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All my strings popped loose at once
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November 22, 2019 - 9:21 pm
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PippyLongstocking said
Why did it happen- Greg?


we had just started running heat after weather turned cold.  This was before I started paying attention to humidity as much.  I'm not for sure this is what caused all the strings to pop loose but its the only thing I can come up with.   Irv also mentioned a tailpiece but that wasn't a problem in my case.


November 23, 2019 - 12:03 am
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@GregW and others.  Losing a tail piece gut is a rather traumatic thing.  Kind of like hearing a fire cracker go off in a closet.  Which is why I like to use Kevlar cord.  

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa


November 23, 2019 - 4:45 am
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From the picture it looks good to go to tighten the strings up and play, I'm guessing most violin sound posts are not perfectly vertical, the more closer to vertical the better in most cases. 



Master the Frog and you have mastered the bow.

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November 23, 2019 - 7:15 am
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Irv said
@GregW and others.  Losing a tail piece gut is a rather traumatic thing.  Kind of like hearing a fire cracker go off in a closet.  Which is why I like to use Kevlar cord.  


LOL, indeed - especially when playing ! Happened once to me, in spectacular fashion where the tail gut actually snapped.  I finally located the bridge, under a chair at the other side of the room.

Now, having thought about the replacement I got (not just the tail gut, a whole new - but relatively inexpensive - OK - it was "cheap" - tail and gut) - I noticed on the gut (which was some kind of nylon) there were a couple of internally-threaded metal sleeves.  In screwing them on to the end of the nylon, they will cut into the nylon tail, creating a thread, matching the thread on the inside of the metal sleeve. These I guess are there to adjust the length of the gut to the anchor-point on the underside of the tail-piece.   I would imagine (just guessing from the pictures and posts, given the bridge did not actually collapse) then @PippyLongstocking - it is just possible if yours was of similar construction, that the "threading" (carved into the nylon by the metal adjuster sleeves) gave up the ghost and ripped-back maybe the effective length of a few turns on the threaded sleeve - thereby loosening all strings at once.    Just a guess.....

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

November 23, 2019 - 10:54 am
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cid said
Can anyone tell anything from the photo pippylongstocking provided? I just had some ideas of what would or could affect every string at the same time. Other than that, I have no idea how to help her out.

Pippy (Sorry for the shortened username. Have yet to do it without having to correct a typo, so quit while I was ahead),  Pippy, have you been able to get the string all tightened and tuned? Just curious.


Hi Cid.

Thanks for your responses

I was able to tighten and tune up last night - but was too scared to play.  Went back to it this morning and is still in tune and plays like a little dream (well it would in more capable hands hah) but I have had a good couple of hours playing and all well

It is a strange scenario, - it seems to be staying in tune and playing OK for now...but I will keep an eye on it.

I don't realy understand what humidity is tbh. But I clearly need to find out - as it sounds like that can be a huge issue for violins - and in honesty I did have the heating on really hot for a prolonged period 

I am not sure the soundpost has moved or not - I would guess no as it sounds the same as it always did but. If it has, it is only a mm or two and I managed to move the bridge back to its initial position (oo go me!) so I was quite proud of that. I only like playing violins, anything other, even changing a string- scares me.

For now I am going to see what happens, but I think, for my own peace of mind - I will get the luthier to cast an expert eye as I would hate to do something to break my beloved instrument


and I will defo buy one of those humidity devices

November 23, 2019 - 2:16 pm
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Glad to hear you are up and running. Maybe someone with a little more knowledge of the proper humidity will chime in and give you more detail. I have never had an issue with it, so I don’t know much about what to do if it is not right in your house for it.

I would definitely have someone work with you in proper care, changing strings, etc. Maybe you could spend some lesson time with your instructor on that? I think there might be some videos by Fiddlerman on cade and string changing.

Here is where to find the videos. At the top of this page in the black banner, there Re menu items. There is all sorts of great information and videos available for free. I am not sure exactly which one will get you what you need, but poke around. I still find things I haven’t seen before.

There is always this forum, too.

They call me, “Mellow Cello” 

Fort Lauderdale
November 24, 2019 - 8:33 am
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Hi PippyLongstocking and welcome to the forum.

I'll give you my 2 cents as to why this might have happened.

The humidity is a great guess. If one string peg pops out because of the dry air, the tailpiece pivots rapidly and since the peg box is probably dryer and not swollen, it's easy for that quick change to cause the other pegs to break their hold. Remember that the pegs are conical and once they move enough, there isn't much keeping them from popping out.

Peg compound will do wonders as your teacher suggested since it keeps the pegs moist in the right way. It both keeps them from slipping and sticking. Be sure to push the pegs in adequately while turning so that they don' have the tendency to slip.

Another option could be that your tailpiece adjuster (nicknamed tailgut from back in the day when they were all made of gut) stripped. They are usually made of nylon with a barrel type nut to adjust. Some people melt the tip to keep it from slipping if it starts. I have seen them slip and pop even with the melted tips.

Glad that you resolved your issue and are able to play again.

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but the one who needs the least."

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