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Increasing the Low-End

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by dragonetti11, Oct 11, 2005.


  1. dragonetti11

    dragonetti11

    Jun 20, 2002
    I am wondering what can be done with any aspect of the setup to increase the depth and fundalmental of my low end. I have been thinking about getting an extension but I first want to see if I can just get a little more out of my E and A strings. I am currently using original flexocors. Thanks.
     
  2. nicklloyd

    nicklloyd Supporting Member/Luthier

    Jan 27, 2002
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    You are using an Original Flexocore E string?
     
  3. arnoldschnitzer

    arnoldschnitzer AES Fine Instruments

    Feb 16, 2002
    Brewster, NY, USA
    Nick is getting at something, namely: the Original Flexicor E is pretty dull and dead-sounding. A good replacement is the regular Flexicor E in heavy or stark gauge. It has more oomph, is a touch brighter, and puts a little more pressure on the bass bar. I'd also like to know about the position and fit of your soundpost, and what type of bass it is.
     
  4. Tbeers

    Tbeers

    Mar 27, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Don't some players use Permanent on the bottom? I think many people are dissatisfied with the Orig Flex E.
     
  5. dragonetti11

    dragonetti11

    Jun 20, 2002
    Thanks for the responses. I have a stark ruby flex and I will try it. Arnold, my bass is the first Guadagnini copy Kolstein had for sale about 6 months ago. I am not sure if you are familiar with it or not. When I got the bass the Soundpost was pretty far from the bridge and my luthier moved it much closer. It is now less than a sound posts width from the bridge and slightly more to the treble side of the foot. If it were to be moved down away from the bridge would I lose much volume? All I need is a little more depth on the low notes. I am happy with the top 2 strings.
     
  6. nicklloyd

    nicklloyd Supporting Member/Luthier

    Jan 27, 2002
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Bringing the post back down a few mm might help. What does your luthier think? Does the bridge blank fit the bass bar placement, btw? Can you post some pics of the bridge area?
     
  7. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    Many people use the Perm E because it is heavier that the reg Flex medium E and because they do not know about the availability of the Starks. The Perm is a different metallic formula than Flexs. I have used this as well but after discovering the Starks, I see how tone matching is also important. I measured the Gauges of the Medium and Stark Flexes and discovered that the Med set is unbalanced as the E seems to be a full gauge if not more under tensioned. The Starks seem to balance well from the G to E.
     
  8. Ken, what are you saying? I am under the impression that guage only relates to tension IF the strings are made from identical winding, core materials. Many manufacturers vary the windings to keep the strings about the right guage at the correct tension. I am confused about the practicality of your statement. Help me. :help:
     
  9. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.

    I recently measured the reg. flex gauges and the E was about .007" lighter than I would expect. It also feels and sounds as if it is too thin and weak in volume. Perms match better within the set as does the Orig flex brand , orig flat chromes and obligatos. I recently tested all these sets for Pirastro using my Martini, Gilkes and Morelli Bass as the demos in performance. The Gs on the Orig 2 brands are a bit scratchy. The Oblig E turns a bit and the Perms sound too thin on the G and D. The Flexes have the best tone and smoothest G. The E however sounds and feels as if it's from a lighter set which they do not make but if tuned up a bit would be better but wrong pitch. I recommended to Pirastro to make the E slightly heavier to help balance the set. So many people around the world have taken off the E and uses the Helocore E only. A few use the Perm but the tone is not as sweet. Deep, but different and the Helicore sounds a bit duller but the gauge and tension match better.....

    Then, I get this Bass from the UK. The Action is for KING KONG. I order a new set of Starks from a US Dist/wholesaler and compare. The Strings on the Bass are old and feel thick. I measure them and they are way heavier than the reg Ruby Flexes with the exception of the G. The new Starks are just a tad heavier than the Reg thickness averaging onluy about .002-.003" bigger with the G .001" which seems in order. The E however is about .009" bigger than the reg gauge set but balances great. This makes sense to me and supports my conclusion that the reg E needs to be bigger. Too many Pros in the world have taken off tha E in favor of the heavier Helicore or Perm E. The Orig flex and orig flat chrome sets are similar in gauge to the Stark Flexs. It seems the reg ruby flex set is the lightest they have with the E being about 2 steps lighter.

    BTW, The Ruby flexes (92s) feel to me closer to the old orig flexes of the Flexs made 30 years ago. This Orig brand is something new but thicker like the stark rubys but brighter to my ear. The Orig Flat chromes remind me of the old Eudoxa Steels of 30 years ago as well....

    This is my findings after about a year of testing. I hate the work of changing strings but love finding the right ones for each Bass. I did this back in the late 70s when I tested strings for Labella. I was the guy on the package back then playing a tri-tone/dom 7 in thumb position across the a,d and g with my old Italian Bass. I also did the same thing with their electric bass strings until I strated my own brand in 1982 but working with a different company. Designing and testing strings has been one of my hobbies for the last 30+ years. I love good results but hate the work.. :confused:

    I hope this helps answer your question. I am willing to discuss this here or any other thread. I also recently put a set of Forte Jaegar Reds on my Dodd in place of the Stark Flexs. Slightly darker but THICK sounding.. yummy.. My Bultitude Bow dances on these strings.. The Gilkes had the Stark ruby Flexs on it now and they balance great. They help bring out the bottom which was weak in the past with the reg 92s rubys in the past.
     
  10. I have read your post several times. There is a lot of information in there, I guess 30 years of string testing would do to a guy! I am formulating some questions and will ask you in another tread sometime. Thanks for the answer.

    I am expecting some strings from Pirastro sometime soon. I wrote to them making inquiries about their different types of violin, cello, viola, bass strings and they said they will send me some samples to try. I hope they send me a full set of Eudoxas.