Drop-A both .066 and .070 seem flappy

Discussion in 'Sevenstring Guitars' started by rexbinary, Feb 23, 2019.

  1. rexbinary

    rexbinary MOD King

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    On my ESP AW-7 25.5" 7-string guitar I am trying to string it up for Drop-A. I've tried both .066 and .070 for the A string plus just a normal 6-string set. (10-46) Both have felt flappy, and sound flubby. I can't imagine I would need anything over .070 so I'm wondering what I could be doing wrong? It does look like the .070 is not sitting flush enough in the nut, but the .066 was fine.
     
  2. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear Vendor

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    For reference, a 72 A is the same tension as a 36 octave A of the 10s set. 68 is the same tension as the 46. 66 is looser than all the other strings.
    So presuming you like 10s, you are perhaps on the borderline of what is enough for you. A 72 might be just right. I have found that lower tunings and bigger gauges need more tension to not be floppy, so having the tightest string on the bottom makes sense - which would be say, a 74.
    The nut slot probably needs widening - you can just rub the string back and forth until it contacts at the bottom (don't rub deeper!) - but this is not your problem. Quite the opposite in fact - with it not seated in the nut, you will have higher action, and experience less flop.
    The safest thing to do here is tune the 70 up to Bb. If that feels good, you want a 74 for A. A 72 will feel like somewhere inbetween A-Bb does on the 70. You can use math to make estimates like this - increase/decrease string size 6% for every semitone.
     
  3. rexbinary

    rexbinary MOD King

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    It doesn't feel good until I turn it up to B. Is that 76?
     
  4. dirtool

    dirtool SS.org Regular

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    I have the same guitar and experienced the same issue, so I think I can give you some advices.
    Picking near the bridge will make you "feel" tighter.
    Tune the whole guitar halt step up, A#FA#D#G#CF, Keith Merrow did that when he play 25.5 Ibanez in the old days.
    Go 26.5 or 27, 25.5 for drop A seems the limit, I finally settle down 64+4610 on 25.5, yes the low A is not as tight as the low E, but it is acceptable and playable. Also I don't need to drill the tuner nor fine the nut.
    Sure you can going thicker, but I just don't like the unbalance tone and feel.
    Hope it helps.
     
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  5. BrutalRob

    BrutalRob SS.org Regular

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    I can confirm what @Winspear said. A 68 on A feels like an 46 on E. Hence i use those for drop A on a 25,5 scale.

    What feels good for you on B? The 66 or the 70? If it is the 66, try an 74 for A. If it is the 70, you would habe to try an 78.

    Though in my experience, at some point you will start to loose the attack and the string will sound muddy.
     
  6. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear Vendor

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    As Rob said, if you mean the .070 then .078 yeah: 70 (A) * 1.06 (A#) * 1.06 (B) = 78.6

    Indeed muddy tone does become an issue getting thick on a short scale. I would try 75 or 76 max, that will feel somewhere between A# and B with the 70.
     
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  7. Noisy Humbucker

    Noisy Humbucker Only obsesses over guitars when not playing them.

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    Or a 59. :)
     
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  8. rexbinary

    rexbinary MOD King

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    Sorry yeah I was referring to using a 70. I’ll check my strumming position, and give 76 a try. I could tune the guitar up a 1/2 step and use my Drop pedal to compensate as well. Good idea. Thanks all!
     
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  9. NoodleFace

    NoodleFace Delicious Noodles

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    You must pick ultra hard or something. I can't imagine that being floppy
     
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  10. Curt

    Curt Where we're going we don't need neck pickups.

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    .068 felt nice enough to me and sounded fine, .070 felt a little better but I didn't like the sound.
     
  11. Glades

    Glades Down in the Everglades

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    I use a 59 for A in 25.5". Feels good to me :shrug:
     
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  12. Ji Sung

    Ji Sung SS.org Regular

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    I use a 59 for Ab. And I pick really hard. Using thin picks certainly helps as well.
     
  13. BrutalRob

    BrutalRob SS.org Regular

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    @ Ji Sung yeah i think thin picks help for using light gauges. but as the gauge increases, i would recomment to use heavier picks as well. thin picks tend to be to elastic with thick gauges

    @rexbinary which string gauge do you use for the E? or any other string gauge as reference
     
  14. CovertSovietBear

    CovertSovietBear Polylinker

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    You might want to widen your nut and mess around with your bridge by adjusting its height.

    I've used a .62 for A on a 25.5 and it felt a little chunky for me but it didn't feel flubby. I've also used .66 for a G on 26.5 and .62 for A on a 26.5 and those felt fine for me but all that varies by playing style and pick choice.

    Like I said just widen your nut and mess with your bridge and see if that helps.
     
  15. rexbinary

    rexbinary MOD King

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    Usually 46 for hard tail and 42 for floyds on E
     
  16. Masoo2

    Masoo2 SS.org Regular

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    Hell I use a SUPER thick pick (Huf Mini Anvil XL) and still run 56s for A-G, it's all about understanding how to pick better and more controlling/precise while still being aggressive.
     
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  17. Vyn

    Vyn Not a Sparkly Vampire

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    It really does come down to picking technique. I ran a 58 for A for years, I've only recently moved to a 62 just to experiment a bit

    From memory Jason Richardson uses a 58 on a 25.5 scale guitar for G. Even Misha admitted to using a 56 for A on their AGCFAD tuned 6s on their last tour.
     
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  18. Glades

    Glades Down in the Everglades

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    It's not a matter of taughtness for me. The heavier gauges certainly feel easier to find with the right hand. For me the thicker strings just sound different. The heavier I've gone, the more the strings get a round, almost muffled sound. So i kept the 59 on A and got used to it. And now i really like it.
     
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  19. Mathemagician

    Mathemagician SS.org Regular

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    I use a 64 for the low B on 25.5 JP7. A 62 feels loose.
     
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  20. jephjacques

    jephjacques BUTTS LOL

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    Even a 62 feels too thick for drop A to me. I'm much happier in the 56-59 range for anything down to Ab.
     
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