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I searched, but no luck....string/bridge trick?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by UntuchablSS, Aug 19, 2012.

  1. UntuchablSS


    Nov 7, 2011
    Hi everyone.

    I've got a MIM Jazz V Deluxe (it has active electronics) and having a slightly floppy B String has prompted me to search for something I saw a long time ago...

    Dunno if it was here or what it's purpose was...but some dude had a kind of steel hollow sleeve in the back of his bridge that the string would go through before actually being strung through the bridge. Once the ball end made contact with this "sleeve" it would be pulled against the bridge, thus elongating the string. I don't remember if it was a B or E string he had done this to.

    But wouldn't that do the opposite (give it even less tension)? :confused:

    Anyway, have any of you seen the same thing ? What was its purpose ??
  2. t77mackie


    Jun 13, 2012
    Wormtown, MA
    I don't think that would make a difference. All that matters is the length of the string from the nut to the bridge saddle. If you change the scale on just one string the intonation would get all whacked out.

    I'm no expert though and could be wrong.

    -good luck
  3. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    Gary Willis suggests using PC board spacers like that. You put the string through the spacer, then run it through the string holes on the bridge. He claims it adds "tension" to the string, but extending the length of the string on either side of the witness points (nut and bridge) can't change the tension. If the tension increased, the pitch goes up, so to get into tune, you lower the tension with the tuning machine.

    It's like the fallacious concept that stringing a bass through the body adds tension.

  4. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    If you want more tension on the B string, just get a thicker guage B string.... guaranteed to work. Ignore nonsensical snake-oil solutions not founded in physics....
  5. 96tbird

    96tbird PLEASE STAND BY Supporting Member

    This was discussed a week or two ago. Lengthening the string has been proven to make the string FEEL looser. Simple: there is more core wire to stretch when deflecting the string so it is more "compliant" and feels softer. The experiments were done with weights and the droop was measured. Sure enough longer strings stretched further.

    Length increases flop! Tension of course remains constant at pitch despite available length for core stretch.

    The more tension myth is untrue and anecdotes to the contrary can not be explained nor proven.
  6. Ewo

    Ewo a/k/a Steve Cooper Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    Huntington WV
    What gauges are you using, OP?

    IME, a lot of the 5 string sets are way too light on the B; hence, that string feels much looser than the others. For me, the more even the tension on all the strings the better it feels.

    You might just buy a single B string about .130 or so, and see if you like it better.

    I bought a set but haven't yet put them on (hence can't give a personal review), but Circle K strings are designed to have even tension. Their website gets into that thing, big time.
  7. UntuchablSS


    Nov 7, 2011
    Hi and thanks for the replies so far, yeah I understand a heavier gauge will help relieve the flop factor on a B String, I already use 130's...was just wondering why someone would do that, to me it didn't make sense unless if used to balance the "feel" of the higher tensioned string(s) vs. those that were lower, not the other way around.
    Thanks again guys 8)
  8. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Try a hex-core string. Pretty much the same tension but "stiffer" to the touch. Check out DR strings for their offerings.

  9. UntuchablSS


    Nov 7, 2011
    Thanks ! ....will do ! =)
  10. The Gary Willis method ONLY works for EXPOSED CORE strings.

    What the spacer, between the ball end of the string and the bridge, does is reduce the length of exposed core in front of the bridge to essentially zero. (Of course then you might as well just be using regular strings.)

    This method does NOTHING for regular strings. It also has NOTHING to do with the overall length of the string.
  11. swedbass

    swedbass Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2007
    Los Angeles CA
    Endorsing Artist: F Bass
    Exposed core strings theoretically improve intonation. A conventional string acts more like a rod and that's why the saddle has to be moved further back. The true break point is not at the saddle but a little in front of it. But if the difference is Audible...? I think it has more to do with taste. Different instruments call for different strings. Personally, I like the slinky feel of strings with low tension and they seem to growl a little more. But they also buzz more and limit my dynamic range. Higher tension strings allow lower action but are more difficult to bend for vibratos etc. But yeah, the 'longer B string, more tension' myth is founded more on intuition than reality.

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