Thinner strings?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Born Villain, Jul 26, 2013.


  1. Born Villain

    Born Villain

    Jul 26, 2013
    Is this even possible? I'm a new bassist in a band, and I'm actually a guitarist and I have very small hands (being a tiny girl and all ew). Any strings that will be easier for me?
     
  2. Technotitclan

    Technotitclan Lurking TB from work

    Mar 1, 2012
    Rochester, NY
    Highly recommend any of DR's round core strings for ease of playing. There super flexible. With a good setup with low action it will almost play itself. I used to like really lite strings (used to use Elixir 40-95 or 40-100) but when i switched to DR I ended up using either 45-105 or the 50-110 depending on which of my basses I'm using.

    I recommend using Bassstringsonline.com. Jason there has awesome prices and shipping is only 3 days at the most for me and I'm on the other side of the country from him.
    https://www.bassstringsonline.com/DR-Strings_c_16.html
     
  3. Ian_Flash

    Ian_Flash

    Jan 17, 2013
    What kind of bass are you playing, and what kind of music/sound do you need? The size (scale) of your bass could determine the best gauge and type of string. There are lots of options... let me know and I can give you some good recos.
     
  4. Technotitclan

    Technotitclan Lurking TB from work

    Mar 1, 2012
    Rochester, NY
    There are lots of strings out there for bass and there all different. If you can describe the sound your looking all of us here will be happy to recommend a string that will work for you. They come int all sizes and textures. Theres thick, thin, coated, nickle, steel, flat wound, round wound, colored.... you name it and theres a bass string for it.
     
  5. Ian_Flash

    Ian_Flash

    Jan 17, 2013
    I agree with technoticlan about round-core DR's. Definitely easier to play, but you still want to try to select the best materials and gauges, since DR offers a few options.
     
  6. Jaco Taco

    Jaco Taco

    Jul 30, 2012
    I will third the opinion on DR strings. They're just great. Just make sure not to get the Low-Riders as they have hex cores and are rather stiff. You can't go wrong with a light gauge of either Hi-Beams or Sun Beams.
     
  7. Born Villain

    Born Villain

    Jul 26, 2013
    We play plain old rock (Dave Grohl inspired band), and to be honest I haven't ever played bass before(I'm a guitarist so on bass it was just fooling around you know, Marilyn Manson riffs and Bulls On Parade), so I don't know a lot about bass. I'm a tiny teenaged girl and my fingers are pretty small so anything to make things easier for me would be nice (sorry Jack White). I don't know what kind of bass I'm getting, but I need a light one since I don't have a lot of strength and i have some back problems. Yeah. THanks for your help:)
     
  8. MikeyV

    MikeyV

    Jun 15, 2011
    Bay Area, CA
    Why does this sound fishy to me?
     
  9. Ian_Flash

    Ian_Flash

    Jan 17, 2013
    Epiphone makes a "Tobias Toby" model that's light and easy to play, but you may want something with a narrower string spacing, so check out the Ibanez line. If you want really small, they make a Mikro model which is downsized in scale and weight. Personally, I don't think it's critical for you downsize that much, since you can get something with a narrow/thin neck and a slightly shorter scale to make it easier to match your hands to the fret-spacing in the lower registers. Many great-sounding basses are made of Basswood which is a light-but-resonant tone wood, even on full-size bodies. Epiphone also make an EB model (EB-0, I think) which is a 32" scale length ("standard" is 34"), slightly shorter but still long enough to give you some punch and bottom. With a shorter scale, string tension will be lower, therefore easier on your fingers. You can combine that with a lighter gauge set - say 40- 100 or 40-95 and still not get too "Floppy". Too loose and you risk getting string buzz, then you'd have to raise the action to remedy that - but then it's harder to play. (Welcome to our world. My suggestion: A 34" thin-neck with .040 gauge DR Sunbeams or Hi-Beams, or a 32" scale with .045 gauge DR SB's or HB's. High Beams are Stainless Steel wrap - a little more output and sustain but a rougher feel on the surface. Sunbeams are Nickel-Plated Steel - more of a vintage mellow tone but smoother and easier on the fingers. Both are round-cores so they will be flexible and both are SUPERIOR-sounding strings.
     
