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Grey
04-15-2017, 06:29 AM
I play a Soprano and I'm moderately experienced, but one problem that I suffer is that I sound strings when I release a chord. It's like my fingers are sticky or something (even though they're completely dry). So on a quiet piece I end up with an unwanted 'pull-off' chord as I lift my fingers.

Somebody told me that players of Spanish guitar rub their finger pads on their forehead to pick up some of the natural oils on the skin to avoid this. Not sure whether that's true or not.

Mivo
04-15-2017, 06:57 AM
I had this happen when I started playing, but as my finger tips toughened a little, it mostly went away. I may also have pressed too hard. It could also depend on the strings you are using. Have you experimented with different materials?

Grey
04-15-2017, 08:10 AM
Maybe I'm pressing two hard and perhaps the strings are embedding into my pads a bit too deeply. My pads are already quite hard but they do have a groove in them.

I'm using Aquila strings, which I like because they have a nice full sound. Is there a different flavour I could try?

janeray1940
04-15-2017, 08:14 AM
I'm using Aquila strings, which I like because they have a nice full sound. Is there a different flavour I could try?

I find Martin fluorocarbons to be the most "slippery" strings I've tried. I'd rank Aquilas on the slightly sticky side, but not as much as Oasis, if that helps. Funny how different string textures and different skin textures can or can't play well together :)

Croaky Keith
04-15-2017, 08:30 AM
I used to suffer this too, but as my tips hardened it became less often, & has almost completely disappeared now that I use flourocarbon strings. :)

Grey
04-15-2017, 09:34 AM
Looking on Amazon, is this what you would recommend?
GHS 20 (https://www.amazon.co.uk/GHS-20-Fluorocarbon-Hawaiian-Ukulele-String/dp/B00LLHLF0K/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&qid=1492284781&sr=8-14&keywords=ukulele+fluorocarbon+strings)
or
GHS H20 (https://www.amazon.co.uk/GHS-H20-Fluorocarbon-Soprano-Concert/dp/B00LLHLFP0/ref=sr_1_12?s=musical-instruments&ie=UTF8&qid=1492284942&sr=1-12&keywords=ukulele+fluorocarbon+strings)
and are they are the right ones for standard GCEA tuning?

hikaru
04-15-2017, 11:02 AM
I recently changed my strings from the Aquila to the Martin fluorocarbon ones, and it definitely reduces the noises when releasing the strings. Also, because the fluorocarbon ones are much thinner than Aquila, even the barre chords are easier now!!!

Martin 600 (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0002CZVZK/ref=sr_ph_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1492289798&sr=sr-1&keywords=martin+strings)

Mivo
04-15-2017, 02:06 PM
Aquila make different strings. The Red Series is thinner than some fluorocarbon brands (the Martins have an E string that is too thick for me, which is why I haven't used them in a while.)

Nickie
04-15-2017, 02:11 PM
Are you washing your hands after you eat, before you play?
I would suggest loosening your strings and wiping them down with a moist clean rag.
Then I'd dress the fretboard with some good product like LoPrinzi fretboard butter.
If that fails to help, you might have to do a string change....

Grey
04-16-2017, 07:55 AM
My hands are always clean when I play (I'm kind of fussy about that and I have to wait a while for my pads to dry out). It could certainly be that over time the strings are accumulating a layer of deposits from my fingers or even from the air (like pollen or something). But I'm right handed so if I'm making notes my right hand might be picking up dirt, but it's the left hand holding the fretboard/uke. I'll certainly try cleaning the strings and the fretboard before I consider swopping out the strings.

Kyle23
04-16-2017, 08:42 AM
I had the same problem when I first started and after time it just went away, so I can't explain exactly what I did differently. I want to say I was fretting too hard and my technique wasn't as great when switching. It could be the strings because when I first started I used Aquilas, but I swapped them out and haven't had a problem since.

Doug W
04-16-2017, 01:14 PM
Maybe I'm pressing two hard and perhaps the strings are embedding into my pads a bit too deeply. My pads are already quite hard but they do have a groove in them.

I'm using Aquila strings, which I like because they have a nice full sound. Is there a different flavour I could try?

My wife uses Aquila New Nylgut strings and they sound great on her uke. I don't notice the sound you are talking about when she plays or when I play her uke.

Debussychopin
04-16-2017, 04:21 PM
Naturally , the instrument will make noticeable pull-off sounds just slightly even with clean fingers, good strings, and proper technique.
So if you do practice or play quieter songs (also slower tempoed as well) , it is worthwhile to practice legato, as this musically will help in hiding the pull-off sound. Legato meaning lifting off the played string at the time of playing a future or next note.

LarryS
04-17-2017, 06:49 AM
I notice that too with mine when I'm doing a practice scale run. I'm on Aquilas which have been on since 2014 (tho I didn't really play it the first year I had it)

It's worse on the classical guitar with its wound bass strings because of the squeak. Is it caused by soft fingers? Mine are just now getting toughened up.

bikemech
04-17-2017, 08:24 AM
Those sounds will become more controllable as you mature as a player. Or you may grow to expect them and enjoy them. My guitar instructor once told me that when his daughter, then grown and living on her own, heard the sound of a guitarist's fretting hand squeaking as it moved between chords, it always reminded her of him and the hours he spent playing, and practicing, and squeaking at home. For her, it was comfort food to the ears.

