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Thread: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

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    Registered User russelshack's Avatar
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    Default Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Hello,

    Re-stringing has always been a pain for me.

    I find I often give myself too much slack when re-stringing. Would 3/4 winds around the tuners cause too much tension (especially for the lower gauges)?

    Any other ways you could damage the mando re-stringing?

    Thanks!
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    I put 3 turns on the wound strings and 4 on the plain. I put all my windings on before putting the string thru the hole so it's always the same with no guesswork. It's also a lot faster.
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    a new Gilchrist mandolin arrives with strings wrapped AT MOST two times !! G and D once around and then through !!
    John D

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    It really doesn’t matter providing you’ve enough to allow the string to grip the post. The right number of even windings simply look better.

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Actually the right number of windings takes the stress off the string coming out of the post. More windings, less stress on the string.
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Years ago, I read an interview with Lester Flatt who spoke about this very thing. He said always had three or 4 turnings on the post and said essentially what Pops1 just said; more windings = less string tension. He also said to always tune up to the note, not down to it. I figure he'd know!

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Quote Originally Posted by pops1 View Post
    I put 3 turns on the wound strings and 4 on the plain. I put all my windings on before putting the string thru the hole so it's always the same with no guesswork. It's also a lot faster.
    Can you explain what you mean by "I put all my windings on before putting the string thru the hole"?
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    Registered User wreded's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    I didn't read that same interview, but I've always followed that stringing advice; guitar(s), banjo(s), & mando(s).
    Depending on the string thickness, about 3 windings around the string post, then through the string post hole; always above the windings.
    And always, always, tune up to the note, not down to it.

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Quote Originally Posted by RobP View Post
    Can you explain what you mean by "I put all my windings on before putting the string thru the hole"?
    For years people have poked the string end through the hole, leaving an indeterminable length of slack, and then wound the tuner knob to take up the slack and bring the string up to tune. Relatively recently, people have realised that you can wind the string end around the tuner post several times and then poke it through the hole before bringing it up to tune.

    The advantages of this method are that you can keep the tension on the string to prevent the loop detaching from the tailpiece, you can control the number of windings round the tuner post, it’s neater and it’s quicker.

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    Registered User Kirk Higgins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    I always put the first winding over the top of the string coming through the post hole and then the remaining windings under the string coming through the post hole.
    I snug the lower windings up next to the string coming through the post hole. It seems to produce somewhat of a clamp on the string as it is tightened and I believe it keeps my instruments in tune better.
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray(T) View Post
    ... people have realised that you can wind the string end around the tuner post several times and then poke it through the hole before bringing it up to tune.
    What some of us, at least RobP & I, don't get is:
    - If you WANT, let's say, 3 windings, and you PUT 3 windings before tuning, then AFTER tuning you'll have 5, or 6 or 7, or ...??
    - OTOH, if you put only one winding in anticipation of tuning UP to 3 windings, THEN you end up with one winding + an untuned string!
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk Higgins View Post
    I always put the first winding over the top of the string ... It seems to produce somewhat of a clamp ...
    That has worked well for me on the wound strings; not so much on the plain ones.
    - Ed

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Looks like several folks have answered the question about winding the strings on the post first. If you keep the string tight when you wind it doesn't take long to get it up to tune. Unless I am doing a slotted headstock guitar, I never use a string winder, don't need it. As wreded says when you put the string thru the hole make sure you are above the windings or they will come off. I have been doing this for at least 30 years.
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Quote Originally Posted by pops1 View Post
    Looks like several folks have answered the question about winding the strings on the post first. If you keep the string tight when you wind it doesn't take long to get it up to tune. Unless I am doing a slotted headstock guitar, I never use a string winder, don't need it. As wreded says when you put the string thru the hole make sure you are above the windings or they will come off. I have been doing this for at least 30 years.
    Ok, so you wind the string around the post three times going from the bottom of the post to the top, then pass the string through the post hole over those three string windings and keeping tension on the end of the string tighten the string to pitch. I have a small brain and Iíve never done it this way so does this sound correct pops1?

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Yes. The string tends to keep itís own tension after youíve poked it through the hole. Itís a lot easier to do than to explain - Iím thinking of taking up rocket science!

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Quote Originally Posted by 707erich View Post
    Ok, so you wind the string around the post three times going from the bottom of the post to the top, then pass the string through the post hole over those three string windings and keeping tension on the end of the string tighten the string to pitch. I have a small brain and I’ve never done it this way so does this sound correct pops1?
    Exactly right.
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Quote Originally Posted by pops1 View Post
    Exactly right.
    Thank you. I’m going to give it a try, sure seems easier that what I’ve been doing forever.

