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String Tension Help Please

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by RSmith, Aug 17, 2003.

  1. I was hoping for some advice if anyone can share their experience. I have 3 basses, a MIA Jazz, a Music Man SR5 and a G&L SB-2. When I play the SB-2 the strings are a little less tense then the other two basses and I find it hard to play anything fast that is a breeze on the other two basses. I like the sb-2 tone but I find this limiting my use of it. All my basses are strung with DR "Fat Beams" (Marcus Signature) 45-105 gauges. Thanks for any input.
  2. Nothing can be done to help with the apparent difference in tensions amongst your basses.

    String tension is limited by tuned pitch and scale length. A string that is properly tuned will have only 1 tension for that pitch. Drop or raise the tension and you drop or raise the pitch accordingly.

    Longer scales have more tension because the additional string length has to be added to the amount that stretches when the string is tuned to pitch. That's why 35" and even 36" scale basses are popular. The B strings on these basses aren't as floppy as on shorter scales.
  3. That's what I was thinkin' thanks!
  4. Couldn't you use heavier strings on the offending bass?
  5. You're right - thanx for adding that!

    I forgot to say that different strings - either manufacturer or model - will have different tensions on your bass. Shop around and see if you can find one that better suits your style.
  6. Slater

    Slater Leave that thing alone. Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    Hex core strings usually have a tighter feel than round core strings (Fat Beams are round core).

    You may want to try something like Stainless DR Lo-Riders on your SB-2. They will feel tighter, and sound similar to the Fat Beams.
  7. Thanks for the suggestions!