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Cleaning strings


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Anybody else feel their strings sound worse after cleaning them with a dedicated string cleaning product? I’m coming to the conclusion that maybe you should just leave them alone except for a wipe over after a sweaty session. (Oo-er missus!)

I’m starting to wonder if all the wiping with cloths and ‘cleaner’ is making things worse by the simple virtue that you’re pushing more and more sh*t into the windings.

On this note, anyone got any surefire ideas they use to keep them nicer longer? Maybe someone could invent a kind of spinning toothbrush type gadget to move up and down to get all the crud out effectively. 

Or is that like making a car that would do 800 miles to the gallon so that, like nobody would buy petrol every week, that nobody would buy new strings for ages?

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When I was poorer and basses came so cheap or exchanged easily for something shiny, I kept my strings alive by boiling them in my old mother’s saucepan when she wasn’t around. 
Basses came and went so fast (Kay’s/squiers/Antoria’s) buying new strings didn’t enter the equation. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Update - bought some Isopropyl wipes as some people suggest. Seemed to remove a bit of poo from all four strings.

 

Killed (to my ears anyway) a previously clear sounding newish set of Rotosounds stone dead in 5 minutes.

 

NEVER putting ANYTHING on my strings again apart from my fingers and a small hand towel after each play.

 

Boo. 

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I don't think I've heard of any method of cleaning strings that make any significant distance to their lifespan. Boiling strings give a few hours at best. IIRC Marlowe DK made a video RE: letting the strings off and slapping them to death which cleaned a lot of the gunk out but again the gain was limited. 

 

I think you just need to accept that (roundwound) strings have a limited life after which you need to buy others. Flatwounds have a much longer life, Tapes longer still.

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On 20/11/2021 at 16:41, LITTLEWING said:

Killed (to my ears anyway) a previously clear sounding newish set of Rotosounds stone dead in 5 minutes.

Really? I am genuinely shocked. I've uses IPA wipes for ages, and usually find they leave strings almost too clean and clear initially. I don't understand how they could make them duller. 

 

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On 20/11/2021 at 19:08, TheGreek said:

I don't think I've heard of any method of cleaning strings that make any significant distance to their lifespan. Boiling strings give a few hours at best. IIRC Marlowe DK made a video RE: letting the strings off and slapping them to death which cleaned a lot of the gunk out but again the gain was limited. 

 

I think you just need to accept that (roundwound) strings have a limited life after which you need to buy others. Flatwounds have a much longer life, Tapes longer still.

 

That Marlowe video... yes, ruin your fretboard at the same time. :facepalm:

 

Not a fan of coated strings either because they feel like they're dull from the offset. 

 

I normally get six months out of my DR strings. 

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I stick mine in a tub of hot water with a tiny bit of washing up liquid, give them 10 minutes then pour out the hot water, rinse them quickly to remove any suds and dry them with a towel, gives me another few weeks of life to my strings. 

The tub method works better than boiling them on a stove which is too hard on the strings and doesn't last very long.

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