Strings Which Of These String Sets Will Exert More Tension On The Bridge?

Bill Sheehan

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Anyone have a perspective as to which of the following two sets of soprano strings, when tuned to pitch, will exert a greater amount of "pull" on the bridge?

D'Addario Nyltechs (25 36 30 23)

Martin M600 fluorocarbons (22 34 25 19)

Although the Martins would appear to be "thinner", I wasn't sure if the different composition of the strings had a significant impact on how much pull they will exert. I would welcome any thoughts! Thanks!
 
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  • Martin M600 soprano/concert uke strings
  • Fluorocarbon
  • Gauges: 19-25-34-22
  • Tension: 30 (total pounds with all 4 strings at standard gCEA)

I have to find D'Addario's... what D'Addario set# was that?

I'm guessing: D'Addario EJ88S Gauges and Tensions
  • A: 0.0240" / 0.6096 mm, 8.157 lbs / 3.700 kg
  • E: 0.0300" / 0.7700 mm, 7.054 lbs / 3.200 kg
  • C: 0.0360" / 0.9200 mm, 6.613 lbs / 3.000 kg
  • G: 0.0260" / 0.6604 mm, 7.495 lbs / 3.400 kg
  • ...also about 30 lbs. at gCEA
They look to be about the same tension, so the "pull" on the bridge would be the same.
However, strings with a greater mass could/would excite (vibrate) the bridge more. I don't know the mass of the strings in either set.
(This sounds like a "String Theory" question... ;)
 
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Anyone have a perspective as to which of the following two sets of soprano strings, when tuned to pitch, will exert a greater amount of "pull" on the bridge?

D'Addario Nyltech (25 36 30 23)

Martin M600 (22 34 25 19)

Although the Martins would appear to be "thinner", I wasn't sure if the different composition of the strings had a significant impact on how much pull they will exert. I would welcome any thoughts! Thanks!
Acknowledging that (A) common sense ain’t all that common, and (B) there is far more to physics than common sense, I presume the Martins require the lesser “pull” and am very interested to see the “why” if that’s not the case.🥸
 
If they have similar tension then they also have similar mass at the same length. Difference is only in thickness and density, which should only matter to the feeling under the fingers.
 
  • Martin M600 soprano/concert uke strings
  • Fluorocarbon
  • Gauges: 19-25-34-22
  • Tension: 30 (total pounds with all 4 strings at standard gCEA)

I have to find D'Addario's... what D'Addario set# was that?

I'm guessing: D'Addario EJ88S Gauges and Tensions
  • A: 0.0240" / 0.6096 mm, 8.157 lbs / 3.700 kg
  • E: 0.0300" / 0.7700 mm, 7.054 lbs / 3.200 kg
  • C: 0.0360" / 0.9200 mm, 6.613 lbs / 3.000 kg
  • G: 0.0260" / 0.6604 mm, 7.495 lbs / 3.400 kg
  • ...also about 30 lbs. at gCEA
They look to be about the same tension, so the "pull" on the bridge would be the same.
However, strings with a greater mass could/would excite (vibrate) the bridge more. I don't know the mass of the strings in either set.
(This sounds like a "String Theory" question... ;)
Thank you, Wiggy. Yes, the D'Addario set is indeed the EJ88S set. Your info is very helpful, and greatly appreciated! (y)
 
Acknowledging that (A) common sense ain’t all that common, and (B) there is far more to physics than common sense, I presume the Martins require the lesser “pull” and am very interested to see the “why” if that’s not the case.🥸
Thank you, OSF! My thinking would have been along the same lines as yours, but it would appear that there's a sort of offsetting effect going on that may indeed have to do with the different material of which the two different string sets are made, resulting in their respective "pull levels" being about the same. (Yes, I know just enough to be dangerous...) ;)
 
If they have similar tension then they also have similar mass at the same length. Difference is only in thickness and density, which should only matter to the feeling under the fingers.
Thank you, Merlin. Your thoughts hint at the underlying reason that I offered my original question-- that is, I'm thinking about tuning my soprano up to "aDF#B". In the past, I have done this using the M600 strings, and it worked quite well. However, this time around, I was considering using the "aDF#B" tuning with the D'Addario Nyltechs, because I have a slight preference for the way they feel under my fingers-- but I didn't want to use the Nyltechs if they were known to exert substantially more pull on the bridge, thus possibly putting it at risk of lifting. Sounds like I should be okay!
 
Yes, the Martins are thinner than the D'Addarios.
For example, the Martin "19" A string is .019" in diameter vs D'Addario's .024" A .
Thus, the "feel" Merlin666 is referring to.
 
Thank you, Merlin. Your thoughts hint at the underlying reason that I offered my original question-- that is, I'm thinking about tuning my soprano up to "aDF#B". In the past, I have done this using the M600 strings, and it worked quite well. However, this time around, I was considering using the "aDF#B" tuning with the D'Addario Nyltechs, because I have a slight preference for the way they feel under my fingers-- but I didn't want to use the Nyltechs if they were known to exert substantially more pull on the bridge, thus possibly putting it at risk of lifting. Sounds like I should be okay!
Though I’m admittedly a creature of habit, I recently tried tuning that half step up on the Nyltechs and didn’t enjoy the higher pitch.
 
