This will be for a 4-string 25" scale electric CBG. Open G tuning. Learning to play 3 strings first before implementing the 4th. Seems light strings are most common for this application though some people seem to use medium strings. I have been considering D'addario exl110 or Ernie Ball 2221. Any preference people have? people prefer light over medium?

Views: 97

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Nothing wrong with going for a heavier set, just make sure that your guitar can take the tension.

my 4 Stringer has a set of Ernie Balls on there from a set of 2221's with standard open G tuning, nice rich tone with just a hint of twang.

There are a few variants on "open G" for 4 strings, so you need to decide which one you are going for before settling on the string gauges. GDGB adds the 3rd in the chord to the first string. DGBD is more akin to a conventional 6 string open G, with the 3rd in the chord on the second string. Both these tunings will require different string gauges. I've found that using a pack of regular strings and discarding some of them is a less than optimum way of doing it, and the manufacturers' definition of "light" or "medium" is too vague to have a proper idea of the final string tensions. When we have other people's cigar box guitars in the workshop we often find the strings are really unsuitable in terms of playability as the gauges are commonly totally out of whack, often far too light and unbalanced in tension.  It's much better to make a note of the measured gauges...for example for the GDGB tuning we use 042w, 028w, 020p, 015p, and for DGBD we use 030w, 022w, 016p, 014p.

Hey, thanks. So I think because initially I want to learn just with 3-strings before venturing to including the fourth string I'll initially be looking at the GDGB tuning. I assume that will let me follow along the bulk of the lessons and videos out there on CBG playing. So that would be 042w, 028w, 020p, 015p. So the the last two gauges are not wound I assume because they are too thin. So I'm looking at buying individual strings then, I'm ordering through the mail so I suppose there are enough places to find them. Thanks again. 

In the interest of fairness, you can stick to Ernie Ball when buying individual strings. I've bought from several sellers who sell a wide range of individual Ernie Ball strings, putting together your ideal set shouldn't be an issue.

Not partial to any brand. Just those two are quite common. 

D’addario keep their tone longer than Ernie ball, go with nickel wound if you’re looking for a warmer tone


The Essential Pages

New to Cigar Box Nation?How to Play Cigar Box GuitarsFree Plans & How to Build Cigar Box GuitarsCigar Box Guitar Building BasicsCigar Box Guitar Parts Store

Site Sponsor

Recommended Links & Resources


What in a headstock

Started by Jeff 'Bones' Reilly in Performances, How to Play, Lessons, Concerts. Last reply by Korrigan 1 hour ago. 2 Replies

My first real work bench.

Started by Cause the Blue rat in Other stuff - off topic, fun stuff, whatever. Last reply by Cause the Blue rat yesterday. 15 Replies

Cigar Box Inserts

Started by FoldedSoup in Building Secrets, Tips, Advice, Discussion. Last reply by the anonymous pick on Thursday. 2 Replies

Blog Posts

My New Alexandria CBG Adventure

Posted by Poorness Studios on November 12, 2018 at 7:30pm 1 Comment

String Talk !

Posted by Andries D. EKER on November 4, 2018 at 4:40pm 16 Comments

Gutter Guard Sound Hole Covers

Posted by Steebos Kalist on November 4, 2018 at 12:45pm 5 Comments


Posted by Danny Gordon on October 31, 2018 at 5:01pm 3 Comments

Latest Activity

Jeff 'Bones' Reilly liked Uncle John's photo
2 minutes ago
bigredradio joined the anonymous pick's group

Teisco and vintage Japanese Lovers group.

For all things Teisco. AND those sweet vintage japanese guitars with those vintage pickups made by…See More
14 minutes ago
BrianQ. liked Uncle John's photo
17 minutes ago
BrianQ. commented on Uncle John's photo

new top project

"Awesome uncle, what’s the measurements of that beauty?"
17 minutes ago
BrianQ. commented on Poorness Studios's blog post My New Alexandria CBG Adventure
"Glad you took pics, west coaster like me can only hope, someday?Cheers"
21 minutes ago
Poorness Studios posted a video

Shane Speal & the Snakes Play The Star Spangled Banner

This is a live recording made on November 10, 2018. The video was taken at Speal's Tavern in New Alexandria, PA. These guys put on an amazing show!
28 minutes ago
Preston J. Laisure posted an event

CBG Minded Michigan'ders Meeting at Red Sky Stage

January 12, 2019 from 1pm to 5pm
Our monthly Meeting is always held on the 2nd Saturday of each month. We exchange information on…See More
47 minutes ago
JB liked Uncle John's photo
52 minutes ago
Brent Kasl replied to Brent Kasl's discussion Strings recommendation
"Thanks all All I know is that of the two magnetic builds just completed the bronze/phosphorus…"
55 minutes ago
Poorness Studios posted a blog post

My New Alexandria CBG Adventure

Ever since I learned about the Cigar Box Guitar Museum (inside of Speal’s Tavern) in New…See More
1 hour ago
AGP # commented on Uncle John's video

Weary Blues ~ Hank Williams song on CBG and Iowa Saxophone

"Yep UJ, fun trip, but always nice to be back home, may take me a few days to catch up with all the…"
1 hour ago
AGP # commented on Dave Lynas's video

The New Saw

"Don't know if its available in the US, but this is what I use in the Land Down Under to start…"
1 hour ago



© 2018   Created by Ben "C. B. Gitty" Baker.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service