Strings Thomastik Infeld CF-27, and other options for wound C string?

Tritone

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On my tenor ukulele, the body resonates at G (boosting my wound low G string) but dampens the C string, especially around the 2nd fret (D). This is apparently somewhat common with low G tenors, and I can compensate for the first (powerful low G) via playing technique (different chord voicings, altering strumming attack), but the latter (dampened C string) is harder to manage. I've tried a number of different string sets with mixed success.

Well, I most recently have tried the chrome steel (silk core?) flat-wound Thomastik-Infeld CF-27 third string, which has been recommended here, and it's a tremendous improvement in terms of balance. My other strings currently are a Fremont Soloist low G, and Uke Logic Soft Tension E and A fluorocarbon strings. The CF-27 is an odd duck here; it's labeled as a guitar string (G note) which, at uke scale length, becomes a C string. It's not quite as smooth feeling as the Fremont Soloist, nor is it a perfect match for timbre, and it's slightly annoying to tie knots in (at the bridge or post) as it resists bending and tightening. It also comes up to tension shockingly quickly; you need to give it a little slack at the post when putting it on, in order to get a reasonable number of windings. But ultimately, it is still nice to play on (for a wound string), and the overall sound is quite preferable to a deadened nylon or fluorocarbon C string, as I was previously encountering. Ultimately I can recommend trying it.
  • Width: 0.027 in = 0.69 mm
  • Tension: 14.2 lbs = 6.5 kg
Are there any other options for a wound C string on tenor ukes? I think I saw that Southcoast once sold one, but that is no longer available if so. Just wondering what other options are out there. It would be great if Fremont could produce a "C-soloist"!

Addendum: I just found this post which suggests that the brass wound 4th and 3rd strings from the Oasis UKE-8200BL baritone set can work perfectly on a tenor GCEA uke. That seems like a promising alternative!
 
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Hmm... interesting that such a low gauge wound string works so well as the C string. Some strings brands - such as Ko'olau and D'Addario - use a .036 gauge wound string as the C on certain string sets. I wonder if you can improve the sound by just increasing the gauge on the T-I string.

In general, Thomastik-Infeld strings are really good even if I agree on the few niggles you had. They're not as smooth as something like the Fremont Soloist or Uke Logic wound low G, and they are indeed really rigid. I've actually had a few unwind completely on my baritone. Still haven't found the exact reason, but I really like the sound and feel of them so much that I'll keep using them.
 
I am the person who posted about the Oasis wound strings. Another alternative that I really like and have on three of my ukuleles is the Savarez N 527 R. It is a classical guitar string designed to replace the nylon 3rd with a wound on classical guitars. It has a diameter of.028" which works great and a tone I love. It is not squeakless but sounds and feels great tension wise.

Other alternatives are the D'Addario Pro Arte Silver wound in .026-.028 diameters. I really do like the Oasis for having the matched 4th and 3rd strings in smooth wound.
 

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Funny. I just ordered a CF30 and a CF27 last night. Been meaning to try them for while but haven't yet.
 
StringsByMail.com sells Savarez string sets, (originally classical guitar strings) for ukulele.

JEU Set 150R High-g Plain Strings
G - 0.57mm 4.10 kg tension
C - 0.81mm 3.70 kg tension
E - 0.69mm 4.26 kg tension
A - 0.57mm 5.17 kg tension


They also have a custom set that was derived by UU Member Hollis Dwyer.

H.D. Tenor Ukulele Set:
1st: Savarez Alliance KF 541R - (A) normal tension .0244
2nd: Savarez Alliance KF 542R - (E) normal tension .0272
3rd: Thomastik-Infeld CF27 - 3rd string (C) .027 chrome steel flat wound
4th: Thomastik-Infeld CF30 - 4th string (Low G) .030 chrome steel flat wound

Ukes they are they played on: Beau Hannam Tenor Ukulele, 2018, top/sides/back woods: all Tasmanian Blackwood, MiSi active pickup

Creator Description: The TI chrome flat wound strings are the most silent when sliding up or down the neck that I have found and work well when amplified. The Savarez strings balance the TI’s well providing great sustain and dynamics.

Kenn: These sound really good on my LFdM tenor.
 
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I sent Dave at Oasis a few sets of the previous sets of Southcoast strings I have. He sent them back after testing. The wound set for tenor and baritone is a copy he made to be similar to Southcoast strings of old. Pretty close but not quite like Dirk's. sure miss the guy.

