do whatever I want. Now on my double bass, things are a bit different. Still at the fighting with it physically stage.

    Just throwing that out there. My thoughts are that unless using really huge strings (50 - 110 or something) bending should be pretty easy. Maybe the bass' setup is to blame?
  9. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Well, yes and no. After about five years of playing metal, I can bend 2-1/2 steps almost effortlessly, and I bend guitars out of tune without even thinking about it (meaning I have to find guitars with small frets and then throw .10's on em) And yes, I know what you mean, URB is still difficult, slightly different hand motions, I guess.

    And yes, setups can be responsible for something that's hard to bend...
  10. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    Ah, beat me to Setups.

    Yes, lighter strings and get your bass setup and soon you'll be bending like a pro. Make a total wank face so you look sincere when you do it.
  11. conduit


    Jul 1, 2004
    I have a standard string gauge, and I don't think it has something to do with strength; when I bend the 12th fret on the G string a half step it already feels like my string is about to snap, and it's impossible to bend it more... So what setup changes can make bending easier?
  12. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    I can do full bends with 035-095 but then I almost run out of fret space on a 4-string.
  13. I find that I can approximate the sound of larger bends by combining a hammer-on with a half step bend in a certain way, which is a good technique to know since it's fairly easy to pull a half step pretty much anywhere on a bass even with heavy strings.
  14. WillBuckingham


    Mar 30, 2005
    Hey Typlons, don't the lower strings have less tension? Wouldn't this make them easier to bend. I have a lot more trouble bending my high G and C strings than my low E.