Seriously...long lasting rounds?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by raul, Feb 21, 2014.

  1. raul


    Aug 30, 2006
    Planet Earth
    How long can they possibly last? I saw an Ed Friesland video and he was playing a bass with 10 year old Labella ss rounds! 10 years! Can rounds really last that long? Which last longer, nickel or steel? I'm thinking of steel for one P bass and nickel for the other. I love rounds. Maybe leave a steel set on for a long time on one and change the nickel set periodically? Thinking of Labella steel and Daddario nickel.
  2. bass12

    bass12 And Grace, too Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2008
    Montreal, Canada
    Doesn't make much difference to me. Two or three gigs and my strings - no matter which brand (save for coated strings, which I don't like much) - are dead. :(
  3. Gorn


    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    Depends what you mean by last. Nothing is gonna retain brightness forever but they'll function as bass strings for a long time till eventually they no longer stay in tune.
  4. adamaarts

    adamaarts Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2001
    Corona, CA
    Beta tester Source Audio, demos/reviews of many others
    Elixir's are the only strings for me that can last 6 months without losing tone. I think I've gone over a year on a set and the new strings after didn't sound too different. Sure I can leave strings on any bass for 10 years but they will most likely be dead or close to it.
  5. joelb79


    Mar 22, 2006
    Lansing, Michigan

    just do this after every show.
  6. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    Years doesn't matter, it's hours. As in how many hours you play that bass, not how many years it's been sitting around in the case.

    But seriously, it's as much your body chemistry as anything. Some people's sweat kills strings in hours, some can make them last years. I keep my hands clean, don't sweat much at gigs and wipe them down with alcohol every so often. My strings last a long time. Plus I prefer rounds that are broken in and have lost the new-string zingyness.
  7. Root 5

    Root 5

    Nov 25, 2001
    To answer longevity questions it requires knowing what kind of tone you like!

    I have found that pure nickel and alloy 52(nickel & iron) strings last a very long time - meaning they still look shiny and maintain their tone. SS strings are good, too.

    Nickel plated steel strings wear out the fastest.
  8. kikstand454

    kikstand454 Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2012

    I like the sound of "broken in" roundwounds. So they last forever for me. I had a set of DR high beams on my gigging bass for roughly 6 years and only changed them for safety's sake. After about 12 hours of playing..... hibeams lose their "piano " tone and turn into beautiful IMHO/IME.
  9. klokker


    Jan 7, 2009
    Steele City, NE
    I have a set of Sadowsky Blue label nickels that have been on my bass for well over a year. They lost some zing of course but still sound clean and I have played that bass a few hundred hours this year. If I need bright I can throw the bright switch on my G&L L2500 and it's there.

    I keep wanting to change them, but then when I listen to the sound I can't justify it.
  10. Dredmahawkus


    Nov 4, 2012
    TI superalloy never die! I never changed them!

    they seriously sound the same 6 months later as they do right out of the pack! nice and even sounding with a ton of growl. I always put them on my favorite bass!
  11. Precision101


    Sep 22, 2013

    Actually that's terrible for the strings. I did it to some old strings I had and they were brighter but ruined the string itself. On DR string packs it says specifically not to do that. The longest lasting strings I've ever used are the d addario pro steels, but I don't use those anymore.

    ROOTSnFIFTHS Low-end Lover since '78!

    Oct 25, 2012
    NJ to Sin City
    Elixers here. Nothing I have used has lasted as long as these.
  13. glorth2


    Jan 26, 2006
    Hi. I play Roto 66s and am looking for a best practice kind of list. Wash hands a lot I get. Do I just wipe them down with a felt cloth? Is there anything I can use on them to get oils off of them? Is there anything besides washing my hands that will help, like using Purell or anything like that? Thanks in advance.
  14. Precision101


    Sep 22, 2013

    I am a rotosound user for life.and
    In my experience whatever you do with them to clean them off they will die out someday. Rotos especially because they tend to lose brightness quickly, but what saved some of it for me was Dunlop formula and washing hands before and wiping down strings after I play. Rounds die either way. Some oils you can't get out because it's stuck between the wound. Try Dunlop formula string cleaner. It works for me. Just wipe your strings down thoroughly after playing though. It saves boat loads of cash:D
  15. Biggbass


    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    10 yrs is a long time. I think the longest I've gone on one set is about 7 years. They got better with age.
    But like said previously, it's not the years it's the hours. And probably the technique, attack, string maintenance, etc, as well.
  16. +1

    Elixir Nanos' are coated strings, and last (give or take) maybe twice what standard rounds do.

    D'Add XLs are inexpensive and probably the best buy, but I've found SIT Powerwounds last a bit longer, and sound pretty nice.
  17. Hobobob

    Hobobob Don't feed the troll, folks.

    Jan 25, 2011
    Camarillo, CA
    I've had a set of Circle K's on my 4 string for a year now, and they've gone from sounding almost as zingy as steels to sounding like barely broken-in nickels. I use fast fret before each use, which helps.
  18. petrus61

    petrus61 Supporting Member

    I highly recommend the Labella Deep Talkin rounds. Highly underrated. I got them on the advice from Jason at BSO looking for a round that was the closest to what popular artists were using in the late 60's/early 70's. He informed me that the DTR's have remained virtually unchanged for years, so that intrigued me. They are also unique for a a round in that they use a thinner core wire with multiple outer wraps. The result is a heavier gauge string with perfect tension. They feel much more like nickel than SS and lack the chorus like overtones off many other SS sets. They pretty much converted me from being a hardcore flats user.
  19. bobalu


    Oct 1, 2004
    above the 49th
    ^^^ I have to agree with Petrus here. I hated SS and vowed never to use them again after my run in with Roto's saw wire. I was a hard core nickel plated player for years until someone suggested the LaBella DTR's to me. I was converted. It really is an underrated SS string IMO. Close to nickel in feel like Petrus said. My "go to" string now.
  20. Levin


    Oct 30, 2012
    ^+a lot on this, was so for me too, put these on my Jazz and never want to let them go... :D except for trying new things! But... such great deep sound...