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Unopened Strings


Bozz
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I have 12 or 15 unopened sets of  Gibson Masterbuilt 80/20's that I bought a while back when supplies of the old stock were starting to dwindle.  These strings work really well on a couple of my guitars and I'd love to sit on them for a while and use them sparingly down the road.  Does anyone here have an idea on shelf life?  They are pretty well packaged in what appears to be an air tight foil wrapper.  I store them in a desk drawer in a temperature and humidity controlled guitar room.  The last set I opened a month or two ago were perfectly fine.  They are probably coming up on 2 years of age.

I've seen some ugly corroded new strings come out of paper packaging after sitting around a couple of years, but I have to think these will last quite a bit longer. 

Edited by Bozz
typo
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I have a Black Diamond display rack from the 1960s filled with guitar and other strings.  Also some individual Gibson strings going back way further which came as case candy.  Some day I am going to screw up the courage and try them.  Not worried about the guitar but I do not relish the thought of a B string breaking and going on the attack.

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  • 3 weeks later...
1 hour ago, Salfromchatham said:

I wish I did as you did. Great strings for Gibsons.

I had 4 sets I was hording,  they're gone now. 

So,, I tried the "newish" Gibson coated PBs.  And the experience there was that they are VERY close in feel and sound to the Masterbuilts PBs.

I ordered them from Gibson directly, took 3 days to arrive, and they've been on since like March some time, they are still great.

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5 minutes ago, Salfromchatham said:

I have about 15 sets of strings   Martins and daddarios.   I will do that kidblast!  Why not!

hey Sal, have you tried the D'Addario XS sets yet?  I've been impressed so far.

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It depends ....

I have very different experiences with older (about 3 years), new and very old guitar strings. All of them have been stored at room temperature (16 - 24°C, 40-60% rel.hum.) in the original packages. Had corroded high b- and e-strings in quite new sets of Earnie Ball and Fender electric guitar sets, completely good, clean Martin guitar strings in old paper bags and up to no problems with Gibson strings (phosphor bronze, (80/20s) in the original hermitcally sealed Gibson bags. 

So it is hard to say what will happed but in my case 98% of even very old unused strings made no problems.

As the thread is drifting in direction "coated strings" - I like the coated Gibson strings, but I did never like other coated strings with the exception of Martin Lifespan strings.

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3 hours ago, Salfromchatham said:

I have 3 sets - havent tried them yet.  Ands now i just ordered 3 sets of Gibson PBs coated....   looking forward to trying them both.

 

 

the XS feel and kind of respond like EJ16s. 

(and I don't like the XTs.  they seem overly bright to me)

I've been playing on a bot sets for about 2 months now, no visible signs of shredding.  Same with the Gibson PB Coated.

I was using Elixir Nanos for years, but really the shredding they are prone to is a real buzz kill.  

 

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I won't buy Martin strings anymore after experiencing this on several different sets - I'm guessing there's moisture sealed in the packs that causes this - to their credit Martin did replace these but enough is enough.

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Had the same experience with Earnie Ball electric guitar strings - not as bad as we can she on Brucebub´s photos, but b- and high e-string could not be used. But this was only an random finding, maybe there have been some variations in the packaging process at the string manufacturers.

I have some quite old strings only packed in paper bags - without corrosion ... 

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I've got two Ernie Ball wooden boxes from the 70s and I swear they have some of the original strings in them. I have replenished them here and there, mostly from buying quantities of old store stock. I can't remember the last time I dug in and pulled ONE string out due to breakage. I have, on occasion, put together a set for a yard sale guitar.

Times change. People change. I may dump these wooden boxes on ebay.

I did splurge on an unopened set of Fender Super Bullets....case candy for my '77 Tele.

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Pretty much like yogurt: after a couple of weeks, they curdle and mold.

Seriously, the things are composed of metal alloys. Surface corrosion is meaningless. Use limits the lifetime of strings. The constant vibration (well, only when you're playing them) bends, stretches, and fatigues the metal. If they haven't been used, they are as good as new.

I've used unused sets from the 1930s and 1940s (the Kalamazoo Gals unloaded on me their pristine sets of Gibson strings). They sound like new strings. Alas, my playing still sucks.

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