Coated Strings and Shared Guitars

Discussion in 'Tonefreaks' started by northernguitarguy, Oct 3, 2017.

  1. northernguitarguy

    northernguitarguy SWeAT hOg

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    Hello there and good day.

    I have to teach two classes of middle-school Music this year and will be teaching some basic guitar. We have 30 decent Yamaha acoustic guitars that I'm sending out to be restrung. I'm wondering if it would be worth it to spend extra on Elixir's. I personally don't like playing with them, they just feel too soft and weird under the fingers. But for a class set, I'm wondering if I would be able to get a full school year's usage out of them. Some kid hands can be 'gooey' and I'd like to be able to wipe them clean after use.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. dffdff

    dffdff Senior Member

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    I'd say absolutely. You said middle-school and first thing that came to mind was sticky hands and black strings. If you want to keep them somewhat interested, might as well go the full distance.

    I mean, I already like playing the damn thing and still hate old acoustic stings enough to be discouraged sometimes, imagine kids. They might ruin a regular set in the first use, but unless they start doing pick-slides, or have such a heavy grip that they peel off the coating (seen it happen) I doubt they'll ruin elixirs too quickly. In the end, you'll save a bunch of money.

    That said, I went on a different route in my situation. Acoustic strings will go completely dead on me after a week of normal use, even though I wash my hands before playing. So I went with regular electric nickel wounds (with a wound G). It's a bit more quiet than your regular 80/20 (might be good in your case), but not as stiff as bronze (better for small hands, go nuts and use 11's for full effect!) and stays bright for a long time. I enjoy it a lot more, and it's an interesting, distinctive sound.
     
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  3. tzd

    tzd Senior Member

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    I have one acoustic guitar. I hardly play it. About a year ago I decided to put a set of D'Addario EXP's which is D'Addario's version of coated string, hoping it would last for a long time. It sounded great when I put them on. I played a bit, then the guitar went back into the case and did not come out for probably another 6-9 months. When I next took the guitar out, the strings have turned into a sticky mess, like having a layer of dried glue on them, that rubs off on my fingers.

    So, I'm not using coated strings any more. If I were you, I would check out Ernie Ball's Paradigm acoustic strings. They are supposed to be similar to D'Addario's NYXL in that they are corrosion and break resistant, without any coating. NYXL's are only available for electrics, whereas Paradigm has an acoustic version available. I haven't tried them myself, but that looks to be the most promising to me at the moment.
     
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  4. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    I Would say this is the perfect use for coated, not a fan of them either but they work and alot of kids prob wont notice, maybe keep one strung up with uncoated freshies for those with a keen interest, and include in lessons the importance of hands washed before play time :naughty:

    Interesting about the sticky mess on the Ddarios
     
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  5. northernguitarguy

    northernguitarguy SWeAT hOg

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    I appreciate fresh strings on an acoustic guitar most of all. I'd rather just restring as soon they go dead.
    But yeah, them hands can be sticky. Everything from cheesy chips to dirty basketballs to boogers to who knows what. I'm gonna push the hand washing and will have soap/paper towels in the room. That might not be enough. It's like kids absorb all this stuff and then let it ooze out of their pores after washing. :rofl:
     
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  6. dffdff

    dffdff Senior Member

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    That's quite accurate, actually. Have you ever had some heavy, greasy meal that you felt you were sweating out of your body later that day? I experience that every now and then, especially fried stuff. It's quite common, but some people will be more aware of it and also depends on metabolism. We're strange creatures.

    Now imagine, with the variety of shit kids eat... I wouldn't be surprised that's the case, in fact I'd be quite curious to put a low E under a microscope after they give it a heavy ride, see what I find.

    Also, if you go with uncoated strings, keep in mind that poorly dried hands after being washed will ruin bronze almost immediately anyways. Man, I really feel for you. That's some deep pool of crap you got yourself into.
     
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  7. northernguitarguy

    northernguitarguy SWeAT hOg

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    Yuck. That sounds pretty messy.
     
  8. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Suppose you could have them whipe em down at the end as well... save you a lil time and keep things... less boogery.
     
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  9. morbidalex666

    morbidalex666 Senior Member

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    I could get 6 months out of one set of nanoweb acoustic strings, when I used them.
    No slimy side-effects.
    Go ahead man!
     
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  10. Pop1655

    Pop1655 Premium Member

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    I like the comments made about hand washing. Granted, they won't do a good job and it might not really help that much. If over the year just a couple of em grasp the concept of taking care of themselves and taking care of an instrument, you've done something.
     
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  11. penguinchit

    penguinchit Senior Member

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    Initial thoughts, Chris, you're a good man. First, paid or not, teaching kids, music or not, is a very admirable way to invest in the future. Second, geting the knowledge out of your head and into theirs in a way that they will comprehend is no easy task.

    I applaud this SweatHog!
     
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  12. northernguitarguy

    northernguitarguy SWeAT hOg

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    @penguinchit Thanks, brother. Nicest thing said to me all week. :)
     
  13. irocdave12

    irocdave12 Senior Member

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    Yeah it would be good but significant extra cost. You could add as part of the lesson plan a 2 minute exercise in the kids wiping down the strings and guitar at end of lessons. It teaches good habits and good for the guitars and their knowledge why it's important to do
     
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  14. LtKojak

    LtKojak Senior Member

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    As an longtime user (20+ years) of EXP coated acoustic guitar strings, that gooey mess being talked about here, is wrongly attributed to the strings; it's much more likely condensation produced by temperature changes inside the case. I've seen it happen with non-coated strings, that's why I know.

    HTH,
     
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