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Four-string Bass Conversion To Big Gauge Strings?

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Bear with me here....

So, i've been playing music lately where i'm tuned down to C. On a Precision bass. Problem is that the string tension, of course, just goes to hell, and i'm thinking of ways to fix it.

So i'm thinking about just basically stringing the bass up with the lower four strings from five-string bass set. I'd try to get a lighter set, obviously, so the tune-up wouldnt add too much tension. Of course this would involve making a new nut, but that's easy.

Anyway, does anyone foresee any OTHER problems with this that i'm not thinking of?

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Nope, looks like you have the right idea. You don't even have to make a new nut, just use some needle files to widen the slots slighty. You will also have to adjust the action and intonation as well. I don't think over tensioning will be a problem for you. If I am not mistaken, strings are designed so that when tuned they all exert the same, or nearly the same, amount of tension. I certainly wouldn't go for the heaviest guage you can get, but if you can't find super light 5 string sets, I wouldn't worry too much about it.

You may also notices that even with the larger guage strings it will still be a bit "floppy", due mainly to the 34" scale of Fender basses. I've always considered P-Basses to be "floppy" feeling anyway, for whatever reason (and I know logically that it shouldn't, but I don't know...).

Either way, its bound to be better than it is now! Good luck, and let us know how it turns out.

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