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View Full Version : single wound low G advice very specific question . . .



DaveY
10-08-2017, 11:48 AM
So I have a new Godin MultiUke (tenor, 17" scale) that I'll convert to low G, and an old UU thread featured Andrew K. (HMS/TUS) explaining (see here (http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?80327-Godin-Multiuke-got-here/page7)) that a wound .032 inch diameter string is the way to go.

I found three D'Addarios that seem to qualify, but their string tension varies:

Single EXP Coated 80/20 Bronze Wound 032 in. / 27.860 lb. tension

Single EXP Coated Phosphor Bronze Wound 032 inch / 28.730 lb. tension

Single 80/20 Bronze Wound 032 inch / 29.010 lb. tension

He also mentioned that the .030 Fremont lacked sufficient tension (for optimal intonation). It's described as "medium tension" on the HMS site and elsewhere I couldn't find a specific tension number.

Does one (or two) of those strings seem like a better fit? Or should I just buy all three and see what happens?

And/or are there options in addition to D'Addarios?

Booli
10-08-2017, 12:41 PM
where are you getting those numbers for 29-29 lbs of string tension, and for which scale length.

A FULL SET of 4 strings on a soprano is usually not more than 28 lbs of tension so for one string, your numbers might be off...


Most classical guitar for 25.5" scale or 650mm scale will have string tension near 11-15 lbs per string depending upon if it is wound or unwound, and about 80-90 lb total string tension for the whole set of 6 strings....

~27+ lbs of string tension for a SINGLE string on uke for nylon type strings or classical strings seems dangerous to me for a standard uke, even for the chambered solid-body MultiUke. Even an electric guitar E4 STEEL string usually has no more than 23-25 lbs of tension, and that is on a Strat scale of 25.5" or 650mm.

For ukulele, I've found the Thomastik-Infeld CF30 chrome flatwound classical guitar string to be really great and has about 11-12lbs of tension which is what you'd need to have in order to approach decent intonation possibility.

The Thomastik chrome flatwound strings are onsidered high-tension, AND to be just perfect for any time I wanted a low-G and also consider it to be significantly smoother than the Fremont Soloist, and with near-zero string noise.

stringsbymail.com sells these as single strings - just search for CF30 and you will find them...

Booli
10-08-2017, 12:45 PM
...

And/or are there options in addition to D'Addarios?

D'Addario is but only one of 33 different string makers listed on Strings by Mail for classical guitar, see here:

https://www.stringsbymail.com/classical-guitar-strings-1/

Each of the 33 string makers has MANY sets each, there are maybe 500 total possible choices of string sets, and many more if only looking at string singles....

neo1022
10-08-2017, 01:17 PM
where are you getting those numbers for 29-29 lbs of string tension, and for which scale length.

A FULL SET of 4 strings on a soprano is usually not more than 28 lbs of tension so for one string, your numbers might be off...


Most classical guitar for 25.5" scale or 650mm scale will have string tension near 11-15 lbs per string depending upon if it is wound or unwound, and about 80-90 lb total string tension for the whole set of 6 strings....

~27+ lbs of string tension for a SINGLE string on uke for nylon type strings or classical strings seems dangerous to me for a standard uke, even for the chambered solid-body MultiUke. Even an electric guitar E4 STEEL string usually has no more than 23-25 lbs of tension, and that is on a Strat scale of 25.5" or 650mm.

For ukulele, I've found the Thomastik-Infeld CF30 chrome flatwound classical guitar string to be really great and has about 11-12lbs of tension which is what you'd need to have in order to approach decent intonation possibility.

The Thomastik chrome flatwound strings are onsidered high-tension, AND to be just perfect for any time I wanted a low-G and also consider it to be significantly smoother than the Fremont Soloist, and with near-zero string noise.

stringsbymail.com sells these as single strings - just search for CF30 and you will find them...

Agreed. The Thomastik C27 and C30 wound strings are great, and the combination of wound G and C is just about perfect, IMO.

DaveY
10-08-2017, 01:20 PM
where are you getting those numbers for 29-29 lbs of string tension, and for which scale length.

I should have mentioned that these are all guitar strings . . . which I now suspect might be a problem. But I know of people using four guitar strings for their ukes.

The info came from the D'Addario website.


Each of the 33 string makers has MANY sets each, there are maybe 500 total possible choices of string sets, and many more if only looking at string singles....

(Oh, crap . . . I might just take up the piccolo instead.)

Actually, thanks for the reply. Should I just try those three guitar strings? It's the D string on each of them.

