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Quick, stupid question on flatwounds.

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Tom Henry, Feb 6, 2016.

  1. I live at the beach. Strings will rust quickly if i leave the basses i have out instead of putting them in gig bags or cases. So here is my question:

    Do flatwounds rust the same way as roundwounds?


  2. SLaPiNFuNK

    SLaPiNFuNK Commercial User

    Jul 28, 2006
    LA California
    The Brains: FretNation.com
    the surface of the flats is smooth. As you play them over time you will continue to polish them. If the flats have gaps in the winding build up can occur there.
    Tom Henry likes this.
  3. FYI- ernie ball cobalt flats rusted- 5 months. (moderate use-stored in gig bag when not in use.)
  4. La Faro

    La Faro

    Jun 20, 2016
    The string material is a big factor. My phospher bronze acoustic guitar can't stand the environment here (central Vietnam), so i've ordered coated strings. I did want to try Daddarios silver plated, but my silver flute tarnishes my quicker than in the UK. I've got chrome flats on the way for my guitar, so I expect them to handle the weather.

    Tapes and stainless steel flats from GHS for my basses coming too. SO they should fair well.

    I see GHS bass boomers are coated in nickel, so should perform well compared to none coated rounds
  5. subdude67


    Jan 18, 2010
    I live in a tropical beach environment and use both rounds and flats in stainless steel only. No problems with rust.
  6. blr2


    Apr 21, 2010
    Sofia, EU
    Rusting of outer wraps should not be a problem with normal use. These are either SS or NPS. The problem is corrosion of the cores. They are made of carbon (i.e. not stainless) steel. Core corrosion leads to dead strings and breakage.
  7. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    I can't speak to rust but I can say if it's humid where you live/play, you may find that flatwounds get sticky under your fingers to the point where it can significantly impact your technique. This topic pops up every year on TB when the weather turns warm and gigs move outside... so do a search and you'll find plenty of tips if you're running into that.
    petrus61 likes this.
  8. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    Allot of flats like chromes are stainless steel wrapped. Try those.
  9. petrus61

    petrus61 Supporting Member

    Yep. I've been having a relatively dry summer in upstate NY. I came to VA for a week and brought along my flat equipped P bass...yikes! Even in the hotel room with AC and less humidity, my fingers are sticking like crazy to the broken in Labellas I'm using. I keep washing my hands to dry them out, but soon after playing my fingers are sticking. I have very dry, calloused hands up north, but not down here apparently!

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