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View Full Version : Changing to low G on a Tenor



Bluke
05-07-2009, 08:30 AM
I want to set up one of my (current high G) tenors for low G. I'm not sure if I even need to ask this, but this forum has the members who would know best. Is it simply a matter of replacing the string with a thicker one (around .036"?) and making sure the nut and saddle will accommodate the thicker string diameter? If I decide to go with a wound string, should I use a silk 'n steel guitar string of the correct diameter? I've been using aquillas , which I've noticed are thicker than the flourocarbon strings I've also tried (Fremont set). So, the diameter of the low G may vary according to what type strings are being used.

Thanks for your advice.

NukeDOC
05-07-2009, 08:42 AM
every string manufacturer is going to have different characteristics for their strings. so judging solely on the diameter is not going to be efficient enough. you want to find the string that will give you the right pitch at the right tension. if you are only changing the G string, then this may require some guess and check / trial and error.

in my experience, however, i have been able to use a tenor wound C string as a low G string on a concert. i have also been able to use an old classical D string (metal wound silk) as a low G string on a tenor. i have also been able to use a tenor wound C string as a low G on the same tenor when i switched out for an unwound C string. but before i found these possibilities for my ukuleles, i went through several spare strings and string changes till i found what worked.

in the end, what worked for me was to stay in high G. hehe.

there are two ways you can get around this. try what youve got and get lucky the first time, or just spring for a low G set of strings.

Bluke
05-07-2009, 11:03 AM
Thanks, Doc, sure appreciate the advice. Looks like you've been through all this before. I do like playing in high G, but some things I play are restrictive that way, and since I own more than one tenor, I can change one. I'll get a couple of metal wound silk strings and try them. Too bad Aquila does not state what the diameters of their strings are. I've been measuring them and marking the sizes on the packaging. It does seem silly to have to buy a whole low G set for one string because I can't find out the set's gauges before I buy!

Did you stick with wound strings only for the low g?

Ukulele Dude
05-07-2009, 02:21 PM
Bluke,
I recently started using a Savarez wound classical guitar string for low g on my tenors and I really like it. The one I use is a Savarez 504rh. You can order the string individually from stringsbymail.com.

You can use an unwound low g if you want. But they tend to be larger diameter and floppy (low tension).

If the action on your uke isn't too low, and the nut slot is large enough for the larger string, you should just be able to switch the string without any issues.

Harold O.
05-07-2009, 08:06 PM
try what youve got and get lucky the first time, or just spring for a low G set of strings.

This is something I do not understand -- and it regularly shows up in this forum. $8 seems out of the reach of way too many people.:eek:

For myself, I'd much rather spend the $8 for a whole set than spend endless hours restringing with a variety of strings and then trying to convince myself THIS or THAT string sounds better than THE OTHER string.:old:

Keep it simple. Get a new set. Keep the old set.

Bluke
05-07-2009, 08:23 PM
Harold, you can change all the strings if you like. I just want to change one. It seems that Doc was putting in more hours of time for the sake of experimentation and the fun of figuring it out.

I found the MGM was able to sell me separate low G strings, so I ordered a couple of different types.

Harold O.
05-08-2009, 06:32 AM
Harold, you can change all the strings if you like. I just want to change one. It seems that Doc was putting in more hours of time for the sake of experimentation and the fun of figuring it out.

I found the MGM was able to sell me separate low G strings, so I ordered a couple of different types.

Yeah, no problem. But I have enough playing adventures without the experimentation. I'd have to record after each change to tell any real difference.

Those fires near you?

seeso
05-08-2009, 06:48 AM
The Aquila wound low G strings don't last a week for me. I've been using a classical guitar wound D string for a long time, and it's been awesome. I don't remember the make.