Gibson J185-12 string recommendations

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Gibson J185-12 string recommendations

Postby (Axelorox) » Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:48 pm

I will soon be the proud owner of a new Gibson J185-12 and need advice on what strings to get for it. This will be my first ever 12 string.

Here are my key criteria:
- Uncoated. I never found coated strings that I liked the sound or feel of.
- Good for vocal accompaniment. I am pretty much always singing when I am playing acoustic guitar, so need tone that complements the voice (I'm a tenor) rather than stands out on its own for solo playing.
- Good longevity and durability. Changing strings is already bad enough on a six string!
- Correct tension for standard tuning. I'm not sure what gauge these leave the Gibson factory with, but I think it's .10s.
- Something that emulates the vintage (~1970s) 12 string sounds that inspired me to get this instrument. Pink Floyd, John Denver, Wings, etc.

I am not usually a gearhead type at all so any information or advice is appreciated. Thanks in advance.
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Re: Gibson J185-12 string recommendations

Postby (teb) » Thu Feb 07, 2019 12:26 am

My current acoustic twelve is a Martin SPD12-16R and I've been using their Acoustic SP Phosphor Bronze extra light sets (.010-.047) for about the last ten years and they have worked well. Before that I owned a couple of Takamine twelves and used either the same Martin strings or a similar weight of D'Addario light gauge phosphor bronze EJ38 (.010-.047) sets without problems. I have always kept them tuned up to concert pitch.
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Re: Gibson J185-12 string recommendations

Postby (jps) » Thu Feb 07, 2019 3:34 am

The strings I have on my Yamamoto MS-12 are D'Addario 10-47s, seems to work well enough on it, and it sound wonderful, to me, and everyone who's played it. Good enough for me. :D

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Yamamoto MS-12 Photograph 2016 © Jeffrey P. Scott All rights reserved
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Re: Gibson J185-12 string recommendations

Postby (Axelorox) » Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:43 am

Thanks for the suggestions.

@jps: How has the durability of the D'Addario strings been for you? When I was younger I used mainly D'Addario but broke strings pretty frequently. But then those were cheaper guitars that probably did not have great quality of the nut or saddle.
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Re: Gibson J185-12 string recommendations

Postby (jps) » Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:34 pm

I've never broken a guitar string except for one octave G but that was an old string. So, my verdict on D'Ad is no issues.
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