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Need help with fitting/tuning new bass strings

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by robplaysguitar, Dec 26, 2011.


  1. robplaysguitar

    robplaysguitar Guest

    Dec 26, 2011
    Hey, i'm having a bit of a problem fitting my new bass strings on my guitar. I've fitted strings a few times before but only on an acoustic guitar, this is my first attempt on a bass.. It can't be much different, surely?

    I'm going for a standard tuning (to settle them in) and i'm half way through (doing one string at a time)....

    I've fitted both the 50 and 75 strings and tuning them to a G and D but i can't get them into tune! The tension feels right but my tuner is coming up with a B instead of a D (LB on the screen) and an E instead of G!? I'm worried that if i tighten them anymore they'll snap :/

    Am i doing something wrong or is this just the fact the strings need to loosen up a bit or have i done something wrong? I didn't cut the strings so there's quite alot wound into the tuning peg, i've also lined it all up just how it was before with the old strings. I haven't touched the bridge, however whilst takikng the old strings off i did loosen this nut that was going over the D and G string right at the neck of the bass, it looked like a securing nut or something but not sure?

    So just so you know the strings i'm fitting are Ernie Ball Regular Slinky (Custom Gauge) Roundwound. Oh and my bass is a Cruiser by Crafter, and before you say anything about that...I got it given to me!

    Any help would be great! :bassist:
     
  2. Foamy

    Foamy

    Jun 26, 2006
    Sac Area
    Sounds like you are already too high. Like, the G string is tuned to the higher B. Do you have a piano, or another source of reference?
    Is your tuner set to 440?
     
  3. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Stop now, read the stickies on installing strings.

    Then start over.

    Tune carefully and don't overshoot...tune up from slack strings.
     
  4. soulman969

    soulman969 Banned

    Oct 6, 2011
    Englewood, Colorado
    Both the above are good advice. By all means read the info posted here on changing strings and doing a setup after restringing. Follow the advice given to calibrate your tuner to A 440 and back the tension down until you hit the proper pitch. Let them settle while you change the other two strings then using the tuner bring them up to pitch never take them down to pitch.

    There are a few other things to do when you change strings to such as making certain the strings are wound to as close to the bottom of the tuning posts as possible and creating a break angle over the bridge. There may also be adjustments to make in neck relief and intonation so read through the info completely as ask for help after you've read through it if you need.
     
  5. AmadeusXeno

    AmadeusXeno

    Mar 8, 2011
    Maine
    You said you have 2 of the new strings on. Do you still have the other 2 old strings on? You need to have all 4 strings on the bass for them to feel correct when in tune. Also different strings have different tension. Different gauges will have different tension as well.
     
  6. robplaysguitar

    robplaysguitar Guest

    Dec 26, 2011
    Ok and no i don't have a piano to tune to, just my electric tuner.
     
  7. robplaysguitar

    robplaysguitar Guest

    Dec 26, 2011
    Yes i still have the 2 old strings on as well as the 2 new ones.
     
  8. robplaysguitar

    robplaysguitar Guest

    Dec 26, 2011
    Ok i'll read the stickies and use the advice on here and i'll get back to you if i have any problems.

    Thanks guys.
     
  9. Foamy

    Foamy

    Jun 26, 2006
    Sac Area
    Can you play a song on YouTube? Like "Another One Bites The Dust", and tune your E to the E on the song?
    I'm really reaching here, I realize...
    Then tune the rest from the E?
    I am trying to imagine the situation you're trying to describe, and you're either way off, or your tuner is messed up.
     
  10. robplaysguitar

    robplaysguitar Guest

    Dec 26, 2011
    Yeah i could do that but i think it's only something small that i'm doing wrong. I just set my tuner to bass mode and went to tune it from there. It looks like i'm going to have to calibirate my tuner and try it that way.
     
  11. robplaysguitar

    robplaysguitar Guest

    Dec 26, 2011
    Is someone able to post a link to the stickies? I can't seem to find them on here.
     
  12. Coolhandjjl

    Coolhandjjl Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Appleton
    +1
     
  13. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Rob, try this site. There doesn't seem to be a good sticky on strininging at the top of the Hardware and Repair forum. I did some searching and the TuneMyBass site appears to have a good combination of photos and directions:

    How to String a Bass Guitar

    My comment is that in step 6 of his procedure, he recommends cutting the string "a couple of inches" past the tuning post. I think that's on the short side and I prefer to cut them longer than this. Remember, you can always cut them shorter - but not longer. I use my hand to measure and I allow the width of 4 fingers of extra string, then I cut. On some headstocks, there may not be quite enough string to allow this extra length, but that's OK.

    You will not find universal agreement on the length of extra string to leave. That's life.
     
  14. Foamy

    Foamy

    Jun 26, 2006
    Sac Area
    Pilgrim, can I clarify? Not trying to be a punk, but this caught my eye.

    Should say:

    You can always go back later and cut them shorter if they were cut too long in the first place. You can't go back and make them longer if you cut them too short the first time.
     
  15. robplaysguitar

    robplaysguitar Guest

    Dec 26, 2011
    Ok so i've fitted all the new strings now and got them in tune, thanks to everyone for their help. @Pilgrim - That link especially really helped, it just turned out that i needed to tighten the tuning peg a bit more to get to the desired note, i guess i was just worried about a snap beforehand!

    One last question though. When tuning the E string the slightly fatter part of the end of the string went onto the tuning peg (due to me cutting it a bit longer than the original that was on there) will this be a problem or will it in fact add strength? It seems to sit in the nut ok..
     
  16. Foamy

    Foamy

    Jun 26, 2006
    Sac Area
    Not a factor one way or the other.

    Glad you got it sorted!
     
  17. robplaysguitar

    robplaysguitar Guest

    Dec 26, 2011
    I seem to be getting some string rattle particuarly on the high frets (14th and up) of the E string and wondered if it may be due to me doing/not doing something when changing the strings. It's only a slight rattle but is a tad annoying. Also for generally playing i find the strings rattle a bit more when sliding from fret to fret, is this likely to be because the action is too low? If so, can i just adjust the bridge? Or is this all normal with new strings on a bass?
     
  18. Foamy

    Foamy

    Jun 26, 2006
    Sac Area
    Could be a couple things.
    Look down the neck from head to heel.
    Anything weird, like a hump, where the neck meets the body?
    Is the neck perfectly straight?
    Does it bow just a bit one way or the other?
     
  19. robplaysguitar

    robplaysguitar Guest

    Dec 26, 2011
    Can't see anything major and the neck seems straight to me. Only thing i can see is that the E and A strings being slightly more raised than the D and G but i gathered that was because they are thicker strings.

    It's all in tune by the way..

    Hmm.
     

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