Effect of e string gauge on other strings
Does a stark/heavy e string increase or decrease the tension on the other strings (relative to a medium e)?
Other than changing the tension of the lower strings, are there any other effects due to e string choice on the lower strings?
Tension in a string is a function of the note it is tuned to and its weight. A string's tension, at tune, is NOT affected by the tension in the other strings.
Each string requires a certain amount of tension to be at the proper pitch. Different e strings that are different thicknesses will require more or less tension. Changing the e will affect the tension of that string, but the other strings will still require the same amount of tension. The overall tension will change, though, which is why changing the e can improve the sound of the whole set.
The OP is also asking about the propensity of the E string to modify the pivoting motion of the bridge, and the resulting effect on tone / playability.
Hi all. Thanks for your responses. It appears my initial hypothesis of having effects on the tension of lower strings is wrong.
Yep, that is the theory. Conversely the G string supposedly allows a bit more motion if it's not as tight.
In my experience, a lighter E is not necessary awful-sounding, nor must it be worse for the rest of the strings. So dolce/thin/weich Es are not out of the question for some players.
Going from a light to a heavy e string may increase the total tension in the e string by about 4lbs.