Heavier gauge on a strat.. quick question..

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by 1968, Jul 29, 2008.

  1. 1968

    1968 Member

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    Im thinking about putting on some heavier strings on my strat (tuned down to Eb)..Will (.011, .014, .018, .032, .042, .054) work ok with standard fender vintage frets?..
     
  2. jman

    jman Supporting Member

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    try it...it won't feel all that different than 10's at A440.
     
  3. Dave Orban

    Dave Orban Gold Supporting Member

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  4. cram

    cram Member

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    for me - amer std strat, I have to put 12's on it or else I over fret. I've got a heavier touch than most but I play at Eb and I wasn't happy with the tension of the 11's. It's not just in the left hand either, strumming felt weird.
    I play with 2 guitars. the other one is a shorter scale and I use 11's on that one. I've found my happy spot so I'm cool and won't change the guage.

    pay attention to your setup though. Everything: springs, saddle height and neck relief. I keep 5 springs back there to keep the bridge down.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2008
  5. 1968

    1968 Member

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    Do you do much bends/vibrato?.
     
  6. uOpt

    uOpt Member

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    Frets - no problem. Nut - maybe. get nut lubricant at the least.
     
  7. cram

    cram Member

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    yes, quite a bit actually.
    with the scale length, the large guage is something I'm used to. Now, bends at the second fret like one may do on a lighter guage is a bit tough, but for the most part I'm cool with it.
     
  8. Bob V

    Bob V Member

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    Sure, good idea. The fretwire won't be a problem at all. Just be aware that you need to check to see if the nut slots are binding with the slightly fatter strings - that would cause tuning stability problems when you wham or bend. Just listen for "ping" sounds or snaps when you tune up which signal binding at the nut; also try bending behind the nut to make sure the string comes back to pitch. Also, the trem springs might want to be set at a different tension after you change to heavier springs and this may change the action height and require the bridge saddles to be adjusted(assuming you're set up floating). Lastly the additional tension on the neck might require a tweak of the trussrod (not likely, but possible). Play it for awhile with the new gauge, then take a fresh set of strings with the guitar to a good tech for a checkup. You didn't mention it but I assume you're starting with stock .009's; on the other hand a change from .010 to .011 the guitar might not notice.
     
  9. ur86d

    ur86d Member

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    "Why don't you just make 10 louder, and make 10 be the top number, and make that a little louder?"


    (blank stare for a second or two) This amp goes to 11.
     

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