Proper balanced tension strings in Europe? (brands and/or shops)

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Nohrellas, Jun 17, 2017.


  1. Nohrellas

    Nohrellas

    May 11, 2016
    Vienna
    Ever since I tried out balanced tension strings I just can't go back, the problem is that it's fairly costly. Currently I'm just buying Daddario XL (nickel plated steel) Singles in my preferred gauges, that ends up costing me 40€ for a single set of strings on my 5er (including shipping). I'd love to use Kalium strings but the shipping costs to Europe make that impossible. I have an issue with the balanced tension sets that daddario sells, mainly the A and E string are lower tension than the D and G (which makes no sense), 40 55 70 95, while I use 40 55 75 100, and I'd have to buy a single low B string, and not everyone carries extra long scale single strings, etc. It's a mess. Another issue is that nobody carries short or medium scale single strings for my shortscale bass.

    So are there other brands that I'm missing? Any string shops or music shops with a proper selection of single strings that you guys could recommend in europe (with low/acceptable shipping costs within europe) or basically any other solution to this problem?
    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. Here are the tension numbers for the GHS Boomers L3045 factory set:

    G 040 - 33.6 lbs.
    D 055 - 35.2
    A 075 - 35.9
    E 095 - 36.1

    Plus the .126-B at 33.2 lbs.

    EDIT: I should point out the factory 5L-DYB 5-string set comes with a .120-B to go with the above four, which weighs in at 31.3 lbs.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2017
  3. Nohrellas

    Nohrellas

    May 11, 2016
    Vienna
    That makes a lot of sense. I can deal with the slightly lower tension low B. I'll definitely check that out, thanks. Hopefully they fit on a 35'' scale instrument.

    edit: ah, just read your edit. Yeah so I'd buy a 4-string set and then a .126 or a .130 low B with that. I'll check it out, thanks!
     
  4. The winding length (ball end to silk) on the "long" is 37.25", while the "long plus" is 38".

    The above tension numbers are based on the 34-inch scale, so the actual numbers would be slightly higher on the 35-inch scale.
     
  5. ixlramp

    ixlramp

    Jan 25, 2005
    UK
    So the Matching B would be around .135.
    Apart from D'Addario and the Boomers set above i know of no equal-tension sets, anywhere with singles will be more expensive, but it's worth it to allow perfecting your gauges.
    40Euro seems high, maybe look at www.stringsdirect.co.uk ? I build my custom sets from there and the speed and customer service is just amazing, they can order in any weird gauges you need too.
     
  6. Nohrellas

    Nohrellas

    May 11, 2016
    Vienna
    Just measured on my Sandberg, 96cm from the ball end to the nut, so I'd need the long plus which they don't have any single strings for, oh well...

    edit: okay, I did that measurement VERY generously so the full winding would stop after the nut behind the zero fret, and they might just fit, but I don't want to be in the same situation as I was with a .135 long scale daddario string where it literally stopped 1mm or 2mm before the zero fret, so I'm not risking that anymore.

    Yes, I used a .130SL (would have preferred the .135 but that doesn't exist in super long scale).
    I checked it out at stringsdirect and that's actually more expensive + 6 pounds shipping. Thanks for the help though.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2017
  7. HaphAsSard

    HaphAsSard

    Dec 1, 2013
    Italia
    As per my recent post and enclosed rant,
    In short, check Saitenmarkt first,
    Einzelsaitenservice - Einzelsaiten für Bass
    or LotS if nickel-plated D'Addarios or Elixirs are fine by you (there is little else):
    Bas > Enkele snaren
     
  8. Nohrellas

    Nohrellas

    May 11, 2016
    Vienna
    Thanks, I already order from Saitenmarkt (probably should have mentioned that) but the prices for single strings seem significantly higher than they are in US stores (where a set of strings might be 20$ in the US and roughly 20€ here, my 5 single strings are 26$ in the US and 35€ here). I'll check out the other stores though, maybe they have better shipping prices than Saitenmarkt.
     
  9. HaphAsSard

    HaphAsSard

    Dec 1, 2013
    Italia
    Lord of the Strings would be the ticket if it weren't for two tiny things: 1) they have a D'Addario .042 but no .040, and 2) no single (D'Ad or other, or so I've gathered at a glance) super-long low Bs.
    Immagine.jpg
    Shipping is marginally cheaper than SMarkt, at 4.10 vs 4.20 euros. A little over €30 totes.
     
