Okay, so let's say a "standard" 7-string tuned B to E @ 25.5" scale and let's say 10-56 is a "standard" gauge string, with obviously some variation depending upon a given individual's testicular fortitude (Chris, I'm looking at you, tough guy).
Now we look at baritone strings, most of which range in the .14-.72-ish range. Baritones vary greatly in scale, but are generally in the 27" to 30" range.
So why are baritone strings so damn thick? Wouldn't the extended scale mean you can tune farther down with lighter strings and still maintain tension? What am I missing here?
My guess is because most of those baritone guitars were thought of as between a regular guitar and a bass guitar so the strings split the difference. They were and are most rhythm instruments so you can get away with thicker strings if you're not playing super shreddy stuff. Also as as strings get longer they get easier to bend so the increase in tension isn't as bad as it might seem.
Also thick strings and manly string tension make you 11ty billion percent more awesome.