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How often do you change your violin strings? (Poll)
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ryonass
Maryland
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December 13, 2017 - 2:19 pm
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Just started noticing my violin sounding more nasally. Not sure if it is my bow or strings. I would say strings, been about 8 months since I got my violin and it still has the Tonica that came with it. Upgrading soon...curious how you often you change your strings.

 

How often do you change your strings?

  • Whenever sound quality declines(50% : 6 votes)
  • Once a year(33% : 4 votes)
  • Twice a year(17% : 2 votes)
  • Three times a year(17% : 2 votes)
  • Don't know(0% : 0 votes)
Total Voters: 12
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damfino
oHIo, USA
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December 13, 2017 - 3:04 pm
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I change mine maybe every 8 months or so, with it in mind that if I end up with spare cash I'd do it sooner, but haven't yet.

The strings I have on my Ming have been on since March (my old German fiddle has had it's strings for over a year, pretty much since I got it in I think April 2016). I did buy another set at some point, but haven't put them on, and a guy who has been piggy-backing on my fiddle lesson for us to learn how to jam together bought me a set of strings to make up for hogging my lessons, so now I have some strings on hand, but I still can't bring myself to change my strings yet, haha. 

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ryonass
Maryland
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December 13, 2017 - 4:28 pm
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so now I have some strings on hand, but I still can't bring myself to change my strings yet, haha.   

That is funny. I picked up a set of strings, but I can't bring myself to change it either.

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damfino
oHIo, USA
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December 13, 2017 - 4:34 pm
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ryonass said

That is funny. I picked up a set of strings, but I can't bring myself to change it either.  

If you use them, then you have to worry about having to buy more down the road, haha. 

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Cearbhael
Minnesota
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December 13, 2017 - 4:36 pm
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I just changed my strings in September, and I don’t play enough to warrant changing them often. I use Fiddlerman strings and so far I have had no issues. I keep a Fiddlerman E string on hand just in case I pop one but so far they have been very dependable.

"Reality is an illusion, albeit a persistent one".- Albert Einstein 

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AndrewH
Sacramento, California
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December 13, 2017 - 4:57 pm
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Whenever sound quality declines, which depends on both the strings and how often I've been playing. Typically this is anywhere from 6 to 12 months. I use Dominant C-G-D strings on my viola, and Larsen A, all of which last longer than average. I tend to replace the Dominants a little more frequently than the Larsen. I keep the strings I most recently removed from my viola as backups, because they're still playable when I take them off.

I delay replacing strings if I have a performance coming up; I try to avoid performing on strings that have been on my viola for less than two weeks. I've been meaning to replace my three lower strings since October, and will probably finally get around to it this week, now that my December concert commitments are over.

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Bob
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December 13, 2017 - 6:28 pm
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Let's see, I put these strings on in 1997 and just replaced them (dominants) with Fiddlerman strings (very similar at half the price). But, I hadn't played for 20 years and since retiring decided to start practicing again (with a great help from the folks on this forum).

I would think once a year, unless they start becoming unresponsive as Andrew said, would be a good choice.

Bob in Lone Oak, Texas

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
December 14, 2017 - 9:39 am
Member Since: September 26, 2010
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I used to change my strings every 6 weeks, but back then, the orchestra paid for them. 🙂 After a while the orchestra decided to pay a monthly rental for our instruments instead and I started saving money. LOL

I think for professionals, 3 months depending on how much you play, though I knew pros who hardly ever changed their strings. Musicians are also cheap, lol. For non-professional players, from 3 months to a year. If the sound becomes dull you should consider changing but if you're happy with the sound and action of the strings, you could just hold off.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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CyndieZ
Maryland
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December 14, 2017 - 10:49 am
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Well, I haven't changed the strings on my violin yet, but I plan on doing what I do for guitar and change them when the quality of the sound starts to degrade. 

Speaking of which, that is starting to happen to my violin now. I have the Fiddlerman Artist and it still has the original strings. I'm not sure what strings came with it, but I'm looking for suggestions for replacements. Hoping to find strings that will favor a warm sound. Anyone have any suggestions? 

Cyndie santa3

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Fran
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December 14, 2017 - 10:58 am
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I just changed my strings which came with my violin which I bought a year ago Sept. I changed them because the A string unraveled in one spot

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
December 14, 2017 - 11:05 am
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CyndieZ said
Well, I haven't changed the strings on my violin yet, but I plan on doing what I do for guitar and change them when the quality of the sound starts to degrade. 

Speaking of which, that is starting to happen to my violin now. I have the Fiddlerman Artist and it still has the original strings. I'm not sure what strings came with it, but I'm looking for suggestions for replacements. Hoping to find strings that will favor a warm sound. Anyone have any suggestions? 

