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Thread: E strings breaking?

  1. #1

    Default E strings breaking?

    Hello I recently purchased an Eastman 315 mandolin and have been having trouble with my high E strings breaking while tuning up to pitch. The breaks are happening at the tuning post. The tuning pegs seem hard to turn due to the tightness of the strings. I am using standard medium strings. Doesn’t happen all the time. Bridge and tailpiece are fine.
    Is this normal?
    Tuning peg and post seem fine?
    Can I just buy single strings from somewhere?
    Maybe strings need to really stretch before hitting the E note?

    Thank you

  2. #2

    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    I have had this happen to me before. One possibility is the potential of a burr in the hole of the tuning post, which may be almost undetectable to our eyes. I took an old D string and with light pressure, moved it back and forth around the hole of the E string post in question. Smoothing out and gently "filing" the hole on both sides and all the way around the hole. Solved it for me, give that a try! Good luck!

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    Registered User Ranald's Avatar
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    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    I sometimes have trouble with E strings too. I always seem to have an uneven number of strings around the house, as the A's and E's are more inclined to break. It sounds as though you're not leaving enough slack in the string, so that when you tighten it, the tension snaps it. Try leaving about an inch and a half of slack, then increase the tension slowly until you have the string is in tune. There are some good videos on installing strings, as well as previous threads on the subject. You can buy E strings by themselves, but you may have to use mail order for this, then order in quantity. Here's hoping you won't get that desperate!

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    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Exclamation Re: E strings breaking?

    It's thinnest and to reach pitch , at the highest tension ..

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    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    Yeah, sounds like a burr on the tuner to me, also. use a different string, or a small file to lightly smooth over the hole where the string breaks.

    As to replacement strings, most of the regular vendors have them, juststrings.com, stringsandbeyond.com, and probably other sources.

    If you have a store nearby that sells instruments, call them. They might have single strings in stock.

    It's never a bad idea to have a few spare E and A strings around just for that type of situation.
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    Registered User bennyb's Avatar
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    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    Quote Originally Posted by Laredo View Post
    The tuning pegs seem hard to turn due to the tightness of the strings.
    Thank you
    That sounds like a problem at the nut, if so, most likely slots are too narrow.

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    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    Easiest thing to try first is to go much slower in bringing it to pitch. I'll go up a bit and then pause for a bit. Go up some more and pause, etc... If that doesn't help, it's likely a burr.
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    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    I would check out how the tuner is without tension. If it gets harder with string tension then there is an alignment problem with the post. I agree it sounds like you have a burr or rough spot on your tuner.

  10. #9

    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    Thank you all for responding and for the tips. I did notice each post had a rough sharp edge on the hole of the post. I took a small precision file and smoothed each hole and cleaned it out with fine sandpaper and a final polish with a dremel tool. The strings are back on now. So far so good. I did notice the tuners could get tight without any strings on it. I added a small drop of oil on the rotating pivot point. It seemed to help a little but not much. I just guess it’s a cheap set of tuners. I may look for a good replacement set later, hopefully it will be just a drop in set. I hope it works for now. Thank you all.

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    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    Re, the tuning pegs being tight - as above, this might be due to binding at the nut, but I suspect it's because they just are. I think the Eastman 315 has the same tuning machines as my 305 - they work OK for budget tuners, but boy, they're tight.

  13. #11

    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    Thank you. I would love to find a quality drop set of tuners. Need to research it.

  14. #12
    Registered User Nick Gellie's Avatar
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    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    A bit of graphite in the nut slot helps. I had this problem and the break was appearing in between the tuning machines and the nut.
    Nic Gellie

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    Default Re: E strings breaking?

    There's also stuff called Nut Sauce that's a clear nut and bridge slot lubricant.

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