DaveY
10-08-2017, 04:44 PM
. . . and I think it can be narrowed down to .032 in. strings, as that's what was recommended for this particular uke, in order to keep the intonation correct.

KamakOzzie
10-08-2017, 06:05 PM
I found three D'Addarios that seem to qualify, but their string tension varies:

Single EXP Coated 80/20 Bronze Wound 032 in. / 27.860 lb. tension

Single EXP Coated Phosphor Bronze Wound 032 inch / 28.730 lb. tension

Single 80/20 Bronze Wound 032 inch / 29.010 lb. tension



Those are steel strings. I don't think they are what you want. Check classical guitar strings .

DaveY
10-08-2017, 06:37 PM
Those are steel strings. I don't think they are what you want. Check classical guitar strings .

Ahhh.... thanks.

Booli
10-08-2017, 08:41 PM
I should have mentioned that these are all guitar strings . . . which I now suspect might be a problem. But I know of people using four guitar strings for their ukes.

The info came from the D'Addario website...

99% of the time, when folks are speaking of guitar strings on a uke they mean CLASSICAL guitar strings, which have the same tension (at uke scale and tuning) and sound profile as 'uke' strings.

Otherwise the other 1% that are talking about using STEEL guitar strings on a uke are either woefully misinformed or just ignorant.

STEEL guitar strings, even on the solid-body Multi-Uke is STILL a bad Idea and will likely kill your instrument from the excess tension, and the very fragile RMC piezo pickup elements in the bridge are likely not going to be happy either.

Steel strings on an electric guitar usually START at about 130 lbs of tension for the whole set of 6 strings, nylon-type classical strings start at about 80 lbs tension for the whole set of 6 strings, and baritone uke, by comparison starts at about 45 lbs for the whole set of 4 strings and tenor uke is about 36 lbs of tension for the whole set of 4 strings.

Part of the extra tension you might be reading about is a factor of the SCALE LENGTH of 25.5" guitars vs. the 19" or smaller scale of ukes.

Most ukes will snap in half if you put 80+ lbs of string tension on them, and if not snap in half, the bridge is like to get pulled off, the neck to warp (despite any truss rod) and generally lack ANY resonance because at the dangerously high tension, the vibrating arc of the string is likely to be small, and therefore transfer very little kinetic energy to the saddle and then the soundboard, and in the end the uke will be quiet -- yes EVEN the MultiUke since all the energy comes from string vibration...

If you are using ANYTHING other than CLASSICAL GUITAR or UKE strings, on your uke, then I am sad to inform you that whatever you saw on the D'Addario site or elsewhere, you are reading it wrong.

Please heed my words here and dont kill your wonderful Godin MultiUke. I know what I'm talking about with regard to strings and tension.

Please understand that I am trying to help you here. However, it's your choice to do as you please.

frigiliana
10-08-2017, 09:22 PM
I've had the Thomastik C27 and C30 wound strings on my Godin Multiuke for 6 months love them , no need for any nut faffing .

Booli
10-08-2017, 09:36 PM
I've had the Thomastik C27 and C30 wound strings on my Godin Multiuke for 6 months love them , no need for any nut faffing .

I agree. What I have previously written in this thread (http://goo.gl/bMN94H) <--click it :) regarding these Thomastik and other strings might be further helpful to this current thread by DaveY.

DaveY
10-09-2017, 03:43 AM
Thanks, Booli -- I knew that I needed classical strings; I just didn't know that I was looking at non-classical ones. So I'll call myself "half-ignorant."

frigiliana, thanks for that specific info about the Thomastik and MultiUke compatibility I'll try that brand. Now I just have to look up what "faffing" means to see if I might want to do that next weekend ('cause it sounds like fun).

By the way, the MultiUke is my third solid or chambered body uke; I sold the other two. It's by far my favorite. It doesn't seem to be available from most or maybe any uke sellers (although HMS carried it a few years go), and doesn't get a lot of attention. But I've been giving it attention it looks, sounds and plays great.

UPDATE: I looked up "faffing." I already did that in gathering all the useless info on the wrong strings. It was not fun at all.

frigiliana
10-09-2017, 05:48 AM
Sorry DaveY it's my Lancashire flat cap and Ferret upbringing . It's a great Ukulele i wouldn't swap mine , i've been playing around with effects pedals not quite got it right yet. It's such a versatile ukulele i've played some great Funk stuff on it, Barre the 7th fret for a Em7 for a couple of bars then put a finger on the C string 9th fret and you can do a Nile Rodgers groove need to a bit of damping between the strum sounds good i'm not quite up to speed.
Back to strings, for the 1st and 2nd strings i'm trying some D'addario Titanium sound OK and you can bend them from here to Christmas .

