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Thread: Deviation of the strings?

  1. #11
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    "Do you think that they make the action high so you can adjust it and do a set up to suit your particular requirement for string height?"

    That is a very charitable reading of the situation. I am less generous in my assessment. It takes time to set up a new instrument. Time costs money. The better retailers will check a new ukulele and make sure the action is satisfactory. That is, satisfactory from an "everyman" (OK - every person) perspective.

    The manufacturer could do the same. In fact, some are better than others in that respect, but I have handled ukuleles that caused real difficulty and discomfort for the player. There is no excuse for that.

    John Colter.

  2. #12
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    There is the consideration that not everyone likes the same setup on their uke(s). I like a lower, easy action because I have some arthritis in my hands. I'll endure an occasional buzz as the trade off.

    But yes, the manufacturers should do a better job. My first uke was a Fender NoHea tenor. I bought it from Amazon—because I didn't know any better. The tech I eventually took it to for a setup said it was one of the worst he'd ever worked on. It took a pair of Vicegrips to barre the first fret. Well, almost. And the frets were uneven.

  3. #13
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    I agree that there are personal differences in setups, but getting the string height at the nut acceptable is not one of them. If you can't fret at the first fret without it being sharp it is poor quality. Every manufacturer needs to make sure at least that one part of a setup is done prior to shipping the ukulele to a retailer. If that is off the ukulele is unplayable.

    John
    Last edited by 70sSanO; 09-18-2018 at 07:18 AM.

  4. #14
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    No, the Stagg isnīt set up by the manufacturer. So I draw the conclusion that no one can really answer the original question that this thread was supposed to be about. How much deviation the strings cause from ideal intonation over the fretboard?

  5. #15
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    It all depends on what is meant by ideal intonation. Perfect intonation is not achievable on a ukulele in real life. A good electronic tuner is much more discerning than the human ear. All human ears are not equal.

    You could be pursuing an impossible dream.

    So, yes, an individual string can make a difference to the way a ukulele produces different notes at various points on the fret board. A synthetic string can have variations in thickness, or slight inconsistences of density. It might have been slightly over stretched at some time. It might have been subjected to undesirably high temperatures. The individual string is only one of several variables that can affect matters. One of the biggest factors will be variations of pressure exerted by the fretting finger. Your electronic tuner will show how great an effect that can have.

    Try measuring the diameter of a string, at several places along its length. Use electronic calipers - they too are very discerning. You may be surprised.

    I once tried to set up a soprano ukulele (a twelve fretted one) to produce the most accurate intonation I could achieve. I was using an Intelli 500 tuner. I spent hours fiddling with string heights, fret heights, compensation at the saddle etc. and eventually had to accept that a good compromise is the best you can hope for - and when I checked the uke, the next day, it had changed. However, it still sounded fine.

    Trying to satisfy an electronic tuner can drive you nuts. Satisfy your ears, and then just enjoy playing your uke.

    John Colter.

  6. #16
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    If you are only talkng about the strings, there is no deviation tolerance that can be measured that is solely attributed to the manufacturing of the strings. There might be deviations based on string diameters along the string, as mentioned above. Under tension materials stretch and I have found strings will measure slightly thinner in diameter under tension. If you have a properly setup instrument and change the strings to a significantly different diameter, the intonation may be off.

    Strings are so much better today than 10 years ago. I can't remember the last thread where someone was told to flip the string around if there are intonation issues after a string change.

    To be honest, there are so many videos on HMS of artists playing all levels of ukuleles that sound fantastic for someone to be concerned about string tolerances. If there was an issue, no one would pay thousands of dollars for a custom ukulele that could never be in tune. Unfortunately you may be chasing the wind.

    John
    Last edited by 70sSanO; 09-19-2018 at 03:00 AM.

  7. #17
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    You are right and you are also wrong. I bought a set of ukulele strings from a company that makes a brand with a name that starts with an A and ends with an e and I admit it is a female name. Thereby not saying that this brand of strings does have anything in particular to do with femininity.
    I made a set up with these strings (and I was careful to get it right). I played my ukulele for some time, quite some time acutally and found now it is time to change the strings (many months later). Then when the new set of strings of the same brand were on the ukulele and I expected to be able to play carefree for some long time I realized the f***ing ukulele didnīt play in tune. Nothing had changed but the strings. So please take notice that a brand of cheap ukulele strings can put mess in the set up.
    Last edited by Henning; 09-22-2018 at 09:22 AM.

  8. #18
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    It sounds as though you had the answer to your own question all along.

    John Colter

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ukantor View Post
    It sounds as though you had the answer to your own question all along.

    John Colter


    I could be wrong on the brand but one matching the understandably vague description is available on Amazon for about Ģ3. I’ve unwittingly used poor strings in the past and have come to the conclusion that uniformity of string diameter along its whole length is essential (lack of uniformity will change how the string vibrates as it’s characteristic change when fretted).

    If there is one then the moral to this tail is always buy a quality product. Unfortunately, other than brand reputation and anecdotes, the quality and reliability of strings is hard to judge.

  10. #20
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    As far as clip on tuners and accuracy. There are ukes that don't transmit as well up the neck or even consistent based on where the tuner is attached to the headstock. I'm dealing with this now. A couple of strings show flat at the 12th, but sound in tune string to string up the neck. I was able to clip the tuner onto the bridge and the readings are showing the strings are not flat at the 12th. This is not a string issue, but it does illustrate that tuner readings cannot always be blindly relied upon.

    John

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