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    No natural talent Dave Hulse's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    I have recently used Roger Siminoff's method found on the Straight Up Strings web site which wraps very few times. I was a bit skeptical at first but I have not had any problems.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    OK, tell us how you get them off again without using wire cutters?

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray(T) View Post
    OK, tell us how you get them off again without using wire cutters?
    You don’t , I was pour for along time and I’m not rich now, I used to have to save my used strings as replacements in case I broke one. I tried locking them on like this before but it was’t an option for me.

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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Quote Originally Posted by EdHanrahan View Post
    What some of us, at least RobP & I, don't get is:
    - If you WANT, let's say, 3 windings, and you PUT 3 windings before tuning, then AFTER tuning you'll have 5, or 6 or 7, or ...??
    - OTOH, if you put only one winding in anticipation of tuning UP to 3 windings, THEN you end up with one winding + an untuned string!
    You don’t end up with 6 or 7 wraps because you don’t leave that much slack. Pull it tight before wrapping around the post. Doesn’t take much to tune to pitch, because there’s not much slack to take out like with the OP’s initially described method. I used to do the string lock and leave slack method until I learned of the wrap first approach, but have never felt the need to go back to my old method. FWIW, I don’t see how more wraps decreases string tension…when tuned up to pitch that’s gonna be a constant regardless of the wraps (at least as I see it). But I certainly wouldn’t argue the physics of I’d ever had a chance to meet Lester, lol.

    For those who lock and the wind out the slack as I used to, you eventually figure out how much slack you need to keep it neat. I favor 1-2 wraps on the wound strings and 3 on the unwound strings, but, as long as your instrument is holding tune, so it however makes you happy.
    Chuck

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    Registered User John Bertotti's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    I only get more than a wrap when I mess up. I do a locking wrap wih the strong pulled up a bit and the hole for the tuner at an able from about 7-1 on one side and 11-5 on the other. I think it has actually been over a year since my last strong change when I put on the TI stark flats.
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    It doesn't reduce string tension on the instrument, it reduces string tension on the string from bending and coming out of the post. I helps to keep the string from breaking.
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    Ok, I am not a mechanical engineer, but I have been doing a bit of reading and research, and unless you have a frictionless connection/surface where the string wraps around the post, the tension does decrease with each wrap, with probably the most taken up in the first wrap. Of course, it does not all go away, or you could easily unwind the bit through the hole and maybe the first wrap while it was still in tune; but there is by no measure the full tension of the [tuned] string at the top of multiple wraps. So, my guess/theory is that even with a couple wraps, it's probably irrelevant what happens at the string-through point *if* you haven't damaged the string at the start of the winding process. Regardless of whether you start or stop at the top, though, the tension at that point is a function of the tuned string pitch and number of wraps. (I do have a crapload of credits in mathematics + comp sci, and even some in engineering before I figured out it wasn't for me many decades ago).

    I would really love for someone with an actual ME degree and experience, perhaps tying up aircraft carriers at a pier, hoisting freight elevators, etc. or such, really disassemble/diagram this though!

    p.s. (edit) I guess an inverse/corollary though is that if it is a frictionless surface, the number of wraps makes zero difference! And, from that I'd infer that if the friction is low, say an unwound steel string on a very polished, new post, more wraps will reduce the tension at least a bit more than fewer wraps. So, if the highest string breaks frequently a the top, it might benefit from one extra turn, and don't kink the dang thing unnecessarily in the process.
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    Default Re: Wrapping strings around tuners too many times restringing?

    It just seems to me that the tension/risk of breakage is created at the string bend at the tuning peg, and I don’t see how more wraps reduces that. I’m not arguing that those claiming that are wrong, I’d just like clarification/an explanation of how more wraps somehow reduces that tension (because it seems that the the string tension/force at the string bend is going to be the same if you’re tuning to the same pitch, regardless of the wraps, unless the angle of the bend is substantially different. The boat tie analogy is a good one. Once you make that first wrap with the rope it’s locked, the others just make us feel better about it (or so I was told by my sailing uncle).

    I’m really not trolling, I’d just like to understand the mechanics/physics behind it. ‘Cuz Lester said so” doesn’t cut it. I want to know WHY Lester said so…and I’ll readily admit to wanting some spoon feeding, as the method I’m using is working for me (without detunings or breakages) and life/work is really busy, so the odds of me digging into it are extremely low…
    Chuck

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