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View Full Version : Another go at Aquila Reds



Osprey
07-15-2016, 09:48 AM
I have a Kaka 10th Anniversary solid Acacia tenor ukulele. I have had it for about a year with the original strings. I have wanted to try the Reds on it for two reasons, one I think they will look good with the paduk binding and trim. More importantly I think they will make the ukulele sing. I tried the Reds a couple of years ago on another ukulele, they sounded good but the "a" string broke after a few weeks. I am hopefull this time things will work out. They are on, I took my time to carefully bring them up to pitch. They sound great, but ther is intonation issues with the "e" string. I am hoping that will improve as they settle in. Wish me luck.

Mivo
07-15-2016, 10:09 AM
I have them on four ukes right now, no breakages. :) Pono Baritone (slotted headstock, tie bridge), Barron River tenor (pin bridge), KoAloha LN soprano (tie bridge), KoAloha Opio concert (tie bridge). In all cases they are from 2015 (baritone) and 2016 (the rest), according to the stickers. They sound better on my ukes than any other strings I tried. Good luck!

pritch
07-15-2016, 12:52 PM
I have them on two tenors, have had them on others with no problems. Good luck.

M3Ukulele
07-15-2016, 01:22 PM
I have them on my Sapele KoAloha Opio tenor. They are great. New formula but also, you need to take care when putting them on. Key is to not let them ride the in the nut slot when bringing up to pitch. Often there is a sharp edge and that causes issue. Also, when winding on the tuners, watch for sharp edges. I do a pre stretch before the wind on. Hook them to my tie bridge, pull them parallel to the fret board a few times and then wind on with care. I really enjoy them.
I would have no hesitation putting them on any ukulele. I also really like the Lava's and currently have a mix of Laval and Reds on my Opio. Funny , cause I'm not a big fan of the regular Aquila strings.

igorthebarbarian
07-15-2016, 01:28 PM
I have had no problems with them either (knock on wood). I really like the texture of them on the fingers when played. They sound great too.

Nickie
07-15-2016, 02:21 PM
" I also really like the Lava's and currently have a mix of Laval and Reds on my Opio. Funny , cause I'm not a big fan of the regular Aquila strings. "

I agree. I'm not a fan of the Aquila whites, either. I do like my Lavas though. Aquila says there's little difference, is it in my head because I like the color more? Not sure I feel safe with the Reds, they break too easily.

SoloRule
07-15-2016, 04:07 PM
I have them on my Fluke concert, Fluke tenor and Kala baritone.
I don't think our music shop carry new stock. The date stamp is 2014. I have been lucky. No breakage and Settled after only a couple of days ! I like the red, it's feel right for finger picking . Now I am Very tempted to put it on the more expensive ukes. I bet it will sing on the Ko'olau !

M3Ukulele
07-15-2016, 08:01 PM
I'm sure I read Lava's were same formula as the New Aquilas just different color but they feel different and play way different to me. I think they are thinner. Anyways I like Lava's and Red's.

cml
07-15-2016, 08:47 PM
Ive had the same set of aquila reds on and off about a dozen times. They are not as fragile as made out to be, but as previously mentioned; do not let them ride against any sharp edge when bringing them up to pitch. They chafe easier than other strings. I think a lot of the reports of breaking are old, but that the reputation is hard to get rid of.
Personally, I found the reds too bright, but I loved the texture.

Pier
07-16-2016, 12:51 AM
I'm sure I read Lava's were same formula as the New Aquilas just different color but they feel different and play way different to me. I think they are thinner. Anyways I like Lava's and Red's.

No, Lava are the same as the SUPER nylgut, totally different from the New nylgut and nylgut. Different material, gauge and tension.

Osprey
07-16-2016, 03:34 AM
They made it through the night. I will take it to my Uke group this morning. I expect to tune after every song. Intonation on the "e" string is better but not quite there yet.

BearMakingNoises
07-17-2016, 05:01 PM
I put a set on my number #1 yesterday. I am liking the results so far.... the seem a bit clearer but softer and more bell-like than the Nylaguts I had on before. They tuned up pretty quickly but I did do a lot of gentle stretching along the way. I am actually surprised because they sound bright but not overpoweringly so like the nylaguts and they have better balance to my ears... the c isn't overwhelming the other strings now

stevepetergal
07-17-2016, 05:23 PM
I've never heard of intonation improving as strings "break in". Let us know how it goes.

hammer40
07-17-2016, 09:57 PM
Ive had the same set of aquila reds on and off about a dozen times. They are not as fragile as made out to be, but as previously mentioned; do not let them ride against any sharp edge when bringing them up to pitch. They chafe easier than other strings. I think a lot of the reports of breaking are old, but that the reputation is hard to get rid of.
Personally, I found the reds too bright, but I loved the texture.

