PDA

View Full Version : A Phone Call To Kanilea Ukulele



ancient
02-20-2013, 11:58 AM
Just got off the phone with Kristen at Kanilea Ukulele.
I called to inquire about the strings that Kanilea uses on the GL6 Guitarlele. Kristen said that they were a special set they had made up by GHS just for the Guitarlele. She said they have them for sale. I asked about the price and they are $14.00 a set. This seems high to me. Kristen told me that you could not use classic strings on the GL6 because Joe built the Guitarlele for the special strings they sell. I don't quite understand this when everything I have read says that you can use classcal guitar strings on the GL6. They even state on Hawaii Music that you can use classical guitar strings.
Can anyone help me with this question?

OldePhart
02-20-2013, 12:04 PM
I know from zip on Guitarleles - how is it tuned? If it is tuned higher than a guitar then you should be able to use classical guitar strings. If it is tuned the standard EADGBE then you might be able to use high-tension classical strings but they might be a little floppy. On my baris in "standard" DGBE tuning I use classical strings for the basses, shifted over one position (i.e. the "A" string for the bari D string, the "D" string for the bari G string).

Even if it is tuned the same as a guitar you should be able to use strings intended for a 3/4 size classical...

Edited to add: BTW, the $14 might not be unreasonable, especially if they are flat wound. For my baris I use Thomastik-Infeld flat wound strings on the basses - the strings are about five bucks each...

John

ancient
02-20-2013, 12:18 PM
The Guitarlele is tuned ADGCEA like a capo on the fifth fret of a guitar.

OldePhart
02-20-2013, 12:29 PM
The Guitarlele is tuned ADGCEA like a capo on the fifth fret of a guitar.

Then I can't see any reason that you shouldn't be able to use classical guitar strings. It's simple, the scale length of the guitarlele is roughly the same as the scale length from the fifth fret of a classical guitar. So, classical guitar strings will be under approximately the same tension on the guitarlele that they would be under on a classical guitar. The biggest thing affecting string response and intonation up the neck is the tension. Too loose and intonation suffers. Too tight and response suffers.

Be advised that good classical guitar strings are probably not going to be much cheaper than the $14 quoted, though - in fact, they might be more expensive. The advantage is that you have a much wider field to choose from. The first strings I'd try would be a set of the Thomastik-Infeld flat wound chrome steel classical strings (I don't recall the part number for the full set - I buy the individual CF35 and CF30 strings as I mentioned before for my baris). (BTW, the naming on these strings is a little wierd - they're intended for classical guitars but the name would lead you to believe that they are "steel" strings.) The reason I like them though is that there is much less of the "squeak" you typically get with wound strings.

Good luck, and let us know how it goes...

John

ancient
02-20-2013, 12:38 PM
Thanks for the information. I see no reason not to use classical nylon strings. I put a set of dAddario J43s on it.
They are a light gauge set 0.275-0.317-0.397-028W-038W-042W.

ancient
02-20-2013, 12:52 PM
Just got a reply from Kristen at Kanilea.

The gages are:

A = .412
E = .406
C = .398
G = .405
D = .401
A = .391


This does not sound right. What do you think.

OldePhart
02-20-2013, 01:01 PM
Just got a reply from Kristen at Kanilea.

The gages are:

A = .412
E = .406
C = .398
G = .405
D = .401
A = .391


This does not sound right. What do you think.

Maybe they're in mm? Well...fairly obvious they can't be in inches... LOL

Sounds like they've tried to go with the same "keep diameter the same and alter density" philosophy that is behind the new Aquila Red line. Still probably no reason that you couldn't at least try classical guitar strings and see how they sound. Likely the only problem might be that the thinnest strings in the set might "squirm" in the too-wide nut slot and affect sustain. If the D'Addarios sound good and sustain normally I'd say they're probably okay.

John

Tigeralum2001
02-20-2013, 03:03 PM
I wonder what some dealers might say? I have heard some caution against certain strings and certain ukes (one case involving Kanilea) because of the high tension.

I'm not sure if TRU bracing is not as strong or if that is just an individual's opinion. I know KoAloha uses minimal (sometimes no) bracing; so I am sure opinions abound...

All of that said, $14 is not a bad price. I pay an average of $7-10 for uke strings; $14 seems right for 6. I can't remember what I paid for my last 6-string uke strings... I think $12.

ricdoug
02-20-2013, 07:34 PM
Knowing the Souza's, it has to do with tension, action and fret relief. It's not just the guage of the string, tension and tonal quality are other factors. Most cars run better on premium, than unleaded. Ric

stevepetergal
02-21-2013, 04:05 AM
I'd spend the 14 clams and analyze from there. Save money on all subsequent sets (if that's the goal).

ancient
02-21-2013, 05:21 AM
Here is where things get a little confusing. Hawaii Music Supply on their discription of the GL6 states
"This is not a very common instrument but it is played just like a guitar and can use classical guitar strings. We can gladly help you with that."

gyosh
02-21-2013, 06:09 AM
Here is where things get a little confusing. Hawaii Music Supply on their discription of the GL6 states
"This is not a very common instrument but it is played just like a guitar and can use classical guitar strings. We can gladly help you with that."

You called the Souza's. They built it and told you what to use.

Now you're asking/taking a vendor's advice over the builder's and then asking us to decide?

My opinion is to go with the builder's suggestion and do further research while playing that beautiful Kanile'a. It's not like they slapped a set of inexpensive strings on it to save money.

ancient
02-21-2013, 06:18 AM
I am going to try to contact Joe if I can get him on the phone.

gyosh
02-21-2013, 06:25 AM
I am going to try to contact Joe if I can get him on the phone.

Kristin knows her stuff too and they are wonderful people.

Hope you get your answers.

seeso
02-21-2013, 06:27 AM
I would absolutely go with the builders' suggestion.

Kauai808
02-21-2013, 09:52 AM
$1000+ instrument and your balking at $14 strings? Just buy the things and get it over with

MGM
02-21-2013, 12:27 PM
The GL6 strings have been used and tested on the specific guitarlele and have been adjusted for guage feel and sound....Yes the wound strings are classical guitar type strings and the higher plains nylon but you if you decide to experiment better know your string tensions as using a really wrong string will ruin your gl6 possibly and warranty issue may arise....would your car warranty cover your Auto if the trans broke trying to tow a semi truck and trailer...i think not..

like the previous poster said...by the set its only 14.00