I play metal and all I have ever used is drop d, I have tried standard a few times but I always went back to drop d. Now i'm getting a very nice new guitar and I have felt limited with my tuning, so now I want to either tune to E standard or D. The only thing about D is string gauge and are my fibgers, strong enough, so now i'm thinking going to E standard. So....what gauge strings should I get for E and what gauge string for D? Now please dont just tell me 10 or 11's, tell me that of course but also tell me the gauge fort the low E. The lightest gauge possible, Being that my fingers are not as strong as what I would like. Please tell me like
942s. 9's, with the lowest E a 42.

I'm not sure why you should be complaining about gauge on that string if your action is low enough.
Weak fingers? Push them further or practice some bass guitar. You'll build that strength in no time.
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I play blues/acid rock and I use the following: .38, .36, .34, .15, .13, .10 and usually tune a half step down.

String gauge is about preference. I mean yeah, there's tonal differences and some tunings need higher gauges, but if it's not comfortable to play on higher gauges, then don't. Really, you should be able to use a set of 9s and tune down to Drop D or D standard without any tuning issues (unless your tuning machines or trem system suck).

More tone comes from the way you play than the thickness of your strings, so why not be comfortable?

Just to add to lemurflames' suggestions. Go pick up an acoustic guitar for awhile as well. I keep 11s on mine and it keeps my hands in shape.
For drop D you don't need any specific type of strings really. You're only taking the E string down 2 semitones. I use 9-42s in C# standard so you'll be right.
Really as long as you don't play stupidly hard and cause your strings to rattle you can you can get away with light gauge strings for anything. Drop D is almost identical to E, and D standard really isn't that big a difference. I use the same gauge strings for everything, anywhere from E to drop B.
Well...it depends on the guitar, but I would still recommend you do a full setup every time you retune from E to D. (Tuning from E to Drop D doesn't require a full setup, imho. But you still should do a visual check of everything.) String gauge is entirely up to your preference. But since you will be using the same gauge for both tunings, you need to learn how to do a full setup of your guitar. This includes, checking action, intonation, the neck (depending on the neck, you may need to adjust the truss rod)...everything.
The best way to get your hands stronger is to use heavier strings.

I moved to 11s in standard for quite a while (partially because they sound a bit thicker than 9s or 10s) and when I moved back to 10s it was effortless.

Currently, what I use (and this is totally my preference, but to give you some ideas):
E Standard: 10-46 (25.5" scale guitar)
Drop D: 10-52 (25.5" scale guitar)
D Standard: 11-52 (24.75" scale guitar)
C# Standard/Drop B: 11-56 (24.75" scale guitar)
7 String B standard: 10-46 (just like E standard) and a 64 for the low B. (25.5" scale guitar).
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Quote by Anonden
You CAN play anything with anything....but some guitars sound right for some things, and not for others. Single coils sound retarded for metal, though those who are apeshit about harpsichord probably beg to differ.
Last edited by oneblackened at Jun 28, 2014,