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"What Fencing Wire Do YOU Use"?

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by powermans, Nov 12, 2002.

  1. Thanks to all contributors who have informed me of "What Strings the Gods Use" Now,
    I am in the market for a new lot of fencing wire....as my set of Corelli are close to terminal and,as I have read ALL the reviews on the likes of NHOP/BROWN/BROMBERG/CARTER/ etc to name just a few(and thanks to all)..... I can't help thinking like ED said a little way back... Don't forget these players are being endorsed and who's to say that they don't keep a set of the rival strings in the flight case just in case they get a recording session!

    Anyway, fellow bassists who read these lines who have not yet made the grade to God Bassists, would you please enlighten ME and tell me what YOU have on YOUR basses right now and WHY?Also guage and reasons WHY...Is it for Speed/Sound or WHAT? Also what strings have you bought in the past and have been disappointed with and WHY?

    I would love to hear from EVERBODY but in particular the following:- Ed Faqua,Francois,Monte, Don Higdon,Will Davis.

    I should add that I'm only interested in Pizz as I only deal in Jazz!

    Thankyou ALL in anticipation!
  2. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Spirocore Orcherstra gauge. Why? Because nothing else gets that sound on my bass, and they speak quicker and sustain longer than any other string I've tried. All other strings I've tried don't measure up because they don't get that sound.

    Sorry I'm not Ed, Don, Monte, Will or Francois.

    Well, not really, but you know what I mean.....
  3. Well, I've tried many many strings.
    My favorites right now are Original Flexocors for the G, D and A, and a Flexocor ('92) E.
    The latter because the Original Flexocor E is too muddy for me.
    Why these strings?
    I want a warm tone, short sustain, and clean sound!

    Regular pizz strings like Spiros or Jazzers are too bright for me, and too much sustain.

    Obligatos sound nasal on my instrument.

    I've tried gut strings.
    Eudoxas were too bright and nasal. The Oliv G is superb but the D was muddy and nasal.
    But gut is very temperamental and I couldn't get used to it.

  4. olivier


    Dec 17, 1999
    Paris, France

    Because warm & deep fundamental, not too colored by overtones. And also easy bowing as well as nice sustain.

    Before that,I had:

    Velvet 360: too low tension, and bright
    Cromcore: the real fence wire...
    Helicore hybrid medium: the bow busters
    Corelli TX forte: bright, bright
    Innovation H (honey) & B (braided) see newbie link

    So right now I wonder if I get a new set of the same, or try Olive&Eudoxa, à la Monte.

    Good luck...
  5. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    Spiros. EbolaGatos at present, the longest-lasting non-Spriros that I've ever had on. Spiros next. Perhaps Weichs down the road a piece.

    The Obli's are ok. The sound is neat. Very 'dry' sounding. Not quite loud or fast enough for me. I like the sound I get when they are quite low, but they get a little too fundamental for me when I get them up to what would be the right height. The E and A are a bit snotty with the bow (the rolling thing).

    I'd really like to have Spiro solos on, but they don't pizz well at full volume. If I were recording a lot I would likely have them on. I like the sound they give me pizz and they bow great. At full pizz they lose attack and center of sound.

    Dominants sounded neat for a while but started to get really too dark after about a month, plus they were tearing my right hand apart. Bowed like a dream -- you could bow about anywhere on the neck and get a consistent sound (no stuffiness up the E and A strings). These would be my arco-only strings.

    Jargar D and G are some of the neatest bowing D and G strings I've had on, although I don't think the sound would carry too well, volume-wise. I think They'd be neat for recording and chamber stuff. E and A blowed. The ball ends are these strange little wafers that made installation a health-hazard to standers-by.

    I've hated every D'Addario string that I've ever played on anything, Slab or Bass.

    I had some Correlli's way back for a bit. Sounded great, didn't last long, and cost and arm and a leg.

    About anything else I've tried so far came off the bass a lot faster than they went on.

