Question on Garbo Strings vs. Plain Gut

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by goodgig, Jul 6, 2013.

  1. I'm playing bass on a show that takes place in 1930's. Old Timey Gospel/Hillbilly style music. I'm tempted to change my set up to plain guts - at least the D & G - for this show. I'm otherwise happy with my current set up (Spiro Stark E, Mittel A & D and Olive G). But they tend to sound a bit jazzy in this context. I don't have adjusters on my bridge and the string height is pretty low (G 6mm E7-8mm). How do you think Garbo set with the plain G would work? Can I play them without raising the action?
  2. AndreasH


    Apr 8, 2005
    In my experience, the action seems a bit low for Garbos/Guts. I have about 10mm on the G-string right now, strung with guts and garbos!

    I mean you can still give it a try, but don't expect to get the fullest out of the gut strings. ;)
  3. You could play guts or Garbos at that height, but I don't think they'll really speak and if you intend to leave the Stark E and Mittel A on there, the difference in tension will probably be pretty weird. The easiest thing to do would be leave the strings as they are and cut off the sustain right after the initial attack of the note. If your Spiros have been on there a while, they should do that pretty well.
  4. Michael Glynn

    Michael Glynn

    Feb 25, 2004
    If you are replacing the spirocores with the garbos or guts, the string height might increase a little on its own, due to the lower tension on the top of the bass.
  5. Edvin


    Feb 25, 2010
    of course it'll work!
  6. Thanks for the input guys. Great suggestions! In the past I stung up my bass with all guts and as I remember they did need a higher string height to get the optimum sound. I suppose that will be true for the Garbos as well, since they have less tension than Spiros. I really liked the vibe all guts have. But $$$ I've decided to go with my current set up. It took me quite a while to find what works the best for my bass. Kungfoo - good point about the approach using the Spiros. Once I play the old timey music with the right conception, my worries about not having gut strings will hopefully go away.
  7. The guts on my flatback are about 3/4" off the end of the fingerboard. They really speak and project. I put Spiro Mittel E&A on the bass shortly after I bought it, mostly for laughs, and wouldn't recommend cranking Spiros up that high!
  8. It is rather easy to damp a ringing string, but impossible to extend the sustain of a short-ringing one.

    Anyway, if you want to try lower tension string for a special occasion, you might want to raise the bridge using a few layers of hardwood shims (maple, beech) under the bridge feet. Not a good solution for a long time but I think totally acceptable for a few gigs.
    Don't glue them together, because they need to bend to the top curvature.
  9. Decided to give myself an early Birthday present and ordered a set of Lenzner guts. I'm sure that will result in a good sound for the old-timey show. I'll try raising the height with shims as double MIDI suggested. That idea didn't occur to me. Thanks again. I'll let you know how I make out when they settle in.