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 Post subject: 9-42 Gauge Strings
 Post Posted: Fri Sep 19, 2014 9:05 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2006 1:00 pm
Posts: 51
Location: Sun City, California
Hi Rics,

I am considering changing to Ernie Ball Super Slinkys 9-42 gauge strings on my 360. I purchased this guitar new about 9 years ago and believe it is set up from the factory. What can I expect from this change regarding the neck, intonation, etc.

Thanks.....


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 Post subject: Re: 9-42 Gauge Strings
 Post Posted: Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:36 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 6:07 am
Posts: 3847
May not be a good idea. There is so little tension on the strings that they may not generate enough downforce over the bridge with the relatively shallow break angle back to the tailpiece to retain good tone or sustain.

But here is a great use of a 9-42 set: as a "terz" tuning on a 320/325. Tune the set up to G/D/Bb/F/C/G or G#/D#/B/F#/C#/G# for a bright, transparent tone that is completely different from either a mandolin, a 12-string or a regular guitar capo'ed.


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 Post subject: Re: 9-42 Gauge Strings
 Post Posted: Sat Sep 20, 2014 12:24 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2013 5:59 pm
Posts: 52
This is based upon my personal preference and experience....so here's my two guitar picks worth. With some truss rod adjustment, etc a 360 could be set up for 9-42 guage strings...but.....as previously noted, 360's (and most Rick's) have a relatively shallow string break angle from the bridge to the tailpiece which yields less string tension which combined with the 24 3/4" scale contributes to the guitars easy playability. With 9-42's, the strings will feel almost floppy, may not hold tune as well, and probably need more neck relief to eliminate possible buzzing from the looser string tension. One thing we do know is that Rickenbackers tend to play, feel and sound their best with as little neck relief as possible (they are designed
that way). I would stick with 10-46's and make sure the guitar is really well set-up. While Rickenbacker's generally leave the factory with a good set-up, things do change over time as wood settles, guitars move from one climate to another, etc. A good basic set-up (truss rod adjustment/neck relief, bridge height, intonation) can do wonders. When I purchased my new 620/6 it came well set-up from the dealer, but I still needed to tweak the rod and bridge to get it just right...then as the guitar settled over the next 3 or 4 weeks, I did a string change and again fine tuned the set-up. Also, you can experiment with different brands of 10-46 strings....some have more or less tension than others (fat, thin, round or hex cores, nickel plated vs pure nickel wound, etc).


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 Post subject: Re: 9-42 Gauge Strings
 Post Posted: Tue Sep 23, 2014 10:22 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2006 1:00 pm
Posts: 51
Location: Sun City, California
Hi Rics,

Thanks for the important advice. I was trying to make it a little easier to play and bend the strings. It's been awhile since I've played. Thanks again Rics....


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 Post subject: Re: 9-42 Gauge Strings
 Post Posted: Tue Sep 23, 2014 8:31 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 16, 2013 4:18 pm
Posts: 76
Location: Chicagoland
You're talking about an ~$8 experiment ($4 for 9's and $4 for another set of 10's if you don't like it). I like 9's (or even 8's) on some of my guitars, but my experience with them on Ricks is that the tone suffers. So what. Doesn't sound like you're playing sold out arenas at the moment. ;) If its more comfortable to you and that's what's going to get you playing again, that's more important than your tone being a little thin. Put 9's on and play, then play some more and work your way back up to 10's if you're not happy with the tone.

Just play. :)


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 Post subject: Re: 9-42 Gauge Strings
 Post Posted: Thu Sep 25, 2014 8:52 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 6:07 am
Posts: 3847
I actually prefer 11's, as they have a little more tension, but not that much more, and they really help bring out all the tone the guitar has to offer.


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