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Thoughts on changing tuning

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Festus, Dec 5, 2012.

  1. Festus


    Dec 12, 2001
    London, England.
    I have thought about changing my set up so that my bass is set up for piccolo.

    My current thoughts are to tune to CFBbEb (C being like the 3rd fret on an A string)

    Any tips regarding this change would be welcome.

    My thoughts on string gauge would be something like C as 65, F as 45, Bb as 35 and Eb as 20/25
  2. hoketus


    Nov 5, 2012
    Toronto, ON, CA
    I would go a touch lighter on the higher strings. Maybe a .030 and .018. I used to use a .028 as a "C" with good tension.
  3. Oneirogenic


    Nov 10, 2009
    Agree and disagree with this. Lighter gauges and lower tensions are nice for uptuning but our OP may prefer a wound string for his highest string. I don't mind plain strings at all but some people do. The feel and timbre difference can be very weird especially if you haven't played instruments that have plain strings. OP may also want to consider that very light gauge wound strings are far more prone to breakage because of the very thin cores they have.
  4. S6I6X


    Jun 25, 2011
    San Diego
    Depending on your preferred string company you may be able to get a tension chart. When I tune up or down I keep the tension about the same so you can figure out what would feel right strait away.
  5. ixlramp


    Jan 25, 2005
    You can use this chart to discover what tension you want, and design a custom set with that tension on each string, then round to the nearest .005 for brands other than Circle K. CKS sell piccolo sets for any pitch here http://circlekstrings.com/store/standard-balanced-4-strings.html but keep in mind their .025 cannot be tuned past C.
    A .025 at Eb is extremely tight and close to breaking, i recommend either a plain string or a .020 / .022 designed for high F from here http://www.conklinguitars.com/bass_strings.html
  6. hoketus


    Nov 5, 2012
    Toronto, ON, CA
    .035 doesn't seem particularly loose for a "Bb". Tight, if anything. I once tried a .035 as a "C" string gauge (a step higher) and it broke while I was stringing it up. 35" scale though, to be fair.

    For the "Eb" string, Conklin sells a 0.20 wound "F" string which should work fine. Guitar strings are also an option if they fit (I used to use a D'Addario guitar string (wound 0.28 "D" on my 35" scale bass - just barely fit).