1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

"plucking finger stickiness"

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by deckard, Mar 28, 2013.

  1. deckard


    Apr 4, 2003
    I'm looking for suggestions for strings (ss or nickle, doesn't matter which) where "plucking finger stickiness" is a non-issue.

    I play mostly jazz + some latin stuff these days, and esp. noticeable on fast sambas my usual Roto 66s exhibit this unwelcome characteristic of slowing down my right/plucking fingers with what can best be described as "fingertip stickiness": about 30 seconds or so into a fast samba my fingertips definitely start "sticking" a bit to the Rotos as I pluck.

    Right now I am trying D'Addario nickle XLs, coated and uncoated - I like both but the coated ones have this tendency, too, albeit less than the Rotos; the uncoated ones not so much.

    I would like to find strings where this issue is non-existant.

    All suggestions & comments welcome - thanks!
  2. Formula144


    Sep 27, 2011
    I'm just a newb, but so far the slickest-feeling strings I've tried have been GHS Pressurewounds.

    I've sometimes felt that my fingers were sticking to the strings when trying to play fast, but I just assumed it was poor technique.
  3. 20db pad

    20db pad

    Feb 11, 2003
    I been everywhere, man...
    None. At all.
    Years ago, I found that Rotosounds were on the "sticky" side when newly installed as well, and that fueled my change to D'Addario XL, which I've used nearly 20 years now. I thought that Dean Markley Blue Steels had similar tone and feel to Rotosounds, but maybe had less drag or stickiness. I thought the same of Trace Elliot strings, which are no longer made. More recently, I've been using D'Addario Chromes, which seem sticky for a few days but then settle in and lose that tackiness.

    My remarks here apply to my right (plucking) hand, I experienced no problems in this regard with my left hand.

    I revisited Rotos a few months ago and didn't experience the sticky feel. Even though Rotosound may have changed their formula over time, this also holds true for other brands of strings I thought were sticky back in the day. I've been playing a long time and I think that as your approach to the instrument changes, the nature and texture of your calluses change too, which allows for a smoother, drag free finger attack.
  4. Bassist4Eris

    Bassist4Eris Frat-Pack Sympathizer

    I have found Roto 66s to be one of the stickier strings out there, which is one reason why I don't use them.

    IME, stainless steel strings generally have more of this stickiness than nickel wrapped.

    DR Sunbeams are very comfortable on the fingers. However, they sound a LOT different than Roto 66s. Much warmer/mellower. Not like flats are warm and mellow. These still have some crisp top end (enough for slap, if that's your thing), but they're not "snarly" like the Roto 66s. But to be honest, you may actually find the Sunbeams to be more to your liking, considering the genres you're playing.
  5. .
    Just rub your fingers across your forehead before you play, then again occasionally through the set if you feel the stickiness returning.
    It'll make 'em slip over the strings beautifully.

    .... seriously ... this works!
    I've been doing it for 20+ years. My first bass teacher told me about it.
  6. Rip Topaz

    Rip Topaz

    Aug 12, 2005
    Willow Street, PA
    Beta tester for Positive Grid
    +1. Needs a little nose grease!!
  7. Stone Soup

    Stone Soup

    Dec 3, 2012
    Use nickel wound strings. Problem solved.
  8. giacomini


    Dec 14, 2008
    Florianopolis - Brazil
    Endorsing: Copetti Guitars
    Some forehead grease might be fine, but PLEASE don't lick your fingers while you play (I've seen even pros doing that, it is just disgusting).

Share This Page