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FDP Forum / Fender Bass Guitars and Bass Amps / Speaking of strings, do they "break in"

Contributing Member


Jul 5th, 2019 04:32 PM   Edit   Profile  


A relatively recent bass player here who has only ever changed strings once.
I put a set of flats on a bass a couple of months ago and it seems like thery are getting easy to play,not quite as "stiff" as it were.

Is this a common phenomenon is it just getting used to them ?

(This message was last edited by windmill at 08:34 PM, Jul 5th, 2019)

Contributing Member

North Florida

A Friend of Bill W.
Jul 5th, 2019 04:48 PM   Edit   Profile  

Think they do, but it has to do more with the tone being a bit higher sometimes jangling, then they’ll settle down a bit. I don’t know if they get any less tension, if they do it would be vary little. Could be a bit of surface tension from manufacturing process breaking in.

Contributing Member


an acquired taste some may never acquire
Jul 5th, 2019 04:55 PM   Edit   Profile  

Agree about the tone: D'Addario Chromes, especially the G string, seem too bright when fresh on. As they break in, they loose some of what I think of as excessively "piano-like" quality and start yielding more of the "thump" I'm looking for. Seems like there's also more clank and rattle with new ones.

Contributing Member

New York City

Jul 6th, 2019 06:33 AM   Edit   Profile  

TI flats "mature" over time as they lose the metallic clang of new strings and the fundamental emerges. This happens most noticeably over the first month or so and then continues to happen gradually over the years. I've never noticed any change in feel or tension.

In general, that metallic sound is the thing you want out of round wounds and they are certainly brightest when they are brand new. They do settle down over time and get less "twangy". It's a matter of taste as to when they need to be changed. I have less experience with rounds but I don't think the feel changes much on them either.

(This message was last edited by digiboy at 08:35 AM, Jul 6th, 2019)


Jul 6th, 2019 07:51 AM   Edit   Profile  

I think you're just getting used to them.

Contributing Member


Jul 10th, 2019 09:43 PM   Edit   Profile  

Agreed ilan!

Contributing Member

New York City

Jul 10th, 2019 10:01 PM   Edit   Profile  

"I think you're just getting used to them."

ummm...no. Have you ever replaced an old set of bass strings with a new set of the same brand and type? The new strings will be much brighter and more metallic sounding than the same older ones, flat or round. It's very easy to hear the difference. Then eventually that twangy brightness diminishes. It make take weeks or months or even years depending on the strings, but they most certainly change.

Te 52

Laws of Physics

strictly enforced
Jul 10th, 2019 10:37 PM   Edit   Profile  

Round wounds definitely get duller sounding as the grooves between the windings fill up with that lovely mix of dirt, dead skin cells and sweat.

Flats not so much.

Contributing Member

Bogue Falaya River

is STILL dark and cold.
Jul 11th, 2019 06:15 AM   Edit   Profile  

My younger brother, who plays bass in church every week, tells me that his flatwounds start out relatively bright-sounding but get that darker sound due to oils from his hands. He uses a pick on his Hofner Viol, but says if you use your fingers to pluck the strings, they get get darker sounding sooner because of the double helping of oils.

FDP Forum / Fender Bass Guitars and Bass Amps / Speaking of strings, do they "break in"

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