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View Full Version : Are my fingernails tearing up my strings?



franck3d
03-28-2011, 05:06 PM
I have really started enjoying fingerpicking and tonight I noticed that my A string was rough on the underside about where I pluck at it.

Do you notice that strings don't last as long when plucked with nails?

If I have to replace strings more often, I'll do it. I think I have decided that since I don't have much of a singing voice, fingerstyle may be the way to go for me.

I just tabbed out my first 4 chord progression/picking pattern and I just am really surprised how much joy my uke brings me.
Now I just need to practice it enough to put something up on YouTube.

Lori
03-28-2011, 06:02 PM
I do a lot of fingerpicking, but I have never noticed wear on the strings from it. However, I did get a new uke once, and the one of the strings had a rough spot. I assumed it was from some flaw in the string, rather than wear.

–Lori

BBQUKER
03-29-2011, 02:49 AM
I also do a lot of fingerpicking and the A string is really torn up. Will be changing strings (to low G) on my Kala tenor as soon as my new Mainland arives.

Dan

AzMichael
03-29-2011, 02:58 AM
I had this problem when I used Aquilla strings, but haven't with Worths or D'Addario.

~Michael

OldePhart
03-29-2011, 12:05 PM
+1 the Nylgut thing. That thin gut coating gets cut up pretty easily. I don't do much fingerpicking but I do use my nails a lot and I can have a set of Nylguts in tatters in six weeks. Fluorocarbon strings last much, much longer.

John

Huna
03-29-2011, 02:11 PM
Fluorocarbons can handle shark teeth cuz its basically super expensive fishing line thats made to be invisible. This is what baffles me about the fremont blacks.

OldePhart
03-29-2011, 02:16 PM
Fluorocarbons can handle shark teeth cuz its basically super expensive fishing line thats made to be invisible. This is what baffles me about the fremont blacks.
Worth browns appear to just be dyed fluorocarbon leader, and I'd assume the Fremont blacks are the same. It's obvious that's the case with the Worth browns, anyway, they come in exactly the same diameters as the clears, and they correlate perfectly with fishing leader from Seaguar. Out of curiousity I experimented with dyeing some of the Seaguar leader I've purchased. I used simple black "Rit" clothing dye. The best I was able to get was kind of a light grey color but I didn't want to mess with having to actually boil the strings, which I believe you have to do to get the dye to penetrate well.

John

Huna
03-29-2011, 02:35 PM
well the fremont blacks are opaque black like GHS so I don't know why they are even fluorocarbon as they are NOT invisible... maybe just for the toughness.

OldePhart
03-29-2011, 02:41 PM
well the fremont blacks are opaque black like GHS so I don't know why they are even fluorocarbon as they are NOT invisible... maybe just for the toughness.

The "selling point" for fluorocarbons as musical instrument strings is that they are very dense - therefore you can get lower pitches from thinner diameters. More strength for a given thickness is also important in fishing leaders where the thinner the string the less visible it is to fish. (Yes, there is some argument that fluorocarbon has a lower index of refraction, too, making it less visible in its clear or pink (yeah, pink, not sure why) forms.) So, if you are choosing the string for its density for use in musical instruments, then dyeing it is simply for appearance sake. Of course, anything you do to modify a material might change its tonal properties too, which is why I won't claim that there is no tonal difference between Worth browns and Worth clears, for example. (Personally, I suspect that if there is a difference it's pretty slight, but that's a horse I don't care to beat without doing extensive testing first.) :)

John

TCK
03-29-2011, 03:38 PM
I can second what has been said- my Aquilas play into a fine dust all over my soundboard, and my Worths do not- the fine gut coating is also what I suspect is coming off of them. THey do sound really good on some of my ukes though, even if I have to change them more often (I am at about 1x monthly on most the Ukes- 1x every three months with the Worth strings)