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The_Butler

Restringing a Casino with higher gauges

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Howdy folks,

 

I've owned a vintage sunburst Casino for about a month and a half now and it's easily the best $600 I ever spent. The question I got is this: if I were to restring it with medium gauge strings (.011s to be specific) and keep it tuned a full step below standard, would that cause any temporary or permanent damage to the guitar? I play pretty much exclusively straight blues, I go pretty heavy on the strings (thus the higher gauge; lights tend to snap pretty quick for me), and playing in the key of D fits my vocal range best. This is the setup I ran with on the Squier strat I was given as a hand-me-down to learn to play on, and the strat's played fine ever since near as I can tell (to be fair it's not like it had a real dynamite sound to begin with, but still), but the tone on this casino is just freaking unreal and I'd hate to ruin that with these adjustments. So is it doable? Is there anything I can/should do to modify the guitar itself? I figured the extra tension from thicker strings would be balanced out by the lessened tension of a full step down from standard but I want to know for sure.

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Hello Butler, and welcome here.

 

Tuning a full step down will decrease tension about 20% or in other words, the .011" string set will charge your Casino with the load of circa .0098" strings, i. e. slightly less than .010"s in standard tuning.

 

Just set the intonation correctly and care for the truss rod adjustment. There shouldn't result any damage to your precious Casino.

 

Hope this helps.

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There is absolutely no logical reason why you can't use 11s tuned to full pitch, if you want. Unless there's something already structurally wrong with the guitar, it is capable of handling the additional tension. Your typical Epi acoustic guitar comes with 12s, and their necks hold up just fine - think about it; the neck and trussrod are virtually identical on both guitars. If you want to detune it, it's your choice, but it's not necessary. In either case, different gauge strings or detuning may require a trussrod and/or intonation adjustment for optimal playability.

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