WhenDogsSing
10-09-2017, 07:18 AM
A D'Addario .028" wound classical string is what I have always used for low G. For the C string, use a .023" wound classical.

Ukulelerick9255
10-09-2017, 08:31 AM
One suggestion if you’re going to use a wound low g use a wound c, I think this gives a much better balanced sound than a plain C.

Osprey
10-09-2017, 09:04 AM
One suggestion if you’re going to use a wound low g use a wound c, I think this gives a much better balanced sound than a plain C.

I concur. On tenors I use a wound C even with high g tuning.

Booli
10-09-2017, 09:31 AM
Thanks, Booli -- I knew that I needed classical strings; I just didn't know that I was looking at non-classical ones. So I'll call myself "half-ignorant."...

I hope the info is helpful to you. I was rather stern because it seemed like you were being lead down a dark path toward uke implosion.

There's nothing wrong with ignorance, for there is always a cure, but one must be open to receive the cure, and that is simply a matter of self-education. :)

I do my best to impart what I have learned from my own experience and share it with other folks here on UU solely for their own benefit, and certainly not for my own ego nor to win any popularity contests...and I am simply trying to pay forward the kindness I've received from others, in the hope that UU can continue to grow and be a fulfilling resource for all of us. :)

spookelele
10-09-2017, 06:47 PM
yeah, booli turned me on to the TI's for the g/c, and they're great.
I do tend to prefer the wound g+c, balances better, less of the bass standing out.

They are a little higher tension than plastics, but that tension can be useful.
You can set the action quite a bit lower with them, and they also project more so you get more volume, and a fuller bass.
But if you're electric... you can do that other ways. Still.. since i like to play more finger style.. setting the action lower is a big bonus.

FiL
05-01-2018, 07:29 AM
DaveY,

Did you ever settle on a low G string for your Multiuke? I just recently got one, and I'm low-G-curious. :)

I tried searching for both ukulele and classical guitar strings that matched Andrew's description (".032" D'Addario silver wrap"), but came up empty at both juststrings.com and stringsbymail.com

- FiL

twokatmew
05-01-2018, 07:45 AM
DaveY,

Did you ever settle on a low G string for your Multiuke? I just recently got one, and I'm low-G-curious. :)

I tried searching for both ukulele and classical guitar strings that matched Andrew's description (".032" D'Addario silver wrap"), but came up empty at both juststrings.com and stringsbymail.com

- FiL

The part number would be NYL032W, but SBM has a 31 and 33, no 32 that I can see.

twokatmew
05-01-2018, 07:47 AM
A D'Addario .028" wound classical string is what I have always used for low G. For the C string, use a .023" wound classical.

Thx for this info. I use a .033" and .028" for the wound D and G on my baritone, wasn't sure where to start for wound low G and C on a tenor.

Edit: Unfortunately SBM only has a 22 and 24, no 23. :(

strumsilly
05-01-2018, 12:08 PM
I'm a big fan of the Freemont soloist. .030 squeakless/ polished, says you can use em on soprano-tenor, but i only ever used them on tenors. the tension seems right for me.

FiL
05-02-2018, 02:37 AM
Just to clarify, I'm looking to put a low G string on a Godin Multiuke. With it's individual, non-adjustable bridges, strings that work for most normal tenor ukes might not necessarily work on the Multiuke. While I appreciate everyone's input, I'm most interested in hearing from folks who have successfully put low G strings on their Multiukes. Andrew from HMS specifically mentioned that ".032 D'addario silver wrap" was the way to go to get the right tension, and that Freemonts were not perfect.

- FiL

frigiliana
05-02-2018, 07:07 AM
This what you want FIL i've been using these on my Godin Multiuke for over a year now no need for any nut adjustment just fit and play last for ages aswell .

https://www.theukulelesite.com/catalogsearch/result/?cat=0&q=THOMASTIK-INFELD

kissing
05-02-2018, 03:56 PM
To simplify, I don't even usually need to bother sticking to specific gauges of strings.
As a general rule, any D string (4th) of any classical guitar set will function as a low-G string of any Soprano/Concert/Tenor ukulele.

This makes it even easier if you want a full set of strings.
Just buy a classical guitar set and tune the DGBE strings up to GCEA.

