Low B tuning to High C tuning for a 5 string bass??

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ai4281, Feb 12, 2006.

  1. ai4281


    Nov 25, 2005
    hi, I own a BTB405QM 5 string, and I was thinking about changing its tuning to high C.
    In order to do that, do I have to adjust my trusses or change the nut or anything? I got a gig coming up so If you could answer fast, it would be appreciated :bassist:

    edit: Im talking about B-E-A-D-G tuning to E-A-D-G-C tuning, if unclear
  2. Ian Perge

    Ian Perge Supporting Member

    May 11, 2001
    Evansville, Indiana
    You'd most likely just have to replace the nut for the smaller width strings and perhaps adjust the pickup slightly. The tension on the neck is raised a touch (as you're only replacing the B with a C, which takes more tension to bring to pitch) but it's a fairly minimal difference and I wouldn't worry too much about that factor.

    Try searching the "Setup" forum for more info on a EADGC-strung five-string, there should be much more info there to help you.
  3. You should probably be able to just switch the strings. The most likely adjustment you might need is a nut with thinner slots, but you may be able to work just fine with the one you have. If you get rattling then you should put a new one on, but until then putting clay around the strings behind the nut should stop rattling.
  4. west*coast*bass

    west*coast*bass Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2003
    Agoura Hills, CA
    I have had 3 - 5 strings which I had converted from B-G to E-C and did not have to swap out the nut. You will have to set up the bass correctly and a pickup adjustment may be necessary. The nut should not be an issue at all unless you go to a very light gauge string.
  5. WoodyG3


    May 6, 2003
    Colorado, USA
    I didn't have to do much besides change the strings when I went to E-C tuning on my Carvin B5. I would think it would be the same on most bass models. There were no nut issues at all, and only very minor set-up changes. I love this tuning, too, since I've started to do some stuff in a duo with my wife and I'll need the higher notes once in a while.
  6. SmittyG


    Dec 24, 2003
    Texarkana, Texas
    I just converted my Ibanez RD505 yesterday. I was very surprised to find that I needed far less in the way of adjustments than I thought. Pretty much, I just needed to tweak my E-string hight and then my intonation. Plays like a dream; sounds great too.
  7. Just to clarify, the nut thing depends on how well the nut is cut: if the slots have a round bottom, as it should be and normally is the case, a thinner string will still sit at the bottom of the slot and not rattle. When I cut a nut for a guitar I oversize the slots noticeably to accommodate possible future string gauge changes and never had a problem. If the slots have a flat-ish bottom (cheap bass, bad luthier) you may get rattling with thinner strings.
  8. bassaussie


    Oct 6, 2001
    I've done this with a Stingray 5, and it wasn't a problem. A small adjustment to the action, and everything was sweet. As everyine else has said, the only possible problem might be the nut, but that's something you'll find out once you've done the change.
  9. its all preference, i mean theres no rule against it.....just watch to make sure the extra strain on the neck doesnt warp
  10. ai4281


    Nov 25, 2005
    what about the Truss rods guys??
    I got dual-truss rods on my bass, so should I loosen them up a bit for E A D G C tuning??
  11. skunkrawk


    Apr 25, 2003
    i think fodera sells a set of strings tuned e to c if you dont feel like buying a 6 string set and dropping the b. -dave