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9s on a Strat

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by draelyc, Jul 9, 2019.

  1. draelyc

    draelyc Strat-Talk Member

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    My tendinitis is acting up again the past month or so, and I’ve had to drop back from 10-48s to 9-46s. Did a quick setup this afternoon and made a tone test clip. I think through my Shiva it still sounds pretty good, if not quite as thick as before. But man, is everything a whole lot easier to play!

     
  2. Tone Deaf

    Tone Deaf Senior Stratmaster

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    Sounds fine.
    Turn it up.
     
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  3. Triple Jim

    Triple Jim Senior Stratmaster

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    Yes, the tone difference between string sizes is not always completely reality.

    Ha, you can always tell it's not loud enough when you hear the pick-on-strings sound over the amp. :) But I play that way a lot myself.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2019
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  4. BobbyS

    BobbyS Strat-O-Master

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    yeah, after years of working with my hands the wear and tear and abuse has taken it's toll. I use 8's and my hands and fingers are ok with them so I will stay with them.

    Hope ya get better fast!
     
  5. CB91710

    CB91710 This is a Custom Title Gold Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    That's what I run on my Fender-scale guitars.
    I run 10s on the Epiphones.

    I ran 13's on my G&L for a while... Sounded sweet, but way too much work to play, especially at standard tuning.
     
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  6. Triple Jim

    Triple Jim Senior Stratmaster

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    I bet. icon_lol.gif

    In a fairly recent interview, Trower said he plays 13s... a whole step down.
     
  7. CB91710

    CB91710 This is a Custom Title Gold Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Hey, I wanted to sound like everyone who wanted to sound like SRV.
    Too dumb to realize he wasn't playing a standard set of 13s... I think it was more like a 13-52 or some hybrid set like that.

    It also kept other people from wanting to play my Blueburst S500

    s500.jpg
     
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  8. Jack Frost

    Jack Frost Strat-Talker

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    I was listening to a video of Paul Gilbert playing the other day, and he sounded great. And then he said he was using 8-38!

    I don't see the fascination with heavier strings myself. I admit they may stay in tune more and break less frequently, but in terms of sound? The guitar and amp and pedals have all sorts of buttons and dials for changing the sound. I've never listened to a song and thought "boy, you can tell they're using 11s".

    Of course, if you like playing heavier strings then keep doing so! But don't put up with something just for the sake of perceived "better tone".
     
  9. fenderguy4life

    fenderguy4life Strat-Talk Member

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    I noticed the New Fender guitars come from the factories with 10's now, as they used to come with 9's, Which is what my 2013 came with. I vasilaate between 9's and tens. I love the tone i get from 10's, but it is a little extra work on these old hands. Never tried 8's :eek:
    Yet... :D
     
  10. fenderguy4life

    fenderguy4life Strat-Talk Member

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    I respectfully disagree, tone comes from the fingertips as well as the pickups and strings and neck. 2 cents I know what my best tone is. I achieve it by digging in and working for it. That means a resistant string. Not something I can bend lightly. Just my personal opinion. There is rarely a wrong way to perceive the guitar. As long as one can express and have it talk with u.

    Others will take a different view. God Bless America!
     
  11. Jack Frost

    Jack Frost Strat-Talker

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    Oh absolutely you can have a preference in terms of feel. I mean, I detest the feel of new strings. Yuk! :confused: I'm only happy playing once they're a week or so old. And because of that, I sound better once the strings are aged. But if someone used to playing 11s decided to switch to 8s, I think that after 'relearning' how to play with lighter strings they could achieve a sound just as good. It all depends on your playing style.
    Only America? What's wrong with the rest of the world? :(
     
  12. Dave Harmon

    Dave Harmon Strat-Talker

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    I use Ernie Ball Extra Slinky (blue package) wires on my Strat, Tele and G&L. They sound great.
    Also....I replace the 8 with a 10 to make a 10, 11, 14, 22, 30, 38 set.
    This is very close to the James Burton gauges.
     
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  13. fenderguy4life

    fenderguy4life Strat-Talk Member

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    Well at that point, there is definitely a charge to the amp, speakers and effects. Play through a Twin, no pedals. That way you can perceive the tonal differences. I can achieve decent tone with light gauge strings as long as my effects and amp where up to it. Other wise, in my opinion again, i get better tone from heavier strings. I know SRV used extremely heavy gauge, but he lowered a half step at least.

    ZZ Top anybody? He plays 8's. Plenty proof it can be done.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Oh. "America" well, that's just because it's the land of the free and all that. We all have a voice. Now, I haven't been to many other countries enough to consider. But, yeah. I'm sure there are other countries God should be blessing.
    :cool:
     
  14. perttime

    perttime Strat-O-Master

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    And perhaps some tweaking of knobs on amp and guitar.

    I'm using 10s and 11s now, and it is a feel thing, not really tone. Last weekend, a Telecaster with 9s was put in my hands, and it was OK. 8s would certainly take some getting used to.
     
  15. Vic Interceptor

    Vic Interceptor Strat-Talker

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    You still have 2 options :
    A: go back to 10's and tune down 1/2 step.
    B: raise the pickups 1/2 turn to get your magnetic impulse back. (that 1/2 turn might not be exact, twist till happy)
     
  16. HighwayStar106

    HighwayStar106 Strat-Talker

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    I've found different guitars react differently sound-wise to different string gauges. For example, my MIM Strat (with 9-42s) was sounding a bit thinner than I would have liked. Going up to 10-46 gave it a bit more thickness. However, the same switch on my partscaster had no noticeable difference.

    I could get a perfectly good sound out of 9-42s (and even with the 8-41s I used to use), but I much prefer the feel of 10-46s, which is why I use them.
     
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  17. shovelmike

    shovelmike Senior Stratmaster

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    I'm right there with you, draelyc. I have done heavy repetitive work with my hands for decades, resulting in tendonitis, arthritis, and topped off with ulnar nerve damage which depleted some muscle fiber in my left hand.
    I use 9- 42 strings and am happy with the sound. Much of the sound is dependent on amp settings, effects if you use them, and most importantly...the technique if the guitarist.
     
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  18. Red Bread

    Red Bread Strat-Talker

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    Went 9’s years ago
    In my opinion i didnt lose any tone at all in my opinion
    My hand feels better!
    I have a strat with a scalloped neck i run 8’s on and it sounds as good as my other strats with 9’s
    I use that guitar for warm up and practice and its helped me a great deal
    Billy Gibbons plays on 7’s,,,dunlop make his strings under the “Reverend Willys Mexican Lottery brand name
    I think his tone is pretty damn good
     
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  19. echoes71

    echoes71 Senior Stratmaster

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    Ive always played strats with 9's, you're good man!
     
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  20. albala

    albala Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    9's on all electrics
     
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