AndrewKuker
05-02-2018, 06:36 PM
http://vimeo.com/267734646

I like that TI string best for it's balance and feel. But the oasis smooth wound .033 probably nails the intonation most on this model. The Ko'olau is right too, made by D'addario like I was saying. I think it wants that higher tension but the TI is pretty darn good with much less tension which is better in this situation for string balance through the amp. All in all I'd go with the TI.

https://vimeo.com/267734646

hollisdwyer
05-02-2018, 08:14 PM
I may have missed it but are these recommendations for the TI flat wound G & C’s only relevant to chambered body electric Ukes or are they also being recommended for Ukes of standard construction with piezo under saddle pu’s?

Note all my Ukes have MiSi’s and I mostly play amp’ed. Clarification would be very appreciated as I have been using wound 3rd and 4th strings for a while now. I have been happy with Southcoast, Alvarez and D’Addario single wounds but always like to try something new.

DownUpDave
05-02-2018, 08:16 PM
http://vimeo.com/267734646

I like that TI string best for it's balance and feel. But the oasis smooth wound .033 probably nails the intonation most on this model. The Ko'olau is right too, made by D'addario like I was saying. I think it wants that higher tension but the TI is pretty darn good with much less tension which is better in this situation for string balance through the amp. All in all I'd go with the TI.

https://vimeo.com/267734646

I have the cedar top Godin Multiuke and I like the TI, CF30 for the wound G and CF27 wound C strings respectively.

Hey Hollis the TI wounds work great on standard hollow body acoustic ukes as well.

hollisdwyer
05-02-2018, 09:20 PM
I have the cedar top Godin Multiuke and I like the TI, CF30 for the wound G and CF27 wound C strings respectively.

Hey Hollis the TI wounds work great on standard hollow body acoustic ukes as well.

Thanks Dave, I think that I might give them a go.

FiL
05-03-2018, 02:47 AM
frigiliana and Andrew, thanks for the recommendations. And Andrew, special thanks for taking the time from your busy day to make the video, too! Much appreciated.

- FiL

kissing
05-03-2018, 02:59 AM
I may have missed it but are these recommendations for the TI flat wound G & C’s only relevant to chambered body electric Ukes or are they also being recommended for Ukes of standard construction with piezo under saddle pu’s?

Note all my Ukes have MiSi’s and I mostly play amp’ed. Clarification would be very appreciated as I have been using wound 3rd and 4th strings for a while now. I have been happy with Southcoast, Alvarez and D’Addario single wounds but always like to try something new.

I don't think any particular strings is specifically better for ukes with pickups or chambered bodies, etc.
It's really up to preference. Any string appropriate for use as a low-G string (eg: Classical guitar D strings) would work.

hollisdwyer
05-03-2018, 03:24 AM
I don't think any particular strings is specifically better for ukes with pickups or chambered bodies, etc.
It's really up to preference. Any string appropriate for use as a low-G string (eg: Classical guitar D strings) would work.
Totally agree re preference. I have liked all the wound bases I have tried so far but I’m alway willing to try something new. As I change strings relatively often, I get to indulge my curiosity.

DownUpDave
05-03-2018, 04:43 AM
Thanks Dave, I think that I might give them a go.

Andrew has recently developed a set of Koolau florocarbon strings. I really like these a lot and on the set with wound 4th and 3rd strings he uses Fremont for the wound G and TI for the wound C strings. Chuck Moore strings all his low G Moore Bettah ukes with Thomastik Infeld (TI)wound 4th and 3rd. These guys know a thing or two so if use them its gotta be worth a try

hollisdwyer
05-03-2018, 03:19 PM
Andrew has recently developed a set of Koolau florocarbon strings. I really like these a lot and on the set with wound 4th and 3rd strings he uses Fremont for the wound G and TI for the wound C strings. Chuck Moore strings all his low G Moore Bettah ukes with Thomastik Infeld (TI)wound 4th and 3rd. These guys know a thing or two so if use them its gotta be worth a try

I looks like I will be entering a stage of Frankenstein string set creations. “It’s alive I tell you, it’s ALIVE!”.

trek4fr
07-17-2018, 12:55 AM
Thanks, Andrew. My new Multiuke is on its way to me and I want a low G. :) Which specific TI string is this? And is the C a TI string also? Thanks.

DaveY
07-17-2018, 03:47 PM
Thanks, Andrew. My new Multiuke is on its way to me and I want a low G. :) Which specific TI string is this? And is the C a TI string also? Thanks.

I have the Thomastik-Infeld CF-30 as my low G on my Multiuke, and the Thomastik-Infeld CF-27 as the C string, and I have no plans to try anything else.