Any devotee of outdoor sports will be familiar with Gore-Tex—that breathable, waterproof fabric used to make everything from parkas to bike shorts, hiking boots and shelters. But you might not know the connection between Gore-Tex and Elixir Strings. The road to Elixir's unique Polyweb and Nanoweb coatings began in 1995 when researchers at W.L. Gore were working on developing new coatings for flexible push cables and using guitar strings as a platform for testing. Several of the researchers on the project were also guitar players and asked the question, "Why not develop a string coating that will protect the string, give it long life and still sound great?" Opening up the development process to 5,000 real-world guitar players—possibly the largest beta-test group ever used for guitar string technology—meant that when Elixir Strings were finally released as a product, they already had a proven track record on actual guitars played at real gigs.
Since the company’s initial release, Elixir has expanded to make strings for most fretted string instruments and they continue to refine their coating technology, both for feel and sound. Adopted as the standard factory string by a number of guitar makers—including boutique shops like Tom Anderson and Suhr Guitars—Elixir has cemented their reputation for great-sounding strings that last so long that you may forget the last time you changed your strings.