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strings for 8 string bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Ric5, Nov 28, 2017.

  1. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    I am thinking of building an 8 string bass ... 30" scale ... and stringing it DGCF or BEAD with octaves.

    My question is ... where do 8 string players get their bass strings?

    I am thinking one of the online retailers would be the best place to start.
  2. lowendblues

    lowendblues Supporting Member

    Oct 8, 2004
    TC424 and TolerancEJ like this.
  3. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    I've always gotten mine from juststrings and/or bassstringsonline.
    GHS, D'Addario and Rotosound all make 8 string sets for standard tuning, or you can combine a regular set with a piccolo set, or assemble your own from singles.
    Depending on the length you need, you might be able to use guitar strings for the octaves.
    HaphAsSard likes this.
  4. woodyng2

    woodyng2 Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2015
    Oregon Coast
    I had a daddario set on my Fernandes,which seemed to exert a lot of tension/pressure.
    I replaced them with a custom balanced set ordered from Kalium,and they sound great,and play like melted oleo.
  5. davelowell2

    davelowell2 Uhh... FaFaFooey is BaBaBooey... Supporting Member

    Apr 20, 2006
    NYC via StL
    I liked Circle K/ Kallium when I had an 8 stringer.
  6. mellowinman

    mellowinman Free Man

    Oct 19, 2011
    The answer will always lie in my sig...
  7. HaphAsSard


    Dec 1, 2013
    This. On a 30" instrument I'd at least consider getting my favourite 4-string set for bass, and either singles or the bottom four strings from a guitar set*: some brands - e.g. D'Addario (IME), and I've heard the same about GHS - wind them as much as 38" long.

    For best bass results I'd look at the heaviest electric sets available, or singles as said. Choosing them to have each half the gauge of the corresponding lower-octave string ensures equal or very close tension.
  8. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    Half the thickness is a good starting point. Some people prefer them a bit heavier or lighter than that, OP should be prepared to experiment a little.

    Headstock design plays a big part in whether guitar strings will fit. I've been told many brands won't quite reach the G tuner of a 30" bass with a Fender-style head, but work fine with the same scale and a 2+2 head.
    HaphAsSard likes this.
  9. Bob_Ross

    Bob_Ross Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 29, 2012

    As far as which strings... I've screwed around in the past with cobbling together double-course sets from individual singles and/or standard 4-string + piccolo sets, but in the end I found it was way easier just to use D'Addario XL-8s as my go-to on all my 8-string basses. It's probably the only double-course set you'll find routinely in stock at the local Sam Ash or Guitar Center, which can be a life saver if you need strings when out on the road.
    TolerancEJ likes this.

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