Argentine 10s v 11s

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Argentine 10s v 11s

Postby jackspoon » Wed Sep 10, 2008 3:03 pm

Hi All,

Does anybody out there use Argentine 10's? 11's seem to be the norm. I am about to buy a load of new strings and don't want to get the wrong ones.

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Postby Gadjo » Wed Sep 10, 2008 4:59 pm

Some guitars suit 10's and some cheaper guitars need 11's to get the going. 11's kill the sound of my VRB but i need 11's to get the Gitane to speak. Django used 10's on his Selmer as 11's are a recent invention.

Try them both before you order.
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Postby BluesBopHarry » Wed Sep 10, 2008 8:41 pm

A lot depends on the scale and also action of your guitar.
It seems in general short scale guitars respond better to 11s and long scale ones to 10s. But that's not a rule...
What you want to do is get the best compromise between playability and sound.
Guitar tops vary in thickness so what suits well a guitar with a thinner top won't work as good for a thicker topped one.
You need to put enough pressure on the top to drive it to vibrate as much as possible but not too much so it dampens vibration and causes it to "close up". At the same time you need to maintain a relatively easy playability.
This is done via string gauge and/or action adjustments.

For example, for some players and on some guitars, a low action (2.5mm) with 11s provides a happy medium (Bireli did this on his VR) others like to go higher with string height and use 10s, others like to use a 10 set but swap the first two strings for 11 and 15.
As a note: it's been suggested recently by a respected luthier that action shouldn't be higher than 3mm on the low E or you may sacrifice intonation.

You need to do some experimentation on your own guitar to find what's best for you.
I suggest as Gadjo did to try at least one pack of each gauge before you buy in bulk.
Here's a tread from another forum discussing setup: ... highlight=

Hope that helps!
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Postby Ricardo » Sun Sep 14, 2008 8:48 am

I started with 11's and then settled into 10's - I use an oval Manouche and the 10's seem to give me better playability but no real difference in tone. I'd recommend trying some of both as it really is a personal preference.
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