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Alembic Club » Miscellaneous » Archive: 2005 » Archive through November 21, 2005 » TI Jazz Flats - how can you tell when they're dead? « Previous Next »

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Senior Member
Username: bob

Post Number: 534
Registered: 11-2002
Posted on Sunday, November 06, 2005 - 11:36 pm:   Edit Post

Okay, as thread originator, I acknowledge there is room for some wisecracking here, and we certainly have a lot of resident talent in that area. So go ahead, let's have some fun.

But at the same time, it's a serious question for those of you who actually use them - and can't imagine using anything else.

I'm asking because I've been playing very infrequently for much of the last year, but just decided to take off the next three weeks from work - hoping to play a lot, among other things.

I've got two spare sets of strings sitting here, but so far haven't felt the need to use them. I could just put on a new set, the cost wouldn't really bother me - but I'm not sure I'm tuned in to how the old ones sound, and I know that a new set will take a good 10-15 hours to break in and feel comfortable (we've discussed that here before).

In the meantime, I might well lose perspective on whether the old ones were really dead or not. So: how long do you use them (preferably in playing hours, rather than elapsed calendar time), and what is your clue to deciding they need to be replaced?

Not a big deal, I'll probably just restring, because it's been a long time, and if nothing else the silks are getting a bit fuzzy. But I'm curious.

Senior Member
Username: adriaan

Post Number: 654
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Monday, November 07, 2005 - 1:02 am:   Edit Post

I'm waiting for my latest set to tone down a little, but I'm not playing much these days - and only in the living room, so there's no sweat to speed up the process.

I changed them the last time because they did in the end become quite lifeless - probably 200 playing hours? This was a set that had a very crammy A string which was nearly dead when I put it on - which is great to improve evenness of tone from your fingers, but not really great fun. The A on this new set is more in balance, but still not ideal.

Why DO I put up with them?

(Message edited by adriaan on November 07, 2005)
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 2529
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Monday, November 07, 2005 - 7:20 am:   Edit Post

I don't know the answer, but somewhat relatedly I have realized that I need to document when I change strings on each bass and post it by the setup table.
Senior Member
Username: flaxattack

Post Number: 674
Registered: 4-2004
Posted on Monday, November 07, 2005 - 8:10 am:   Edit Post

for me....
i usually rely on my ear and my pod.
when ti;s are new, they tune dead on. as they start to deteriorate i can see the note moving to and fro past the in tune marker on the pod tuner. thats usually the best way
and lastly
if you think they need replacing?- then they probably do. i usually change mine every 2-3 months
based on playing about 10 hrs per week
Senior Member
Username: kungfusheriff

Post Number: 404
Registered: 8-2003
Posted on Monday, November 07, 2005 - 8:38 am:   Edit Post

Some people leave them on forever--mine are three years old, have been on two different basses and have begun to "notch" where they pass over the frets, but still intonate and sound good, except the "plinky" G string.
Username: series_iii

Post Number: 16
Registered: 8-2005
Posted on Monday, November 07, 2005 - 10:40 am:   Edit Post

i put these on a series I fretless that i play on a fairly regular basis. i seem to get 6 - 8 months out of them before they start to lose their "mwahh". i don't like them to get too dead. but OTOH i don't like them too 'live' either - at least not on that bass. hope that helps...
Advanced Member
Username: son_of_magni

Post Number: 219
Registered: 1-2004
Posted on Monday, November 07, 2005 - 4:33 pm:   Edit Post

Well, the problem is that they go dead so slowly (iow, last so long) that you get used to the sound as they age. Maybe the best thing would be to have another Alembic that you play much less often, so you can compare. Wait a minute, I'll see if my wife will go for that...

(Message edited by son_of_magni on November 07, 2005)

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