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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Lone_Poor_Boy, Oct 13, 2021.
Un-block the trem. It may add the bit of sponginess you seek.
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I'm with you, I don't have joint issues (not yet, touch wood!) and for the most part I like the way a guitar feels with 11s, especially the more I play with my fingers. I never really bend more than a whole step so it's not like I'm really working anything out.
I got a Squier Bullet Tele with 9's last year and instead of immediately cutting them off like I always have, I gave them a chance for a week. Then I restrung all of my other guitars with 9's.
Thanks to everyone. Great feedback and I now have a whole new frontier in front of me; experimenting with different string gauges on my main, and a few others.
That's learned wisdom. Well done.
This is exactly what I didn't do with my first Blues Junior. I read all the blah blah about changing speakers and tubes and I reflexively did it. And that is 100% on me. I should have given them a chance first, if only to learn, and train my ear.
Everyone is different but I use D’Addario 10s. With my now aching hands due to work issues im thinking about 9s
Arthritis forced me to drop from years of playing 11s down to 10s and that has helped a lot. It really is a case of what works best for you.
Best of luck with it.
I’m in the group that strings my guitars by the scale length. My Gretsch 6120, Gibson es 125 and Jaguar all have TI 10s on them. My Teles and Strat have 9.5 sets on them. I went to 9.5 a couple of years ago.
I would suggest checking your set up before changing string gauge. What you've described here is something that I would try flattening out the neck to almost no relief by tightening the truss rod. It makes bending around the middle of the fretboard so much easier and easily makes as much difference as changing string gauge, depending on how much relief you have in the neck currently.
10s on Gibsons. 11s on Fenders. I tend to pull sharp on Fenders with anything lighter.
.008-.038 on my tele. Sounds great, plays so easily.
No sense in feeling you're fighting the guitar... So use whatever strings work for you.
Thicker strings will sound different, maybe even better?
But usually a tweeak of an amps settings will compensate there.
I know it's a technique thing but, whilst needing the lighter (9s) treble strings I will invariably make the bass strings in a set of 9s sharp when fretting them.
Bad enough on 9.5" Strat and Tele but a nightmare on a Tele with vintage frets and 7 25" rad.
So, hybrids are ideal for me on Fenders, preferring Rotos or Slinkys in their foil wrappers.
Gibsons I do use 10s and recently dropped down from 12d to 11s on a G&L used for slide guitar.
Why do you want to struggle? Seriously, the 9s play like butter and you struggle with 10s. What are trying to accomplish by making it harder on yourself?
Nothing. The only reason to go heavy is to down-tune. Light top heavy bottom for drop D. Heavier for metal tunings.
I have 8-38s on all my guitars.
I used 10's on my electrics for decades and liked em fine, but a friend of mine who was once a pro rocker and toured the world for decades with some very famous people said "man... you really need to go to 9's if you wanna play XYZ" Literally just a year ago I decided to try his suggestion. Today I have boxes of 9's
9’s on all my Fender electrics.
10’s on the Gibson-scale stuff and my G&L, which doesn’t like 9’s even though it is Fender scale.
I used to use significantly heavier strings—up to 12’s on everything, occasionally 13’s.
I can’t quantify it, it just works.
No extra points in playing heavier strings and how much extra 'tone' you get is more how does the guage match your picking and bending style, and how much attack you like. I like 10s so I can dig in a bit and I'm a little heavy handed, but it's all preference. But I like to put 10s on my short scales too so they have a slinky feel and it makes me play a little less twangy on those.
Try the 9s! Lots of pro players prefer them.
I have arthritis in the middle and ring fingers of my fretting hand.
Down sized to D’adarrio NYXL .008-.038 and after a bit of a warm up I’m good to go.
Never A - B them but I don’t hear too much of a difference that EQ settings won’t fix.
B.B. King / James Burton were onto something…