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Post new topic Bronze or nickel for dobro?
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Author Topic:  Bronze or nickel for dobro?
Terry Sneed

Post Posted 16 Jun 2017 6:31 pm     Reply with quote

Sorry I'm sure it's been asked and answered many
Times before, but I hadn't been on the forum for good while.
Which strings for best tone bronze, nickel, stainless, and
Which brand do you guys prefer? Thanks
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Jack Hanson

San Luis Valley, USA
Post Posted 16 Jun 2017 6:53 pm     Reply with quote

Bronze for sure. Lots of good brands. Currently using John Pearse Phosphor Bronze 3100s because they were recently on sale @
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Nakos Marker

Washington, USA
Post Posted 17 Jun 2017 12:54 am     Reply with quote

It depends on what you're looking for. I've used bronze, nickel, stainless, and stainless flatwound.

I mostly play bluegrass, so I use bronze. It's my favorite for punch, brightness, and sheer volume. They don't last very long, but with the kind of beating they get, no material does. D'Addario has the cheapest decent set I've found.

Stainless has a bit less volume and punch than bronze, but lasts longer against corrosion.

Nickel is the quietest roundwound in my experience. The treble is very articulate, though; sort of 'snappy'. They last about as long as bronze.

I used D'Addario chromes (stainless flatwound) back when I was broke. They're a bit more expensive, but they last SO long if you clean them regularly. The trade off, of course, is a lack of volume, sustain, articulation, and brightness.
"Never a bullet in my hand, never a pedal at my foot."
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Jerry Overstreet

Louisville Ky
Post Posted 17 Jun 2017 6:47 am     Reply with quote

Depends who you ask, I guess. Probably one of the most used sets is D'Addario EJ 42 bronze set. At least for acoustic playing. They also make a Flat Top set in bronze for less noise plugged in.

Then there's Beard, Pearse, Black Diamond, etc. sets in bronze.

Some people like nickel, but I think most players choose bronze for acoustic and on stage miced playing.

b0b has John Pearse nickel and bronze sets here at
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Brad Davis

Texas, USA
Post Posted 17 Jun 2017 8:52 am     Reply with quote

For bluegrass and old country I used the Beard Special 28 and Special 29 sets, bronze. In theory they're designed so the 3rd string lasts longer. Not bad at all for a little Hawaiian either. The EJ42's are good too.

I tried a Pierce nickel set a long time ago and didn't like them, but the guitar I tried them on wasn't that great either.
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Terry Sneed

Post Posted 18 Jun 2017 10:43 am     Strings Reply with quote

Thanks a bunch guys. I'll go with the bronze.
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Mark Eaton

Sonoma County in The Great State Of Northern California
Post Posted 18 Jun 2017 11:26 am     Reply with quote

Good choice.

I can't stand the sound of nickel strings on a dobro.
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K Maul

Round Lake,NY usa
Post Posted 19 Jun 2017 6:41 am     Reply with quote

I usually use Pearse Phosphor Bronze but sometimes nickel. They are slightly duller initially but remain the same for a long long time. If you're cheap like me,then you don't have to change strings as often. Haha.
But...if you want to sound like Uncle Josh,use Martin Monel strings [a solid Nickel/Copper blend, not nickel plated] with an unwound G .026! They just started making them again after 30 years.
GFI,Sho-Bud,Emmons,Fender,Supro,Epiphone,Rickenbacher,Clinesmith steels. Beard & Fluger Resophonics.Fender,Evans,Quilter amps.
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