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Thread: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

  1. #1
    Registered User Kevin Briggs's Avatar
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    Default Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    Hi Everyone,

    I recently ordered two sets of Curt Mangan mandolin strings and, for now anyway, have found my new favorite strings.

    They are the 11.5 - 41 guage, so virtually identical to the J75s I've been using. I was anticipating a difference in tone, but so much in feel. Let me just say, they definitely sound and feel different.

    As other reviewers before me have noted, they do not have that initial brashness characteristic of the J75s. I actually like that brashness, especially after the strings have been on for a day or so. The sweet spot is short lived though, and it sometimes seems as soon as I start loving J75s that's as soon as they start to quickly decline. I get about a week of good tone out of them.

    There's no telling how the Mangans will evolve with my mandolin and playing, but my first impression is they feel smoother and a tad tighter than J75s. It's welcome. It's like a greater sense of stability, and some of my tuning issues have resolved, at least initially. I don't know, they somehow seem to pull out a more robust tone than the J75s.

    We'll see how they evolve, but for now I'm smitten. It is kind of strange that they are so long prior to being trimmed, and the fact that they are almost twice as expensive is a thing, but tone is tone. So far it's worth it.
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  3. #2

    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    I found out about Curt Mangan strings when I got my Girouard mandola and Max told me it had Curt Mangan strings on it, and that's what he put on all his mandolins when he sends them out. I tried some and your experience matches mine: they lose the brashness almost immediately, they settle to the pitch and don't stretch for hours, and they keep that great tone for a long time. Everyone I've given a set to has become a Curt Mangan fan.

    I'm guessing they are long because they get used for other instruments as well and it's probably more efficient to just make one string length. I like it that when I called, Curt answered the phone. He's also just a few hours away up in Cortez, CO.

    Enjoy!
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    Kevin I pretty much use only Curt Mangan's for my mandolins, mandolas, octave mandolins, and mandocello, as well as my guitars ( classical and arch top).
    I agree they have great tone and play ability and seem to hold on to that longer than most of the competition.
    "Mean Old Timer, He's got grey hair, Mean Old Timer he just don't care
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    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    I put a set of CM Monel med. on my Girouard F-5 last week and love them. They hold tune better than any other string I have tried. Well worth the extra $.
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

  6. #5

    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    I have been using and liking the CM Monel's for quite some time. Great strings that seem to lean towards the bluegrass sound to my ears and they last a long time.

  7. #6

    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    Curt worked at Ernie Ball for years. He knows his stuff. I have talked to him on the phone several times, and it's a small company. I think his daughter was doing his website for a while (she might still be).

    I bought my first set of his mandolin strings out of the bargain bin (can you imagine) back in 2010 at the now defunct Acoustic Outfitters in Stratham, NH. Best $3.99 I ever spent.
    There's nothing better than first-hand experience.

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    Registered User Jcdraayer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    I wonder if I got a bad set, but I tried out the CM Monel Mediums on my F5 and they sounded quite anemic to my ears - especially the E strings. Played them for about and hour and took them off.

  9. #8
    Registered User Kevin Briggs's Avatar
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    I hear you, jcdraayer. There are too many variables to explain it. What works for one mandolin wonít work the same for another. Same with people. Iíve only used the heaviest bluegrass series strings, not the monels.

  10. #9
    Registered User Mandobart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    I've been playing Curt Mangan strings on almost all my instruments for a little over a year now. I first tried a set of the fusion matched phosphor bronze strings on my mandola. I've tried lots of different strings and to be honest I don't usually notice any difference, but the Curt Mangan strings were audibly better sounding, with better tone, volume and sustain.

    I use his strings on my mandolins, mandola, octave mandolin, mandocello and my guitars. The only instruments I don't prefer them on is my Martin T1K ukulele (nothing sounds better than Worth strings) and my fiddles. I haven't ran across Mangan fiddle strings.

  11. #10
    Resident Hack
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    Quote Originally Posted by Jcdraayer View Post
    I wonder if I got a bad set, but I tried out the CM Monel Mediums on my F5 and they sounded quite anemic to my ears - especially the E strings. Played them for about and hour and took them off.
    I also did not get great results from Mangan Monel Mediums . I loved the D'Addario Monels but these were weak. I switched back to EJ74s and the result was immediately noticeably better. Way louder. My next change is going to be the Mangan phosphor bronze, so I will be able to compare/contrast on that.
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    I am a fan of Curt's strings on both mandolin and guitar. Good tone and good " life expectancy" at a reasonable price. I have been meaning to give his banjo strings an audition. R/
    I love hanging out with mandolin nerds . . . . . Thanks peeps ...

  13. #12
    Registered User Drew Egerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    I love the Curt Mangan monels. I use the Gabe Wiseman set which is the "custom medium" gauges.
    I can't use Phosphor bronze from any brand as my hands just corrode the heck out of them in no time, CM included. Like 3 days and they are green.
    But no problem with monels. I used d'Addario before for a long time and I would say the CM are at least on par if not slightly better to me (I find both brands significantly better than the Martins and worth the price difference)
    Drew
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  14. #13
    Registered User Jcdraayer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    Quote Originally Posted by Mitch Stein View Post
    I also did not get great results from Mangan Monel Mediums . I loved the D'Addario Monels but these were weak. I switched back to EJ74s and the result was immediately noticeably better. Way louder. My next change is going to be the Mangan phosphor bronze, so I will be able to compare/contrast on that.
    I have a set of the DA monels, so maybe Iíll try those next.

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Egerton View Post
    I love the Curt Mangan monels. I use the Gabe Wiseman set which is the "custom medium" gauges.
    I can't use Phosphor bronze from any brand as my hands just corrode the heck out of them in no time, CM included. Like 3 days and they are green.
    But no problem with monels. I used d'Addario before for a long time and I would say the CM are at least on par if not slightly better to me (I find both brands significantly better than the Martins and worth the price difference)
    Good to know. My F5S seems to sound better with the custom mediums from DA as opposed to the regular mediums. Maybe I just need to try the Gabe Wiseman versions to get more of the same.

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    Old Guy Mike Scott's Avatar
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    Well....it was way past time to change the strings on my Big Muddy M-2. Mike Dulak recommends "medium light" strings of which I have several sets for some reason. I noted that I had a set of Curt Mangan Monels that I didn't remember buying. I never have used light strings - ever. I figured why not and put them on the M-2. Amazing tone from them. Could be it was just that the old strings were really shot - I don't know - but I'm sold so far on the Mangan strings. Call me a believer.
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  16. #15
    Worlds ok-ist mando playr Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Scott View Post
    Well....it was way past time to change the strings on my Big Muddy M-2. Mike Dulak recommends "medium light" strings of which I have several sets for some reason. I noted that I had a set of Curt Mangan Monels that I didn't remember buying. I never have used light strings - ever. I figured why not and put them on the M-2. Amazing tone from them. Could be it was just that the old strings were really shot - I don't know - but I'm sold so far on the Mangan strings. Call me a believer.
    It could be the brand. Or it could maybe be that flat tops perform better with lighter string sets... mine do. YMMV. Most flat top builders suggest/encourage using a lighter gauge.

    Happy pickin'

  17. #16
    Registered User lowtone2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Curt Mangan Strings - Wonderful

    I settled on Elixirs on my mandolin long ago. I like them a lot. So, because they are unavailable right now, i have been trying other coated strings. None hit the spot until I put on a set of Curt Mangans. I immediately bought a few more sets. Now I'm not worried about Elixirs anymore! Something about them is just better. They have all the power of J74s without the zing, and something else...maybe flexibility?

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