That's was a great joint effort by you and Dave at Oasis. I really do like that string set Patrick, as close as it gets to SouthCoast.
 
StringsByMail.com sells Savarez string sets, (originally classical guitar strings) for ukulele.

JEU Set 150R High-g Plain Strings
G - 0.57mm 4.10 kg tension
C - 0.81mm 3.70 kg tension
E - 0.69mm 4.26 kg tension
A - 0.57mm 5.17 kg tension


They also have a custom set that was derived by UU Member Hollis Dwyer.

H.D. Tenor Ukulele Set:
1st: Savarez Alliance KF 541R - (A) normal tension .0244
2nd: Savarez Alliance KF 542R - (E) normal tension .0272
3rd: Thomastik-Infeld CF27 - 3rd string (C) .027 chrome steel flat wound
4th: Thomastik-Infeld CF30 - 4th string (Low G) .030 chrome steel flat wound

Ukes they are they played on: Beau Hannam Tenor Ukulele, 2018, top/sides/back woods: all Tasmanian Blackwood, MiSi active pickup

Creator Description: The TI chrome flat wound strings are the most silent when sliding up or down the neck that I have found and work well when amplified. The Savarez strings balance the TI’s well providing great sustain and dynamics.

Kenn: These sound really good on my LFdM tenor.
Strings by mail packaged up TI/Savarez set for me. I’m HD. Whenever I commission a new build I always send one of these sets to be mounted. The result is receiving my new instrument that is perfectly set up for the string set that I will use most of the time.
 
Is probably mainly a perceived issue for fluorocarbon strings. Though there are GHS, D'Addario, and LaBella nylon tenor sets with aluminum wound 0.036 third string, that are also available as single strings from each manufacturer. As these are IMO the leading uke string manufacturers aside from Aquila I wonder how their aluminum strings compare to the TI guitar strings. Has anyone compared them?
 
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If this hasn't been mentioned before, roundwound > smoothwound (polished) > flatwound in order of brightness and volume to mellow sounding. This might be a consideration for anybody that plugs in with a piezzo under saddle element.
You raise an excellent point. Since starting to play the Uke I have always installed a low G. At first round wound, using a wound classical guitar G string. Then smooth wound, like the Fremont and others, for a more quiet slide up or down the neck. Finally went to the TI’s to create a matching tone for my G and C string. I’m very happy with this pairing when I am amp’d, which is most of the time, but if I wasn’t I would try and find a pair of smooth or round wounds. I do remember though that I used to wear out round wounds very quickly when I used them whereas the TI’s last a long time. My current collection of instruments has a mix of MiSi piezo, K&K transducer or Hawaii 5.0.
 
I’m planning on experimenting with TI CF35, 30, and 27 on a Koll tenor for dropped lower than low G tuning.. we’ll see how that goes.
 
For those who are serious about wound C I recommend reading up on "wound G/3rd" in classical guitar forums, as this applies to ukulele C string gauges. For guitar the three most popular options seem to be the aluminum wound (e.g. Savarez https://www.stringsbymail.com/savarez-577r-3rd-string-g-wound-aluminum-single-string-3398.html) or a much thicker (0.044) nylon wound Savarez (https://www.guitarsalon.com/product/savarez-plastic-wound-3-g-package-of-10-529r) or if thin string is desired just a plain single D'Addario 0.024 is also popular. I have used the .028 D'Addario as A string on my Kamaka Lili'u and am very pleased with its sound and durability.
 
You raise an excellent point. Since starting to play the Uke I have always installed a low G. At first round wound, using a wound classical guitar G string. Then smooth wound, like the Fremont and others, for a more quiet slide up or down the neck. Finally went to the TI’s to create a matching tone for my G and C string. I’m very happy with this pairing when I am amp’d, which is most of the time, but if I wasn’t I would try and find a pair of smooth or round wounds. I do remember though that I used to wear out round wounds very quickly when I used them whereas the TI’s last a long time. My current collection of instruments has a mix of MiSi piezo, K&K transducer or Hawaii 5.0.
Have you noticed any volume difference between the different type of wound strings when plugged in with your MiSi Piezo?
 
Have you noticed any volume difference between the different type of wound strings when plugged in with your MiSi Piezo?
I really couldn’t say without doing a A/B test with a pair of the same instruments, set at the exact volume level on both the MiSi and the same amp. The thing that I do remember was when I first started using the TI’s I had the impression that they sounded softer/quieter than the Fremont or Oasis that I had been previously using.
 
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