Snake Oil Strings? Yes!!

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Skreddy, Jul 12, 2006.


  1. Skreddy

    Skreddy Member

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    I got a set for my bass and some .11's for my strat.

    Frickin awesome.

    The bass strings are silky, smooth, balanced, and sweet. Very musical, excellent definition and dynamics.

    The guitar strings were really strident at first, like extra loud and "serious," steely sounding. And now that they've broken in with a few days of playing they're just perfect. Right about the time that most strings would be getting dull and dead sounding, these things are just hitting their stride.

    I love 'em. :JAM
     
  2. n8b

    n8b Member

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    I just received mine and haven't had a chance to change my strings yet. I did take out the low E to feel it. Definitely silkier than my D'addarios. Are you using Rock or Vintage? I have both here to try.
     
  3. Skreddy

    Skreddy Member

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    I'm using the vintage formula. Nickel, baby.

    I used to like GHS boomers for that sparkly tone, but that only lasts a couple of days. These things scream 60's blues, and their thick, hot, bright tone just won't die. Of course I use .11's, so .09s or .10's won't sound as thick as I describe, but probably more sparkly.

    Snake Oils apparently don't rely on the stiffness of their cores for that snappy tone; instead it's more the alloy in the windings that has more inherent brightness. So the metal fatigue that the core suffers in modern, stiff strings is not a problem with these. (my theory anyway) I notice they're much silkier too. Especially the bass strings. Remarkably flexible.
     
  4. JKoeth

    JKoeth Supporting Member

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    They are magic.
     
  5. DocRock

    DocRock Supporting Member

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    How do the unwound strings sound?
     
  6. JKoeth

    JKoeth Supporting Member

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    They all sound fantastic. They are a league above anything you could buy at a store. Seriously.
     
  7. SGFan

    SGFan Member

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    +1 love em too. 11-52 nickel set here
     
  8. Don L

    Don L Member

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    2 - 3 times "better" than other strings?
     
  9. n8b

    n8b Member

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    This was my experience also. I was replacing sets once a week then switched to John Pearse and then D'addario because they lasted longer. I'll be restringing my G&L tonight.
     
  10. jbro

    jbro Member

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    Well hey, with a name like "snake oil", how could they NOT be great?

    ---

    snake oil

    n.
    1. A worthless preparation fraudulently peddled as a cure for many ills.
    2. Speech or writing intended to deceive; humbug.
    ---

    In all honesty I think these strings are pretty good, but for someone who teaches all day and gigs about 4 nights a week.. not very cost effective. I'm happy with my 25 pack of D'Addario 11's for $60. Definitely not worth paying 4x as much for the Snake Oils in my case. I do think that's a brilliant name for a company, though.
     
  11. PinkStrat

    PinkStrat Member

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    Not cost effective? Most I change mine is once or twice a YEAR (in humid FL no less) and they can/will SAVE everyone a TON of money if properly maintained. They are much more than a cute marketing name.
     
  12. JKoeth

    JKoeth Supporting Member

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    Well, I teach guitar 6 days a week and have 40 students. I've kept the same set of Snake Oils on my Martin for 6 months. I typically only change them once or twice a year too. Guess they're cost effective for me.

    I also buy extra sets so my students can buy them. They like them too.
     
  13. jbro

    jbro Member

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    As always, mileage varies! Personally I change strings before every gig. Hot stage + guitar player = sweaty hands.. and once sweat gets on the strings, they never sound or feel the same no matter how fast you wipe them down or what you clean them with. I didn't find the snake oils to last any longer than D'Addarios or any other brand in a gigging environment. Like I said, I did like the strings, but for me, with my schedule, and at that price, they're not an option. ;)

    EDIT: It's worth mentioning that I'm after the "new string" sound on my strats. I'm sure these strings will LAST weeks, months, or years without physically failing, but that certainly doesn't mean the sound doesn't change. Dog ears? Maybe. Use your own judgement.
     
  14. JKoeth

    JKoeth Supporting Member

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    Some people do have extremely acidic sweat that would eat the chrome off a bumper. That sucks, man.
     
  15. jbro

    jbro Member

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    I would imagine so. I do have clients whose sweat rusts through strings, bridge saddles, and corrodes pickup covers, frets, etc. In my case it's more likely due to over-sensitive ears than acidic sweat, though, since I don't experience any of those problems on my own guitars. I just like the bright attack of new strings (on my strats, at least) - and regardless of what the strings are made of or what they're coated with, that only lasts for so long. Some folks may not hear the difference.

    I use LaBella tapewound strings on my jazz guitar, and I haven't changed the wound ones in about a year and don't really notice a difference in tone. There is no finger-to-metal contact on those strings, though.
     
  16. Phil Harmoneeek

    Phil Harmoneeek Member

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    To each his own, but I definitely agree with the initial post ... they don't even hit their stride until after many hours of playing. Then look out, they get a touch more "slinky" w/ a nice solid tone ... not the "new string" sound, just a great even response & that will last for a gooood loooong time. Can't imagine using anything else.

    Randall
     
  17. Skreddy

    Skreddy Member

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    I have that nasty sweat, too. It eats strings pretty fast. So far my Snake Oils are holding up.

    My tastes have likely changed. Like I said, I used to like the GHS Boomers, for that sparkly, bright, "new string" sound. But now these Snake Oils sound just right to me, even though they're broken in. I like how they bring out the "sound in my head."
     
  18. Shnook

    Shnook Supporting Member

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    The topic of price comes up when discussing the SOS's quite often. There's always one or two folks who can't fathom paying $8.50 for a pack of strings. They use a cheaper brand, lets say in the $3.50-$4.50 range. However, I change the strings on my main guitar with SOS's usually twice a year. They change strings what 8-9 times a year? D'uh! :roll

    It makes no sense to nit-pick about every aspect of gear and then string up with cheap strings that don't even last a month.

    I'm spoiled to SOS's and have no desire to go back to changing strings on my most used guitars 2 or 3 times a month. Not to mention that I love the feel and the sound of the SOS's.
     
  19. jbro

    jbro Member

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    Sigh.

    No, it's not about paying $8.50 for a set of strings. I have no problem dropping $14 on a set of LaBella tapewounds for one of my guitars - but that's because to my ear their attack doesn't really change with time, unlike uncovered metal strings that are exposed to the oils in your fingers. Snake Oils didn't "last" (in a tone sense, not a physical longevity sense) any longer than any other brand of string in my fairly rigorous playing/gigging schedule. That makes them not worth the extra money, to me. That's all. I'm not trying to put down your favorite brand of string, they just didn't work for me. I change strings on my main guitar before every gig, regardless of the brand. I gig 2-5 nights per week. Spending 4x as much on SO's doesn't make sense to me because the "new string" attack sound I'm after doesn't last any longer than D'Addarios on my guitar with my schedule. If I wasn't gigging as much I wouldn't go through strings like I do, and maybe then I would use SO's on my main axe. Is that worded better? You'd think I said "Your strings suck! Mine are better!".. you guys are touchy! I said I LIKE them.
     
  20. DocRock

    DocRock Supporting Member

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    I'll give them a try. I've been using Elixir Nanoweb for a few years now. So far, I've been most satisfied with them because of the longevity. I am a very corrosive bastard, so the old Ernie Ball's, etc., just don't hold up. The Elixir's are good, but they are pricey, too. What's different about the Snake Oil's? Are they coated like Elixir's? Does Snake Oil have a website?

    Best,

    Doc :)
     

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