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How to make strings TIGHTER on a Jazz Bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by novo, Jul 26, 2012.

  1. novo


    Feb 20, 2007
    Hey there...

    Just got my bass set up with Elixir's Heavy set strings and I'm feeling the strings are a bit wobbly...
    How can I get these tighter if its possible??

    Thanks :)
  2. GM60466


    May 20, 2006
    Land of Lakland
    you can't.
  3. gigslut


    Dec 13, 2011
    St Louis, Mo
    Making then tighter will raise the pitch. Go to a heavier gauge string if you need them tighter.
  4. SoVeryTired

    SoVeryTired Endorsing nothing, recommending much

    Jul 2, 2011
    Milton Keynes, UK
    Research strings and find out which have a reputation for being particularly stiff. Certain flats (I think Chromes would be one) are known for being stiff. DR Low Riders are one of their stiffer offerings. You're looking for hex core rather than round core. And a heavy gauge.
  5. Just turn those little knobs at the small end of the bass. You can get them as tight as you want.
  6. SoVeryTired

    SoVeryTired Endorsing nothing, recommending much

    Jul 2, 2011
    Milton Keynes, UK
    And when they go 'ping', you've probably just gone a little too far.
  7. LDonnie


    Aug 3, 2008
    ?? What is this about? Anyway, you can only get tighter strings by using A. a thicker gauge of string or B. another kind of string. Some types of strings have a reputation of being tighter. I generally find GHS and Rotosound strings to be fairly tight.
  8. jordak


    Apr 7, 2011
    Queens, NY
    2nd hexcore strings. They feel stiffer than roundcores. For reference, what gauge string are you using now and what tuning? If you're playing on strings with radically different tension you may have to adjust the neck to straighten it as well as the saddles for action and intonation.
  9. The OP just got new strings and presumably doesn't want to buy more. Jim was kidding.
  10. jordak


    Apr 7, 2011
    Queens, NY
    Wobbly, eh? they are tuned to tension, right?

    EDIT: Sorry to be so insulting. Just checked OP's profile and evidently he has been playing long enough that he should certainly know how to tune his bass.
  11. lburton2

    lburton2 Les Is More

    May 15, 2008
    Detroit, MI
    The heavier the gauge of string, the more tension the string will have when it's tuned to pitch. You could try a heavy gauge with a Hex core like jordak suggested in the future..

    Other than that, if you want to try and make due with the strings that you have (Heavy gauge strings are about as tight as you can get) you might want to try raising the action a bit at the bridge to make sure you don't get fret buzz.. If indeed that's why you don't like loose strings.

    When you raise the string height at the bridge it's going to take more effort on your left hand to pull them down to the fret, and it's a lot harder to get fret buzz...

    Or you could always try playing with a lighter touch and lower action
  12. novo


    Feb 20, 2007
    Thanks lburton2

    Maybe thats the way to go cause I'm getting a little fret buzz and with my SVT, any fret buzz sounds 10 times as much.

    I'm tuned standard no drop tunings here...

    Shame tough cause I got Elixirs (which are pretty exp) heavy set to avoid this prob.

    Thanks :)
  13. jordak


    Apr 7, 2011
    Queens, NY
    Different strings aren't a replacement for a setup. Take it to a tech for optimal playability.
  14. SoVeryTired

    SoVeryTired Endorsing nothing, recommending much

    Jul 2, 2011
    Milton Keynes, UK
    Or even cheaper, learn how to do it yourself. It's not exactly rocket surgery. :)

    I'm terrified of anything that looks remotely like DIY but I managed it with about £5 of new tools and an online guide. It's saved me a whole lot of money on bass and guitars.
  15. jordak


    Apr 7, 2011
    Queens, NY
    I can do most adjustments myself, but when I have a gig or a session, I leave it to my tech. When you want it to be perfect, trust a professional.
  16. If they feel wobbly to you, you could always try raising the action. Less wobbly, less fret clatter this way.
  17. Dbassmon


    Oct 2, 2004
    Rutherford, NJ
    Raise your action #1. This will make the string "feel" stiffer.

    Also, try loosing your truss rod 1/4 turn (counter clockwise). This removes tension from the truss rod and makes adds more pull on the strings.

    Those two things should make the bass fell much stiffer.
  18. exmaxima1


    Jan 27, 2009
    Geneva IL
    Switch to LaBella Deep Talkin' 110's
  19. Come again?
  20. jordak


    Apr 7, 2011
    Queens, NY
    Assuming OP was using medium Elixirs before, he would probably have to tighten the truss rod to straighten out the bow. Can't really tell though, because it could have been backbowed before.

    There is a small window of relief in the neck vs. straight, but no one smart wants to play a totally bowed neck.

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