Which Strings are taper wound??

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Mario Lewis, Apr 15, 2002.

  1. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    I'm looking to replace the strings on my Smith 6, and the bass came with a set of Smith Taper Wound (BEAD) and I love the way the action is as a result of the strings.

    When I first played the bass, it had what I think to be a set of GHS Contact Core (BEAD) strings, only the G and C strings were not tapered at the bridge.

    I'm thinking about trying some Labella's or some Dean Markley SR 2000. The Labella's are exposed down to the CORE!! And on all 6 strings, even the G and C string are exposed core as compared to the Smith and GHS sets that are only tapered on the B,E,A, & D strings. I don't know about the Dean Markley's? Does anyone out there know? I don't care for the Smith version of tapered strings, they are only exposed 1 layer of windings as opposed to the inner most winding like the LaBella's

  2. rsautrey

    rsautrey Banned

    Jul 27, 2000
    Dean Markley SR2000 are taperwound on the B E A and D strings only, not exposed core like the Labella Super Steps.
  3. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    I appreciate that. I was afraid of that. I'm going to go with the Labellas.
  4. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    Imagine a once fierce dog scurrying into a hole in the ground with it's tail tucked.... That's me right about now.....

    However, I will say that when I first played the bass, it has GHS contact core strings on it. the BEAD strings were exposed to the core, the G & C strings were normal. As compared to your brand of Taper Wound strings, the action was lower. Enough that I notice a difference. Now, could I lower the saddles with your brand of strings? Probably. But my experience with fiddling with things that ain't broke is that when I finish, it's broke. I'm not saying that your brand of strings are not good.. They play fine, but they are not the brand or type that I thought I was getting when I asked for them. So I'm not 10 out of 10 satisfied. Just a strong 8.5 to 9. The Labellas are all exposed to the core on all 6, and I have used them on a loaner Fodera. Loved them. They are not available here in a 6 string set. So I'm going to be ordering them off the web. Neither are yours available in Hawaii, so if I want some of them again, I'm still going to be ordering them. In either case, if it doesn't work out for me, then I'll come back to Smith strings, but with all due respect, the Smith strings aren't what I first fell in love with on the instrument. ANd they aren't quite what I thought I'd get when I asked for them. So I'm looking for that feel and action that it had and that I fell in love with when I first tried the instrument in the store. Which led me to plop down the cash to buy it in the first pace.
  5. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    Mr. Smith, it as truly a pleasure to have your contributions on this board. Thank you. And you make some REALLY GREAT instruments.

    I'll keep the info in mind with regard to the overtones that I might hear and the fact that the nut and bridge are cut for your strings when I try other brands.

    I'd also be interested to know the situation on the Rotosound patent issue as well as your decision to reissue such types of "Barecore" strings.

    Thanks again.
  6. Mario Lewis

    Mario Lewis

    Jul 6, 2001
    Clinton, MD
    Just wanted to let you all know how it went.

    I got a set of LaBella Super Steps Standard

    1st C .029
    2nd G .045
    3rd D .065
    4th A .085
    5th E .105
    6th B .128

    All of the strings except the C are exposed to the core or innermost piece of wire that runs the length of the string, so they come over the saddles really low and IN MY OPINION, allow for lower action.

    The Bass is a Ken Smith BSR6-MW that I had strung with Ken Smith Taper Cores. The Smith strings played GREAT. A little rougher on the fingers than I prefer, but after a set or two of live playing and hating that finger dragging noise over the strings, you learn to compensate for it. But don't get me wrong the Smith strings sounded good and I'd buy them again.

    But as I think I alluded to earlier, I tried a Fodera that was strung with the Labella Super steps and the action was more butter than I had ever experienced, and in my unscientific mind, I figured the exposed core (instead of Taper Core that the smiths have) allowed this. (As well as the superior construction, flat enough neck, and other things that make a good bass great!)

    I'd also like to add that I played a friends bass that has really great, low action and he's using Elixirs that are not tapered or anything. He's a tweaker, and he plays an MTD. He's tweaked that bridge and the saddles to the extent that it is really silky!! I don't want to get into that. That's why the LaBella's appealed to me. And this is also not to say that with some saddle adjustments, the Smith Strings wouldn't have played as good.

    Anywho...... I digress.

    I put the Labella's on and I like them better. I like the feel, they are smoother on the outside, the action is even lower, and that makes sense. The sound is A LOT more zingier (is that a word) I'm sure that is becaue they are brand spanking new, but the Smiths were never this zingy when they were new. The Smith's had a warmer smoother sound. Still had the bite and the bright crisp top end, but not the Zing that the Labella's have. The Smith's might have some Nickel in them or something. Not sure.

    But the end of the saga is that with the bass set up for the most optimum action that BassNW could give it with the Smith Taper Core strings, the Labella's work better, and I'm able to have a lighter touch on the instrument. I suspected this would be the case because there were a set of GHS contact core stainless steels on the bass when I tried it out in the store. BassNW didn't have any in stock, and that' show I wound up with the Smith's in the first place.

    Thanks for all the feedback, and especially yours Mr. Smith. You still make the baddest damn basses around in my opinion.