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Thread: Ukulele tuning problem after time.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2018
    Posts
    2

    Unhappy Ukulele tuning problem after time.

    Hey! I bought a keiki mini uke roughly half a year ago and weren't playing it that often (it's too small for me, but a cute and great one ). Now i tried it again after i while and i can see that it is not tuned correctly on all of the frets. Even though its perfectly tuned on empty strings, whichever fret i press it'll be ~15 cents too sharp. I guess neck got bent a little when i wasnt using it? Is it fixable in any way, maybe its not a neck problem, has anyone had similar problem or any problem with the same uke? I really need to fix it, this ukulele is too cute to just throw it away

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Cleveland Ohio
    Posts
    83

    Default

    Intonation problems
    Certainly, if the neck is bent there will be issues.
    But there are other things that can affect intonation.
    With everything perfectly tuned on the open strings, how accurate is the intonation on the first or second fret? If the nut is too high, you might experience problems here.
    How accurate is the intonation going up the fret board? Is each fret a little fUrther out of tune? Problems like this might indicate the saddle being too high or misplaced.
    Is it just one string that is out or all? Just one and you might investigate using a compensated saddle.
    I am sure I am just scratching the surface.
    Oscar-Schmidt Taropatch (1920)
    Cordoba Concert
    Oscar-Schmidt Soprano (1920)
    Cordoba Tenor (low G)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2018
    Posts
    2

    Default

    Hey! Thanks for quick answer. I think you might be right, but i never experienced this problem when i the uke was new.
    There are (cents) on frets, maybe it will help you to diagnose what is the problem:
    0 (0) 1 (17) 2 (20) 3 (22) 4 (25) 5 (27) 6 (32) 7 (39) 8 (42) 9 (45) 10 (-46 from next note)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Honolulu
    Posts
    729

    Default

    As strings wear, intonation can deteriorate. After all, the strings are constantly percussing and rubbing against metal frets, and they eventually become untrue in diameter. Sometimes a new string will be bad out of the box. I just installed a set of Worth on my Kala Elite and the A string was nearly a quarter tone off at the 12th fret! I replaced it with Seaguar Pink 40 LB and it was true as true can be. The color of the strings don't match now but they sound good.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Queanbeyan, NSW Australia.
    Posts
    1,889

    Default

    Intonation problems to the extent you are describing don't just happen over time.
    They must have been there from new but you didn't notice them at the time. Well that's my two bobs worth anyway.

    An intonation error as significant as this will in my view be measurable. If an error isn't measurable than its possible the strings needing to be changed yet I would suggest that a measurable error is the most likely explanation.

    How good are you at measuring things?
    See this thread, https://forum.ukuleleunderground.com...on-Question%85

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    315

    Default

    Try changing the strings.

    Intonation varying along the fretboard is more likely due to the dynamics of the string and not the nut or saddle height.

    Use the stewmac fret calculator to calculate what the fret dimensions should be for your scale length, then check the measurements against your uke. If the measurements match then the only thing that can affect the intonation is the physical properties of the string hence change the strings and see how it goes.
    Col.
    From the UK with a bad case of MIAS.
    Korg PA700, Korg Kross 2, Gibson LP, Fender Jazz Bass,
    + Amps, PA, Boss GT100, mixer.
    Ukes - Kala KA-TEME and Risa ST electric solid body.
    Uke wish list, a Bass, make and model yet to be determined

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Wiltshire, UK
    Posts
    586

    Default

    Intonation is always going to be tricky on such a small scale instrument. I find with my Keiki, I have to pay a lot more attention to how hard (or more to the point gently) I'm fretting each chord - just enough pressure is what's needed - anything more and the string will sound sharp. Other strings might help. I didn't think the strings that came with mine (allegedly custom Aquila, but I'm not convinced they were any different to ordinary nylguts) were doing it justice. I use lightweight nylon strings (similar to GHS soprano Hawaiian D tuning clear nylons) so I can tune the sopranino up to CFAD. In that tuning I think it really sings!
    Corsham Ukulele Jam is at Pound Arts in Corsham, Wiltshire (UK) on the 1st Friday of every month.

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