Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Good Gauge for Bluegrass

Hey Y’All

What’s a good gauge for Bluegrass

Thanks

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Mediums (.013 - .056) are most popular from what I have seen. Some folks prefer light top/medium bottoms, but I like straight mediums.

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I’m curious @Mike_R why do most people tend to go towards a medium versus a light gauge. Is it for a darker tone, or just that mediums last longer than lights?

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I switched from lights to mediums several years ago when I was first getting into playing bluegrass, and immediately noticed a much bigger, more powerful sound and a fuller tone. The mediums felt much stronger in general, which is what you want for hard-driving bluegrass. They’re also the standard used by most professional bluegrass players (at least on guitar, for what I know). Just my opinion!

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Ok thanks, that makes sense. I’ll have to try them sometime!

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Tone, and don’t forget you’re playing next to us banjo pickers. If strapping on electrical wire would help drown out the banjo, some guitarist would do it. :laughing:

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I too think tone/volume would be the most often given reason. One other thing that I notice… when playing with a typical BG pick (rigid) and digging in, lights deflect more. It’s a different feel.

All that said, it is personal preference and some instruments just sound better with a particular string tension. Play the strings that you like!

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Thanks all for your help… take care

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