Lots of broken DR Hi-Beams

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by cheeseman, Jul 15, 2003.

  1. cheeseman


    Feb 3, 2002
    Austin, TX
    As of the past few months, since February I think, I've gone through maybe 8-10 packs of bass strings. I've been using Hi-beams MR45 (.45-.105) on a Warwick Corvette Standard tuned C-G-C-F. Most of the bottom 'E' strings were lasting for as long as three weeks, but as of lately, some only lasted 2 weeks. I thought maybe the gauge was the problem, or at least part of it, but when I put on a Heavy set (.50-.110), the 'E' only lasted 6 DAYS! :mad: I do play mostly with a pick, but also some fingerstyle, with no slapping or popping.

    The breaking occurs just beyond the end of the saddle closest to the pickups, but not really above the saddle itself.

    This is mostly unusual because it was only after I switched to DRs that I had such a high occurency of string breaking. Before that, I only broke a few strings after maybe being in use for 5-6 months, or not at all. I played some Blue Steels Mediums (.50-.105) on this bass if I recall that right. That was the only set I needed, I changed to High Beams for recording and to try DRs out.

    The labels say DRs are noted for their "Noticeably longer life" but this just isn't the case for me. Should I try a different type of DRs? The only other option would be to change brands, which isn't something I want to do, because I love the DR tone and feel. Any other advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Edward :help:
  2. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    longer as in the tone of the string...

    I'd have the bridge looked at if you don't have/know needle files. I had a Ric that ate a few E strings... little bur on the saddle was the reason. After a cheap tune up/set up at the shop it was fine.

    'just beyond' in a broken string might be 'right on' on a mounted string at tension
  3. mans0n


    Jun 15, 2002

    My advice is go on to a different brand

    the feel and tone of these strings cannot greatly outweigh the cost of purchasing a new set so frequently

    is 8-10 packs how long it normally takes someone to try out strings? ;-)
  4. jdombrow

    jdombrow Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2002
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Perhaps your picking style is a bit too agressive? I've been playing bass for 30 years and have never broken a string with any style of picking, plucking, slapping, popping, etc.

    If you adjust your technique, you can still get the same tone without breaking strings.

    I would also follow Speddling's advice about having someone inspect your bridge.

  5. cheeseman


    Feb 3, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Thanks for the quick advice, guys. I thought that about the bridge too from reading other posts, but I took the saddle from my fretless and changed it with the fretted (If you're familiar with Warwick's you'll know what I'm talking about), the fretted's the one that's been giving me the trouble. I've never broken a string with the fretless (yet. I hope I didn't just jinx that). Anyway, I still got broken strings after the switch.

    But still, I'll probably take it to get it checked out, that's probably the best idea. And lightening up my picking is probably something I need to do.

    Oh yeah...

    Lookie here, Wiseguy. ;) J/K. I know you're teasing, but what I meant was that was the first time I bought DRs, after that it was because I liked them. Buying new strings every three weeks wasn't so bad, but if I had to buy them every week...Eeeesh.

  6. Edwcdc

    Edwcdc I call shotgun!

    Jul 21, 2003
    Columbia MD USA
    I don't know what to say about your string problem, but I like the picture of The Cheat.
  7. dragonbass

    dragonbass Commercial User

    Feb 17, 2003
    Owner/Builder of LoPrinzi Basses.........................................EX-Sadowsky Guitars Builder
    Change to another brand!!!!!!!!!

    I have spoken to many Tech's that are having problems with DR strings........your not the only one.......But I wouldn't have wasted the money on 8-10 packs.

    D'ADDARIO's ........stick with what works:cool: I have been using D'addario's for 14 years and never had a problem.

    Good Luck!!!
  8. I don't know how anyone could possibly ever break an E string HEAVY tuned to C. I use medium strings, and I beat the crap out of my strings, what are you using for a pick a chainsaw!? Try going easier, and buying a 5 string, you'll have C right there.
  9. dragonbass

    dragonbass Commercial User

    Feb 17, 2003
    Owner/Builder of LoPrinzi Basses.........................................EX-Sadowsky Guitars Builder
    It's not the fact of the tuning he use's or that he plays with a pick...it's the STRINGS that SUCK!
  10. cheeseman


    Feb 3, 2002
    Austin, TX
    It's good to know that I wasn't the only one I guess. I had my bass looked at today and based on where the strings broke (all in the same place, I even brought one of the broken ones for him to see), the tech told me that it was my playing style and not the bridge or saddle.

    My pick was a 1.00, but I've since gone to a .80 and become more aware of how hard I'm playing. I've also decided to alternate switching and fingerstyle depending on the song to help lighten up the abuse my strings take. But when I was in a metal band, I played Dropped B tuning 125-65 strings with a 1.52 :eek: and didn't break strings as much.

    Dragonbass, do you have any recommendations for D'addario's that are especially bright? Right now I'm pretty much open to trying some bright, but longer lasting strings. The reason I've stayed with DR for this long is their bright tone.

    Edwcdc, Thanks, I took that from The Caper, where Homestar calls The Cheat Batman. Like my title. Get it?

    Sorry, I have no life.
  11. dragonbass

    dragonbass Commercial User

    Feb 17, 2003
    Owner/Builder of LoPrinzi Basses.........................................EX-Sadowsky Guitars Builder
    I would say either try Prism's (which are stainless steel) or XL's (which are Nickel)...

    I have always used the XL's..they seem to give me a warmer sound...

    If you want to try the Prism's I actually have 2 set's that I don't use..if your interested in them....(45-100)
  12. cheeseman


    Feb 3, 2002
    Austin, TX
    45-100 is too lite for me, but thanks for the suggestion.
  13. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    I use DR's about 90% of the time. I think they are great strings. I've been playing for 22 years and have never broken a string. I don't know what the problem might be. Have a tech look at your bass