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Sat Jan 2, 2016, 06:51 PM

Can I put .11's on a full size flattop?

Bought new tuning pegs and some strings for my dreadnought today, and I didn't look at the string gauge 'til I got home. Can I put .11's on a dread, or are those more for like a parlor guitar?

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Reply Can I put .11's on a full size flattop? (Original post)
Iggo Jan 2016 OP
TexasProgresive Jan 2016 #1
Iggo Jan 2016 #2
TexasProgresive Jan 2016 #3
ProfessorGAC Jan 2016 #4

Response to Iggo (Original post)

Sat Jan 2, 2016, 07:35 PM

1. Several things to consider

The lighter gauge strings will tune up with less tension so you might have to adjust the neck to avoid buzzing. Also they will probably not give the sound projection of heavier gauge strings. There is an upside they will be easier to play.

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Response to TexasProgresive (Reply #1)

Sat Jan 2, 2016, 07:39 PM

2. Dangit.

I kinda like my neck right where it is. Bought it brand new back in '84 and it's been playing bright and beautiful ever since. I'll try them, but if there's buzz, I'm just gonna go back and get .12's.

Thanks for the reply!

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Response to Iggo (Reply #2)

Sat Jan 2, 2016, 08:02 PM

3. You might luck out - it just depends on the total string tension of the set.

I have a Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin CW that came stock with (.012,.016, .024w, .032, .042, .052) I replaced them with Thomastik-Infeld Jazz Swing strings .013, .017, .021,.028,.039,.053 flat wounds. There was no need to adjust the neck. I never did this before but the average gauge of the original string set was .030 and the new ones are .029 so perhaps the overall tension is about equal.

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Response to TexasProgresive (Reply #3)

Thu Jan 7, 2016, 05:16 PM

4. What TP Said

Different string compositions have different densities, so the amount of tension required rises or falls for any given gauge.

I'd try the 11's though. Worst case is you loosen them and adjust the truss rod a little, or you can even "zero fret" at the net with a D string.

Wouldn't want to do that permanently, but might help prevent buzz without messing with the neck until you get a gauge that suits the current set up.

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