View Full Version : "thuddy" C-string

05-14-2019, 10:58 AM
I bought a used 2000 KoAloha concert uke, and had it set up with d'Addario Fluorocarbon strings. While the g, e, and a strings sound nice and crisp I find that the low C lacks in the bell-like clarity of the other strings and when played open just makes a thuddy noise. I am not sure if this is an issue with the string, or if it could be fixed by adjustments to the instrument such as checking the nut slot or saddle and frets. Looking forward to your suggestions.

05-14-2019, 11:17 AM
I'd suggest a wound C string. Most C strings are going to sound a little "thuddy", some worse than others.

05-14-2019, 01:13 PM
If you're not into wound, you might try a Nylgut C string. I've found them to be a bit brighter than fluorocarbon for the 3rd string. The D'Addario Composite G string for classical guitar also makes a fine C string and is brighter than fluorocarbon. For my tenors I like the extra hard gauge (.038") from the EJ44C set, albeit you can buy it as a single at Strings by Mail.

05-14-2019, 02:34 PM
I’ve never experienced a thuddy open C. Typically for me it happens around the 3rd, 4th, 5th fret on a C string. That said, my rule of thumb is tension control. The first thing I would do is start adjusting the tension on the C string and see what happens.

If lower tension takes the thud away, and it doesn’t return at the fretted C note, it just comes down to finding the right string.

If it moves to wherever the C note is, it could be a harmonic resonant that is produced as a wolf note that thuds at that frequency. There may be a fix, but you’ll have to research it.

If it doesn’t go away with a tension change, it “might” be an issue with the nut slot that is pinching the string.


05-15-2019, 05:26 AM
Thanks for all the suggestions. Indeed I dislike wound strings so that's not an option. I think I will loosen the string and inspect nut more closely, or even put a shim under the saddle to raise the strings a bit if I find some suitable part. My other ukes have Aquila strings and I like them a lot, but I wanted to try the fluorocarbons on this one to make it as bright and punchy as possible. I have a spare set of "lava" strings that were on my other concert, so as a last resort I may switch to those.