So I have a weird question. Forgive my ignorance...lol
When stringing up your violin, certainly the strings are GDAE.
When I got my violin back from it's first set up, I had it tuned to GDAE but the G string was a smaller diameter than the D.
The D string was the largest. I thought, "wow, this is strange and proceeded." For the past year, that's how my fiddle was strung.
I just got my fiddle back from it's second set up and now the G string is the largest and then down the line. Like I originally thought was the way the violin strings would be strung.
Just realized I didn't ask a question yet...."Is this a thing?"
Edited by - Erockin on 09/01/2023 05:01:54
Same brand of strings, or different?
Well.... I would say that apparently the person that re-strung / re-strang your instrument the first time was not paying attention... or perhaps has too much herb in his or her diet. Yes, there are many types of violin / fiddle strings available for sale. In my experience the G string has always been of a larger diameter than the D string. And yes the A string is of a larger diameter the E string. So, in my experience "No" it is not a thing. Did you perchance measure the strings the first time around? Were you experiencing an optical illusion? Perhaps it just appeared that the lowest string was smaller than the one next to it. I am surprised that the first time around you did not break a string. Anyway now you are good to go. Take some time and learn to change your own strings. I expect that there are several YouTube videos of the process. Luck... R/
Originally posted by DougD
Same brand of strings, or different?
Different...New strings are Helicores. Just wanted to make sure...lol. I thought I was the one with too much...uhhh...lol
I'm no expert, but violin strings are not like guitar strings, where the diameter of the string always increases with lower pitch, because of the difference in mass of the winding materials (aluminum vs silver, for example). I believe only unwound E strings are sold by gauge. You should be able to tell which string is which by comparing the silk colors at the peg and tailpiece ends with online charts or the manufacturer's website. This will be easy with Helicores, and if you still have the old strings you should be able to reconstruct the situation by consulting a color chart and measuring the strings.
PS - I think its highly unlikely the old strings were switched. You probably would have felt the difference or broken a string.
Edited by - DougD on 09/01/2023 05:45:24
E= finest. G=fattest. I played a garage sale fiddle, that just felt wrong. On closer inspection strings were swapped. I seen a garage sale violin with a knot in a string. The things that make you go, hmm?
The reason your D was thicker was probably that it was aluminum wrapped, not silver. Silver D strings tend to be thinner than the G or the A, the latter of which is wrapped in aluminum. Aluminum is cheaper than silver to produce, and it’s used on cheaper versions of sets to lower costs, but it comes with a considerable penalty in response and richness, as the winding makes the string much thicker. Some claim that aluminum is more conductive and grabs the string more easily than silver, but I have always found the opposite to be the case, and I think the market bears this out (silver sound strings are more expensive and premium sets don’t always even give an aluminum option for the D, and most players prefer silver).
Steel strings tend to be thinner, so if you have a mixed set, that could have an impact.
String gauge is much more standardized today than it once was, and it used to be common for players to carry tools to measure the gauge of all the strings. In the days of pure gut, strings would sometimes be very irregular in thickness, so they would either have to be scraped down or discarded. There are accounts of famous players buying all their strings for a year at the one violin shop in the world that they trusted for quality control. Period instrument players today have to make decisions about gauge that players of modern violin music don’t think about much because the choices are reduced. On the other hand, synthetic string technology has improved so vastly since its inception that the reasons for playing around with gauge have all but been eliminated.
Eric - Silver has a density of 10.4 grams per cubic centimeter, while aluminum is only 2.7 grams/cc. So to achieve the desired mass in the string you just need more aluminum, which accounts for the difference in diameter.
The key is the type of wrap on the strings. Different materials will reach the desired effect with less material due to the density as DougD stated. For example, a D'Addario titanium A is much smaller in diameter than the aluminum wrapped A
If the string order were swapped, iy would be very noticeable in the unbalanced string tension.
For the 4th, using a D tuned to G... would be way floppy. For the 3rd, using a G tuned up to D would be way tight, if not break.
Although the numerical values aren’t always provided, some string sets are still available in multiple gauges (typically light, medium, and heavy).
Thanks all for your inputs. Hate to sound like a ding dong....lol...but it was def different feeling. And, the action is way better but the volume has decreased. Therefore the tone is different.
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