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Putting oil on strings?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by bassnuzzle, Dec 18, 2011.

  1. I was wondering if I could lather some cooking oil on my strings to make it easier to slide? They are Roto flats, Monel..

    Would this damage the string in any way?
  2. Lather some cooking oil on your strings....... Think about that for a minute.......

    Get some calluses on them fingers,son!!!! Nothing,not even playing bass comes easy in life. Besides,the whole idea with strings,IS TO KEEP THE OIL OFF THE STRINGS. Unless your're Jamerson.... Cooking oil.....
  3. I have calluses, I've been playing for almost a year now but I figured it would feel nice, ya know?
  4. Save the oil for the bedroom with the old lady,and french fries,okay? Don't forget to lay down a sheet of plastic first. It'll stain the furniture,IME.
  5. Skitch it!

    Skitch it!

    Sep 6, 2010
    I like mine with olive oil...... mozzarella and a bit of basil :p

    Wipe them down and and shine them up a little, I don't think cooking oil would feel too good on the fingers.
  6. testing1two

    testing1two Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2009
    Southern California
    Oil will soak into your fingerboard (assuming your fingerboard isn't maple with a lacquer finish) so oiling your strings every time you play will soak too much oil into your fingerboard and that can lead to bigger problems. Also, don't use cooking oils as they can turn rancid over time. Try GHS Fast Fret or Finger Ease or a little furniture grade lemon oil (which is mostly scented solvent so it won't soak into your fingerboard nearly as much).

    GHS Fast-Fret String Cleaner: Shop Accessories & Other Musical Instruments | Musician's Friend

    Fingerease Guitar String Lubricant: Shop Accessories & Other Musical Instruments | Musician's Friend
  7. jasper383


    Dec 5, 2004
    Durham NC
    Tommy Cogbill, Nashville and Muscle Shoals great, used to keep a jar of Vaseline nearby and dip his fingers in it to make playing easier. He used flats, so keeping the strings bright and free of gunk wasn't a priority.

    Cooking oil of any kind will go rancid so don't do it, but other lubricants won't likely hurt anything.
  8. Jay2U

    Jay2U Not as bad as he lóòks

    Dec 7, 2010
    22 ft below sea level
    The oil would add mass to the strings. This mass won't be evenly distributed, so intonation might become a problem. If slick strings are so important to you, you should consider flatwounds. I use d´Addario Chromes. I tried many brands and types, but these Chromes still are the smoothest to me.
  9. sdoow


    Jun 22, 2010
    Nose grease!!! Do a search of TB, several threads! Still haven't felt the need to try it myself though. :)
  10. bassthumpersf


    May 30, 2010
    Wipe your fingertips along the side of your nose or forehead.
  11. lowendgenerator


    Mar 26, 2006
    Fingerease works, but it's a double edged sword. It tends to make my finger tips softer and more prone to soreness.
  12. SLaPiNFuNK

    SLaPiNFuNK Commercial User

    Jul 28, 2006
    LA California
    The Brains: FretNation.com
    There are a bunch of bass and guitar products that accomplish this...

    Fast Fret and other things mentioned above...

    Planet Waves has a new one called XLR8 that is pretty darn slick feeling...

    For years I have been using Almond Oil on my upright bass. One dime sized drop on a finger tip rubbed into the palms of your hand and then run on the strings and on the back of the neck and you are set for the session.

    You can pickup almond oil and any organic market or something like that... Just make sure there are no additives... I believe Whole Foods calls it "Sweet Almond Oil" and its mixed in with their massage oils. You will want to find a small twist top glass vile to keep a small amount in your gig bag.

    The almond oil is also good for the wood if you have a natural finish instrument.
  13. Barry79


    Sep 11, 2011
    Hi, will using GHS fast fret on an ebony fingerboard be bad for the wood? Thanks... :)
  14. icecycle66


    Feb 4, 2009
    Use nose grease.
    If you use cooking oil it will eventually, like in seconds, turn gummy feeling.

    If you don't produce enough nose grease, find a greasy teenager to sit next to you while you play or get Fast Fret.

    I find Fast Fret to be the second best thing compared to nose grease.
  15. eagle67


    Nov 12, 2010
    GHS Fast Fret is just mineral oil in an applicator. Use it as much as you want, don't get too much on the fingerboard, and wipe off the strings at the end of the night, so dust etc doesn't stick to the mineral oil.
  16. experimental bassist

    experimental bassist

    Mar 15, 2009
    Every one of these answers is wrong.

    The only right answer, is weeks, even MONTHS, of eating fried chicken before and during practices, rehearsals, and shows, and NEVER washing your hands until after the gig.

    Chicken grease, it is the secret weapon of all bass funk, mojo, and slick playing.


    SBassman likes this.
  17. Mmmmmm, french fried flats!
  18. jmac


    May 23, 2007
    Horsham, Pa
    Nose grease all the way. I wish I could bottle it and sell it.
  19. Buy Elixir strings. The best for sliding.

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