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Thread: Best strings for tuning down my concert uke?

  1. #1

    Default Best strings for tuning down my concert uke?

    I would like to tune my concert uke down to Bb (F Bb D G). Any suggestions on a good set of strings? My uke sounds too sloppy by just tuning down a standard set of re-entrant strings.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Tampa Bay, FL


    What strings are you using now?
    You may need a higher tension set....
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  3. #3


    Aquilla Nygut. Looking for a recommendation of a brand that would work.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2013


    Quote Originally Posted by ubulele View Post
    Try a tenor set; the strings should be slightly thicker. Generally speaking, the lower the open pitch, the thicker the string should be. In particular, you might try the tenor Savarez Alliance strings, which I found to be a little higher tension than most other tenor sets I've tried. But really, almost any tenor-specific set should work, leaving your choice of string brand wide open (and possibly avoiding the need to special order, at least for a quick trial).

    I'm a bit biased, but for tone, I think almost any fluorocarbon strings are better than Nylguts. Or try the Aquila Sugars or SuperNylguts (or Lavas). If you want finer control of the tension, Worth makes lighter and heavier sets of their fluorocarbon strings (but don't use browns if you already find the tension too low). Southcoast also sells sets for various tensions, and you can find charts on their website which help indicate which sets to use for the tuning and tension desired for the various standard uke scales.
    Ubu is right on the money here.

    On one of my sopranos I found the Martin M600 strings a bit too floppy with too low tension for me since I mostly play tenors. I put a set of the Martin M620 'tenor' strings on and like the feel much better with the slightly higher tension, which also makes this little uke a bit louder.

    If these were not enough, I was next going to try the Worth Clears (CF), or 'FATS' which are even thicker and even higher tension still, but that was not necessary in my case.
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  5. #5


    Thanks. The Southcoast website was very healpful, so I ordered a set.

  6. #6


    I put on a set of Southcoast Heavy-Mediums, and tuned down my concert to Bb. Sounds pretty good, but next time I would go a little heavier because they seem a little loose.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2012


    I've never liked Aguilas. I use Freemont Black Line on my two main tenors. One is a Kamaka and the other a Kanilea. I tune the Kanilea down one whole step and it sounds amazing.
    Last edited by peanuts56; 06-17-2018 at 03:12 AM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2017


    It also depends on what you play. I gravitate towards roots/Americana music and therefore I need bendable strings. I like Southcoast mediums generally and brown Worths. However if I were more of a strummer and singer I would probably try the fat Worths or a higher tension Southcoast variety. On the recommendation of a professional ukulele performer I bought some Guadalupe strings. I have to admit they sounded great, but they were rather stiff and bending them was quite a travail, so I jettisoned them. Perhaps they would work for someone looking for more tension.
    Last edited by ripock; 06-13-2018 at 03:12 AM.

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