#1
I'm interested in buying an 8 string guitar, but have no idea where/what kind of strings I need. I like my 6 string to be super heavy, and I use 12-54 gauge on it, because I usually play drop b. What strings would I need to get for an 8 string so the third string, or e string would be a b?


And any other advice iswelcome.
#2
What scale length is it? I like a .59 - .56 for the low B in drop b but my guitar is a 25.5 in scale. I would imagine the 8 string is a bit longer, which would mean you can use a thinner string for the same tension.

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#3
Guitar strings are personal preference. 6, 7, or 8 string - doesn't matter. Whatever you feel comfortable with is the "proper" string gauge.
#4
If you're getting an 8-string, the 7th string would be a B (8-string tuning is F#BEADGBE), why would you want the 6th string to be a B as well?

On my 7-string (Scale length 27'), I have a 0.59 for my low B, I think that'll be heavy enough for anyone...
Last edited by Jacques-Henri at May 3, 2013,
#5
Quote by Jacques-Henri
If you're getting an 8-string, the 7th string would be a B (8-string tuning is F#BEADGBE), why would you want the 6th string to be a B as well?

On my 7-string (Scale length 27'), I have a 0.59 for my low B, I think that'll be heavy enough for anyone...

My guess is he wants to drop the 7th and 8th string as well.

Quote by ajb667
I'm interested in buying an 8 string guitar, but have no idea where/what kind of strings I need. I like my 6 string to be super heavy, and I use 12-54 gauge on it, because I usually play drop b. What strings would I need to get for an 8 string so the third string, or e string would be a b?


And any other advice iswelcome.

If, as above, you're dropping your 8th string to a D# (if I'm not counting it wrongly), you'd need something bigger than a .080 to get roughly the same tension. The calculator I'm using provides up to a maximum of .080, which gives you 11.7lbs of tension (your .054 at B gives 13.8lbs).

Edit: This is assuming a 25.5" scale length, but if you're dropping all the way down there, you're probably already shopping for a baritone guitar. Mess around with this if you're using a different scale length. You probably won't have to go all the way up to .080 if you're using something like a 27" or above guitar.
Last edited by triface at May 3, 2013,
#6
The one I'm planning on getting has a 28" scale neck. Glad I probably won't need to go to .80; that seems like it'd be hard to use O_O
#7
Quote by ajb667
The one I'm planning on getting has a 28" scale neck. Glad I probably won't need to go to .80; that seems like it'd be hard to use O_O


I'm using a 27.5" scale guitar at the moment with a 80 string tuned to G, the tension feels just right.
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#8
The vast majority of electric guitar machine heads can't take more than a .070 string anyway. In fact many can't even take that.

Your best bet is to use the same strings you use for 6-string, then buy two more strings separately. If you like a .054 for B on a standard-scale guitar then for 28" scale and those lower strings, you'll probably want something like a .058 and .062. It depends if you're 'dropping' them or not, too. I can't imagine you would need to go any larger than .068 for the 8th string on 28" scale.

The highest strings certainly may be an issue. Personally, I would not advise anything more than .011 for the 1st string on a 28" scale, even when tuning low. The 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th strings should be fine at your usual gauge.

It would be smarter to go for something a little lighter at first and only go thicker if you feel you really need it, since it is easier to set up a guitar for light strings then move to heavier ones than it is to set it up for heavier ones then move to lighter strings. As tempting as it may be to go for the heaviest strings possible because somebody on the internet told you that you can't play metal with using steel bars for strings, it just doesn't make sense to jump right in at the deep end. Do not underestimate how much of a difference to tension the longer scale will make. .012 on 25.5" scale is about the same tension (at the same tuning) as a .0905 at 28".
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