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9s on a Strat

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

  1. sbpark

    sbpark Strat-Talker

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    I use 9-46 Ernie Ball or D’Addario hybrid sets on my Strats and Teles and 13’s on my acoustics.

    Of course it’s personal preference, but style of music you play also plays a part to some degree. Sure, there are outliers, but I doubt a majority of players out there that play country, doing tons of bends and pedal steel type licks with 11’s, etc. if I was playing straight ahead rock I’d be fine with heavier gauges, but having lighter gauge on the G, B, and high E strings just wants bending easier and more consistently accurate.
     
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  2. The-Kid

    The-Kid Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I am pretty sure EVH, Hendrix and Clapton used 9s.....


    Somehow I think they work....



    If you ask me those in my book have always been the top three players in all of guitar history time and for all those who say 9s are to thin, lifeless, pedestrian, dull etc etc.....


    Just say that about EVH, Hendrix or Clapton and everyone will laugh at your face
     
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  3. dirocyn

    dirocyn Senior Stratmaster

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    Clapton uses Ernie Ball 10-46. Jimi Hendrix played 10-38, an unusual set now but the same gauges as Fender's light "rock 'n roll" set--and tuned a little (or a lot) flat.

    EVH is well known for playing 9s. Pretty sure Gilmour also plays 9s.

    String tension makes a dramatic difference in acoustic tone, a big difference in feel, and a difference in amplified tone. Tune your B string up to a high E (if you play 9s it's probably a 13 anyway) and you can compare without buying anything. Or go the other way and tune your e down to a B and compare what your guitar would sound like using a set with that string in the B position. With another string right there next to it and tuned to the same note, you'll be in a really good position to judge the differences of strings the same age, in real time. In my experience it's really hard to judge sounds if they're not right next to each other.

    SRV's recordings are full of sonic artifacts of him using very heavy strings. If that's how you want to sound, you won't get those artifacts without pretty heavy strings. But he's not the only good tone in all of history. Personally I like Gilmour's tone better.
     
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  4. henderman

    henderman Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    9's were once fine but 8's are now great. i have so much more control now that my tone is better.
     
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  5. Blue Beagle

    Blue Beagle Strat-Talker

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    Only ever used Ernie Ball Super Slinky 9s.

    Tried D'addario 9s, didn't like.

    Tried Ernie Ball Slinky 10s, didn't like.

    Tried Fender 9s that came on my various Fender guitars over the years and I do like them but still, I'm an Ernie Ball man.
     
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  6. Electgumbo

    Electgumbo Lost Planet Airman Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I have the dreaded nickel allergy. Nickel strings makes my hands split and crack. Makes playing guitar no fun at all. The only strings that I have found that I can use is the Pro Steels from D’Addario. I found the 10’s to be too stiff. Stiffer then nickel 10’s. So now I use the 9’s cause they feel like 10’s or maybe slightly lighter. The sound is different but after a few months I don’t notice it anymore... I just made a few amp adjustments and pickup adjustments.
     
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  7. draelyc

    draelyc Strat-Talk Member

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    Figured I should run the same tone test through my Budda, as well:

     
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  8. UmpaHimself

    UmpaHimself Strat-O-Master

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    I only do 9s on my Fenders. Easy bending, easy playing.
     
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  9. Heavyriff

    Heavyriff Strat-Talker

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    I like 9's on my 24.75 scale. Once properly stretched they just suit my style of playing. Very easy to bend. I use D'Addario which seem to resist breaking in my experience.
     
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  10. irie

    irie Strat-Talker

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    9's on strats, 10's on tele's and nothing less than 10's on a LP.... lol
     
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  11. ProSonicLive

    ProSonicLive Senior Stratmaster

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    Also, when you get used to heavy strings, you can often go nuts trying to play small ones again as they have a much lower tactile feel. something akin to playing with fishing line.
     
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  12. StratoMutt

    StratoMutt Strat-Talker

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  13. Nate D

    Nate D Most Honored Senior Member

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    Body size is the same on the two, but scale lengths are different. A 000 has a 24.9” scale and an OM has a 25.4” scale.

    The OM has the same scale length as a Martin Dreadnaught.
     
  14. JB74

    JB74 Senior Stratmaster

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    If you're having trouble with 10's on a strat, don't ever pick up a 360/12 Ric... :D:D:cool:
     
  15. amstratnut

    amstratnut Peace thru Music. Strat-Talk Supporter

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    K here is something weird.

    I use 9s but I use a 10 on the high e string. The 9 sounds too plinky.

    I discovered that its the B and G strings that give me grief when bending 10s.
     
  16. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Gilmour's sets are hybrid - .010,.012,.016,.028,.038,.048.
    Clapton used to use 9's - may have moved up in the last few years...
     
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  17. Stratoskater

    Stratoskater Most Honored Senior Member

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    Yep. I use gauge on acoustics to drive the top vs. change the feel for scale length like I do on electrics. Any small body (O,OO,OO or OM) I use 12-54, any dread I use 13-56.
     
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  18. Nate D

    Nate D Most Honored Senior Member

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    I use .10’s on my OM. :)
     
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  19. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I've moved down on my gauges - old age catching up and whatnot.
    I tried D'addario's roundwound Balanced Tension sets back earlier in the year and in many ways liked them, as I felt that the stock string sets are fairly imbalanced string-to-string - however, I felt that, especially on the BT 9 sets, that the low strings were just too thin.
    So I ended up working with a string tension calculator I developed in Excel and coming up with a custom set that was a happy medium between a heavy enough gauge on the low end and, if not truly balanced, then at least a smooth increase in tension from the high E to the low E - .009,.012,.016,.024,.032,.044. Basically, it is nearly the same as a normal 9 set but with a heavier B and low E, which on a stock set are the most imbalanced as far as tension goes.
    My 10 sets I use semi-flat pure nickels, gauged .010,.013,.017,.026,.036,.048 - being semi-flats the tension is a little higher, so I concentrated on balancing the wound strings together and the plain strings together - really it was just the low E on that set that was off tension-wise.
     
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  20. draelyc

    draelyc Strat-Talk Member

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    I’ve used 11s on my dread before, when my wrist is acting up. :eek:
     
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