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OEM Strings on original Esquire/Broadcaster

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by jfgesquire, Nov 30, 2020.

  1. jfgesquire

    jfgesquire Tele-Afflicted

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    More "research", lol, in case there are any technical geeks out there like me that want to know more useless information....

    I acquired a reproduction 1950 Fender catalog which lists only the Esquire guitar and Mapes strings.

    The Electric Spanish Guitar strings are Mapes Set No. 1100, with Anaconda ball ends (referring to Anaconda American Brass); probably monel alloy round wound, wound 3rd, over hex core, ground and polished, and probably 13-55 gauges.

    Going to have to get me some half rounds or brite wires! I don't think the Martin Monel strings are hex core and they certainly aren't "ground and polished".

    EDIT : The Mapes sets offered a plain 3rd option according to this catalog!

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  2. ThermionicScott

    ThermionicScott Poster Extraordinaire

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    Funny how people worry about putting too much stress on the neck if they gauge up a little, but Fender shipped them all with 0.013s back in the day!

    There are a couple Fender catalogs from the 1950s and 1960s on archive.org. Between them, you can put together that the #10 "Electric Spanish Guitar" set ran 13-17-28-34-46-55. I'd probably just get a set of D'Addario EPN22 (pure nickel 13-56) and call it a day. Big strings and low action is a fun feel. :cool:
     
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  3. notroHnhoJ

    notroHnhoJ Tele-Meister

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    Just for fun, I’ve been running that Martin/Monel set on my tele’ from time to time. I do the “banjo string” trick and drop the low E, and swap everything else up one string. It may not be ground and polished but its pretty damn fun, those strings sound great and kind of last forever! If I’m not mistaken GHS Burnished Flats might be this exact old school thing, and I’ll bet they have a set with a wound G.
    Hey thanks jfgesquire for scrounging this up, its pretty damn cool!
     
  4. notroHnhoJ

    notroHnhoJ Tele-Meister

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    Huh. Looking at that list, it sure looks like you could opt for a plain G string for ones “electric spanish.”
     
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  5. jfgesquire

    jfgesquire Tele-Afflicted

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    I believe GHS' roots are tied to the manufacturer of early Fender strings, aka Squier. By 1957 Fender Spanish Guitar strings became pure nickel, not alloy, although still ground and polished. I think GHS was founded by employees previously making Fender strings at Squier during the whole CBS/Fender thing in the early 60s.

    I play the monels on my Fender Paramount parlor guitar. I love that tone on that guitar, it has a real old 1931 Gibson L-2 vibe going. I also play those Monel strings on my Epiphone Inspired by 1964 Texan as I installed a discrete magnetic pickup at the end of the fretboard and got rid of the under saddle.

    They break in almost immediately and hold that tone for months.

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  6. jfgesquire

    jfgesquire Tele-Afflicted

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    From the factory Esquire/Broadcaster/Telecaster were equipped with a wound G.... Later catalogs tend to confirm that.

    BUT Mapes included 9 strings in a 6 string pack, so your replacement packs certainly gave you the plain 3rd option as early as this 1950 catalog indicates.
     
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  7. jfgesquire

    jfgesquire Tele-Afflicted

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    By the 60s the catalogs indicate that the 12-52 set #1500 was the set that came standard on all Fender guitars, still round wound, ground and polish Fender still made the #10 set in features, but no longer standard equipment.

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  8. kennl

    kennl Tele-Afflicted

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    interesting that hex core wire was used in the early '50's
     
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  9. notroHnhoJ

    notroHnhoJ Tele-Meister

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    Yeah thats really really intriguing, I have no idea what’s going on there.

    Mapes still makes strings, supposedly providing wire for most brands. You can order direct from them some select sets, I did so last year sometime. I kind of didn’t dig ‘em. They sure were inexpensive enough (5 or 6 bucks?) but I opted for round core/plated steel, they weren’t great. They weren’t exactly “true” they had weird flat and slightly thicker spots on them, and they buzzed against the frets in an odd fashion. They sounded really great for a minute and then didnt.
     
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