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Old 08-19-2014, 05:25 AM   #1
Noisembryo
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Changing string gauge from 0.10 to 0.07

I haven't been playing for a LONG time and I started recently again just to find out that I'm working to hard on bends and vibratos. My hand hurts, my fingers are sore...I know this is to be expected after long time of no playing so I decided that I wanna make my guitar playing as effortless as possible so I'm taking a bit extreme approach to this.

I'm playing Kramer Pacer Classic (25.5 scale, 14'' neck radius, double locking Kramer licensed Floyd Rose) which has 0.10 - 0.46 gauge on. I ordered Billy Gibbons signature set 0.07 - 0.38 and it should arrive soon.

For the string action I'm thinking 4/64(1.6mm) on bass side and 3/64(1.2mm) on treble side. I believe with 0.07's this will give strings enough space to vibrate and allow me to use bends/vibratos without dead notes or fret out's. I prefer lower action (not super low like strings lying on frets) and I do have a light touch.

So my question is what guitar adjustments will I have to do to make this perfectly playable? (don't say take it to a tech).
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Old 08-19-2014, 05:29 AM   #2
the_bi99man
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For that big of a gauge change, on a guitar with a Floyd Rose/Licensed Floyd Rose system, is going to require a complete setup before it's "perfectly playable". So, unfortunately, I'm gonna have to say take it to a tech, unless you're confident doing all that yourself. You will have to adjust the spring tension through the back of the guitar, behind the bridge, and very likely have to make significant intonation and saddle adjustments.

This thread will help.

http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/foru...ad.php?t=614226
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Old 08-19-2014, 09:22 AM   #3
TheLiberation
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I've never done this before, but my impression is that unless you play very, very lightly, this is going to be near impossible to setup without heavy buzz. I hadn't even known 0.07 strings exist, and the tension is going to be extremely low.

Don't want to be the malcontent here, but I think you should take it into account that this might happen.
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Old 08-19-2014, 09:25 AM   #4
Danustar
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Probs need to adjust neck relief also with that much change.

So yeah, springs .. possibly even removing one. Bridge height, saddles and truss rod.
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Old 08-19-2014, 11:30 AM   #5
BlackDeath92
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Why not use 0.09 gauge strings? They're easier to bend than 10s and wouldn't require nearly as much of a re-setup on the Floyd Rose.
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Old 08-19-2014, 11:41 AM   #6
jpnyc
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Going from .010 to .007 with a Floyd is the kind of thing I would pay a tech to do. Iím sure it will work out fine, but someone with experience can just do this as opposed to blowing half a day on trial-and-error tweaks to get it right.
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Old 08-19-2014, 08:01 PM   #7
the_bi99man
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Really, OP, I think that big of a change is overkill. Just try a 9-42 set, if the 10-46 feels too tense for you. It might not sound like a big difference, but it's night and day when it comes to bending those high strings. .007 is ridiculously tiny. Only time I've ever even seen a .007 gauge string was on this dude's guitar that was brought into the shop I work at for some adjustments. And he was using a .007 because he tuned to Robert Fripp's New Standard Tuning, with a high A, which is a 4th higher than the high E of standard tuning.
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Old 08-19-2014, 09:20 PM   #8
chrismendiola
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.07? I thought I played with light strings (my electrics have .09). I didn't even know such a thing exists.
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Old 08-20-2014, 03:52 AM   #9
Noisembryo
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I forgot to mention one thing...I rarely use floyd (and by rarely I mean never), so no dive bombs, no vibrato, nothing. If we take this into consideration will guitar still need as much setup as mentioned thus far?

Tremolo is not my thing, I bought the guitar because I love the playability especially neck and floyd rose is actually a negative thing about it...for me. Since you can't have one without FR is there a way to make FR behave like "normal" bridge to avoid all the nuances when changing strings?

As far as the string gauges go I'll experiment a bit. I'll go with 9 - 42 set first and see how that feels and later on put 7 - 38.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:29 AM   #10
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The real issue you run into with such light strings is lack of tone. Yes the mechanical issues were already mentioned and playing may be easier but I've found such thin strings lack tone, lack sustain and lack durability. I was a big user of 9's on strats and tele's for a while but hated how my guit sounded and went through multiple setups until my band mate gave me a set of 11's at a gig. Yeah they hurt like hell but loved the way they sounded and never went back.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:52 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noisembryo
I forgot to mention one thing...I rarely use floyd (and by rarely I mean never), so no dive bombs, no vibrato, nothing. If we take this into consideration will guitar still need as much setup as mentioned thus far?

Tremolo is not my thing, I bought the guitar because I love the playability especially neck and floyd rose is actually a negative thing about it...for me. Since you can't have one without FR is there a way to make FR behave like "normal" bridge to avoid all the nuances when changing strings?

As far as the string gauges go I'll experiment a bit. I'll go with 9 - 42 set first and see how that feels and later on put 7 - 38.


In that case, I'd suggest that you investigate the ways to block or lock down the Floyd (there are several). If it were me, I'd just heavy up the springs (maybe put all five on) and release the claw just enough so that the strings/springs were in stasis at pitch.

Here's the issue. When you bend with a Floyd-equipped guitar that's softly sprung, the bending string actually pulls up the back of the Floyd (watch it when you bend). That flats the rest of the strings, but it also forces you to move the bend further across the fretboard to get the same pitch change. With a 25.5" scale, you're already moving the string further than you would if you had a shorter (say, 24.75" Les Paul-style) scale.

Blocking or over-springing the Floyd will keep the butt end of the Floyd down on the deck when you bend (particularly with smaller gauge strings), reduce the distance you have to push a bend, and reduce or eliminate the amount of flatting of the other strings.

As your hands and fingers round into shape (think of this as any other exercise program that leaves you with sore muscles), the string gauge will mean a bit less to you.
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Old 08-20-2014, 09:01 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kndavid
The real issue you run into with such light strings is lack of tone. Yes the mechanical issues were already mentioned and playing may be easier but I've found such thin strings lack tone, lack sustain and lack durability. I was a big user of 9's on strats and tele's for a while but hated how my guit sounded and went through multiple setups until my band mate gave me a set of 11's at a gig. Yeah they hurt like hell but loved the way they sounded and never went back.


I'd have to give that one a big "meh."

I've used 9's for years on strat-scale guitars, and (mostly) 10's on Les Paul-scale guitars.

I did really like a set of 11's on a 25.5" scale and a 27" scale guitar that had string spacing that was about 1/8" wider all the way down the neck, including at the bridge. It took some getting used to, but I was happy with them when that happened.

But I haven't bothered to change any of my guitars to that gauge that are skinny-string strung. They don't lack tone at all; everything has been set up for them and they're fine. They definitely don't lack sustain (that's more of a function of the design and materials on the guitar), and "durability" has never been an issue. I don't break strings, I change them often (but mostly use cheap sets of strings for practice), and they don't get corroded, etc. I have a pretty light touch and I really don't play an electric like an acoustic (as do some players).

In short, string gauge is really just a matter of preference.
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Old 08-20-2014, 01:27 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kndavid
The real issue you run into with such light strings is lack of tone. Yes the mechanical issues were already mentioned and playing may be easier but I've found such thin strings lack tone, lack sustain and lack durability. I was a big user of 9's on strats and tele's for a while but hated how my guit sounded and went through multiple setups until my band mate gave me a set of 11's at a gig. Yeah they hurt like hell but loved the way they sounded and never went back.

I think this kind of thing is only applicable to certain guitars. Some people play with light strings, and it sounds great. Others play with light strings, and it sounds not so great. Why? Their guitar and style of playing, probably.
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