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View Full Version : Uh Oh, Newb question. Conert Ukes - high G & Low G Conversion?



Joe Losacco
05-27-2011, 09:48 AM
Once again, I am brand spanking new to your world, so new in fact I have that new car smell so please understand I am as naive as they get with the instrument. I was wondering, I purchased a decent Lanikai concert uke yesterday which has the high G on it. Is it possible or okay to change that to a low G? Is there anything that prohibits doing this and is it okay for the uke? I don't want to damage it or have to make major alterations to make it happen if I ever decided to try it.

Thanks for entertaining my questions if they are silly.

CTurner
05-27-2011, 09:54 AM
Try a bit of search in the forums here, use "concert" and "low g". I'm pretty sure there was a recent conversation about it. Short answer: all you need to do is get a low g string and substitute it. Some concerts sound very good with low g, others not so much. Welcome!

TheOnlyUkeThatMatters
05-27-2011, 09:56 AM
Welcome to UU!

Nothing prevents using a low G string on a concert uke. Have lots of high and low fun!!

Joe Losacco
05-27-2011, 09:57 AM
Cool. Thanks for quick answer and the welcome.

Lori
05-27-2011, 10:08 AM
Welcome to UU! Some concert ukes sound good with the low G, and others sound a bit dull on that string. Experiment with different strings, non-wound gives you a more balanced tone, and wound strings might give you a bit more sustain. You will probably have to modify your playing a bit, because the low G can sometimes sound a bit boomy, so you have to lighten up on that string a bit.

Have fun.

–Lori

mr moonlight
05-27-2011, 10:14 AM
Sometimes the groove on the nut is not wide enough to accommodate the thicker low G string so a little filing may be in order. You can have any guitar tech or repair person take care of it or you can buy a set of needle files for a few bucks and do it yourself. Takes all of about 30 seconds to do. What I do is, make a mark with a pencil at the bottom of the groove before I start filing and make sure that I don't file off that mark. Just widen it until the string fits snug.

Doc_J
05-27-2011, 11:23 AM
Sometimes the groove on the nut is not wide enough to accommodate the thicker low G string so a little filing may be in order. You can have any guitar tech or repair person take care of it or you can buy a set of needle files for a few bucks and do it yourself. Takes all of about 30 seconds to do. What I do is, make a mark with a pencil at the bottom of the groove before I start filing and make sure that I don't file off that mark. Just widen it until the string fits snug.


Good point Mr Moonlight about the nut. I've also had problems with slotted bridges. I hate it when putting on some new thicker strings and find a bridge string slot is too narrow. :mad:
Usually I'm not in the mood to file the slot and use other strings. That's why I am a fan of tie bridges or bridge pins.

Skulleigh
05-27-2011, 05:53 PM
I actually just changed the strings on my oldest uke over to a set with a low-G, and it's a concert sized one. I didn't even have to file out the nut. If you'd like to try it out, I say go for it - I went from pondering selling or trading that particular uke to really enjoying it.

It's not my only uke however, so I still have high-G on the rest of them, and I'm glad of it. Some songs sound better to me with high-G, some sound better with low-G.

Joe Losacco
06-02-2011, 08:00 AM
Very cool. Thanks for all of the help.

On a side note, I am very familiar with guitars and basses. I've scratch built many over the years and have cut every nut on each from bone. I am a pretty experienced luthier in that aspect, just not all too familiar with the ukulele yet but I plan to explore this instrument to "nth" degree and eventually build one from scratch as well.