Heavy bottom, light top strings can twist the neck: True or False?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by WilburBufferson, Sep 18, 2019.

  1. WilburBufferson

    WilburBufferson Tele-Afflicted

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    My tech recommended against a hybrid set for this reason, because the greater string tension on the bass side could have negative consequences. I'm talking something like 10 on the top, and 52 on the bottom.

    I play rhythm and lead in my band and tend to have a heavier attack: I am finding that the low E and A strings buzz and I can hear it through the amp. I usually play regular 10s, but have moved up to D'Addario 10.5 to 48 to solve the problem, but still hear the buzz, and the action isn't ridiculously low. Is there any truth to my tech's statement, or any other special considerations I should take if I go 10-52?
     
  2. NewKid

    NewKid Tele-Meister

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    My low E is a 48 on my set of 10s. So your tech thinks going from 48 to 52 may twist your neck?

    What guitar are we talking about? That difference doesn’t seem significant to me if you have a standard Tele. If it was any other guitar I wouldn’t even care if the neck twisted.

    Maybe get your frets leveled or raise the action if the buzz bothers you?
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2019
  3. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Been using a 9-46 set for years on every guitar with no problems.
    String gauges are pretty arbitrary.
    You guitar doesn't know what they're supposed top be, and will not revolt if they don't conform.
    Your "tech" is a doofus.
     
  4. WilburBufferson

    WilburBufferson Tele-Afflicted

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    One is a 72 Tele deluxe (with the strat hardtail bridge) and the other is the USA Meteora (with the conventional 3 barrel tele ashtray bridge). Frets are levelled, so that isn't the issue.
     
  5. Verne Bunsen

    Verne Bunsen Tele-Afflicted

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    I’ve been using 10-50 and 10-52 sets for a very long time and have had no such issues. I would file this under “rumors and lies”.
     
  6. Pechorin

    Pechorin TDPRI Member

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    I used the light top/heavy bottom Dean Markley set (the old red pack) on all manner of Telecasters and Strats for many years without experiencing any problem.
     
  7. tubelectron

    tubelectron Tele-Meister

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    Hi @WilburBufferson,

    All my electrics have 10-52 DM or EB Lt Top Hvy Btm.
    My short scales electrics have 11-54 EB Beefy Slinky.
    My acoustic archtop have 12-24 Cleartone Phosphor-Bronze.

    My usual action is : 1.75mm Hi E and 2.00mm Lo E at the 12th fret (Metric Stewmac Action Gauge) with neck relief of 0.2-0.3mm at the 8th box (checked with a notched rule)

    No warp nowhere, never.

    I rather suggest that your guitar may have a setup in need to be readjusted... o_O

    But it's me, OK ? :D

    -tbln
     
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  8. rangercaster

    rangercaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    Ridiculous !!! In my decades of experience, never have I heard a similar claim ... Get a new tech ....
     
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  9. Flaneur

    Flaneur Friend of Leo's

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    If you were playing punk, using 8-54s, on a cheapo toothpick neck, in a really humid environment, your tech would still be wrong, I reckon. Does he have any personal experience of the phenomenon suggested?
     
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  10. mexicanyella

    mexicanyella Tele-Holic

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    I used GHS nickel 10-52 sets on a Lotus Tele copy back in college and never had neck or setup issues.

    Why not try a set of .011s? If you can bend and riff on a 10-52 set, you’ll adjust easily, and the .050ish top string can take a heavy pick hand with correct setup.

    The junker I play woke up, tonally speaking, when I switched up to .011s... the higher strings sounded rounder and beefier after the switch and that was a step in the right direction. I had no trouble with string tension, going from .010 to .011.
     
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  11. joealso

    joealso Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    All above is correct. This myth is busted.
     
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  12. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    D'Addario has a "String Tension 101" page on their website to understand the tensions on each string. This might give you some idea of what kind of differences occur from your high E to low E strings. On their chart, you wil notice that on a normal set, the highest tension is on the A and D strings which does not twist necks. Plus you will notice the string tension does not vary more than about 2 lbs across the 6 strings. Which is something like only a 15% variance.

    Anyway, I am not a luthier, so it will be interesting to see what people say about this.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2019
  13. ReverendRevolver

    ReverendRevolver Tele-Holic

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    I've used 9-46 for years. Like close to 15 years.
    I've only recently started using 10-48, but that's an odd electric gage... but SUPER common for acoustic for ages. You know how all acoustics have twisted necks? Me neither.

    Experiment until you find what feels and sounds right. You would need widely offcenter truss rod and excessive force opposite to "twist" and youd need an even less plausible setup to spiral your neck. Like, you may not succeed at anything other than just bowing it if you set out trying to twist it. Bolt on necks aren't indestructible, but strings on a 6 string in standard tuning exert less force than most outside variables. I have heard of 12 string acoustics being safer if tuned down for storage; neck and body bracing issues are cited.

    I wouldn't worry about string gage of "hybrid" sets, theyve been used for decades by various people.
     
  14. rze99

    rze99 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Idiotic.
     
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  15. Kezzell

    Kezzell TDPRI Member Ad Free Member

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    i ran those strings for years on an Epiphone Les Paul Classic with a maple neck. No issues what so ever.
     
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  16. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Meister

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    The only occurrence I would be reluctant to use an unbalanced set of strings would be if the neck is already twisted a bit, but still playable: in this case you definitely do not want to stress it more.
    And in this case it would still depend on the direction of the twist, because the unbalanced set of strings could be precisely what you want to counteract the twist.
     
  17. Skydog1010

    Skydog1010 Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

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    Get a different tech or upgrade your neck. I play 11-13-17-30-42-52 almost always. Where exactly did you find this tech?
     
  18. Skydog1010

    Skydog1010 Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

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    I disagree, this is not a function or malady from the strings.
     
  19. Skydog1010

    Skydog1010 Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

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    Or start 12,14,22, 30, 42, 52, OP needs a new luthier or learn how to work on his own guitars.
     
  20. Frontier9

    Frontier9 Friend of Leo's

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    I agree that there won't be a problem with warping, but I wonder if putting strings with more mass on your guitar will solve your string buzz issue...?
     
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