Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Choice of classical guitar strings and technical issues connected with their use.
hesson11
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Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by hesson11 » Wed Feb 22, 2017 8:17 pm

I've been playing for many years and have always tended to change all 6 strings at the same time. But I've often read of those who prefer to change the bass strings relatively frequently while leaving the trebles in place. The implication is that the trebles improve or at least change in some way.

What I'm wondering is what are the specific effects you may have noticed when leaving the treble strings on for longer periods. Do they get brighter and more sharply defined? Warmer and rounder? More powerful? More refined? Other? Or is it simply that the trebles don't deteriorate as quickly as the wound basses? Any thoughts would be appreciated. THANKS.
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petermc61
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by petermc61 » Wed Feb 22, 2017 8:58 pm

They don't tend to deteriorate as quickly from a sound quality perspective. I probably change treble strings just as often because they have gotten a bit scratchy from my nails, or because I just want to experiment with something else.

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Beowulf
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by Beowulf » Wed Feb 22, 2017 9:49 pm

I change all at once and have for over 50 years now. Yes, the bass strings deteriorate more rapidly than the treble...with the D string tending to be the most fragile. My experience has been that once the bass strings need replacing, even the treble strings have lost a bit of life and vibrancy and if they are not changed at the same time, the balance between bass and treble suffers. However, that is just me and I tend to use a set for 2-3 months (5-7 hours per week on average).
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astro64
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by astro64 » Thu Feb 23, 2017 12:03 am

The better the guitar, the longer the bass strings will still sound good. So assuming you don't shred the basses by playing mostly on the same frets with heavy pressure, the need to change the basses before the trebles may depend more on whether or not you tend to get scratches on the trebles, as Petermc61 also notes. If the trebles are not easily scratched, they last a very long time. I have guitars that I haven't played with 3 yr old trebles that still sound fine whenever I try them.

oc chuck
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by oc chuck » Thu Feb 23, 2017 2:01 am

I think the trebles themselves stay the same longer than the basses.
The old trebles will "sound better" because the new bass strings
will pick up sympathetic vibrations that the old basses have lost.
IMHO.
I change basses 2 or 3 times before I change the trebles.

hesson11
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by hesson11 » Thu Feb 23, 2017 3:44 am

Thanks all. The consensus so far seems to be not that they improve over time but that they remain the same, relative to the basses. THANKS.
-Bob

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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by Bill B » Thu Feb 23, 2017 3:52 am

If were talking about the difference between trebles a few weeks old and maybe a month or two, I think tuning stability might be improved with the older ones. classical guitar strings take some time to become anything like stable, and many people say they can't really count on strings staying in tune for the first few days. I think that they may continue to improve stability for a few weeks to a month perhaps. Of course the better you tie them, the faster they settle in. I feel like I can get a new set to stay reasonably well in tune after a day if I fuss with them enough, but they require less fuss the older they get.
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:14 am

Beowulf wrote:I change all at once and have for over 50 years now. Yes, the bass strings deteriorate more rapidly than the treble...with the D string tending to be the most fragile. My experience has been that once the bass strings need replacing, even the treble strings have lost a bit of life and vibrancy and if they are not changed at the same time, the balance between bass and treble suffers. However, that is just me and I tend to use a set for 2-3 months (5-7 hours per week on average).
Just curious, what strings do you use?

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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by JohnB » Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:42 am

It depends. I find that some trebles get very scratchy, very quickly and I would have to replace those much sooner that than the basses.
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zupfgeiger
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by zupfgeiger » Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:56 am

I second what others have said. My trebles last longer than the basses but some get scratchy (especially 1. string) after only two weeks of intensive daily playing. Most of the time I use Knobloch carbon g and b string which last longer than the nylon e. My average playing time for trebles is 4 weeks while I am changing basses every two weeks or even 10 days.
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Salvador
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by Salvador » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:25 am

There's a time i lost interest to play guitar. I did not change the strings for more than a year. I played it again and recorded a video and uploaded to Youtube. The video got 24k views, with 2 dislikes. The video got positive feedback even though the strings are more than 1 year old hehe.

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Contreras
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by Contreras » Thu Feb 23, 2017 12:12 pm

Salvador wrote:There's a time i lost interest to play guitar. I did not change the strings for more than a year. I played it again and recorded a video and uploaded to Youtube. The video got 24k views, with 2 dislikes. The video got positive feedback even though the strings are more than 1 year old hehe.
You really think they were applauding the strings? :mrgreen:
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by Salvador » Thu Feb 23, 2017 12:33 pm

Contreras wrote:
Salvador wrote:There's a time i lost interest to play guitar. I did not change the strings for more than a year. I played it again and recorded a video and uploaded to Youtube. The video got 24k views, with 2 dislikes. The video got positive feedback even though the strings are more than 1 year old hehe.
You really think they were applauding the strings? :mrgreen:
Hehe you are right. Most comments i received is how nice the song is, and not how nice my guitar sounds lol.

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zupfgeiger
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by zupfgeiger » Thu Feb 23, 2017 1:31 pm

Salvador wrote:There's a time i lost interest to play guitar. I did not change the strings for more than a year. I played it again and recorded a video and uploaded to Youtube. The video got 24k views, with 2 dislikes. The video got positive feedback even though the strings are more than 1 year old hehe.
A string which is not at all or very rarely played over a period of one year of course sounds like a new string. No wonder the audience liked it.
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Salvador
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Re: Effects of leaving treble strings on for prolonged periods?

Post by Salvador » Thu Feb 23, 2017 2:49 pm

zupfgeiger wrote:
Salvador wrote:There's a time i lost interest to play guitar. I did not change the strings for more than a year. I played it again and recorded a video and uploaded to Youtube. The video got 24k views, with 2 dislikes. The video got positive feedback even though the strings are more than 1 year old hehe.
A string which is not at all or very rarely played over a period of one year of course sounds like a new string. No wonder the audience liked it.
I see, now i understand. That's why i did not bother to change it. It still sounds fine especially the treble strings, but the bass strings, the volume and punchy sound decreased.

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