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Thread: tenor or new standard tuning

  1. #26

    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob View Post
    New standard tuning is ususally C-G-D-A-E-G. If your guitar is standard scale length, around 25.5 inches, high B on the 1st string is pretty much impossible. Even very thin strings will break before reaching that pitch. The practical pitch limit for the 1st string is most probably high G, as on a twelve string guitar.
    I have the top strings on my 2 twelve-strings tuned to E, so I don't know what you mean by high G as on a 12-string...

  2. #27
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Quote Originally Posted by Eddie Sheehy View Post
    I have the top strings on my 2 twelve-strings tuned to E, so I don't know what you mean by high G as on a 12-string...
    that would be the octave G string

  3. #28

    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Ahh, the .008"...

  4. #29
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Octave Down from the E next to it ?
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  5. #30
    Registered User jdchapman's Avatar
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    I would think the scale would make a big difference. A long scaled guitar tuned in fifths wouldn't allow some of the fingerings possible in a shorter scale instrument, obviously. Even a long scale tenor can make some things difficult, which is why people like me like those little Regals so much. No reason not to try the tuning, but I'm curious, are you mostly playing single string leads on it? Or just two finger chords? I've been getting back into tenor myself, but I have been opting for GDGD or GDAD. New tunings make things fun again on every chordophone, I say.

  6. #31
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    mostly leads and 2 finger, some 3.


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  7. #32
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Octave4Plus makes a .006 High B String that tunes up to B super fast w/o any issues

  8. #33

    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Quote Originally Posted by s11141827 View Post
    Octave4Plus makes a .006 High B String that tunes up to B super fast w/o any issues
    Absolutely not true, friend.

    The string path has to be free of burrs, kinks and flaws. Any potential flaw can act as a knife edge, leading to the string snapping at that location.

    The string has to be brought to pitch over time. I know people who tuned quickly, counter to the instructions, and then complained of breakage. Don't do it!

    Here's a few topics wherein I post about my sucessful experiments tuning to (low to high) CGDAEB on steel-string instruments.

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/t...-my-experiment

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/t...ndocello-Plus!

    And a social group topic wherein I posted about an easy way to convert a nylon-string guitar to CGDAEB tuning with fishing line for the top string.

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/g...#gmessage86786

    Sorry to be nitpicky about this, but I think of the Café, as well as other forums, as resources for those who will come later. Bad information takes away from the value of that knowledge and information. If someone doesn't care enough about the forum to do more than occasionally drop spam and misinformation, at least future readers and members might appreciate being given alternative ideas and claims, and can consider for themselves what might be reliable.
    ----

    Playing a funky oval-hole scroll-body mandolin, several mandolins retuned to CGDA, three CGDA-tuned Flatiron mandolas, two Flatiron mandolas tuned as octave mandolins,and a six-course 25.5" scale CGDAEB-tuned Ovation Mandophone.

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  10. #34

    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Quote Originally Posted by Explorer View Post
    The string path has to be free of burrs, kinks and flaws. Any potential flaw can act as a knife edge, leading to the string snapping at that location.

    The string has to be brought to pitch over time. I know people who tuned quickly, counter to the instructions, and then complained of breakage. Don't do it!
    I second this and thank you for bringing it up. I have a short-scale 6-string I tune Eb Bb F C G D. To get the high D I need an .008. It took a lot of trial-and-error to realize I had to tune it in steps - tune up then let it rest, tune a bit higher then let it rest and continue until it hits pitch. Once there its quite stable.

    A big part of getting strings to hit the higher pitches is, as you note, making sure the string path is clean and clear.

    But I also think heat generated by the vibrating string is a factor. When I say I "let it rest" I'm usually considering a reasonable amount of time for the string to cool down before I go at it again. Whether true or not, the slow and steady method is the way to go.

    PS - I have been able to get the high D up a semi-tone to Eb but strings always break before hitting the high E, even with a .007 gauge.
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  11. #35
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Quote Originally Posted by fentonjames View Post
    not looking to replace the mandolin. looking for a way to keep myself interested in playing guitar.
    Revisiting this thread because of a recent experience. A friend of mine, long long time guitarist, (and a rather good one) asked me very similar questions a couple of years ago about just tuning his guitar in fifths to play it like a tenor guitar, and for very similar reasons. While playing somewhat more mandolinny, his main goal was to do something that forced him into a new world, a new guitar with new problems to resolve and new ways to think.

    Instead of going all mandolinish and tuning in fifths, I suggested he try perfect fourths tuning. Just taking the top two strings up a semitone so that every interval between open strings is a fourth.

    This preserves the "hand span" for the next open string for chromatic fingering (one fret one finger), which a guitar is kind of optimized for. And one can revel in the amazing symmetries when all the string intervals are the same. Everything is portable up and down and across the neck.

    Not that my friend shouldn't explore tenor guitars tuned in fifths, or mandocellos, or mandolins, or anything he wants. Might be some advantage of course to using an instrument designed for the task, of course. But, I told him, if you are not looking to explore mandolinishness as much as to find a way to stay interested in guitar, it seemed to me that perfect fourths tuning was a better, and maybe more exciting and less frustrtating way to go.

