Join Strat-Talk Today

How do 11's feel on a Strat?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by mikej89, Sep 17, 2019.

  1. Martins Strat

    Martins Strat Strat-Talker

    Messages:
    425
    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2018
    Location:
    UK
    Looks like the correct answers is the first one, you have to find out for yourself!

    So many different points of view here. I use Ernie Ball power slinkys (not sure how they're different to normal 11's) with a decked bridge, 4 springs in the back, standard tuning on a 7.25 radius and have no issues with hand fatigue or bending. They feel very slinky and easy to play, but we're all different, it just depends what you're used to.
     
    CB91710 likes this.
  2. dirocyn

    dirocyn Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    44
    Messages:
    2,456
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2018
    Location:
    Murfreesboro, TN
    I have noticed that guitars sound different acoustically depending how much tension is on the strings. To my ear they start sounding "right" with something like 17 lbs tension. On Strats & Teles that's a set of 10s, on Gibson scale that's 11s, on Jaguar that's 12s.

    When I first strung up my Yamaha SBG500 (Gibson Scale) I used 9s because I didn't know any better. For the longest time I thought I just didn't like that guitar very much. It felt weak and anemic. Then I learned up on string tension and strung it with 11s, I play it a lot more often now.
     
    mikej89 likes this.
  3. jayoldschool

    jayoldschool Mod Admin Staff Member

    Messages:
    1,505
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2011
    Location:
    Canada
    Admin Post
    Tried 9s, 10s, 11s on my different Strats. Went to 9s on all of them and haven't looked back. 9s are the right choice for me... YMMV, of course.
     
  4. mikej89

    mikej89 Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    30
    Messages:
    2,187
    Joined:
    May 12, 2016
    Location:
    River Falls, WI
    Doesn't going up or down on string size instantly throw off your intonation, though?
     
  5. Cerb

    Cerb Anti conformist reformist Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    39
    Messages:
    9,279
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2016
    Location:
    Sweden
    Only very, very little IME.
     
  6. mikej89

    mikej89 Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    30
    Messages:
    2,187
    Joined:
    May 12, 2016
    Location:
    River Falls, WI
    That's really interesting... Sounds like your talking mostly about the acoustic qualities but also the feel. I don't think hardly anyone uses 11's on Gibsons and especially 12's on a Jaguar.
     
  7. mikej89

    mikej89 Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    30
    Messages:
    2,187
    Joined:
    May 12, 2016
    Location:
    River Falls, WI
    That's good to hear. My American Standard has 10/9 hybrids on it but I might like to go to straight 10's... They just have a fuller tone and less brittle feeling. I hate how weak and brittle 9 high E's feel lol. The guitar is just setup perfectly so afraid to change anything to wreck the intonation. I know how to adjust intonation but I really hate doing it lol.
     
  8. fretWalkr

    fretWalkr Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    60
    Messages:
    26
    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2019
    Location:
    Dallas via Memphis
    I use 11s on my strat and my tele. I do a lot of bending, no problem. I like the fullness of the sound, especially the low end. If I go with lighter gauges I notice tuning issues from the strings getting pushed laterally on the neck.
     
    Dick Blackmore likes this.
  9. sam_in_cali

    sam_in_cali Scream for me Strat-Talk! Strat-Talk Supporter

    Messages:
    12,358
    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2014
    Location:
    Santa Maria, CA
    Intonation may change slightly but it really comes into play when the length between the nut and the saddle changes; For instance, if you normally play 9's in E Standard, then change to 11's, the neck will naturally bow a little and you'll have to compensate for it by either adjusting the truss rod for relief, saddles for intonation, or both.

    IMO, all the different string gauges are just there so you can find the appropriate tension that works for YOU given the tuning you are working with. Any changes in tone due to different changes can be adjusted for with knobs. Go with what feels good/comfortable. Personally, I like a real slinky feel because I do a lot of exaggerated bends and vibrato when I play. If I was just strumming chords, I'd probably go with a heavier gauge.
     
    Bob the builder and Cerb like this.
  10. Tcon

    Tcon Strat-Talker

    Age:
    60
    Messages:
    240
    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2016
    Location:
    KCMO
    I'll have what he's having!
     
    Bob the builder likes this.
  11. dirocyn

    dirocyn Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    44
    Messages:
    2,456
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2018
    Location:
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Yes, acoustic quality mostly. When I first bought my Casino I noticed that the B string would really sing when the rest of the strings...not so much. After a little experimentation with string gauge I settled on about 17 lbs per string across the board--and the guitar sounds fantastic plugged or unplugged.

    When I took the same approach with my SBG500 it went from being a kind of dull guitar with no body resonance and completely inaudible unplugged--to being lively and resonant, not my loudest guitar unplugged but still ok to play that way.

    BTW you can experiment with string tension by tuning up or down, and get a really good idea of what the guitar will sound and feel like with different gauge strings.

    Oh, and the Jaguar would probably be best with 11.5s, I just wanted to try flats on it. La Bella flatwound 12s with the wound G, I'm digging 'em.

    I don't have any problem with the string tensions I've got, I learned to play on an acoustic with mile-high action, a 24.5" scale and phosphor bronze 13s. 11s on a Gibby play nice and easy by comparison.
     
  12. CB91710

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

    Messages:
    2,603
    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2019
    Location:
    SoCal
    Theoretically, the saddle position will change by 1/2 the difference in diameter of the string... back for heavier strings, forward for lighter strings.
    10/9 hybrids to 10 would at most only be a couple of thousandths. String height has a greater impact, and you might find that you can go lower with a heavier string.
     
  13. Dick Blackmore

    Dick Blackmore Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    50
    Messages:
    1,620
    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2017
    Location:
    San Diego
    This is my favorite stringset. It has nearly perfect balanced tension across the board. You can set your action low, you can pick hard, that .050 is robust. I put it on all my guitars including my 27" 7 string baritone (with a .064 on the B string \m/MESHUGGAH\m/) I don't really notice any difference in bending or vibrato from a .010 set except on the baritone.

    [​IMG]
     
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.