String Gauges and Les Paul's!


Junior Member
Mar 23, 2010
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Hi all,

Bit of a newbie when it comes to string gauges and technicalities of it all, but I just wanted to confirm with the community about something I was adviced by a guitar tech.

So I bought Les Paul Traditional last year (Feb) and never needed to change the strings until recently. From looking it up, I understand the standard stock string gauge that comes from the factory is 10's, from Gibson's own string brand. Am I right assume they are 10? or are some 9?

I recently bought a set of DR Pure Blues Strings 10's (and 9's for my strat). Phoned up a tech I have gone to a couple of times in the past to confirm if stock Les Paul's come in 10's. Here's what got me worried. He said even if its the same gauge, it could still effect the tension of the neck, if the strings are a different brand, and could cause neck warping. He said without a proper setup (As this les paul is going by the factory setup and strings at the moment), there could be some damage to the neck if I put 9's or even different branded 10's gauge on.

So what do you guys feel about this? Is it as "serious" as it sounds, should I hold off changing the strings until I take it to the tech for a setup? Does the Truss rod need to be adjusted even when moving brands of the same gauge due to the tension? It might sound silly, I apologize if it does, I just don't want to risk any damage, but don't also want to spend any unnecessary extra money.


Tim Plains

Senior Member
Feb 10, 2008
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They come with Brite Wire 10s.
I think you should buy a $20 book about guitar maintenance and stop listening to this clown.
Setting up a LP is the easiest thing to do. This guy's just looking to make $50 off you.


Senior Member
Nov 15, 2010
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Yes, the Traditional ships with 10-46 Gibson strings.

The DRs you bought are the exact same gauge (10-13-17-26-36-46) and while the tension may not be exactly the same, they will almost certainly be close enough that no adjustments will be necessary. Now, if you were going to 12s you might need a truss rod adjustment, but even so you are not going to warp the neck. I too think your tech is trying to make some money off you.

Of course, it wouldn't hurt to check your intonation. Everyone should be able to do this. If you think you can't then you need [ame=""]Dan Erlewine's book[/ame].



Senior Member
Sep 19, 2010
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Even if it isn't set up perfectly with the new strings you aren't going to cause damage. Even changing up or down a gauge wouldn't do that - a guitar is just not that fragile otherwise you would break one string and the whole neck would warp.:rolleyes:

I think your tech is trying it on.:hmm:

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