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Hello all! This is my first post here, so my apologies if this isn't in the right location. A couple of weeks ago, I got my first violin and so far, I'm absolutely loving it (a Mathias Thoma MT3044 model). However, the more I learn about the violin, the more questions I come up with! I only have a few for now, though, regarding strings and the pegs.
Firstly, approximately how often should the strings be changed, and how can I tell when they need changed? Everything sounds pretty scratchy right now, so I don't think I'll be able to tell when they sound "dead"... Right now I've been using the strings that came on the violin (no idea how old they are or how long they were used). I've been playing about 1-2 hours every single day that I've had the violin so far. Should I let them go until they snap, or is that bad for the bridge?
Secondly -- would cold weather affect the tuning pegs and cause them to slip? The E peg has been giving me a bit of trouble since I got it, but this afternoon, the G peg was also slipping just a bit. None have slipped while I play (so far) but only when I'm trying to tune it. We just experienced a pretty sharp drop in temperatures where I live, so would that be affecting the pegs, or are they just adjusting to being played and will I need to get some compound or something to keep them from slipping?
I think that's all for now, and I apologize for making this a bit longer than what I originally planned to write out. Any information would be very much appreciated; I don't know anyone who has experience with these instruments, and there are essentially no instructors within 2 hours of my house so I'm relying on the internet for learning! Thanks and have a nice day, everyone!
Hi! Welcome to the forum and the violin 🙂
I kept my first set of strings on until they were about 6 or 8 months old. At that point I knew my strings had been dull for a while, and wasn't getting the sound I wanted anymore.
For the slipping pegs, cold temperatures and furnaces will cause the air to be drier and make the pegs slip. In the winter I keep my main violin in the case whenever I'm not playing it, and keep a case humidifier in there (I use an Oasis at my teacher's recommendation, and it's worked well very for me). That keeps the pegs behaving and the rest of the violin happy, but the fiddle I don't keep in a case the pegs slip like crazy in the winter.
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