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Thread: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

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    Spacevodkapukeologist Aceman's Avatar
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    Default Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    So...I have a 4 string I tune to Eb (Down 1/2 step)

    I have a couple of 5 string string sets....EB regular Slinky - 45, 65, 80, 100, 130

    What strings would you use for an Eb tuning? Might occasionally tune down to drop D or even a low C#.

    Which four of the five would you use?
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    130 is too big for Eb, IMO. But I understand if 100 is too small for D and C#. Somewhere around 45/65/85/110 is my preference, in other words Hybrid Slinky with a 110 "E".
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    Does such a thing exist???
    Quote Originally Posted by Rik Emmett
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    Unfortunately it's buying another E string. Sucks. Thankfully I change bass strings once every two years or so.

    Of course www.stringjoy.com exists now, haven't tried it yet.
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    What are you looking for out of the strings? Are you going to do a lot of work on the 1 and 2 like Billy Sheehan or Steve Harris? If so, you might want the 45 and 65 for those.

    For the 3rd, that could easily go 80 or 100, depending on what you're doing on the 1 and 2, and how/if you integrate the 3rd into that.

    For the 4th, for maximum flexibility, I'd say the 130 but tune it only to the lowest open note you will go to, and then transpose for the song in question. When you need that open C#, it's there. WHen you don't, move up the neck. Chords and scalar patterns might involve a bit more stretching, however.

    As an added bonus, you (and you alone) would have the option of dropping to a lower D while everyone else is in standard, so you can really fatten things up, or do the intro to Judas Priest's 'Love Bites' accurately.
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    Dunlop makes a 50-110 set that would work for Eb-D standard. Anything lower and I'd go with a 55-115 set.
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    I like 45-105 in Eb. IMO 130 is waaaaay too heavy.
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    The c# only gets used for Def Leppard. And usually not this bass, and not me.

    I don't like the 130 string. I'm a guitar player - this is my bass in Eb. Actually have another tuned to E that I would more likely tune down....

    Yeah - regular set on this me thinks.
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    I saw a thing recently with Bryan Beller where he did exactly what you mentioned. The only thing is he tuned down to C (which makes sense) and I'm guessing a nut filing is in order.

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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    Quote Originally Posted by toowrongfoo View Post
    I saw a thing recently with Bryan Beller where he did exactly what you mentioned. The only thing is he tuned down to C (which makes sense) and I'm guessing a nut filing is in order.
    And that's why I wouldn't recommend doing it with Eb. C standard is a half step up from B, which is fine and for Dethklok, Beller does want a bit more tension on the strings, but Eb would be way too much tension on the strings. If the strings don't snap, there's a high likelihood of damaging the neck.
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    For a bass in Eb 95% of the time regular or hybrid will be great.
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny the Kid View Post
    And that's why I wouldn't recommend doing it with Eb. C standard is a half step up from B, which is fine and for Dethklok, Beller does want a bit more tension on the strings, but Eb would be way too much tension on the strings. If the strings don't snap, there's a high likelihood of damaging the neck.

    That would be my thought, but everyone is different. Again, me thinks a nut widening would be in order IF someone was to do it, and that is a no-no to me. Mostly because if you didn't like it, then you are in need of a new nut.

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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    Quote Originally Posted by toowrongfoo View Post
    That would be my thought, but everyone is different.
    This isn't just ever one being different. This is physics. At some point a string becomes too thick to feasibly use in a particular situation. I read a review a while ago on some DR 13-65's and the guy complained because he said that they snapped when he was trying to tune to standard. They aren't made for standard. Same with a 125 tuned to Eb. It's just too high for that string to handle the tension without snapping.
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny the Kid View Post
    This isn't just ever one being different. This is physics. At some point a string becomes too thick to feasibly use in a particular situation. I read a review a while ago on some DR 13-65's and the guy complained because he said that they snapped when he was trying to tune to standard. They aren't made for standard. Same with a 125 tuned to Eb. It's just too high for that string to handle the tension without snapping.
    That's also why B-A 8 string guitars tend to have fanned-frets as a regular .007 string that you'd use for the high A tends to be very prone to breakage on 25.5" scale. The solution is to use a special high-tension string (which costs more than the rest of the set on its own) or shorten the scale of the high A to around 24" (or slightly less).
    Quote Originally Posted by crusty philtrum View Post
    And that's probably because most people with electric guitars seem more interested in their own performance rather than the effect on the listener ... in fact i don't think many people who own electric guitars even give a poop about the effect on a listener. Which is why many people play electric guitars but very very few of them are actually musicians.

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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    Quote Originally Posted by dystrust View Post
    That's also why B-A 8 string guitars tend to have fanned-frets as a regular .007 string that you'd use for the high A tends to be very prone to breakage on 25.5" scale. The solution is to use a special high-tension string (which costs more than the rest of the set on its own) or shorten the scale of the high A to around 24" (or slightly less).
    It's the argument of multiple scale lengths in general.
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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    I dunno though. Whoever that company is that used to be "circle k" strings has the CRAZIEST heavy gauges. People actually use them.

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    Default Re: Another String question... 5 string set on a 4 string?

    Quote Originally Posted by toowrongfoo View Post
    I dunno though. Whoever that company is that used to be "circle k" strings has the CRAZIEST heavy gauges. People actually use them.
    They don't use them for standard tuning though. I know Nolly from Periphery uses them. His tunings are as follows: accompanying the Drop C six string material GCGCF, accompanying the six string weird Drop A tuning AGCF, for seven string stuff he plays a 5 string tuned AbEbAbDbGb, and he plays a six string bass for the 8 string stuff tuned F#BEADG. These are pretty low tunings and although the multi scale basses helps, it doesn't make enough of a different to be able to use standard strings, especially that F#. But Kalium strings go up to 254. Tuning one of those to standard would result in a low E with a tension of around 262 pounds, which would absolutely destroy the bass's neck when paired with the other strings, if the string didn't break first. Even tuning to Eb, D, or even C# would not result in a loss of over 200lbs of tension on the string (ideally bass strings should exert around 50lbs tension). While not as extreme, a 130 would be in a similar situation of too much tension and it would likely snap as a result.
    Last edited by Johnny the Kid; 05-30-2017 at 02:39 AM.
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