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New strings the night of a gig?!

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Din Of Win, Jun 2, 2011.

  1. For playing as long as i've been... i've never had to think about this, haha!

    Tonight is opening night of the musical i'm playing bass for. I was gonna swap out the old strings on my fender jazz for a new pack of DR hi-beams...

    ...but is that a bad idea? I've done this a few times, but it's only been for loud noisy punk bands where things like 'being in tune' were sort of backseat concerns.

    Will they go crazy out of tune between songs? I can tune back up between a few songs, but many songs segue into one another...

  2. Lammchop93

    Lammchop93 Supporting Member

    Feb 4, 2007
    Louisville, KY
    I'd put them on maybe an hour or two before, and let them stretch, tune them. Then pull on each string before you go on and tune a final time, and you should be fine. I've done this many times
  3. Warfender


    Oct 25, 2009
    Learned from a tech is to tune up a half step and play for a few mins then tune down and play for a few mins then tune up half step and let sit for a short while and when you tune back down it is good to go.
  4. G00D+~VIBES


    Nov 21, 2008
    Kansas City
    Make sure to press down firmly on both sides of the saddle and nut to ensure the break angle is solid. This will help a lot considering DR's are wound at tension so they don't stretch much.

    Solid break angles. this i tell you. trust.
  5. Infidelity

    Infidelity Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2010
    Melbourne, FL
    +1 break angle is your best friend
  6. I got them about a week and a half ago, and they've been strung up on my Peavey T-20 for about a week. I haven't really played it outside of tuning it up, but do you think the tension of just being strung on another bass is sufficient enough?
  7. Syco_bass

    Syco_bass Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2008
    Tucson, Arizona
    Custom builder - Arizona Bass Company/Curcio Custom Basses
    I do it all the time. As long as the strings are the same tension (gauge/make) you should be fine. If you are going to DR hi-beams and those are not what is on the bass now, you might have to make some adjustments and the neck might need some time to settle in. Still no big deal, just leave yourself enough time to do that.

    Good luck.
  8. enricogaletta


    May 21, 2011
    it's just depend what kind of "new strings sound" you want, from 2 hours to a day before you'll able to listen differences on your instruments and not just from the sound but also fro the playing, check both :)
  9. Just pull them!

    Put them on, then fret around the 17 fret and pull in the middle of whats left with your other hand, do it 4 or 5 times fretting closer and closer to the nut! That will usually be enough to avoid any kind of mad loss of tuning during the first few minutes of playing!

    I personally wouldnt change strings before a gig but i would be more worried about the brightness of brand new strings, never liked that in a mix!
  10. Like i said, i had them strung for a week on another bass... it did the trick!!! No wonky de-tuning throughout each act. When i re-tuned at intermission, everything was still on point!!

    I agree that i'm not a fan of brand-new string brightness... especially with hi-beams. But having them on the other bass for a week de-bright-afied them to a much more pleasing tone.

    Opening night was a HUGE success... sold out theatre... the band even got roaring applause! Can't ask for more than that :D
  11. darkstorm


    Oct 13, 2009
    I expect a little bit of tuning drift the first day or two of putting on new strings. Not enough to actually be hearable in most cases. But still enough to need little tuning tweak once or twice from checking elect tuner. Id diff choose to have new rather then dead strings for a opening gig. My pedal board mutes when in tuning mode and theres allways gonna be opportunity a few times to check & tweak tuning if worried. Main thing is do good 2-3 turns of string around post and snug each wrap up against the prev one as you go. I'll initially tune sharp then back it down to normal which seems to help new strings start holding tune their best.
  12. FunkMetalBass


    Aug 5, 2005
    Phoenix, Arizona 85029
    Endorsing Artist: J.C. Basses
    I do it before every show. Giving the strings sufficient time to stretch, force stretching them, and checking your break angles will keep your tuning incredible stable.

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