Though I’m admittedly a creature of habit, I recently tried tuning that half step up on the Nyltechs and didn’t enjoy the higher pitch.
Oldscruggsfan, I've gone back and forth many times thru the years on the question of what tuning to use. The higher tuning sure seems to increase volume, improve intonation, and eliminate the often squiggly feel of the third string, but it also puts more strain on the vocal cords if you're using the uke to accompany yourself singing (assuming the same chord shapes are used as were being used in the lower tuning). Chances are, I'll be on a different kick this time next week! :rolleyes:
 
Just a quick addendum...

I see that D'Addario also makes a set of "extruded clear nylon" strings (set #EJ65S) which, according to their website, is optimized for "aDF#B" tuning. Might be worth checking those out!
 
If you search on here then, and it might not be easy, you should come across threads that tabulate string tensions. The table that I have in mind - maybe from a couple of years back - covers all of the common string sets, but it would likely take me a lot of time to find it again.
 
Thanks for that link, Jack.

From a review (heavily edited for clarity) of the RS85 set: "It is not printed on the package, but the RotoSound ( 23 29 29 23 ) tuning is for the higher tuning soprano/concert aDF#B."
 
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Following up, I went to my local music store this morning and grabbed a set of the D'Addario EJ65S clear nylons, specifically designed for "aDF#B" tuning. They're still settling in, but I must say, I'm very impressed. They feel comfortable and firm under my fingers. They intonate very precisely. They produce a nice, punchy, but not overly bright, tone. And being "optimized" for the higher tuning, I don't feel like they're over-stressing my bridge. Most noticeably, they make my uke feel like a cell phone set on "vibrate" in my hands, really a nice thing. So, if anyone is considering trying out the "aDF#B" tuning, you may find these strings to be a good choice!
 
Following up, I went to my local music store this morning and grabbed a set of the D'Addario EJ65S clear nylons, specifically designed for "aDF#B" tuning. They're still settling in, but I must say, I'm very impressed. They feel comfortable and firm under my fingers. They intonate very precisely. They produce a nice, punchy, but not overly bright, tone. And being "optimized" for the higher tuning, I don't feel like they're over-stressing my bridge. Most noticeably, they make my uke feel like a cell phone set on "vibrate" in my hands, really a nice thing. So, if anyone is considering trying out the "aDF#B" tuning, you may find these strings to be a good choice!
Are the clears similarly priced to the Nyltechs? My reason for asking is that the absence of color is the main thing I like about Martin M600s as compared to black Fremonts and stark white Nyltechs. Had the A string not prematurely frayed, I’d likely still be using Martins specifically because they’re clear, which has always seemed the nearest in appearance to steel strings, and that appeals to the old banjo player who always plays a role in my musical decisions.
 
Are the clears similarly priced to the Nyltechs? My reason for asking is that the absence of color is the main thing I like about Martin M600s as compared to black Fremonts and stark white Nyltechs. Had the A string not prematurely frayed, I’d likely still be using Martins specifically because they’re clear, which has always seemed the nearest in appearance to steel strings, and that appeals to the old banjo player who always plays a role in my musical decisions.
Yes, OSF, I believe the D'Addario clear nylons are similarly priced to the Nyltechs. At my local store the nylons were $5.50. They're a bit more settled in now this morning, and I really like them. I think I may have tried these D'Addario clear nylons a couple of years ago and didn't care for their "loosey-goosey" feel-- but I was using the "gCEA" tuning then, and didn't realize these were intended more for "aDF#B" !! Tuned up to "aDF#B", they feel great and sound really nice!
 
Acknowledging that (A) common sense ain’t all that common, and (B) there is far more to physics than common sense, I presume the Martins require the lesser “pull” and am very interested to see the “why” if that’s not the case.🥸

If they were made from material of the same density, that should indeed be the case.
Since it is not, the difference in density between flourcarbon and nyltech must counter the difference in cross sectional area.
One must assume that they all aim for that 30 pound tension, but since flourcarbon is denser, they get to be thinner and more flexible.

Peculiar that the ratio between diameters are not the same.
 
Anyone have a perspective as to which of the following two sets of soprano strings, when tuned to pitch, will exert a greater amount of "pull" on the bridge?

D'Addario Nyltechs (25 36 30 23)

Martin M600 fluorocarbons (22 34 25 19)

Although the Martins would appear to be "thinner", I wasn't sure if the different composition of the strings had a significant impact on how much pull they will exert. I would welcome any thoughts! Thanks!
Are you asking this because you are worried that string tension will pull up the saddle?

Or are you looking for the microscopic solution to Solve ultimate playability on a soprano uke.
 
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