Or you can just check out this thread: http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?126863-Sticky-Ukulele-Strings

LarryS
04-17-2017, 08:48 AM
On the ukulele it's more annoying because it's like a hammer off each time I jump strings when doing a scale run, and it's quite loud

bikemech
04-17-2017, 09:17 AM
On the ukulele it's more annoying because it's like a hammer off each time I jump strings when doing a scale run, and it's quite loud

I would say that you likely need to concentrate more on lifting your fingers straight, up and away from the strings before you move them toward the next position. As always, practice at the slowest speed you need to get the technique down. Don't be in a hurry. Speed will come later.

Grey
04-19-2017, 01:39 PM
I cleaned my strings and it really didn't make much difference, so I was considering trying one of the other sets that's been recommended. The killer for me is releasing a barre, my index finger seems to cling to every string on the release and I get a perfect Am7 which can sound awful. However, my dad always said "a bad workman blames his tools"; words which ring in my ears in such situations.

So... I have started lifting my fingers slower and that seems to help. I also noticed how gracefully many players move around the fretboard and how little they raise them from the fretboard. When I'm trying to keep time, I'm in a big hurry to lift my fingers, move and plant them elsewhere, so it's almost like three movements rather than one fluid movement. Seems like an obvious solution but just playing at a slower tempo, get everything sounding sweet, then maybe picking up the pace as and when I can cleanly move around the fretboard (with all fingers moving in unison and in one movement).

frigiliana
04-19-2017, 09:28 PM
Would this help ? it's Lemon Oil .https://www.amazon.co.uk/Planet-Waves-PW-LMN-Lemon-Oil/dp/B000BNSYHW

actadh
04-20-2017, 03:35 AM
Worth Browns on the Brueko seem the "cleanest" for me, but I bought it used and don't know if that was how they originally felt. To me, they have a tension that makes it great for fingerpicking, but harder for barring. But that may be the higher action, too.

My new Kala ASOV S that was the Overstock deal a few weeks ago still has the stock Aquila New Nylgut. I felt like my hands were needing to be washed after playing for a bit. I attributed it to the powdery coating that seems to be on their new strings, as I noticed the same thing when I purchased my Luna that came with the same strings. Now that the strings have been on for a while it is not as noticeable, as was the case with the Luna. I was leaning towards changing the strings to Martins, but they sound so much better after a few weeks. It wasn't a staying-in-tune issue as much as a odd sound to the uke. Now it is good to my ears :)

I barre the best when using Martins.

Mivo
04-20-2017, 05:11 AM
I'm currently using aNueNue Black Water and Clear Water strings. They have a bit lower tension (but they are not floppy) and I find them really very easy and comfortable to play. They are new and not widely available yet, though. They have different gauges than other fluorocarbon sets, so for people who haven't yet found strings they swear by, or who'd like thinner or differently balanced strings, they may be worth a look.

70sSanO
04-21-2017, 08:16 PM
So... I have started lifting my fingers slower and that seems to help. I also noticed how gracefully many players move around the fretboard and how little they raise them from the fretboard. When I'm trying to keep time, I'm in a big hurry to lift my fingers, move and plant them elsewhere, so it's almost like three movements rather than one fluid movement. Seems like an obvious solution but just playing at a slower tempo, get everything sounding sweet, then maybe picking up the pace as and when I can cleanly move around the fretboard (with all fingers moving in unison and in one movement).

I think technique will ultimately be your solution. Once you develop a smoother transition between chords I think it may help. I just tried to get a pull off between chords and found that if I aggressively lift my fingers I can get a pull-off, but when I normally play I don't hear any. Maybe a lighter touch and less lifting might help.

I do realize that some fast flamenco style playing would take a technique far beyond my ability, but for most chord/fingerstyle you will be able to get there.

John

phil hague
04-21-2017, 11:18 PM
Just rub a little talc powder on your fingers and make sure you wipe it off, that works for me in hot sticky weather.

Rllink
04-22-2017, 04:48 AM
I thought about this thread this morning. My seven month old grand daughter sits on my lap and helps me play the ukulele. She grabs the strings, licks the ukulele, and she slobbers all over the fretboard. My whole ukulele is a sticky mess.

Grey
04-22-2017, 12:48 PM
I thought about this thread this morning. My seven month old grand daughter sits on my lap and helps me play the ukulele. She grabs the strings, licks the ukulele, and she slobbers all over the fretboard. My whole ukulele is a sticky mess.

Kids, can't help but lov'em. Sounds like you need to de-string it and clean it all up, the strings too. In a store near where I live they sell really cheap Ukes (a low end brand), maybe you should use one of those when she's around and keep your best Uke hidden away (and high up!).

hikaru
04-22-2017, 06:33 PM
Just curious... will the sticky noises still be heard via pick-ups?