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Luthier seeks string advice (what to put on a new bass?)

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by uprightben, Jun 30, 2012.


  1. uprightben

    uprightben

    Nov 3, 2006
    Boone, NC
    Hi All,

    The luthier I work for recently completed his 2nd bass, and we are going crazy trying to figure out what strings to put on it. It is a medium sized round back with gamba corners, currently strung with some used mystery strings of low quality that were hanging around the shop. The sound is very focused, and really opens up and sings around the break. I'm thinking that synthetic or rope core strings would balance out the tone, but the only strings of that type I have experience with on my bass are the pirazzis, which I like. Any thoughts on what strings like that would be good on a bass that is brand new and is still breaking in/opening up? Something that would work for a wide variety of playing styles?

    Thanks in advance,
    Ben
     
  2. Eric Hochberg

    Eric Hochberg

    Jul 7, 2004
    Chicago
    EP Weichs or Obligatos would be my recommendation. Most of the maker's new basses at 2011 ISB were strung with bowing strings such as Bel Canto. If you want pizz players in the mix of buyers, those two should satisfy all, at least for a preliminary test.
     
  3. Jake deVilliers

    Jake deVilliers Commercial User

    May 24, 2006
    Crescent Beach, BC
    Owner of The Bass Spa, String Repairman at Long & McQuade Vancouver
    Spiro Weich ;)
     
  4. Eric Hochberg

    Eric Hochberg

    Jul 7, 2004
    Chicago
    I thought about suggesting those but maybe they are just too bright for most orchestral players. They do bow well. It depends on the bass to a large extent.
     
  5. MIKMAN

    MIKMAN

    Mar 4, 2008
    Larisa, Greece
    I agree with Eric. My experience, albeit limited to four new instruments, showed that the EP Weich usually give a focused arco sound and the proper booming jazz sound. After a year of thorough playing each one of my instruments became "mature" for Spiros.
    Mike
     
  6. Jake deVilliers

    Jake deVilliers Commercial User

    May 24, 2006
    Crescent Beach, BC
    Owner of The Bass Spa, String Repairman at Long & McQuade Vancouver
    You're probably right Eric - I think I just don't like the Evah Pirazzis...
     
  7. uprightben

    uprightben

    Nov 3, 2006
    Boone, NC
    Thanks guys, I was leaning towards the Evahs, that's what I'm playing on my bass. I could never get along with the roll of obligatos, and the only symphony player looking at the bass feels the same. I think the bass is a little to new and raw for spiros, we did try an old set when it was in the white. That was useful for figuring out where we were tone wise, I think of spiros as being as close to a standard string as you are going to get, kind of a base line sound where I can differentiate the sound of the string from the sound of the bass.

    Everyone seems to be recommending the lowest tension version of every string, any reason for that?

    Thanks again,
    Ben
     
  8. Eric Hochberg

    Eric Hochberg

    Jul 7, 2004
    Chicago
    IME, spiro weichs are friendlier to the bow than mitts and EP weichs are more of a medium tension string, the regs are heavier.
     
  9. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    Are we talking the S42 Weichs, or the 3885 Weichs, which are just a tad more substantive, but not all the way to S42 Mitts?
     
  10. Matt Ides

    Matt Ides Supporting Member

    May 12, 2004
    Minneapolis, MN
    I have a newer bass (10 yr old Snow) and the EP's are a great match. JFYI.
     

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