In reality... how long do strings last

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Dr. D, Mar 29, 2005.

  1. Dr. D

    Dr. D Loaded For Bear

    Jan 13, 2005
    New Orleans, Louisiana
    I have 2 fairly new basses. an MiM fender presision, and a ibanez sr300dx. Had both setup by a luthier and a string change from new.

    It took me a month to break-in the strings, (where they would stay in tune 100% between playings) Have had the strings on them for about 6 months, and can't really even tell of any wear.
  2. i have had mine on for about 3.5 months and they are starting to show sings of wear but still sound pretty good i think i should change them soon
  3. Rhythmalism


    Sep 25, 2004
    I get about nine months before mine go completely limp. After that they don't ever sound in tune and they really collect dents from the frets.
  4. Toasted


    May 26, 2003
    Leeds, UK
    The first time your let someone sweaty play your bass. Thats when your strings die.
  5. frobie


    Jan 7, 2005
    Im happy if my strings last 1.5 months, they normally break by then.
  6. Current strings have been on for just over five years. Still going strong. TI flats.
  7. frobie


    Jan 7, 2005
    Dr. D, just much do you play?
  8. Cerb


    Sep 27, 2004
    What in the world are you doing to break them within 1.5 months?
  9. A month to break-in the strings? Mine settle in after about a week. How often to you play on them?
  10. mrelwood


    Dec 15, 2004
    Funny. My strings set in in 10 minutes, 'cause I stretch them properly. Or did You guys mean the sound setting in?

    Cheapest strings used to get dull after the second set of a gig, that is about one hour of playing. Yeah, I'm, the guy who ruins all Your strings!

    Nowadays, I use strings for atleast 6 months, almost daily playing. You must have guessed, Elixir. You can never imagine how much more I love playing nowadays compared to pre-Elixir time!

  11. frobie


    Jan 7, 2005
    I do alot of slap/popping stuff, and I play funk/fusion aggressively. I also try to practice everyday and average about 10 hours a week of rehearsals.
  12. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    It depends on your body chemistry, how much you play, and the quality of the strings. One thing that you can do to prolong the life of the strings is to always wash your hands with soap and water before playing. Another is to wipe down the strings after you play, although I don't do this as religiously as I do washing.

    I like a very bright sound.

    If I buy good stainless steels(Dean Markley SR2000, DRs, etc) they usually sound right (to me)for 3 or 4 months.

    After that, I soak them in denatured alcohol and get another 2 or 3 months out of them.

    I can usually do this 2 or 3 times before they get so damaged from playing that they will no longer intonate properly.

    So I can get almost a years use out of a good set of stainless strings.

    Nickels don't last me very long. There is something about my body chemistry that kills them pretty quick, and they don't recover their tone as well from soaking as stainless IMHO.
  13. Danksalot


    Apr 9, 2003
    Dallas, Texas, USA
    Endorsing Artist: SIT Strings
    I change my strings about once per month. I like that fresh string sound.

    Then again, I play about 8 hours per day on them at work.
  14. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    With rounds I change them every three to four months, two if I'm playing more than usual. Stainless for me, even surviving a Hipshot Xtender. I haven't broken a string in over three years, and that one was a freak accident.

    How do you break your strings so quickly, frobie. What strings are you using?
  15. frobie


    Jan 7, 2005
    I have been using Fender Strings Nickel Plated STeel RoundWound (sometimes tapered depending what mood I am in) .045 - .105 (or .110)

    I went a little lighter today
    .040, .060, .080, .105 (I got a thicker E) but I think im gonna get a .100, im not sure yet.

    I do slapping and popping stuff and honestly, my strings always break before they go dead. I am sort of aggressive. that might explain some of it
  16. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    I kill strings fast.

    I can wreck a set in 2 nites of playing out...3+ hours per nite. That's with clean hands and wiping them down. Luckily, I don't need them extra sprongy sounding.

    For the regular practicing and such they usually last me about a month and then I boil them and use them for another month. I average 1.5 to 3+ hours of practice a day.

    My newest bass likes Rotos, which I kill even faster, in a live setting that could mean 1.5 hours. :(

    It doesn't matter if'n they're steel or nickel either.

    I do stretch them out well when putting on a new set...for me that means ganking on them until they don't de-tune.
  17. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    This is remarkably similar to my "How often do you change your strings?" thread. :D

    Anyway, like Danks, I play a lot. 600 shows a year. I usually change every 3 weeks. They're OK after that amount of time, but I always love the new ones...after a day or 2 of playing. Currently using Smith's but with a DR low B. I think the Smith low B is poop.

    Yes, I've tried the tapered ones. ;)
  18. When do you eat?
  19. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    LOL. Between 5:30 and 7:30. We have shows every day at 3 & 8 (except Wednesday), then every day in the summer (4 months). It's a pretty tough schedule, AFAIK, the heaviest in town. At Legends, the business model is apprently more is more.
  20. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    Hey, but you're working steady in a business (I presume) you love. :hyper: