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May 7, 2021 - 5:10:33 PM
315 posts since 9/20/2007
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What’s your preference

May 7, 2021 - 8:34:29 PM

11413 posts since 10/27/2006

Most here will probably answer bronze. Also, for the vast majority, this is only an issue for the 4th string. For me, it's the 3rd and 4th strings.

I prefer the longer life and brighter tone of stainless steel. There may be those who prefer the slightly mellower sound if nickel plated steel.

Ideally, I would prefer Gore Elixir Nanoweb for their fantastic long life while the tone is unchanged from beginning to end. Unfortunately, the wound strings aren't as long as I need for my long necked banjos.

May 7, 2021 - 8:47:50 PM

13964 posts since 10/30/2008

Stainless, usually AMB Cryo, or GHS Crowe.

May 8, 2021 - 7:15:25 AM

1031 posts since 1/26/2011

Stainless from Huber

May 8, 2021 - 8:06:57 AM



922 posts since 11/8/2014

Optima strings. They don't stretch out over time.

May 8, 2021 - 2:37:58 PM
likes this

8547 posts since 8/28/2013

For tone, I prefer bronze. For longevity, anything else. I usually use "anything else" because bronze goes dead too quickly.

May 8, 2021 - 4:43:23 PM

536 posts since 1/28/2011

Strings are a personal choice. The answers you get here will be opinions on what strings give the sound that a particular person likes on thier particular banjo. Not all strings sound the same on every banjo or every set up on a banjo. There is no particular tone that every banjo player likes. I have tried stainless strings I did not like and tried other stainless that sounded great on my banjo. Most people just experiment with different types of strings and different guages until they find strings that work best for them.

Edited by - latigo1 on 05/08/2021 16:50:24

May 8, 2021 - 6:26:14 PM

4460 posts since 6/30/2020

Originally posted by soonersailor

What’s your preference

GHS PF175 Medium Light 11-12-13-22-11 stainless steel, Sonny Osborne Signature Set

May 8, 2021 - 7:03:52 PM



8612 posts since 6/5/2011

Originally posted by latigo1

<snip> Most people just experiment with different types of strings and different guages until they find strings that work best for them.

....and some of us can't tell/hear the difference.  crying

May 8, 2021 - 7:31:02 PM

4285 posts since 6/15/2005

I use both stainless wound and nickel wound depending on the banjo. The Stellings on my Stellings are stainless, as are the Curt Mangans on my prewar archtop. The D'Addarios on my Gibson Retro-4, DP Hopkins Renaissance, LouZee, and Baldwin-Ode are nickel.

I didn't choose these particular string sets because of the winding. I chose them out of convenience, because each set had the string gauges I wanted for each banjo.

I used to think that nickel is slightly warmer than stainless. I would buy individual strings and put together my own sets in order to have a nickel wound fourth. The difference may have been imaginary. Now I don't care.

I tried bronze wound strings maybe 40 years ago but found they did not last long. My body chemistry caused them to grow dull within a week or so.

May 9, 2021 - 12:59:56 PM
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11413 posts since 10/27/2006

Bottom line: Strings are cheap. Buy different types and try them out for yourself.

If you find a particular type and set of gauges that work for you, buy in bulk. In bulk, strings are even less expensive.

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