Unwinding at bridge.

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Condorman
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Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Condorman » Thu Jul 12, 2018 1:06 pm

I am having trouble with my e strings unwinding at the ball end in my Kiesel Vader 6x.

I have used 3 or 4 strings from daddario and an earnie ball cobalt pack.

This only happens to 9s. Only e.

The ball end does not pop off. The long winding loops simply get pulled through the tighter loops.

1) Has anyone else encountered this?

2) My string touches the edge between the string holder and the saddle. If I start from further back I can avoid this contact point. How are your strings set up? Are they touching that contact point or does it go straight from ball end to saddle?

Thanks so much in advance. This had been frustrating me since I've been stuck with 10s and I want to go lighter.

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Condorman » Mon Jul 23, 2018 5:58 pm

Darn. No one has this problem? Maybe someone can share a photo of inside their saddles so I can see if mine is normal.

Also, how tight to you pull your strings before locking down at the neck?

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby HarlowTheFish » Mon Jul 23, 2018 6:00 pm

Have you tried using reinforced plain strings? I know EB does them, and I think GHS. They essentially have a stronger wrap at the ball end for use with tremolos, maybe that'll help.

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby ToneWood » Tue Jul 24, 2018 8:37 am

HarlowTheFish wrote:Have you tried using reinforced plain strings? I know EB does them, and I think GHS. They essentially have a stronger wrap at the ball end for use with tremolos, maybe that'll help.


Have you tried experimenting with putting one of those 9s in the b slot instead? (Just to isolate the problem.)

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Condorman » Thu Jul 26, 2018 3:40 pm

HarlowTheFish wrote:Have you tried using reinforced plain strings? I know EB does them, and I think GHS. They essentially have a stronger wrap at the ball end for use with tremolos, maybe that'll help.


Wow, that's a great idea. I've never heard of these. I'll try one more set of EB strings but attempt to remove the contact point caused by the ball-end holder being moved up towards the neck.

If that doesn't work, I'll get the reinforced strings.

ToneWood wrote:Have you tried experimenting with putting one of those 9s in the b slot instead? (Just to isolate the problem.)


No, but it usually only happens after a few days of playing.

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Naked Ape
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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Naked Ape » Fri Jul 27, 2018 2:47 am

Harlow the Fish may be on to something.
I know you are not using a Kahler Tremolo.......But
Ernie Ball strings are specifically mentioned.... 'NOT' recommended for use with Kahler tremolos, due to the insufficient windings at ball end.
DR's and Elixirs are also reinforced, and may help with your problem. I solder the windings if using D'Addarios with a Kahler.

Hope you get this figured out. Good Luck.

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby HarlowTheFish » Fri Jul 27, 2018 5:59 am

Naked Ape wrote:Harlow the Fish may be on to something.
I know you are not using a Kahler Tremolo.......But
Ernie Ball strings are specifically mentioned.... 'NOT' recommended for use with Kahler tremolos, due to the insufficient windings at ball end.
DR's and Elixirs are also reinforced, and may help with your problem. I solder the windings if using D'Addarios with a Kahler.

Hope you get this figured out. Good Luck.


The Kahler info pages are exactly what gave me the idea, actually. I've been a D'add and Stringjoy user as much as I can get away with, and one thing I always notice with them is that on my string-through guitars, EBs get weird at the winds (but no breakage or tuning issues) while those stay solid. Looking at the ball end mounting on my CL6, especially if your ball end isn't perfectly horizontal, I feel like there might be a little more strain at the winding there. Hell, if OP really likes EBs, their RPS line includes plains with reinforced windings.

Link if interested: https://www.ernieball.com/guitar-strings/electric-guitar-strings/slinky-rps-nickel-wound-electric-guitar-strings

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Doctor Turn » Fri Jul 27, 2018 9:31 am

Hah! I just caught this thread.

Badly wound strings are primarily responsible for the vast majority of the grief that Kahler has dealt with over the years, and so yes I dealt with this problem myself with my Kahler and worked my way thru it like you did.

With any trem there's going to be a slight tuning tweaks needed here or there after some serious abuse... but I was totally aware of this unwinding-slippage as a danger, and so, suddenly after buying a big sale-box of EBall SuperSlinkys I couldn't lay down a track or get through a song and do a yank without sinking into the mire of tuning issues. I kept thinking something was off on the intonation or something because the guitar suddenly turned into a "bad guitar" or at least a guitar with a bad bridge, because the damned thing sounded horrible.. just constantly slipping.

Then after doing lots of research I found that page in Whammyworld about the windings and some of the prime offenders, and saw EB was at the top of the list. So I bought some reinforced strings (I bought 1 GHS Boomers, 1 Elixir and 1 DR Blues), and got-dayum the trem became like new all over again.

If you're using a trem where the ball ends don't get cut off--DON'T use a non reinforced string... if you do you'll note the consequences like OP and me!

I've since changed out the 30 year old Kahler Pro 2300 for a new 2315 with the hybrid locking screw in the rear which turns it into a Schaller 456-esque straight hardtail. So with reinforced strings the slippage is totally eliminated (I have a set of D'AdNYXL's on there at the moment which are expensive but nice), and with the lock, the transformation is like heaven. Rare to have a #1 so well loved first of all.. but also to be lucky enough to be able to truly switch back and forth from true hardtail to true rocker trem all in the same guitar.

Nowadays I rarely use any of my trems, but the Kahler is so stable now I've completely taken the locker clips off of the nut. The block graphite nut and the tuners work so well with the stainless roller saddles that the tuning whack after use is very tiny, even using a full up/down rocker without locks.
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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby HarlowTheFish » Fri Jul 27, 2018 10:07 am

Doctor Turn wrote:Hah! I just caught this thread.

