View Full Version : Trouble Keeping Instrument In Tune

06-20-2014, 04:16 PM
I wanted to pass this on. I had a couple of ukes and guitars that were impossible to keep in tune. I finally figured out what was causing it. The nut slots were too narrow. You would tune up and then when you played for awhile they would be out of tune. The strings would readjust tension between the saddle/nut section and nut/tuner section. I figured it out by pressing in the nut/tuner section and releasing and seeing that the string was pulled out of tune even after I released it.

The quick fix was to widen the slots and use some pencil lead to lubricate. On cheaper instruments with plastic nuts it was worse as the plastic would grip the string.

One instrument was so bad I decided to sell it, while trying to fix it up so it would be playable I stumbled across this issue. Widening the slots made such a difference I am keeping it, even played it onstage a few times.

I had a Yamaha Guitarlele with the same issue. Once I widened the nut slots it would stay in tune.

I've read a lot written about action and intonation but never on the importance of the proper nut slot width or how to properly check it.

06-21-2014, 10:31 AM
That's very useful information to keep in mind. So far all my ukes stay in tune pretty well, in fact it surprises at times that a couple keep in tune for an extended time.