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Round Versus Flatwound Strings

PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 2:49 pm
by Bant's Bluz
Once again I'm about to put my ignorance on display for all. My question is why are flatwound strings referred to as being for jazz players. Many years ago, e.g. late 50's early 60's flatwounds seemed to be very common on electric guitars.

The second thing that confuses me is that, in those days, I had cheap electric guitars and a Gibson SG. I put flatwounds on all of them and never had any difficulty. Now, I've got a LP and I want to start using flatwounds, but of course I can find them in the same gauge as the roundwounds that my LP was shipped with and I'm uncertain (read clue deficient) on what I might encounter with such a change over and then the proper course of action to deal with any such issues should they arise.

All thoughts are appreciated.

Re: Round Versus Flatwound Strings

PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 3:26 pm
by goldbrick
I use Chrome 11 flatwounds on a Les Paul with no problem--I do use a plain 3rd because the wound 3rd breaks easily--no changes to guitar necessary

Re: Round Versus Flatwound Strings

PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 3:38 pm
by leftyguitarman
A friend of mine uses them on his Telecaster because "It makes his guitar have the proper bass response" or something like that. They do sound a little different. You just gotta try them (again).

Re: Round Versus Flatwound Strings

PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 6:25 pm
by ricochet
Flatwounds generally have a bit less sustain and the interaction of the flat edges of the windings tends to mute higher harmonics. Jazzers use complex chords where simplifying the harmonic structure helps keep it from sounding muddy, and long sustain really isn't needed.

Re: Round Versus Flatwound Strings

PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 7:26 pm
by Bant's Bluz
Thanks for the feedback Guys! Goldbrick, could you possibly point me in the right direction of the flatwounds your friend uses, as in manufacturer, etc.?

I've said this many times, but getting back into guitar after an approximate 40 hiatus does present some challenges. That said, the thing I most appreciate about this forum is that people respond and don't make one feel like a complete dumb
ass.

After 4 years in the military, then 30 years in law enforcement and the subsequent sequelae of being hit in the head way, way too many times, my return to music has been a struggle.

Re: Round Versus Flatwound Strings

PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 1:58 am
by rustyslide
I have flatwound .011s on my semi-hollow archtop (with a wound third). Sound great, and feel very different to play. One of my friends is considering putting them on his Strat.

Re: Round Versus Flatwound Strings

PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 2:53 am
by goldbrick
The brand I use are called Chromes --MF sells 'em

Re: Round Versus Flatwound Strings

PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 4:19 am
by zhyla
I haven't really noticed anything interesting with flatwounds. I do like them on my bass but I'm not sure it really affects the sound.

Re: Round Versus Flatwound Strings

PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2009 1:46 pm
by deltablues57
You can get chromes in a 10 set. They really warm up the sound of your guitar. I love them.