Cyndie santa3  

The Artist Violin usually comes with Kaplan Amp strings. They are however quite expensive. If you try the Fiddlerman Strings and are not happy with them, I'll credit you that cost towards the strings of your choice. 🙂

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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ryonass
Maryland
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December 19, 2017 - 5:30 pm
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I took my violin and my strings to a local shop today and they changed my strings for me...for free (how nice). I got the Thomastik Dominant with Pirastro Gold Label E. WOW! what a difference it makes. I love how easy it is to play and I am in love with my E string. I hated the sound of my old E, I used to have Tonica that came with the violin.

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Bob
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December 19, 2017 - 5:55 pm
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@ryonass, isn't it great when things change for the BETTER 🙂 I had a violin that was planed down and setup by a very good luthier in Dallas a few years back. He put Dominants (not sure which E) on and it was so bright it sounded to me like fingernails on a blackboard 🙁

I bought the Fiddlerman strings and replaced the Dominants and it turned in to my favorite violin. So it seems if you get the right strings for your particular instrument, life can be good 🙂

BTW you're really progressing since you first posted a video. Sounding great. Let's hear the new setup soon.

Bob

Bob in Lone Oak, Texas

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AndrewH
Sacramento, California
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December 19, 2017 - 7:07 pm
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Bob said
@ryonass, isn't it great when things change for the BETTER 🙂 I had a violin that was planed down and setup by a very good luthier in Dallas a few years back. He put Dominants (not sure which E) on and it was so bright it sounded to me like fingernails on a blackboard 🙁

I bought the Fiddlerman strings and replaced the Dominants and it turned in to my favorite violin. So it seems if you get the right strings for your particular instrument, life can be good 🙂

BTW you're really progressing since you first posted a video. Sounding great. Let's hear the new setup soon.

Bob  

I find that interesting, because I tend to think of Dominant strings as having a darker-than-average sound.

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ryonass
Maryland
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December 19, 2017 - 9:19 pm
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@Bob that’s weird I guess it depends on the violin? Thanks Bob, I will upload next week once I get “Musette” down. I will feature my new Fiddlerman bow as well

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BillyG
Brora, North-east Scotland
December 20, 2017 - 5:58 am
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Yes, that's interesting....   

Just earlier today I was browsing some details on the nature of various styles of top-plates, and the differences in "thickness-ing" required on the underside (oh, and other internal structures like bass-bars and the use of cleats on the back-plate (not for strengthening in this case - just for altering the modal responses), resulting in different overall frequency responses.   Not that I am EVER, EVER gonna do any luthiery at that level, but it gives a hint as to why even very similarly "looking" violins, even from the same stable, can sound quite different with different strings (which can / will have differing levels of overtone production)

It's a bit "esoteric" even for a geek like me, but, it's here if you're interested....

http://www.platetuning.org/htm.....esses.html

I seriously recommend not copying my mistakes. D'oh - guntohead.JPG

Please make your own, different mistakes, and help us all learn :-)

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Bob
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December 20, 2017 - 6:56 am
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@AndrewH, I also found it strange. Another variable, though,  was that the Dominants were put on that violin in 1997, but the violin was only played once or twice until I restarted my violin practice this year.  It was very bright even when I tried it at the luthier in 1997. Maybe if I'd replaced the "old" strings with another set of Dominants, it would have "mellowed" itself out too, but FM strings are half price and seem to be good quality.

@ryonass, yes it apparently is very dependent on the violin. I've got an Anton Mueller student violin, that the FM strings didn't make much of a change to the sound (or lack of it) on that violin. I've toyed with the idea of playing around with that violin or having it planed a bit thinner to try to increase its voice. I've got to read the link that @BillyG added above first though 🙂

@BillyG as a fellow retired engineer I tend to be a bit "geeky" too, but seems like I'm always running out of time to do the "fun" things. For years, I've thought about trying to learn what to do to improve/change the response of the Mueller violin, but never got around to it. Right now I'm busy replacing capacitors in a 50" plasma display that went south (build using a batch of faulty caps originally).

Merry Christmas, Hanukkah, Eid (belated), etc.

Bob

Bob in Lone Oak, Texas

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CyndieZ
Maryland
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December 20, 2017 - 9:50 am
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Fiddlerman said

The Artist Violin usually comes with Kaplan Amp strings. They are however quite expensive. If you try the Fiddlerman Strings and are not happy with them, I'll credit you that cost towards the strings of your choice. 🙂  

Thanks @Fiddlerman  - I'll probably call to order early in January. Life is just too crazy right now! LOL

Merry Christmas....Happy Holidays....etc

Cyndie santa3

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
December 26, 2017 - 10:20 am
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Whenever you like CyndieZ, I know all about crazy!!!

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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