View Full Version : Harmonic Suppressors
I bought these wee rubber washers and put them between the string pairs back at the tailpiece because I thought I should but really I don't see their use and their function has got to be minimal. Any one have some ideas on these things. Just curious I guess.
They can help eliminate vibrations or buzzes caused by the strings vibrating against the metal on the tailpiece. If you tailpiece has leather, foam, or cork under the strings on the base and over the strings on the cover you will generally not need them. If you don't have any vibrations or buzzes there is really not need for them.
But they do look cool, especially if you arrange them in a nice pattern ... :whistling:
If you see little or no benefit then your mandolin probably didn't need them to begin with. There are lots of things used for the purpose, but if your instrument doesn't have the problem, nothing is needed.
As the name suggests, they suppress harmonics. If you were to strum the strings in the area between the bridge and tailpiece, you would most likely hear the strings ring a very high pitched chord. When you play a closed-chord chop these strings will ring as well and create a harmonic that rings along with the main chord you've just played. The rubber grommets supress that ring so your chord doesn't have that harmonic ring and the main chord deadens as a chop should. I hope that explaination makes sense.
I'm personally not a fan of the grommets. They're a PIA to keep in place, and I always lose them when I'm changing strings. My mando came with a leather velcro strap which I used for behind the bridge which I lost.
Are there any other things to use, besides electrical tape?
leather shoe lace woven between the strings, works wonders
Laying the palm of my hand on the strings as I often do , well you can guess the rest..
I use a thin buckskin strip interwoven across and back. It works well, it doesn't look bad, and no one questions it at historical events.