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Flatwounds...whaddaya like?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by LGOberean, Apr 2, 2021.

  1. teleforumnoob

    teleforumnoob Friend of Leo's

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    I wouldn't worry about that. With that kind of use the wound strings should last several years. The unwound strings will last as long unwound strings normally last.
     
  2. Harry Styron

    Harry Styron Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Charlton Johnson, who succeeded Freddie Green in the Basie Orchestra, recommends round-wounds on acoustic archtops for playing rhythm guitar in a band, "The strings should also be roundwound as opposed to flatwound, halfwound, etc. Roundwound strings have a brighter sound, which gives them more volume and cutting power. For string alloy choices, I recommend sets that are either phosphor bronze, 85/15 bronze or 80/20 bronze, depending on your particular guitar." Swing & Big Band Guitar, Hal Leonard, 1998, page 18.

    Since you're a solo act, you can do as you please.
     
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  3. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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  4. E5RSY

    E5RSY Doctor of Teleocity

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    N.B.: One thing to keep in mind is that flatwounds are typically (sometimes significantly) higher in tension than roundwounds of a similar gauge. May want to drop down a gauge, or two, from what you're used to. Don't want to pull that beautiful old Harmony apart.
     
  5. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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  6. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    I've noticed comments distinguishing between flats on electric vs. acoustic. And it's the kind of input I needed but wasn't thinking about. I'll comment more later, but my wife's just home from work, and wants to go out to eat.

    Before I leave for lunch, just to give y'all an idea of what I'm dealing with. I made this video shortly after I got the guitar. None of my videos are anything fancy: I just set up my cell phone across the living room from me and play. So what you'll hear in this video is cell phone quality sound in the room. But it will give an idea of what the guitar sounds like with round wounds on it.

     
  7. bgmacaw

    bgmacaw Poster Extraordinaire

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    I use the Chrome 13's on my Danelectro Baritone. I had 11's on a Squier Standard Strat I had setup for open C slide for a while.
     
  8. PhoenixBill

    PhoenixBill Tele-Meister

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    Never put flat wounds on an acoustic archtop! There will be a disturbance in the Force. The beams will be crossed. Cats and dogs will live together.

    Now, seriously? Lots of folks put flats on arch tops. Some of the rockabilly guys believe flats and Gretsches belong together. I have two arch tops here myself, both with Chromes. I have also even thrown them on an Ovation flat top acoustic.

    If you like the way it feels and sounds, go for it!
     
  9. bsman

    bsman Friend of Leo's

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    I've found that using Monel or Silk & Steel strings on my acoustics cuts way down on the string noise while also allowing me to use my familiar gauges. I've been tempted to check out flatwounds, but they're just too expensive...
     
  10. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Poster Extraordinaire

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    Now that you mention it, I am not sure if I have ever seen flatwound acoustic guitar strings.
     
  11. ndcaster

    ndcaster Doctor of Teleocity

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    TI 11's

    last forever, stay in tune, nice thwap

    wait ... on an acoustic?

    if your git there is ladder-braced, try some Savarez Argentines, see what happens
     
  12. DekeDog

    DekeDog Tele-Afflicted

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    I can't comment on flat wounds on an acoustic, either, but I use T-I Jazz Swing flats on all of my electrics, 12s on my hollow bodies. Compared to most flats, esp. D'Addario Chromes, T-Is generally have slightly lower gauges in the bass strings with lower overall tension, and they are more flexible and brighter than their competitive brands. I've had them on several guitars for over a year with no immediate plans to change them anytime soon. Mine ran me around $25 a set from Just Strings, and you can buy individual strings from JS if they're in stock.
     
  13. Flip G

    Flip G Tele-Meister

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    I found the receipts. The strings I bought to get the gauges I wanted on my 12 string were ...[​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  14. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    Okay, back from lunch. The discussion here has jogged my memory somewhat. It's still a fuzzy memory from more than a half a century ago, but I'm remembering some aspects I'd forgotten or had confused in my memory.

    The guitar of Dad's that had flatwounds on it was not his Harmony acoustic archtop. It was on a Stella by Harmony that he had a slide for, with a DeArmond soundhole pickup in (the one with the sunken pole for the B string). I don't have a pic of Dad's, but here's a pic of one similarly set up that I stole from the Interwebs...

    upload_2021-4-2_13-39-13.png

    Dad had that guitar from 1961 to 1963. I know the years because of the pickguard and where we were living at the time. The first year the H929 Stella by Harmony had that white pickguard on it was 1961. And we were living in San Juan, Puerto Rico at the time. When we came back to Texas in 1963, I don't think that guitar came back with us. Neither my guitar-playing younger brother nor myself remember that guitar after the Puerto Rico years.

    But I digress. I'm pretty sure that my experience playing flatwounds was on that guitar. And if Dad was using it for slide and amplified, that string choice makes sense. I did what I now call "plunkin' around" on that Stella, including playing around with the slide, but didn't really know how to play guitar, much less slide. I took up guitar playing in earnest in 1967, on Dad's archtop. So I think I conflated two childhood guitar memories.

    Oh, and pics, because it did happen :twisted:...here I am playing Dad's Harmony H1213 Archtone...

    upload_2021-4-2_14-3-50.png
     
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  15. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Like lots of us have said, Chromes are great, especially since they are reasonably priced,
    For your application, they may be best.
    Thomastik/Infelds feel great, and cost a lot.
    I like em', too.
     
  16. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    "Halfwounds." Flat top, round bottom. The John Goodman of strings...?

    [​IMG]
     
  17. El Tele Lobo

    El Tele Lobo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Honestly, Larry...I think that guitar sounds great as is.
     
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  18. loopfinding

    loopfinding Friend of Leo's

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    Pyramid gold, then thomastik js112 (and you can find the thomastik for 20 if you put in the search effort). But I agree that on an acoustic you should probably be looking for phosphor bronze roundwounds.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2021
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  19. Skydog1010

    Skydog1010 Tele-Afflicted Gold Supporter

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    running half rounds d'addario 12's on a '57 strat with Texas special hot pups and jumbo frets on a single piece maple neck, sorry i'm no help with that beautiful arch top harmony acoustic.

    kinda expensive strings to play trial and error with, wish i could help. good luck finding the correct strings for your style.

    i'd love to get a photo of me playing my strat with my dog beside me. awesome photo!
     
  20. JuneauMike

    JuneauMike Poster Extraordinaire

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    I used flatwounds before and they were pricy and sounded kinda flat right out of the pack, definitely a chunking jazzy kinda sound. I haven't used half-rounds before but those sound intriguing.

    I think I'm going to get some flatwounds for a 12 string electric but yeah they may deaden up an acoustic instrument too much. They were great for slide though, as I recall, if you could add lots of volume to the party.
     
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