    Apologies for not being Ed, Francois, Monte, Don , or Will. I like sleep too much to trade in my lifestyle for CF's right now. :)
  6. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Spiro Weich. Can't bring myself to experiment because the damn things just sound and feel great to me, and they last forever.
  7. Monte


    Jan 9, 2001
    DFW Area, Tejas
    Well, although you want to know about pizz only, I can't really answer things that way because I have one bass that has to do both. I was completely satisfied with the Velvet 180 pizz sound, but arco was way too much work to get a smooth sound with those rough windings.

    I use the strings I use because they fit my bass best and make my concept of sound easiest to produce.

    Used to use Spirocores, mostly Weich although I used orchestra and solos. I loved the pizz sound of these when I was first starting out on bass. When I bought my Juzek, I just didn't think it sounded good on it. When I raised the strings where I liked them, it got a choked sound and was hard to play. When I lowered them, they were quiet and had a little more of that growly sound that isn't for me.

    Then I tried Jazzers, which had the same problems pizz although they were better with a bow. Moved on to Corelli 370 TX, but they were too thin feeling and bright for my taste, although they bowed like a dream. Tried Helicores, and really hated the lack of power of the A & E. Sounded good by itself, but tended to disappear in a bass section or rhythm section.

    One day I complained to my luthier about having difficulty getting the bass to really open up. He took a look at it and asked if I had considered gut strings. He explained how he makes violins for competitions and how he carves the top differently for gut than steel, and he thought that gut would allow the top to vibrate better under less tension. Most of what he said was over my head, but I trust him so I tried synthetic gut Velvet 360's. The difference in pizz was tremendous, and about two weeks later my bass was sounding much better. Arco was near impossible on anything fast, and it was a little bright. Then I moved on to the 180's, which I covered earlier.

    I now use the Oliv D & G and Eudoxa E & A. I love them, some people hate them. They get me closer to the Mingus/ PC sound in my head and are easy to bow. On a different bass, I might like some steel strings well enough to not spend that much for them. The bass is a huge part of the equation. Remember that Francois uses electric uprights, so he probably gets as close to the true characteristics of strings as you can, since there is not an acoustic body that resonates much.

    The other obvious part of the equation is the player. I still sound like me whether I'm on my teacher's bass with Helicore orchestra's, David K's bass with Spiros, or a bass I use here that has Obligato's. However, my set-up works well for me and makes it easy to get the sound I want. I will probably see how I like a full set of Eudoxa's eventually, since that is cheaper than a mixed set.

  8. Buddy Lee

    Buddy Lee

    May 5, 2002
    At first I have to say that I only play little pizz and mostly slap.
    I have a set of Corelli 390TX tuned down to orchestra pitch on my bass.
    I once tried Jargar Dolce, because it was recommended to me for Rockabilly, but I didn't like the tone at all. Too dark and dead sounding.
    I really like the tone of the Corellis. Quite bright, lots of definition and neither too short- nor too long-sustained.
    I must admit that due to the low tension I have a hard time of getting some volume out of them without causing unwanted fingerboard noise when playing pizz.
    But I really love the Corellis' tone and tuned down to orchestra pitch they're quite easy to slap (for a steel string).
  9. sean p

    sean p

    Mar 7, 2002
    eugene, oregon
    currently using obligato a,d,g, jazzer e. the obli's sound smooth enough bowed and punchy enough pizz (with nice sustain for more lyrical playing) to satisfy both sides of my brain.

    i don't like the way the a rolls - bothers me most when my finger comes off the d string and lands on it. i anticipated the roll of the obli e thanks to web chatter so got the jazzer, which sounds like a spiro, is guaged like a spiro, is tense like a combination of orch/weich, and bows more like an orch.

    i play pizz primarily. bowed stuff is for practice and personal satisfaction.

    good luck!

    sean p
  10. I played an Engelhardt with Spirocores for at least a decade (the past five years with the same set -- they were just starting to sound good!).

    When I got my Christopher hybrid, I had a set of Obligatos installed immediately to replace the factory strings (which weren't bad). This decision was based mostly on favorable comments I read here, and a price that was quite attractive.

    I love the sound -- warm warm warm and deep deep deep.

