I keep reading on this forum about guys using .11 gauge strings for playing Drop C and Drop B... am I wrong to be using .12 gauges with a wound 3rd on a Epiphone Les Paul Standard in standard (occasionally drop D) tuning?

I've been playing 6 years and have played with the thick gauge for about half of that time. When I decided to start playing with the heavier strings I did it because I thought it would help my intonation and tuning stability; I think it has to a point, and I do quite like the feel of the beefy almost-acoustic thickness of the strings.

Do you guys think it might negatively affect my playing though, and possibly be overkill? Maybe I should move down to .10's?

Thanks for any thoughts and advice
If you like heavy gauge strings and they don't slow down your playing, then there is no disadvantage to them - particularly when you are playing in lowered tunings. You might find it easier to bend strings with a lighter gauge, but I wouldn't change unless you're having a problem with your playing. Besides, guys like SRV and Robben Ford played strings the size of telephone cables so yours aren't particularly heavy in the overall scheme of things.
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I find doing chords on heavy gauges to be kind of harder and also hurts my fingers a bit, but it might be my guitar not being the best as well.
I personally find thicker strings to be... less good for intonation, but that's probably my guitar.

I'd say, for the fun of it, buy some lighter strings and see how it feels to just experiment. If you want to use thick strings, use them.
No it is because Les Pauls have a shorter scale than other guitars, which means you need thicker strings to keep it tight. I use twelves on mine too

Maybe next set you should try going back to some 11's to see what the difference is
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Last edited by sammo_boi at Sep 28, 2010,
Not if you're comfortable playing it. I use .12's always on my practice guitars because it builds up strength, and makes it so much easier to play on lighter strings. It could be negative on your playing while you're playing it, but when you make the switch, it'll be easy. I also find that thicker guages ALWAYS sound better than lighter gauges, whether it's on acoustic or electric guitar. As long as you're fine playing with them, enjoy the superior quality you have over other people.
I think another reason I started using a heavier gauge was the mentality of "if I play on heavier strings for a while, when I go back to normal I'll find it much easier"... maybe now's the time for me to try some lighter strings again?

I'm not having any problems that I could describe, but I'm not sure if that's just because I don't know (if you get me). It's probably worth trying some lighter gauge strings. Conveniently the other guitarist in my band has the same guitar (but in a different colour) strung with 9's so I could have a go on his and see how I like it

Any more opinions on the subject would be much appreciated!
I had an LP strung with .11s in standard. Was the only guage I would consider using for that particular guitar. Not the greatest for bends, but you build that strength after a while. The tone was superior. Obviously you're going to have to look into possible truss rod adjustments and such at heavier gauges, but experiment and find what fits you best, there's no right or wrong.
Quote by Ultima2876
Conveniently the other guitarist in my band has the same guitar (but in a different colour) strung with 9's so I could have a go on his and see how I like it

Any more opinions on the subject would be much appreciated!

If you decide you like the 9's and want to try them on your LP, you'll want to get your guitar set up for the 9's, since going from 12's to 9's will most likely warrant it.

Personally though, I love the tone from using thicker strings. I use 11's and 12's in standard all the time. But it's all a matter of opinion. Can't hurt to try your other guitarist's guitar through your rig and see what you think! But don't feel that the 12's are overkill....it's all a matter of finding what you like and what's comfortable!
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.10 are my fav.
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