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String Changes & Intonation

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by Rob Hunter, Dec 14, 2004.

  1. Am I going mad? I recently changed from Obligatos to a thinner gauge Flexocor. It seems to me that I'm now adjusting my left hand up a bit. In other words, the notes on the fingerboard seem to be closer to the nut than they were when I was using the old strings.

    Is this possible? Am I imagining this or is there some science happening here?

    - Rob
  2. mcbosler


    May 12, 2000
    Plano, TX
    Only thing I can think of right away is that your bridge might have inched up the table a bit when you changed the strings...I wouldn't think the string tension itself would affect the scale. Then again, I supppose anything's possible.
  3. kwd


    Jun 26, 2003
    silicon valley
    I've experienced the same thing when switching to strings of different gauge -just went from Oblis to Corellis. I've found that the adjustment is more pronounced in lower positions which leads me to believe that is has to do with the nut height and the relative thickness of the string. People talk about the one/two credit/business card rules for nut height but I think that the ideal height is -on some level- a function of string diameter.
  4. As the tension of the string increases, they tend to go more sharp as you press them down. This is obviously more a problem with higher strings. I experienced something similar when switching to gut strings. Don't sweat it. Adjustment is a fact of life with basses. Your muscle memory isn't very good on an instrument that large anyway. That's why you have to practive every day to maintain good intonation on bass.