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Thread: string dampeners?

  1. #1

    Default string dampeners?

    I was watching my early release (for donors) of this week's MandoLesson video and noticed some rubber (?) string dampeners (?) on the headstock strings on Baron's mandolin:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nTKKldpKlF8

    What are they for? Are they common? Etc etc.

  2. #2
    Registered User Roger Moss's Avatar
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    Default Re: string dampeners?

    I would suspect they are for the same reason as dampeners on strings behind the bridge - that is to inhibit ringing of strings (aka harmonic overtones). I thought the string length above the nut would be too short and the tension too high for there to be a problem there, but I guess it happens.
    When the sun beats down and I lie on the bench, I can always hear them talk.
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    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Default Re: string dampeners?

    recurring FAQ..

    No, not necessary separately , if the damping in the bridge takes care of that..

    James Bridges solve that , with the O rings, that also secure the cover..

    Leather strips under the strings and a bit of felt inside ,

    under the traditional Gibson style Tailpiece cover, also cures that..


    Or your right hand palm ...



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  5. #4
    Registered User Roger Moss's Avatar
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    Default Re: string dampeners?

    Quote Originally Posted by mandroid View Post
    recurring FAQ..

    No, not necessary separately , if the damping in the bridge takes care of that..

    James Bridges solve that , with the O rings, that also secure the cover..

    Leather strips under the strings and a bit of felt inside ,

    under the traditional Gibson style Tailpiece cover, also cures that..


    Or your right hand palm ...



    ...
    The OP is asking about string dampening on the headstock. That inplies that the strings in question are running from the nut to the posts. Or am I misinterpreting something here?

  6. #5

    Default Re: string dampeners?

    If you run your pick across the strings between the nut and the tuners, you'll hear plenty of sound up there. I use a small piece of leather under the strings (thick enough to touch the strings) right behind the nut to dampen those overtones.

    The James tailpiece (and a few others) will dampen most of the ringing between the bridge and the tailpiece. Most times you see the grommets used between the bridge and tailpiece because the overtones are louder back there.
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  7. #6
    Confused... or?
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    Default Re: string dampeners?

    I hate to be the old fogey in the room (at 71!), but ...

    - "Dampen" means making something wet.
    - "Damp", or "damping", is the act of stopping or reducing a motion, often a vibration or oscillation. Doesn't have to be a string; cars' shock absorbers are sometimes referred to a "dampers", stopping the rebound motion of bouncing over a bump. On occasion, the more eloquent automotive writers refer to brakes as dampers as well, stopping the car's forward motion.

    And yes, the "damper" in your fireplace is there to control the movement of air up the chimney. Unless you're doing that by means of a garden hose, in which case "dampen" is probably accurate.

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