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Thread: Why do I need to constantly re-tune my ukulele?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Geelong, Australia
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    5

    Default Why do I need to constantly re-tune my ukulele?

    G'Day one and all,

    I have recently found the joy in playing the ukulele and purchased a Lanikai LU-11. Whilst nowhere near the expensive range, it was not the cheapest and one I thought would be a good introduction.

    I have found that I have to re-tune my baby nearly every time I play.

    Is this normal and can I expect the strings to settle down? It is a month old.

    Respect

    The Goatman

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Newcastle under Lyme, England
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    3,039

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    If the strings have not been tuned up before, they will take several days to settle and stretch. After that you won't need to turn the tuners so much to get the instrument into tune.

    As you get more experienced you will find that you will not be happy unless you tune the uke every time you play it, not just every day.
    KEN


    Ken Middleton Ukulele

    http://www.KenMiddleton.co.uk

    For Living Water Strings go to http://www.kenmiddleton.co.uk/Pages/LWS.aspx

    For Ohana related comments, observations and questions, email me at ken@ohana-music.com

    Remember: a ukulele is forever.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Okinawa, Japan
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    Ken is right on the money. Patience may be necessary for a few days.
    Beeru Onegashimasu.
    Little ukes, Bigger ukes, Big ukes
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Savannah, GA
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    you need to keep retuning the ukulele while the strings are still being stretched out. you'll find that you'll need to re tune the uke a lot in the beginning, but it will become less frequent as time goes by. happy playing!
    www.UkuleleJourney.com - A blog dedicated to beginner ukulele players and enthusiasts - I'm always looking for guest writers!

    My YouTube Channel on Photography - For those of you that are into photography!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Brown County Indiana
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    http://www.youtube.com/user/hoosierhiver

    UWC: no shirt, no shoes, no problem..

    Ukes questions should be emailed to mike@mainlandukes.com

    I know Gary Yoshida.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    E TN - Knoxville
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    why do you think even the pros have tuners on their ukuleles most of the time lol

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Columbus, Ohio
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huna View Post
    why do you think even the pros have tuners on their ukuleles most of the time lol
    Tuning is standard practice. Every stage uke that we use has a tuner clipped to it during a performance. If I'm playing a vintage uke with friction tuners, there's a good chance that I have to check the tuning quite often.

    However, after new strings have stretched and settled in nicely, a ukulele should hold tune. If you are re-tuning after every song with settled in strings then there maybe a problem with a slipping tuners, etc.
    Mike Kaplan

    The Velvet Sirens
    Unique & Traditional Vocal Jazz and Swing
    http://www.thevelvetsirens.com


    "To this day, if I ever meet grownups who play ukulele, I love 'em." --Paul McCartney

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Geelong, Australia
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    Many thanks for all the reassurance and advice. I must admit that it is pleasurable to hear a tuned instrument while I am learning.

    Cheers

    The Goatman

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Port Hueneme, CA
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    2,543

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    Your strings may be a cause as well.
    Some ukuleles come with less than first quality strings. (some dealers change out strings before they sell a ukulele)
    Also make sure the strings are sliding thru the nut smoothly and that there are only 2 or 3 wraps on the post.
    If you have overlaps you will never hold tune.
    If you still have tuning issues after a week of stretching strings, go invest in some new strings.
    Try Aquila nylguts, or a flourocarbon (Worth,Blackline, etc.) I believe you will notice a big difference from the factory installed strings.
    Keep Strummin'

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Michigan
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    Quote Originally Posted by SailingUke View Post
    Try Aquila nylguts, or a flourocarbon (Worth,Blackline, etc.) I believe you will notice a big difference from the factory installed strings.
    The ukulele The Goatman is learning with comes standard with Aquila nylguts. That's not to say it won't benefit from a string change, but swapping for Aquilas probably wouldn't make a difference.
    One of these things is not like the other...
    Lanikai LU-21p :: Mainland red cedar soprano :: Makai spruce-top/lacewood soprano :: Paulele bamboo soprano :: Konablaster electric baritone
    Sometimes I put up uke videos on my Tumblr.

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