  10. Nohrellas

    Nohrellas

    May 11, 2016
    Vienna
    Aw man, well thanks for the help. The worst part is that the normal long scale low B strings are literally 1mm or 2mm too short, the outermost winding stops right before the zero fret. Guess I'll just have to keep paying my 40€ per set of strings then or hope that Daddario fixes their balanced tension sets and makes a 5-string set.
     
  11. Have you contacted the shops to ask if they can accommodate you? I imagine LotS, being a smaller, specialised shop (with good customer service in my brief experience) would be able to help.

    You already know these shops, but my main purchasing is done through Thomann or Bax, and LotS for strings as they are often slightly cheaper.
     
    HaphAsSard likes this.
  12. Honch

    Honch Guest

    Sep 7, 2006
    You should contact little company NEWTONE STRINGS in the UK. He can make anything customized for you, at your wish, and you don't have to pay premium. He mixed a set with hex core and round core to me and a friend, and you can decide how thick or thin the inner core should be, in order to equal tension. Just one caveat:

    1. U.K. is inside the EU....but not for any long... ;) time's running out!

    Be swift and buy up a stash of them strings now, before the prices skyrockets!

    Newtone Strings – British Handmade Strings est.1985

    You just have to mail him, and ask for price estimates. The don't have fancy packaging, and they have even been the fist company I've heard of who make double ball end bass strings for headless neck that has multiscale/fanned frets! That's a first for me.
     
  13. Nohrellas

    Nohrellas

    May 11, 2016
    Vienna
    Ah, interesting. I'll check them out, thanks. Seems like they don't have actual measurements for the string tension but it seems like I'd be roughly in the correct ballpark (going by other companies) when I stick to my tensions. so something along the lines of 040 055 075 100 135
     
    Honch likes this.
  14. cnltb

    cnltb

    May 28, 2005
    I'd say Newtone Strings.
    Great strings and an amazing company to deal with.
    Very flexible as well( I've had a lot of custom stuff wound by them, mostly extra long round core/exposed core but also a 35' double ball set).
     
    Honch and Nohrellas like this.
  15. Nohrellas

    Nohrellas

    May 11, 2016
    Vienna
    I sent a mail and already got a response, yeah I'll probably try their strings. Probably their diamond set in my preferred gauges, now the question of whether I'd try round or hex core but I guess I'll just stick with hex core since that should be roughly the same tension.
     
  16. cnltb

    cnltb

    May 28, 2005
    I've been on rounds for a long time now but have tried their hex core strings too.
    I liked both a lot!
     
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  17. Honch

    Honch Guest

    Sep 7, 2006
    Ok, good and fast response. Now, get the following: Round cores have slightly LESS tension than hex core, if all else equal, total gauge, inner core to wrap ratio and so on. You can mix and match within the same string set hex and round core, but I'll suggest that in order for you to gain some kind of equal tension, he knows what to do, and that is altering the inner core only in diameter although the outer gauge is the same. I mean, compared to regular tensioned (not equal tension) strings. Stick to hex cores for now. I use round cores only on double ball end strings for headless.

    Newtone doesn't dabble with tapered or anything silk that goes over the nut, bridge or zero fret. You can ask for the low B to be tapered though.

    How was their prices according to you? Middle? Cheap? Expensive but not THAT expensive?
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2017
  18. Honch

    Honch Guest

    Sep 7, 2006
    It's funny @Nohrellas that you seem to live in Austria (according to your Avatar) and can't get any good bass strings....THOMASTIK INFELD!? Italy makes some of the best bass strings too, like Galli strings, E & O Mari (they started out there) etc. I mean every other brand has Italian sounding name, and its origins are from Italy. LaBella, D'addario, D'arco, Vinci, D'Aquisto, Sfarzo strings, Pirastro, you name it.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2017
  19. Nohrellas

    Nohrellas

    May 11, 2016
    Vienna
    He told me that they don't have any real experience with balanced tension sets but that the tensions should be similar to the ones from the different tension calculators. So I'll try the gauges I use now and maybe adjust them slightly if they turn out not to be correct. That's also why I'm sticking to hex core for now since they should be fairly similar to the Daddarios. I don't particularly like tapered or exposed core strings, just standard diamonds for a 35'' bass. Price seems fine, actually cheaper than the Daddario XLs if I buy single strings.

    Thomastik strings are EXPENSIVE. I'm not sure if they would make custom strings (I think they actually do) but I'd expect them to be even more expensive than a standard set.
     
  20. Honch

    Honch Guest

    Sep 7, 2006
    Me neither, they're a nuisance.

    Find it funny, because it's IN HOUSE to you, so to speak, with inside Austria. No shipping, not vat tax, and I thought that domestic prices were fair enough for you guys.
     
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    Primary TB Assistant

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