View Full Version : Question here! + Intro

06-08-2009, 07:26 AM
Greeting all!

First of all, I'm Danish (+teen), so I might not be totally understandable, but I'll try to explain, and hopefully the most patient of you will understand.

So, after playing bass and guitar for some time, I thought I'd try either a mandolin or a uke - and as you might have guessed, I went with the uke, and I loved it. After 2 days I could play several songs, and mastered the "chunking" technique quite well. Oh, and perhaps I should mention that I bought an Oscar Schmidt OU3, which have a standard head and a tie bar bridge. The stock strings were horrible (even I could see/hear that) so I bought the strings offered from UU shop (thanks for the wonderful service btw)

Gah, wall of text, I'm sorry.

So attaching the strings to the bridge went quite well I believe. (thanks to the UU video) but my problem was at the headstock. I did as Aldrine showed in the video. String through the hole, and tie. But when I released my hand from the string, it would go all loose. So I tried to put the string through the hole again.

Result? It sounds horrible now, so I'm gonna have to buy some new strings I guess. It can't keep in tune, and I'm really annoyed, cause I wanna play :)

So what am I doing wrong? What is the right technique.

God, what a post for such a small question. I need to learn self-control..:D


06-08-2009, 07:33 AM
I am gong to guess you got the strings on. So one thing that people often find out is the strings need some time to settle in. They are Nylon or some material like that and they need to stretch. You might want to try tunning up a step or two then playing for a little bit then check if they are in tune or not then repeat until they level out and will be streched.

Once they get settled in they should shound pretty good.

If that is not it I don't know what the problem might be.

06-08-2009, 07:43 AM
Stringing the uke is just like stringing the guitar. You have to keep tension on the string by placing your finger on the string just below the nut, and turn the tuner unil the string is taught enough to stay in place on its own.

06-08-2009, 07:45 AM
I didn't quite like Aldrine's technique. I double looped mine and they held just fine. You want enough wraps that they bind against each other so they don't slip, but not so many wraps that they jam up against the bottom of the tuners.

One way I learned that works is to hold the tail of the string in place and wind the first wrap *above* the tail and then let the other wraps go below. This helps to trap the end of the string in place so it doesn't slip.

BTW, my wife is currently in DK as I'm writing this. She'll be dancing in Copenhagen at "Plex" next weekend.

06-08-2009, 07:48 AM
Okay thanks for the advice.

And I know that strings need time to settle. I put them on 3 days ago, but I'll give them another day, tuned up a bit.

Else, I think I know what I've done wrong by now, incase I'm going to buy a new pair of strings :)

Aldrine Guerrero
06-08-2009, 07:49 AM
dnewton2 is correct here. My guess is that the strings are trying to settle and they are sliding. You should stretch out the strings before playing. Try and tuning it higher and leaving it overnight. Tune the strings a step up the night before and retune them in the morning.

06-08-2009, 07:50 AM
strings can take a few weeks to finally "break-in"
or so i believe....
but welcome to UU! and say bye to your friends because you'll be ukeing all the time =D

06-08-2009, 07:51 AM
I do it the same way as DaveVisi - no problem. I'm guessing the strings just need a day or so of regular tuning to settle down.

John Colter (Ukantor)

06-08-2009, 08:07 AM
I also do what Aldrine just said and tune a full note sharp. By the next day they're settled into the proper note.

My assumption was that the OP's problem wasn't the strings not holding their tuning, but that they were physically slipping off the tuners and pulling out of the hole. That's why it's important that you "lock" the tail one way or another before bringing up to tension.