  10. Same reason it does to me, but what the hell. :p


    How tiny are you? Height is important too in the question of whether you will be comfortable with a long scale bass.

    GENERALLY: Jazz basses have narrower necks, "P" basses have wider necks. The old American Peaveys have very narrow necks, but most of them are not light-weight instruments. If you REALLY want light weight, then a "Beatle bass" might be a way to go: a "violin" hollow body bass.

    As far as strings, are you sure you need smaller, or do you just want more comfortable? Tape-wounds are really big, but extremely comfortable. Flats are also very comfortable, but some are very stiff (not all).

    Edit: Oh, and there's always the headless basses too in the lightweight catagory . . . never tried one myself.
     
  11. Ian_Flash

    Ian_Flash

    Jan 17, 2013
    Unless your Day Job is baking cookies in the bottom of a hollow tree, you should be able to handle a narrow-neck 32 - 34" J-Style bass, as long as it's light. I agree that a "Hofner Style" Violin bass would probably be the lightest and most comfortable; as long as you can get the sound you need, you should try it.
     
  12. Technotitclan

    Technotitclan Lurking TB from work

    Mar 1, 2012
    Rochester, NY
    Then I would recommend a medium gauge sunbeam set from Dr. I also second opinions of a violin bass or a ibanez sr.
     
  13. SLaPiNFuNK

    SLaPiNFuNK Inactive Commercial User

    Jul 28, 2006
    LA California
    The Brains: FretNation.com
    Get light gauge strings... 35-90 even...
     
  14. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Colorado
    I disclose nothing
    On some of my basses I useD'addario Super Light Gauge bass strings ... .125 .095 .075 .060 .040 it makes the bass less boomy and brings out the mids more.
     
  15. tylerwylie

    tylerwylie

    Jan 5, 2008
    Dunwoody, GA
    Best...response...ever
     
  16. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    My first bass was a P-copy in a 30 inch scale. Squier also made a P-copy in a 32 inch scale, and there are many more.

    Here's the deal that nobody has mentioned: string tension decreases with the square of the scale length. So getting a narrow neck with a 32 inch scale, 40-95 strings, and the resulting tension is only about 3/4 of a "standard" 45-105 set on a "standard" 34-inch scale.
     
  17. dedpool1052

    dedpool1052

    Jan 10, 2011
    Seattle, WA
    i'd been using 45-105 guage strings for years until i recently switched to 40-95. it made a difference in the ease of playability for me. after using those guages for 2 months now i've decided to go even thinner and just ordered a few sets of super light DRs, which are 30-90. brand, type and guage can all affect how playable a bass is to you. try some different brands and guages and see what sticks.
     
  18. danielfnj96

    danielfnj96

    Jan 29, 2012
    NJ, USA
    I've allot of good things about the short scale fender mustang basses and since it's short scale a set of standard gauge (45-105 or 45-100) strings will feel more like a set of light strings.
     

  19. The smallest I've ran across over the years is D'Addario XL's 40-90. Which is the gauge I seem to prefer for mainly slapping on my '75 J-Bass.
     
  20. DavC

    DavC

    May 17, 2005
    Tallmadge , Ohio
    easy on the fingers ... GHS Compression wounds ...

    available in light guages ... i think .40 - .95 ...

    shorter scale basses ... my first bass was a 69 Hagstrom 8 string - short scale ..

    had a 80's Yamaha BX-1 headless bass - short scale

    just ordered a used Yamaha Motion B III bass .. similar to the BX1 ... short scale ... i plan on using it as a Tenor ..
    strung with a high C ... w/GHS Compression wounds ...

    i think SIT makes a compression wound string , there wound in such a way that they feel smoother and retain most the brightness of a round wound ...

    when you say " old rock " ... i think ' Yardbirds ' ... but i'm old ..!! ha ... bad back , arthritic fingers from 50+ yrs of keys ..! i like fairly soft flexible strings ... ( Ti flats on fairly light P type bass /Warmoth )

    there are lots of variables ... !
     
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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