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String Cleaner

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Llaslo, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. Llaslo


    Mar 8, 2012
    I just bought some new DR Hi-Beams for my bass that I'm going to install this weekend. I was curious what string cleaner you all recommend for these?
  2. testing1two

    testing1two Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2009
    Southern California
  3. bunkaroo


    Apr 25, 2003
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    I tried cleaning my Fat Beam with the BassBrites and they didn't seem to do much. The wipes feel fairly dry so I don't know if that's a problem or not. Looks like it will continue to be denatured alcohol soaks for me.
  4. droo46


    Jun 16, 2011
    Sting cleaner = snake oil
  5. 4-string


    Jul 23, 2006
    I don't quite get it either. Clean hands before you start playing, wipe down with a dry cloth when you're done. Keeping the bass in its case when not in use also helps string life.
  6. AwesomeWithAQ


    Nov 25, 2012
    I really like XLR8 from Planet Waves. I apply some of that and then use a treated string cloth before and after playing. You can see the gunk that comes off and it makes a very noticeable difference in string life.
  7. Llaslo


    Mar 8, 2012
    I wondered about it, but a friend told me you should definitely do it every time you play. I haven't been, but as these were new strings, I figured why not, but it seems kinda unnecessary, i guess.
  8. bunkaroo


    Apr 25, 2003
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    I do all these things, and my strings still go from new zing to dull within a few hours. In fact I am usually using a dry cloth in between songs and wiping my hands on a different towel. So it gets to be quite frustrating.
  9. A little alcohol - not booze - on a clean rag and gently wipe. But really, just wash your hands.
  10. 4-string


    Jul 23, 2006
    Absolutely, I've seen that happen. I just don't understand how a cleaner could fix that problem. Once the string is dead like that there's no return ime.

    Coated strings might do the trick though.
  11. .
    I'm a string cleaner/lubricant virgin. Until yesterday I'd never bought any.
    All I've ever done to date is the old rub-the-fingers-across-the-forehead trick for lubrication and occasionally wipe the strings with a cloth, though I rarely remember to do the latter.
    I sometimes boil them in water and mild detergent, which really cleans them well.
    (Yes, I'm one of the string boiling advocates, ok?)

    I'm going to try out a few brands/types over the next 12 months, looking for a product that both cleans the strings and lubricates/protects them a little.
    As with anything to do with bass playing, opinions vary wildly and I take all advice with a grain of salt.
    I need to prove things to myself!

    Yesterday I bought GHS's Fast-Fret

    and Tone Finger Ease

    First impressions?
    Fast Fret is good, but it's pretty dry and I can't see how it's going to clean down in the grooves between windings, because it only really contacts the outer surface of the string. Also, it only cleans the top surface (and maybe down the sides a little), not underneath where gunk is going to collect just as much as the top.

    Finger Ease is messy, because it's a spray product. I sprayed the strings (and fretboard!) then wiped over/under/around them with a clean cloth and there was definately crap on that cloth!
    The strings had a lovely smooth/slippery feel to them after re-application. It lubricated the back of the neck very well after I'd polished it.

    So far, for me, it's Finger Ease ahead by a nose.
  12. Doner Designs

    Doner Designs Steve Doner Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2012
    Metro Chicago Area
    Doner Designs is an alias for Steve Doner
    I use Dunlop ultraglide on new strings to get the oxidation (or crud or whatever it is) off.
  13. Ewo

    Ewo a/k/a Steve Cooper Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    Huntington WV
    I made myself one of these.

    Every time I play, I wipe the strings with a clean cloth. When they get too dull for my liking, they go into the alcohol soak tube. Alternating sets like that (one on the bass, one in the soak tube), I'll get about three uses out of each before the windings deform too much from contact with the frets.

    I've tried a bunch of string cleaning products, but this routine has worked the best for me.
  14. I use the denatured alkyhole too. Works better'n boiling. I soak em 24hrs only, then hang to dry.
    Saves me hundreds $$/year & the strings come out virtually new. Works on flats, coated, tapes etc.

    I also keep an old jar (plastic) in my bass gig bag pocket with a rag that's dampened with alkyhole & wipe strings down after use.
    I get sweaty man! Altho I wash me hands, after 1 set, they're as sweaty as Betty :D
  15. I use denatured alcohol from recently. Good stuff, soak strings in it for 12 hours and you will hear the difference ....
  16. Floyd Eye

    Floyd Eye Banned

    Feb 21, 2010
    St. Louis

    Finger Ease has silicone in it. If that matters to you ( it does to me).

    Fast Fret on the other hand, if used after you play every time will significantly increase string life. It will also keep your fretboard clean.

    My suggestion to the OP was going to be Fast Fret and a clean towel.
  17. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    +1 these work great they get dirt that you don't think is there love them use them once a week on all of my basses.
  18. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    That is how they should be they work great for me you don't want them to be too wet because they will just leave a residue that will attract more dirt.
  19. Take a trip to Walmart and find the diabetic section.
    You can buy a box of BD Alcohol Swabs for a bit more than $1 for 100.
    These are individual packets, and perfect for a quick string wipe after a gig.
  20. Richard Sabines

    Richard Sabines

    Sep 25, 2007

    how many times can you put a roundwound set to the denatured alcohol? is there anytime (months, years)when they don't respond to the alcohol after several times soaking them?

    Interesting that you mention it works with flats too, I can't imagine