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Thread: String suggestions for flat tops

  1. #1
    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default String suggestions for flat tops

    Hello all and thank you in advance for your response!

    I was stringing up a few instruments yesterday, a couple mandolins too, and realized I didn't have any light gauge strings for my Red Valley flat top. I usually like SIT strings phosphor bronze but figured before I ordered I could see what other flat top players are using???

    Thanks! Zach Wilson
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  2. #2
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    I've always used GHS A250's on my Flatiron 1N. The only exception is I tried the medium Thomastiks (Mittels) and liked them pretty well also. Overall, I used the A250s.

    f-d
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    +1 GHS A250's
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

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  6. #4
    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by fatt-dad View Post
    I've always used GHS A250's on my Flatiron 1N. The only exception is I tried the medium Thomastiks (Mittels) and liked them pretty well also. Overall, I used the A250s.

    f-d
    Thanks! I like those on my Yellowstone, med though (11-40). I'll have to get some lighter ones for the Red Valley.

  7. #5
    Registered User Eric F.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    GHS A240 is the set I've always used on flattops.

  8. #6
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    A250s are exactly the string gauges recommended for my Flatiron 1N. There's a sticker on the neck block and I went googling.

    Not to rule out something lighter, that is!

    f-d
    ˇpapá gordo ain’t no madre flaca!

    '20 A3, '30 L-1, '97 914, 2012 Cohen A5, 2012 Muth A5, '14 OM28A

  9. #7
    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by fatt-dad View Post
    A250s are exactly the string gauges recommended for my Flatiron 1N. There's a sticker on the neck block and I went googling.

    Not to rule out something lighter, that is!

    f-d
    Yes! I think that the A250s are the gauge I'd want, also recommend by James Wilson, who built mine. The Weber I have used A270s I think.

    Zach

  10. #8
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    yes, A270 are their EXP74 substitute.

    f-d
    ˇpapá gordo ain’t no madre flaca!

    '20 A3, '30 L-1, '97 914, 2012 Cohen A5, 2012 Muth A5, '14 OM28A

  11. #9
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Another vote for GHS A250s
    Steve

  12. #10
    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve L View Post
    Another vote for GHS A250s
    Quote Originally Posted by pops1 View Post
    +1 GHS A250's
    Thanks!

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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    I used A250 or D’Addairio J62s, depending on availability. Same gauges, and both good string sets...
    Chuck

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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    I bought a used Red Valley. Strings were old and dead so I put some EJ74's on. The tone brightened up considerably but it was too jangly for my taste. So I emailed Jim Wilson (Mr. Red Valley) for recommendations. He said he uses SIT Lights but other lighter gauge strings would probably be fine too. I had some Martin lights on hand so I put them on and the tone is a lot better. Ordered some SIT lights for backup but have not put them on again.

    The SIT lights are 10-15-24-36, phosphor bronze.
    The Martin lights are 10-14-24-34, not sure of windings - look like phosphor bronze.
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  15. #13
    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve L View Post
    Another vote for GHS A250s
    Quote Originally Posted by HonketyHank View Post
    I bought a used Red Valley. Strings were old and dead so I put some EJ74's on. The tone brightened up considerably but it was too jangly for my taste. So I emailed Jim Wilson (Mr. Red Valley) for recommendations. He said he uses SIT Lights but other lighter gauge strings would probably be fine too. I had some Martin lights on hand so I put them on and the tone is a lot better. Ordered some SIT lights for backup but have not put them on again.

    The SIT lights are 10-15-24-36, phosphor bronze.
    The Martin lights are 10-14-24-34, not sure of windings - look like phosphor bronze.
    Oh, yeah! I always forget about those Martin strings. I think I can get them locally for around $4!

  16. #14
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Nickel wound Newtone Medium 10~37 ..

    I've only replaced the 10 & 13.. the wound ones, 24 & 37. have been fine for many years..
    nickel alloys don't go dead from corrosion so soon . unlike bronze ..

    My flat top: a Hodson D'Jangolin..
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    Registered User Cobalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by mandroid View Post
    Nickel wound Newtone Medium 10~37 ..

    I've only replaced the 10 & 13.. the wound ones, 24 & 37. have been fine for many years..
    nickel alloys don't go dead from corrosion so soon . unlike bronze ..

    My flat top: a Hodson D'Jangolin..
    That's cool. Newtone strings are made just a few miles from where I live, and yet mostly I'm looking to imported USA-made strings. I have used Newtone in the past, without giving it a second thought, I reckon they are worth a look - the customisation options are really good, so many choices.

  19. #16
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Just the way the loops on the plain strings are formed, by Newtone, is why Gibson tailpieces have the 4 extra hooks, (12 in total)..
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  21. #17
    Registered User John Flynn's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    I really like EJ62's on my Parsons flat-top. 80/20 Bronze, light, 10 -34. The 80/20's have a slight "bell-like" tone I like.

  22. #18
    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by John Flynn View Post
    I really like EJ62's on my Parsons flat-top. 80/20 Bronze, light, 10 -34. The 80/20's have a slight "bell-like" tone I like.
    I haven't tried 80/20 bronze on any of my Mandolins. Are they more or less bright sounding then Phosphor bronze?

  23. #19
    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Thank you all for your recommendations! I love this community

    I received my GHS A250S in the mail the other day (ordered from just strings, who threw in a couple picks and a sticker!!!) and did a string change this morning.

    After a bit of time for the new strings to settle, I played for a bit, and I have to say I'm very impressed with the tone I am getting! It's a bit raspy (not buzzing)! The feel and sound is similar to the SIT strings I have used before. Choices are fun

    Once again, thanks!

  24. #20
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Soliver #001 has GHS A250s ...at least it will once I finish fixing it
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  25. #21
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by soliver View Post
    Soliver #001 has GHS A250s ...at least it will once I finish fixing it
    Oh, I cant wait to see it!

  26. #22
    Registered User John Flynn's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by Zach Wilson View Post
    I haven't tried 80/20 bronze on any of my Mandolins. Are they more or less bright sounding then Phosphor bronze?
    I would say more bright.

  27. #23
    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by John Flynn View Post
    I would say more bright.
    Thank you! I certainly think the PB is bright enough. If anything I'd like to find a "darker" or "warmer" sounding string.

  28. #24
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    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    Quote Originally Posted by Zach Wilson View Post
    Thank you! I certainly think the PB is bright enough. If anything I'd like to find a "darker" or "warmer" sounding string.
    Wait a week and the PB will warm up.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  29. #25

    Default Re: String suggestions for flat tops

    As someone who has never played a flat top before but might pull the trigger on one sometime soon, is there a reason why you put light gauge strings on them or is it just preference?

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