    My only complaint is the inherent flabbiness of the E-string. I've compensated my technique, but I wouldn't mind a little more punch. Maybe I'll try a jazzer E.
  11. Don Higdon

    Don Higdon In Memoriam

    Dec 11, 1999
    Princeton Junction, NJ
    For me, they are the only string which perform well both pizz and arco.
    I am selling off my basses. I had 7, and in a few days I'll be down to 2 - My American Standard (serial no. 87; that's old, folks) and my dream Transylvanian, pictured on the left, which I'm now using for both orchestra and jazz.
    When I carried one jazz bass (my DeLeone) and one orchestra bass (the Trannie), I used Spirocores and Original Flexocors. I have weichs on Old 87.
    In my drawer are:
    Flexocor (not Original Flexocor)
    Spirocore Orch
    Spirocore Weich
    Spirocoe Solo
    D'Addario Helicore Pizz
    D'Addario Helicore Arco
    Some Jargar E's

    And I'm nowhere near as sick as Francois.

    Love the sound of bowed Eudoxa and Oliv, can't stand retuning all night.
    Going up against horns, give me Spirocores.
    For huge projection in an orchestra section, Original Flexocors.
    For 18th century and earlier, Oliv or Eudoxa.
    The one string that comes closest to doing it all is Obligato. They don't last long enough, but life is not perfect.
  12. First off,THANKS to the 11 replies ALREADY ...Only posted this Thread less than 24 hours ago. I really got some GREAT info from all you guys and, have made notes from each reply received.
    Also PLEASE don't take the comment regarding MY picking out CERTAIN members for THEIR replies.
    I simply found that when I,ve laid down a thread these particular guys reply with GOOD info...ie:- they know what their talking about! however I 'll have to extend the list next time with ALL these great replies.

    OK, Chris & Mike "Spirocores" Yes, nearly bought a set the other week never used them before but @$385.00 Set AUSSIE a possibility!

    francois :- (The String God) You say "Original Flexocors" Don't know a lot about them but......they appear to be the one for you and I am also glad you gave me YOUR views on "Gut Strings"
    as I can get a set of GUT at the moment here in Brisse ...the only thing is they want $725.00 Aussie.They would want to GOODDDDDDDD! for those bucks!
    To Buddy Lee , YES I have ALSO enjoyed the Corelli's now for the past 3 years and.... I must say, at a pinch I could put another set on and go for another 3 years...however , I just feel I want to try something a bit different.

    And to Oliver , Ray , Ed, Sean, Mike and Don.It would appear that the consensus of opinion would have it that you either all work for Obligato or have shares in the company.Or is it (Ebola-gatos) as Ray said.
    I note all of you Obligato-essssss say they really hang on / with a WARM / DEEP sound. Well I'm after a SUSTAIN with a WARM DEEP sound so just maybe ... these are the strings I'm after. ARE THERE DIFFERENT GUAGES / MODELS within the range of Obligatos?( sorry I don't know ANY info on these strings)
    I note that NO ONE here in Aussie land have these strings.... Does someone have a GOOD contact ie:- web site for these strings ...better still is there a recommended retail outlet you may know of who would send me a set "Down Under"???? would appreciate any info on this !

    Lastly, I know it's ONLY 24 hours since I started this thread however, NO ONE has mentioned "La BELLA.... ME being a BIG Bromberg fan I hear he had La Bellas on for his "WOOD" album.... You talk about sustain and warm sound....well

  13. To Marcus & Monte,
    I just received your replies and note that you both seem to support Spiro Weich...
    Good logic Monte.. you make some good comments.
    I was wondering from BOTH of you ...Marcus you say the weich sound great and last forever.... sounds like my kind of string given the prices here in Aussie land. Marcus do you use Orchestra or Solos and is there much of a difference??? Monte you might like to give your two cents worth on this also....
    Thanks Lads,
  14. Don Higdon