I wouldn't say the reports were old. At the time, it was with the very latest version supplied by the owner of Aquilla himself. The ones that supposedly had the new formula fixing the issue. There was just another thread where folks were talking about breakage.

If these, or yours aren't breaking that's awesome, I liked the strings, but every set had a string break. Usually, the A string but sometimes the G. And the that's on a uke with no slots on the nut. A Hoffman/Boatpaddle uke. I'd love to hear that these strings finally had the issue corrected.

cml
07-17-2016, 11:29 PM
I wouldn't say the reports were old. At the time, it was with the very latest version supplied by the owner of Aquilla himself. The ones that supposedly had the new formula fixing the issue. There was just another thread where folks were talking about breakage.

If these, or yours aren't breaking that's awesome, I liked the strings, but every set had a string break. Usually, the A string but sometimes the G. And the that's on a uke with no slots on the nut. A Hoffman/Boatpaddle uke. I'd love to hear that these strings finally had the issue corrected.
My first set chafed up like crazy and was about to break before I changed it. I actually made a post about it...hmm...I'll see if I can find it.
The issue was that I was tuning it to pitch in the nut slut, rather than on the nut. This might not seem like a big deal, but if you have anything remotely like a sharp edge, they will chafe.
Perhaps that's a weakness of the strings, but if handled correctly they dont break - at least not mine.
I'm suprised you had issues with the Hoffmann design...(beautiful ukes btw :)).

The design of the reds seems to be layered, and if you chafe the outer layer, then they'll snap.

hammer40
07-18-2016, 12:53 AM
My first set chafed up like crazy and was about to break before I changed it. I actually made a post about it...hmm...I'll see if I can find it.
The issue was that I was tuning it to pitch in the nut slut, rather than on the nut. This might not seem like a big deal, but if you have anything remotely like a sharp edge, they will chafe.
Perhaps that's a weakness of the strings, but if handled correctly they dont break - at least not mine.
I'm suprised you had issues with the Hoffmann design...(beautiful ukes btw :)).

The design of the reds seems to be layered, and if you chafe the outer layer, then they'll snap.

I always figured it was the copper powder that was used in the process of making the strings. Maybe that made them more brittle. I thought I read the newer formula used less copper, I could be mistaken.

I followed his instructions/video to the letter. Tuning them, stretching them up outside the nut until close to pitch and then putting then on or in the nut slot. As I have said in other threads, I really like the strings and really wish I could trust them. I don't want to have to buy extra sets just to get one that might work.

I will probably try them again at some point. I sure have never had any problem remotely like this with any other string manufacturer, ever. So the fact that I am still willing to try them again at some point, speaks to how much I like them and want them to work.

Mivo
07-18-2016, 01:27 AM
I followed his instructions/video to the letter.

I didn't, because the stretching looked so forceful. I put them on like any other set of strings, including nut riding. On the four ukes I have them on now, I never had a string break. Except the baritone set (2015), the other sets fir concert and tenor were manufactured in 2016, so I can't compare them to older ones.

M3Ukulele
07-18-2016, 06:22 AM
Pier, thank you for clarifying Lava=Super Nylgut ( without the color) I will try Super Nylgut when I can find or order them. Locally, I can get lava's, sometimes reds and the old Nylgut which I don't like. I like Lava's and Red's on certain ukulele. Currently blending Lava and Red's with good results. I found the C on my lava set was BOOMING too much so I put a C from a Red set and BAM.... it really blended in and stopped booming. Lava's are more rugged than Red's but if you take the care with stretch, don't let it ride in the NUT when bringing to pitch and are careful for Sharpe edges on tuner, nut, or bridge....... Red's stand up really nice on some ukuleles. They also have a great feel also. I just changed my forth string on one of my tenors to Reds....... so on that ukulele I have Laval on 1 & 2 and Reds of 3 & 4. Sounds good to me.
YMMV.

Osprey
07-18-2016, 09:07 AM
The strings are settling in. The E string is still showing sharp at the first fret, but then improves as you go up the fretboard. They are sounding nice and bright on the solid acacia ukulele.

Inksplosive AL
07-18-2016, 03:32 PM
Ive had a set of reentrant reds on my KA-SEM for a few years now, they only seem to be getting better. I also have a reentrant set on my Risa soprano stick, my KA-GAS and a solid walnut soprano from Bruce Wei.

I did have two separate low G strings snap on the Risa stick. I really hope the formula hasn't changed much due to people not knowing how to string them properly. Do not let them drag in or on the nut when tuning them up but let them ride on your finger instead. The Risa stick is an odd design so I dont fault the strings there more so because the reentrant g is AOK.

Reds feel papery or velvety like no other string. The sound can be described as a bit metallic like a new guitar string. At least to my ears.

:2cents: