New Strings Attached

My last big spending spree was on a set of electric guitar strings. Because I wasn’t intending on changing it anytime soon, and it was the first time I changed it since my mum and I got the acoustic guitar for my sister (who rarely plays it) I picked the most expensive Gibson Brite Wires. (0.09 to 0.42 gauge.)

The damage was RM25.

I slowly dropped each string by one whole step, starting with the lowest (so after the first string was dropped it would be a Drop D shape.) I dropped everything till it was one octave lower and it felt just like a bass guitar, just with smaller frets. It was just as slippery. (I don’t know about the sound, since I don’t have a bass guitar.)

I dropped it another octave and it was still playable, though the low E could barely be heard. Another octave and the strings were sliding off the fretboard! I soon got fedup of unwinding it slowly. At this point the strings were so loose I wouldn’t fear them slapping me in the face.

I took a pair of pliers and tried hard to pull out the white stubs at the bridge. I then put in the new wires.

As I wound in the low E string, I realized that I shouldn’t have put in the other strings just yet. Also, I needed to cut off a whole lot of string. Why they provide such long wires escapes me. The ideal length, I guessed, would be from the bridge to the nut plus the distance between two adjacent nuts.

I tuned everything into place, and it was a wonder to play! It was thinner, brighter, and it was easier to play barre chords! It was pretty, too, as all the strings were the same silver color, compared to the chrome/nickel-colored strings before. The best thing about this upgrade was that I could do full bends now! Before this I was playing half bends (while imagining it was a full bend in my head.)

However, a full bend on the G string, second fret, made it out of tune, repeatedly. I suppose when winding it in, I gave it too much slack at the nut’s hole. Something like this:


Of course, I’d rather play it like this, if not for sonic accuracy:


This was taken from Jimi Hendrix – Foxy Lady.

Why did I go out and get strings? Perhaps, it would be a consolation to failing two subjects and not being able to afford an electric guitar for the moment.

3 thoughts on “New Strings Attached

  1. Pingback: Octave B Tuning Experiment | Glaring Notebook

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