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String tension while tuned really low

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Tyler Dupont, Jul 22, 2001.


  1. Tyler Dupont

    Tyler Dupont Wesly Headpush

    I've got a problem. I play a fiver and my guitarist is tuned extremely low (like standard drop D .. but it's actually B) I tune my bass so that the B is normally where the D would be (3rd fret on the B string) still with me ? If I would have known this earlier I wouldn't have changed my tuning at all. Now I have a choice .. I either have to relearn all the songs tuned standard or set up my bass so that I can get some more string tension while tuned this low.. the tension problem makes me play sloppy while doing some stuff (mostly 3 finger stuff) and I don't think it sounds all that great either.. Is there anything I can do to get some tension happening ? Because I'd rather not relearn all the songs.
     
  2. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    I would think you could install a string tree in the headstock to put some angle on the string and increase tension. Maybe www.stewmac.com has them. I did a crude version of this with nails when I was given a guitar-guitar one Christmas as my first fretted instrument.

    ....or get a 7-string?
     
  3. is that.. like.. drop G ? wow.. you going for the fieldy-thingy ?? :D
     
  4. Tyler Dupont

    Tyler Dupont Wesly Headpush

    Ug ... it was an accident! hehe, I don't like fieldy ... but it does sound like that :( I asked my guitarist if we could tune up a few steps and try it out.. but he's such a nazi control freak he won't even try it.

    God forbid we get a CD out.... can't wait to be ripped apart here :D
     
  5. Tyler Dupont

    Tyler Dupont Wesly Headpush

    Poll : Fieldy vs Loop22


    JT : Light them on fire!
     
  6. Ok here is a good solution... tune the string back up to B, then tune all the rest 3 semitones higher too, then you will have the string tension you want and then some... and you will just have to relearn any open strings you used to play... or I guess any notes in the first couple of frets... but the patterns will be the same for the songs as you go down the bass.
     
  7. 3 words : kick him out

    in a band there is no such thing as " I "
    in a band there is only " we "

    not : I want to do this
    but : i'd like to do this.. how about you guys ?
     
  8. lo-end

    lo-end

    Jun 15, 2001
    PA
    ugh, just relearn the songs in standard B E A D G tuning. It wont take that long (unless youre doing some crazy Jaco stuff on there) and you will thank yourself when you are done.
     
  9. hujo

    hujo

    Apr 18, 2001
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Yeah man, do tune the normal way, and relearn. Are the songs really hard? It might be a problem at first, but as the other person said, it's the same pattern.
     
  10. Suburban

    Suburban

    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Tension is a function of frequency and gauge.
    With a certain gauge, you will loose tension when opting for a lower note.
    By going for a heavier gauge, you get lower freq at the same tension.

    I.e. you need a heavy string.
     
  11. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Using the term tension for two different things is what makes this issue so confusing.

    Tension is only dependent on the pitch you tune a string to.
    Using different gauges changes the "stiffness or flexibility" of a string, which will almost feel as a change of tension.
     
  12. FalsehoodBass

    FalsehoodBass

    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    Sorry JMX, but tension is dependant on both the pitch AND the mass/lentgh ratio of the string... if one has two strings of equal tension and length but different thicknesses (actually mass per length is important here), the thicker string has a lower frequency. So if you want to have a lower frequency without changing tension, get heavier strings (to a point, don't break your nut)
    But to Loop, im voting with the "relearn your songs" team. I had a similiar problem when i bought a 5 string, i used to play drop D with my 4, but relearning the songs was definately the way to go. You can walk into a guitar store and play without having to retune... plus in my opinion the tone is better when you're tuned normally... i can't stand the floppy sound of a detuned bass string....
    either way, goodluck