    Don Higdon In Memoriam

    Dec 11, 1999
    Princeton Junction, NJ
    The worst basis for reaching any conclusion about bass sound is what you hear on a recording. It is a totally unnatural environment. The best sound from a bass is about 20 feet out front; in a studio, you're in a little cubicle with barely enough space left over to fart. After that limitation, the sound is almost solely at the whim of the engineer.
    There are countless stories about great basses that recorded terribly (Ray Brown, Michael Moore among many) and mediocre basses that recorded beautifully (Ray Brown, Michael Moore among many).
    As for LaBella, the story is the same as for any other string. It has its endorsers. Harvie Swartz (now Harvie S) uses them on his Kay, and they sound good, but you're not going to swoon as if you were hearing Paul Chambers live (as I have, dozens of times - one advantage of being as old as I am). Friday, I sat in on a name Japanese player's bass fitted with LaBella, found them a big nothing. Someone else's experience may be totally different. I wouldn't buy them, but I wouldn't tell anyone NOT to buy them, either. I talked with Harvie at length, and he swears by them.
  15. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY

    All too true. However, the right sound engineer with the right mic and the correct placement will be able to record a nice round, warm, RICH sound on same with plenty of sustain. In my opinion, it's all in the mic placement. :)
  16. Original Flexocors are basically an orchestral string. If you want sustain, forget them.
    But on my EUB, I get the right amount of everything, for my taste...
    LaBella makes several models; cheap steel, gut and a couple of pro models.
    One is the 7720 set used by Bromberg (available in medium and light gauges), and the other the 7710 set (black-nylon on steel rope-core), used by Ron Carter, Buster Williams, Mads Vinding and Harvie S on his Merchant EUB.
  17. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    I've never used Orchestras or Solos on this particular bass, just the Weich (soft) set. But it brings up a mantra that appears here often: your mileage may vary! That is, what sounds good on my bass might sound like junk on another, although Spiros sound at least decent on almost any bass, IMHO. They're forgiving from a players standpoint, with good growl and lots of sustain. They're pretty scratchy at first for arco, so I usually change them only when I know I don't have any orchestra gigs coming up, and keep a set of "dead" ones to switch to just in case.
  18. I'm using Spiro Weichs. I tried regular Orchs. for a week but they put too much pressure on my bass which has a negative effect on the sound.
  19. Greetings from the Dominion of the Great White North to Dominion of Oz.....
    I may as well weigh in here on the fence wire too....

    My choice for pizz on my King is Oliv's on the G and D with Spirocore Weichs on the A and E.

    If you are looking for a nice big sound this combination should do it...the gut/steel combination matches quite well.
    Many jazz players like the Weichs all across as a good all round string. That may be your safest bet though. I hate the tinny sounding G on the Weichs ...others are OK with that. I have played the Oliv's outside in the late summer cool nights, the damp and the the heat for over a year and they still sound great. I like the gut sound enough to put up with the minor inconvenience of re-tuning occasionally.

    I would suggest you contact Chris Quinn
    at Quinn Violins or Lemur Music in California. I'm sure they will ship you whatever strings you want.
    I know how you fel about the cost down under. The exchange rate for the Canadian buck is brutal right now plus we have to pay import duties and tax when it gets here. That means two Oliv's cost me about 200 Canadian dollars...the two Weichs I buy from Toronto and they cost me about 100 bucks.
    It looks like you won't be able to afford to experiment much, so good luck with your decision.

    Martin C.
  20. As you can see, I live in The Land Of The Long White Cloud. I've just recently imported a set of Velvet Garbos from Lemur Music in USA, as no-one in New Zealand was dealing in gut strings. The buy price was $255US. When I picked them up from customs, with the exchange rate, postage, and GST (our local goods and services tax...12.5%), they ended up costing me $644NZ. OUCH! But I do not regret it, Lemur's service was very fast and efficient, and they are WAY better than the Helicores I took off my bass, and the La Bellas and Spirocores in my drawer. In My Opinion. I'm a freelancer, and play in jazz, country, blues and rockabilly bands, so I never play arco. I do though, absolutely lurv the tone and bounce of Paul Chambers, and these strings are getting me much closer to that benchmark.

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