Badly wound strings are primarily responsible for the vast majority of the grief that Kahler has dealt with over the years, and so yes I dealt with this problem myself with my Kahler and worked my way thru it like you did.

With any trem there's going to be a slight tuning tweaks needed here or there after some serious abuse... but I was totally aware of this unwinding-slippage as a danger, and so, suddenly after buying a big sale-box of EBall SuperSlinkys I couldn't lay down a track or get through a song and do a yank without sinking into the mire of tuning issues. I kept thinking something was off on the intonation or something because the guitar suddenly turned into a "bad guitar" or at least a guitar with a bad bridge, because the damned thing sounded horrible.. just constantly slipping.

Then after doing lots of research I found that page in Whammyworld about the windings and some of the prime offenders, and saw EB was at the top of the list. So I bought some reinforced strings (I bought 1 GHS Boomers, 1 Elixir and 1 DR Blues), and got-dayum the trem became like new all over again.

If you're using a trem where the ball ends don't get cut off--DON'T use a non reinforced string... if you do you'll note the consequences like OP and me!

I've since changed out the 30 year old Kahler Pro 2300 for a new 2315 with the hybrid locking screw in the rear which turns it into a Schaller 456-esque straight hardtail. So with reinforced strings the slippage is totally eliminated (I have a set of D'AdNYXL's on there at the moment which are expensive but nice), and with the lock, the transformation is like heaven. Rare to have a #1 so well loved first of all.. but also to be lucky enough to be able to truly switch back and forth from true hardtail to true rocker trem all in the same guitar.

Nowadays I rarely use any of my trems, but the Kahler is so stable now I've completely taken the locker clips off of the nut. The block graphite nut and the tuners work so well with the stainless roller saddles that the tuning whack after use is very tiny, even using a full up/down rocker without locks.


After having an Ibby trem in hand for a while, I don't think I'll be going back to non-lockers if I can avoid it at all. I will say I've had good results with non-reinforced strings on the G&L Dual Fulcrum trem, I think due to its design being less conducive to ball-end-winding stresses than some others. Still wanna get my paws on a Kahler for, uh, reasons. Yeah. What say you to a vintage DC125 in garish neon and some kind of obnoxiously hot humbucker as a good first Kahler experience, Doc?

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby X1Glider » Fri Jul 27, 2018 10:25 am

How about a cheap and easy fix:

Solder the winding. Heat the winding up with the solder iron to get some heat into it first. Then apply the solder to the windings. It should flow nicely into the grooves kind of like how it does when sweating copper pipe. In fact, if you're a plumber, you can use the flux paste and solder from your supply stash.

Then you can use whatever string pack you like and not have to order reinforced strings also.

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby UnexplodedCow » Fri Jul 27, 2018 2:07 pm

I had it happen on a cheap set of Darco strings. Happened on the B string. Only one set, though, and those are not meant for vibrato units as far as I'm aware (not reinforced, that's for sure). I'm sure soldering will work.

I've had some mild instability with D'addario in general, though I tend to get them in bulk, and they hold up reasonably well. More than my share of Ernie Ball strings have broken on my guitars; they'll do in a pinch, though they seem unreliable by the numbers.

DR, GHS, Elixir, and surprisingly Fender strings have all been rock solid for me. Dean Markley and Darco are runners up. The first two are favorites, especially DR with the round-core strings.
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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Doctor Turn » Sat Jul 28, 2018 6:07 am

Lol! I just re-read my post and noted a huge typo.. I wrote I was completely aware of the problem originally.. I meant to write I was completely unaware of the problem... So that when the EB's went on (I had bought a big box on special)I couldn't figure why my old well loved Carvin suddenly turned into tuning mush on me. I thought the axe finally bit the dust somehow and it was rather depressing!
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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Condorman » Thu Aug 02, 2018 1:04 pm

Thanks so much for the insights, guys. I've purchased some reinforced strings, so I assume this will fix the problem.

Note that I had constant unwindings WITHOUT using the trem! Just normal bends and *slip*. Retune -> bend -> slip. Repeat until the only windings left were the small tight ones.

I'd still like any photos anyone can provide showing a close-up of the ball end in a contour trem to see if there are 1 or 2 contact points.

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Naked Ape » Fri Aug 03, 2018 1:58 pm

Hope that solves the issue.
Customguitars87 just posted some NGD pics of a Nice Vader 6X, maybe you can ask him to snap a few pics.

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Condorman » Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:34 am

So far I've seen that the reinforced 9's are more stable and there's no pinging at the nut when I tune before each session.

Haven't had a chance to be aggressive with the trem yet. Will update.

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby Condorman » Fri Sep 07, 2018 12:25 pm

So far the reinforced strings are doing the job! The 9's also have basically no pinging at the headstock.

I'm getting a pretty bad problem with my G string going a quarter step down when I dive the tremolo bar and I'm not sure if it's the bridge or the string.

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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby UnexplodedCow » Fri Sep 07, 2018 12:36 pm

The G could be slipping at the head end, if not locked down snugly, or it could be shifting in the saddle enough to cause that.

Try a little lube in the nut, saddle groove, and possibly the pivots of the vibrato, and see how it fares. Not much is needed, but can surely help.

Other than that, I'm glad to hear the reinforced strings are holding up. Out of curiosity, what brand did you choose?
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Re: Unwinding at bridge.

Postby spudmunkey » Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:19 pm

Condorman wrote:So far the reinforced strings are doing the job! The 9's also have basically no pinging at the headstock.


Well, I'm glad that helped!


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