and material of an instrument", "string selection",
and "how you play it"
- proper matching of these three elements is the most important
factor that determines sound of the instrument, in my humble
As you know, it's not an easy task to select appropriate strings for any stringed instrument. There seems to be no end once a person became conscious about strings. It's obvious that a selection affects sound, volume, and sustain of an instrument, but it also affects playability of the instrument, fatigue of its players, and even to cause tendinitis to them. A bad selection might cause a severe damage to the instrument in an extreme case. Yes Virginia, a string selection is a serious business!
Chapter 0, Standard pitch
Chapter 1, Before selecting guitar, lute, or ukulele strings
Chapter 2, Things to consider in selecting strings
Chapter 3, About gut strings
Chapter 4.1, How to use a string slide rule (Pyramid's)
Chapter 4.2, How to use a string slide rule (Kuerschner's)
Chapter 5, Manufacturers of string and how to contact them
Chapter 6, Fishing line gauge
Chapter 7, Some sample selections
Chapter 8, String selection for 19th century guitars
Before the selection..... Have you changed how you
Sample selections for various scale length ranges are summarized below. These are the ones I have calculated, many of which were actually tried on instruments. Sample A is harder tension one and samples C or D softer. It may be worthwhile to choose one depending of the bracing scheme of an instrument. Typical string tension used for the 19th century guitars seemed to have changed as time and also to depend on the type of instruments, which is the reason why multiple selections are listed for a given scale length range. If the exact string gauge calculated is not available (this often is the case for fluorocarbon strings, due to limited availability in string gauge), approximated one has been listed. If you examine these lists with your instrument's scale length and specification in mind, they would be of great use. By trying a few, you can come up with an idea on which one is most suitable for a particular instrument of yours. You got to try!
# 650mm to 640mm
# 630mm to 620mm
# 610mm to 590mm
# 580mm to 570mm
# 560mm to 550mm Terz
Chapter 9, Making gut strings for
This chapter became an independent section of Crane home page. Please go back to home page and enter into "Let's make string" section.