    Well he went to perfect fourths and fell deep into that hole. He has joined "the first church of Ant Law" as he calls it, and thanks me with free drinks whenever I see him.

    FWIW-YMMV
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  12. #36
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    I made a mini telecaster from a Stew Mac kit during lockdown. I tuned it to NST (FCGDAC) and have had some fun with it. The low F string is a bit floppy, and I haven't gotten used to the high C. It does make playing tunes in F and C quite fun.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  13. #37

    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffD View Post
    Instead of going all mandolinish and tuning in fifths, I suggested he try perfect fourths tuning. Just taking the top two strings up a semitone so that every interval between open strings is a fourth. This preserves the "hand span" for the next open string for chromatic fingering (one fret one finger), which a guitar is kind of optimized for. And one can revel in the amazing symmetries when all the string intervals are the same. Everything is portable up and down and across the neck.
    I had two 8-string guitars tuned in fifths, one with a 28.625" scale length (AbEbBbFCGDA) and the other with 25.5". The 25.5" lasted longer in full fifths tuning (BbFCGDAEB low to high), but the 28" was *hugely* vertical in approach. I eventually changed the 28" to what is sometimes called E Standard Extended, tuned low-to-high EADGCFAD. That gave me an extended bass guitar at the bottom, and the standard guitar tuning's intervals at the top, albeit dropped a full step. I was playing mostly combined funk bass/funk rhythm guitar, and the discontinuity of that third interval in the middle of guitar standard tuning makes workable barre chords possible.

    Eventually the 25.5" 8-string also wound up in EADGCFAD tuning.

    The experiment really cemented for me, and allowed me to fully appreciate, just how many advantages there are to standard EADGBE guitar tuning.

    I almost went to a 9-string, which would have added one more string at the bass end, BEADGCFAD, but instead focused almost all my efforts on really mastering mandola.
    ----

    Playing a funky oval-hole scroll-body mandolin, several mandolins retuned to CGDA, three CGDA-tuned Flatiron mandolas, two Flatiron mandolas tuned as octave mandolins,and a six-course 25.5" scale CGDAEB-tuned Ovation Mandophone.

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  14. #38
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    I recently tuned my 1931 Gibson TG-1 tenor one-half step below CGDA (starting with B). This gives (on John Pearse strings) 11, 13, 22, 32. Nothing breaks with this tuning and gauge of strings. I can always capo to go back to CGDA, but this low voice is rather nice. Spooky low tuning.
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  16. #39

    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Quote Originally Posted by Cornelius Morris View Post
    I recently tuned my 1931 Gibson TG-1 tenor one-half step below CGDA (starting with B). This gives (on John Pearse strings) 11, 13, 22, 32. Nothing breaks with this tuning and gauge of strings. I can always capo to go back to CGDA, but this low voice is rather nice. Spooky low tuning.
    Doesn't the TG-1 have a 22 13/16" scale length?

    I'm asking because a plain string will tune easily up to G4 at a 25.5" guitar scale length, with the string at only 73% of breaking tension. Fretting at the second fret gives you A4 with that same tension. At the 22 13/16" scale length of the TG-1, the high A4 should only be around 74% of breaking tension.

    Were you breaking the high A string a lot?
    ----

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  17. #40
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob View Post
    New standard tuning is ususally C-G-D-A-E-G. If your guitar is standard scale length, around 25.5 inches, high B on the 1st string is pretty much impossible. Even very thin strings will break before reaching that pitch. The practical pitch limit for the 1st string is most probably high G, as on a twelve string guitar.
    But Octave4Plus makes a .006 Gauge High B String designed for tuning to B4 on a 25.5 in scale & you have to tune it gently so that it doesn't break

  18. #41

    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Quote Originally Posted by s11141827 View Post
    Octave4Plus makes a .006 High B String that tunes up to B super fast w/o any issues
    Quote Originally Posted by s11141827 View Post
    But Octave4Plus makes a .006 Gauge High B String designed for tuning to B4 on a 25.5 in scale & you have to tune it gently so that it doesn't break
    And now we're to the point where he's contradicting himself. *laugh*
    ----

    Playing a funky oval-hole scroll-body mandolin, several mandolins retuned to CGDA, three CGDA-tuned Flatiron mandolas, two Flatiron mandolas tuned as octave mandolins,and a six-course 25.5" scale CGDAEB-tuned Ovation Mandophone.

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  20. #42
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    Magma makes special 5ths Tuned Nylon strings:https://magmastoreusa.com/products/c...opper-gct-gh-1 you need to make sure there's no burs in the string path so tune it slowly & keep that nut lubricated.

  21. #43
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    The string making technology for super thin strings that can tune super high on a longer scale length is currently going under improvements.

  22. #44
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    Default Re: tenor or new standard tuning

    My .006 High B didn't break cause I actually added some silk winding to both ends of the strings like they do with flat wound strings for bowed stringed instruments

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