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Author Topic: changing strings on a reso  (Read 1157 times)

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Offline unezrider

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changing strings on a reso
« on: February 08, 2011, 10:53:54 PM »
hello friend,
i've read various posts about changing strings on resonator guitars, but they all seem to take the example of removing all of the strings. the article on the little brother blues site is a great resource. http://www.littlebrotherblues.com/Gear/National-EN-Setup/StringingTips.html
i am wondering if you want to change strings one at a time, is it necessary to loosen the strings? or do you leave them at full tension, removing one, replacing it, & moving on to the next?
chris
"Be good, & you will be lonesome." -Mark Twain

Offline blueshome

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Re: changing strings on a reso
« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2011, 01:03:15 AM »
Keep the tension on and replace one at a time. If you loosen the strings then pressure is taken off the cone/cones and there is a good chance of rattles appearing. These can be a devil to get rid of.

Offline LB

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Re: changing strings on a reso
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2011, 04:16:56 AM »
I agree. It takes longer to replace them one at a time but that's a real good cautious way.... Thanks for linking too :)

Offline Richard

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Re: changing strings on a reso
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2011, 02:00:43 PM »
If it ain't broke then don't fix it, or rephrased maybe why tempt providence by taking them all off when the one by one method is proven. I do think the older guitars seem more sensitive to cone placement, particularly if it's an original cone which may well have spent most of it's life in one spot.
(That's enough of that. Ed)

Offline unezrider

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Re: changing strings on a reso
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2011, 02:30:26 PM »
thanks fellas!
the reassurance is helpful. (it's still relatively new, so i get a bit paranoid about moving the cone or ruining it)
i don't know that it matters, in other than a cosmetic way, but any suggestions on getting the end of the string to sit straight & snug in the tailpiece? i have a few that look like they are hanging on for their lives. notice the high E & B strings look nice & snug. the way all my strings looked when i got the guitar. & notice a couple examples of the "just barely making it" variety.
thanks again,
chris

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"Be good, & you will be lonesome." -Mark Twain

Offline LB

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Re: changing strings on a reso
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2011, 03:21:36 PM »
As long as it goes down into that slot the string angle should keep it in there. You should be fine but obviously some brands might fit tighter etc. I see you have EJ16/17s on there You might also rotate the ball a little and hold in place and retighten string.

I have to also say that if I were at some gig with only one reso, or on the road, or playing a prized old one with an old priceless cone, yeah I would do the one string method just out of knowing murphys law. I wish I had a nickel every time National company has fedexed a cone cone to someone.

By the way the more recent "hot rod" version of the national cone is something to be aware of.

Offline unezrider

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Re: changing strings on a reso
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2011, 04:08:42 PM »
"By the way the more recent "hot rod" version of the national cone is something to be aware of."

how so? aren't they thinner than what they were using before? i do know that's whats in my nat.
"Be good, & you will be lonesome." -Mark Twain

Offline LB

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Re: changing strings on a reso
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2011, 08:44:31 AM »
Yeah I have a general opinion based on my own experiences that might hold water in some cases. I'll break that down. And I'm only talking about 9.5" biscuit style cones.

Old vintage cone type 1 - Cones like the one that was out of my 1930s national trovador had some twang to it but also lush overtones, sustain and extreme responsiveness to the light touch but also loud with picks. Well worth the praise and the best cone I have.

Old vintage cone type 2 - Cones like the one in my 1934 trojan looks original for sure but thicker cone with some firmness, loud with a lot of bite and nasally bluesy tone. Fantastic cone I wish I could get more of. Not a great cone for all around styles but for bottleneck makes the guitar astoundingly good and unique. More of a bell tone when held on a pen and tapped. A lot more like quarterman cones when holding in hand.

Standard Nat Cone - Very good solid, loud firm sound. Holding on a pen and pinging them gets a sound not quite like a bell, but not dead like a pie plate either. They sit evenly on a table and pretty firm and solid. Great reliable cone. Lacks some of the responsiveness of the vintage type 1, a full balanced sound.

Hot Rod Nat Cone - lighter, pings less like a bell than the previous and doesn't necessarily sit on a table flat and flush but seals down nice with string pressure. More responsive than the previous modern Nat cones and less of that big perfect sound and more warm midrange and full sound. Very close to the type 1 vintage and good enough to make me happy in my 33 El Trov but still lacks just a touch of the magic of the type 1 vintage. Almost as good as the best vintage one.

Quarterman spun cone with logo stamped on it for authenticity - These ping more like a bell and sit on a table flat. More like the standard modern national cone but I dont think sound as good once installed. Not as resposive as the Nat hotrod cone. Also did not have the unique sound of the type 2 vintage even though they feel and ping similar in hand. Great quality and ping bell sound but just do not live up to the hype. Nowhere near as good as the quarterman spider style cones which have a massive bluegrass sound. and twang.

Your results may vary....  of course. And my opinion might change with future experience.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2011, 08:48:59 AM by LittleBrother »

Offline unezrider

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Re: changing strings on a reso
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2011, 09:00:52 AM »
thanks for the breakdown, little brother :)
(you had me concerned about the "be aware")
"Be good, & you will be lonesome." -Mark Twain

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