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SonSprinter
03-08-2013, 04:19 PM
Easy to Play StrIngs:

Are there certain kind of strings that are easier to play? I have a serious hand/finger injury that will take months/years to completely heal, if ever completely. But I have those translucent "top quality" strings that, to me, seem to require more pressure than those strings on those really cheap $50 ukuleles. I do not care about volume, nor sound quality, only the ease or lightness that my fingers need to press.

jglover
03-08-2013, 06:11 PM
Fretting pressure can greatly depend on the instrument's set up. A well set up uke will require less pressure to fret a string than one with higher action. I've also found nylon and Aquila seem to feel more difficult to play than fluorocarbon strings like Martins.

ChaosToo
03-08-2013, 07:25 PM
Setup is the key! My Tenor (Aquilas) ws really hard to fret 'out of the box'. Since lowering the action, it's a thousand times easier and less painful on the fingers.

SonSprinter
03-08-2013, 10:09 PM
Yeah, the ukulele site set it up, and I asked for a lowest possible action.

Ken Middleton
03-08-2013, 11:15 PM
I may be a bit naive and somewhat inexperienced, but some of you seem to be saying that a low action is a good thing. That can' be right, can it?

ChaosToo
03-08-2013, 11:55 PM
I'm simply saying that, for me, lowering the action has had the most noticeable effect on playability. It's certainly made fretting a lot more comfortable, especially up at the first few frets. It was just a suggestion, rather than a definitive solution :D

Ken Middleton
03-09-2013, 12:20 AM
I'm simply saying that, for me, lowering the action has had the most noticeable effect on playability. It's certainly made fretting a lot more comfortable, especially up at the first few frets. It was just a suggestion, rather than a definitive solution :D

I'm not in any way criticising, Keith. It is just that I would argue that, while a low action makes the strings easier to push down, it makes playability far harder. Playability, to me, is to do with how easy it is to achieve the sound or effect you want to make: vibrato, dynamics, tone, hammer-ons, etc.

tangimango
03-09-2013, 12:28 AM
go with worths CL strings. really light and soft with good sound. thank me later.

oh and if your action is high, a good set up also helps. try find a balance.

dkcrown
03-09-2013, 12:39 AM
What size ukulele do you have? Tenors typically have a higher string tension than sopranos and concerts which can make fretting more difficult for some people.

ChaosToo
03-09-2013, 06:44 AM
I'm not in any way criticising, Keith. It is just that I would argue that, while a low action makes the strings easier to push down, it makes playability far harder. Playability, to me, is to do with how easy it is to achieve the sound or effect you want to make: vibrato, dynamics, tone, hammer-ons, etc.

No worries Ken - maybe it was my choice of the term 'playability' - which, for me, is all about not having to press too hard on the fretboard. With the OP mentioning the problems with arthiritic fingers, I just assumed he might be meaning the same?

:D

wendellfiddler
03-09-2013, 12:16 PM
I'm not in any way criticising, Keith. It is just that I would argue that, while a low action makes the strings easier to push down, it makes playability far harder. Playability, to me, is to do with how easy it is to achieve the sound or effect you want to make: vibrato, dynamics, tone, hammer-ons, etc.

Ken - it so much depends on style of play. For up the neck jazz chording, low action - even very low action, is essential and much more important than volume. Not so much because the strings hurt, but more because your wrist - and your thumb behind the neck gets fatigued. But then, if you play fiddle tunes or use lots of hammer ons and open chords - well you're gonna want something different.

duk

BlackBearUkes
03-09-2013, 12:50 PM
[QUOTE=SonSprinter;1208413]Easy to Play StrIngs:

Are there certain kind of strings that are easier to play? I have a serious hand/finger injury that will take months/years to completely heal, if ever completely. But I have those translucent "top quality" strings that, to me, seem to require more pressure than those strings on those really cheap $50 ukuleles. I do not care about volume, nor sound quality, only the ease or lightness that my fingers need to press.[/QUOT

I think you could just tune down the uke 1/2 or a whole step to soften the action. As long as you are not playing with other people, this could work fine and you wouldn't have to purchase new strings.

Tootler
03-09-2013, 01:13 PM
I think you could just down the uke down 1/2 or a whole step to soften the action. As long as you are not playing with other people, this could work fine and you wouldn't have to purchase new strings.

I was about to say that.

You can play with others but you have to play different chord shapes from them.

I have a concert tuned to Bb tuning (F Bb D G) and it is definitely softer to play. If you want to play in C in this tuning you have to use the chord shapes you would use for D on a uke tuned GCEA and so on.

chuck in ny
03-09-2013, 01:16 PM
did i read hear that fremont blacklines are soft to play? in any case you have a serious condition and have to deal with it in some effective way. certainly you want soft touch strings. maybe you will specialize in sopranos or concerts. as long as you maintain some touch and mobility in the hand you should be able to continue to play and enjoy music. best of luck with this. i am confident you will find your way.

SonSprinter
03-10-2013, 10:46 AM
A guy who worked at a music just advised me that the baritone's strings were lighter to press. Something about having less tenssion.

PTOEguy
03-10-2013, 10:59 AM
A useful reference may be the southcoast string guide (http://www.southcoastukes.com/stringuide.htm) - I've got a set of their "soft" strings that I will be putting on my tenor as soon as my current Aquilas are officially dead. They show a tension rating for each of their sets, and the soft ones have a larger diameter, which could be easier on the fingers.

Macmuse
03-11-2013, 04:04 PM
[QUOTE=SonSprinter;1208413]Easy to Play StrIngs:

I think you could just tune down the uke 1/2 or a whole step to soften the action. As long as you are not playing with other people, this could work fine and you wouldn't have to purchase new strings.

Thanks for this. I've been trying really hard to love my LoPrinzi tenor. The tension had been doing me in compared to the other ukes I play. 1/2 step down and it's much easier to play and sounds wonderful too!

itsme
03-11-2013, 04:28 PM
A guy who worked at a music just advised me that the baritone's strings were lighter to press. Something about having less tenssion.
No. In general, the longer the vibrating string length (distance between nut and saddle) the higher the tension.

Macmuse
03-11-2013, 04:43 PM
No. In general, the longer the vibrating string length (distance between nut and saddle) the higher the tension.

Except that they are tuned lower in general, so both of my baritones are easier to play than my tenors.

mm stan
03-11-2013, 05:47 PM
No worries Ken - maybe it was my choice of the term 'playability' - which, for me, is all about not having to press too hard on the fretboard. With the OP mentioning the problems with arthiritic fingers, I just assumed he might be meaning the same?

:D
Aloha Keith...You may have meant "Comfort" or comfortablitiy.... playing dropped tuned also lowers the tension and softer thinner guage strings help..

ChaosToo
03-11-2013, 10:25 PM
Aloha Keith...You may have meant "Comfort" or comfortablitiy.... playing dropped tuned also lowers the tension and softer thinner guage strings help..

You might be spot on there Stan :D