Gut D&G, wound E&A combinations — GO!

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by iankenselaar, Sep 24, 2021.

  1. iankenselaar


    Jul 2, 2009
    I have a early-mid 20th century carved German bass (unlabeled), play primarily country/bluegrass, modern/trad jazz, and Turkish folk music. Primarily pizz but some arco too. Very minimal slap stuff. I like medium-high action and tension on the medium-stiff side. I use this bass for recordings, completely acoustic gigs all the way up to large festivals. (Using a DG Realist going straight into a beat up Fender Rumble lol — but looking for a new amp/mic now…I know, I know, different thread!)

    Been experimenting w raw gut D&G for about 5 years now. I like a natural, relatively short, punchy thump. I find most guts to have minimal differences but I’ve never found a wound E&A that I really like.

    Right now I’m using this combo but I want to swap out the E&A:

    G: Gamut Lyon, varnished (medium)
    D: Gamut Lyon, varnished (medium)
    A: Evah Mittel
    E: Evah Mittel

    This is my first time trying the Gamut varnished G&D, I found the raw lyon wore down my finger board quickly and only lasted about 9 months. The Red Devils were nice for the price, but the nylon wrapping gave me a plastic-y kinda sound and feel. Don’t think I’d opt for the nylon wrapping on another set. I’ve tried the Pistoy D&G (unvarnished) and honestly can’t recall much of a difference in feel to the Lyon (unvarnished). Never experimented with wide range of different gauges they offer.

    As far as E&A:
    I find the Evah’s have too much ‘mwah’ and not enough bassy thump.

    I remember loving the wound E&A Chorda & Chorda CH (which are now discontinued I believe) but they are very pricey. Would love to find a steel-wound natural gut alternative. The D&G Chordas are also lovely but spenny!

    Spiro’s seem to have even more undulating sustain for me. :(

    Curious to hear everyone’s experience w these and other strings! Thanks in advance.
  2. Francois Blais

    Francois Blais Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 1999
    Québec, Canada
    Difficult to be more thumpy.
    iankenselaar and AGCurry like this.
  3. AGCurry

    AGCurry Supporting Member

    Jun 29, 2005
    St. Louis
    As you say, I've not found much difference among wrapped-gut strings, other than Eudoxa and Oliv (which DO provide "bassy thump"). There isn't much that can be done, other than different wrapping wire, to set one apart from another.

    If Evah mittels have the right tension but too much mwaa for you, maybe you want an orchestral string:
    Bel Canto
    Kaplan medium
    Flexocor Deluxe
    Corelli "Forte"
    Jargar Forte or Medium
    iankenselaar likes this.
  4. I once tried Innovation Silver Slaps A and E with Efrano plain gut D and G. Not bad for pizz but the bowing is too much different on the two pairs.
    And I prefer a bit more sustain, so I use metal wrapped synthetic core strings.
    iankenselaar likes this.
  5. iankenselaar


    Jul 2, 2009

    Have you tried both the Forte and medium gauge?
  6. iankenselaar


    Jul 2, 2009
    I may have tried the Olivs before and remember liking them, but the price….oooooouch. Same goes for the Eudoxas. I think I’d need to get a loan to afford that habit!

    I might go for the Jargars, Flexocor Deluxe, or Corelli’s. Going to do a bit more searching — thanks!
    AGCurry likes this.
  7. iankenselaar


    Jul 2, 2009
    Cool — sounds like we crave a slightly different feel and tone. I still haven’t tried and “slaps” strings — I feel like the tension would be too low for me.

    Heard good things about the Efrano’s. I’ve often heard them mentioned in the same breath as Lenzner, Gotz, and Clef. Haven’t tried any of those yet. I’ll do a bit more digging. Thanks!
  8. Francois Blais

    Francois Blais Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 1999
    Québec, Canada
    Yes, and Dolces too.
    With guts on top, I'd be tempted by the Dolces.

    Much too bright and sustainy for me to go with gut top, but that's just me.
    iankenselaar likes this.
  9. D_Bag


    Feb 8, 2013
    Lawrence, KS
    The Evah slaps with gut D & G sound like what you’re going for. I get no meows on the e and a and they arco well.
    Keith Rawlings and DoubleMIDI like this.
  10. iankenselaar


    Jul 2, 2009
    Pirastro’s website lists the slap’s tension at 20.7kg (E) and 21.6kg (A), while the Evah mittles are 30.6kg (E) & 31.5kg (A), and the weichs are 28.5 kg (E) & 29.1 kg (A).

    That’s a seriously technical breakdown but based on my experience w the Evah weichs and mittels, it sounds like the tension on the slaps is significantly too low for my taste. I like the tension of those strings, the tone and feel is the issue for me w Evahs. Very durable and consistent string though!
  11. iankenselaar


    Jul 2, 2009
    Ahh noted! Definitely not seeking a squeaky clean, bright and shiny sustain. Thanks for the help.
  12. iankenselaar


    Jul 2, 2009
    That’s a strong endorsement for Jargars coming from the mod of the string forum…

    I’m verrrry intrigued by your response hahah
  13. I need to look my measured tension up for the Silver Slaps, but they are similar to the Efrano wound gut strings. I think something around 25 kp for the E and a bit less for the A.

    Found it:
    On a 105 cm scale it is
    21.9 kp on A and
    24.5 kp on E.
    Pre-owned strings, the initial tension might be a bit higher.
    Same tension as my Efrano A, the Efrano E has about the same tension as the A.
    iankenselaar likes this.
  14. Francois Blais

    Francois Blais Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 1999
    Québec, Canada
    I’m no longer a mod since many years now. :)
    iankenselaar likes this.
  15. JeffKissell

    JeffKissell Supporting Member

    Nov 21, 2004
    Soquel, CA
    I’m currently using Spirocore weich E & A with a medium+ Gamut Lyon G and a light+ Lyon D. The gut is varnished and the bass is a 2005 laminated NS Cleveland.
    The only thing I might change is swapping for a light Pistoy D. I really like the tension and I feel like the Spirocore has a very similar bowed response to plain gut.
    In the past, I have used Lenzner or Efrano silver wound E & A with Gamut or Dlugolecki plain D & G on this bass.
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2021
    iankenselaar likes this.
  16. Eli Brockway

    Eli Brockway Supporting Member

    Oct 1, 2019
    What makes you believe they're discontinued? I haven't seen anything, anywhere, suggesting that.
    834federal likes this.
  17. Just to correct:
    The wound Efranos are silver plated copper wound. If they were solid silver wound you would pay a lot more for them, like Eudoxas.
    JeffKissell likes this.
  18. DaveAceofBass

    DaveAceofBass Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2004
    Charlotte, NC
    Corellis are very thin and light.
  19. labravajazz

    labravajazz Supporting Member

    Jan 26, 2006
    Sydney Australia
    I’ve tried a lot of combinations over many years - the issues seem to be matching the tension feel and tone… and then there is the diameter side of things as a lot of metal A are thinner than a gut D. My best combination has been Eudoxa A and E but very close and more inexpensive and practical is Perpetual - especially the E. More straightforward choosing the G and D. Chorda CH, Gamut etc lots of choice
    iankenselaar likes this.
  20. Francois Blais

    Francois Blais Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 1999
    Québec, Canada
    Quoted from pirastro’s website:
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2021
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