String goes flat

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String goes flat

Postby Djwini » Tue Dec 19, 2017 6:47 pm

Each time, After playing the middle string, I hear it go flat. Would this be fixed by replacing? It is a new dulcimer
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Re: String goes flat

Postby kwl » Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:18 pm

What type of tuners do you have on the dulcimer? It could be that the tuner for the middle string needs to be tightened so that it does not slip.

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Re: String goes flat

Postby Djwini » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:36 pm

It is more like the note drops flat each time it is played.
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Re: String goes flat

Postby kwl » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:57 pm

Exactly. If the tuner is loose, each time you press down on the string you pull on the tuner dropping the string down slightly making it sound flat. Try replacing the string and see if it happens with a new string. If it does, it is probably the tuner. It would be helpful to know what type of tuners you have on your dulcimer and who made your dulcimer. Trying to diagnose a problem without seeing the dulcimer and observing the problem. I do a lot of repair work on dulcimers.

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Re: String goes flat

Postby KenH » Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:58 pm

What Ken said -- hard to help if we can't see the problem. There are several possible issues...
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Re: String goes flat

Postby Djwini » Thu Dec 21, 2017 12:10 am

Cedar creek dulcimers, tried attaching a picture but it tells me it is too big
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Re: String goes flat

Postby Djwini » Thu Dec 21, 2017 12:17 am

E72432ED-CD59-446F-8DC3-B50263A0EFA1.jpeg
photogot it now
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Re: String goes flat

Postby KenH » Thu Dec 21, 2017 9:08 am

Now we see that at least they are geared tuners and the two I see were put on the instrument correctly -- the gears have to be between the worm and the body otherwise it won't stay tuned. Still... first thing I would do is get a good screwdriver and make sure those screws are tight.
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Re: String goes flat

Postby kwl » Thu Dec 21, 2017 12:05 pm

Just to be clear, the screws Ken wants you to tighten are the ones in the center of the gears. Don't tighten so much that you can't turn them, but enough to hold the strings from slipping.

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Re: String goes flat

Postby FidPup » Thu Dec 21, 2017 7:11 pm

Djwini,

Are you saying that EVERY time you pick a note on the middle string it sounds on pitch initially, and THEN seems to drop in pitch?

That could happen if that string is too loose, meaning it is too thin (too light gauge). Especially if you strum or pick the string fairly hard.

The "pitch drop" effect with a too-loose string is an illusion - what is actually happening is that the pitch goes SHARPER when initially strummed, and then drops to the tuned pitch.

Is your dulcimer tuned DAD? If so, your middle string should be thicker (heavier gauge) than the melody string. All three strings should feel about the same "tightness".

Ken
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Re: String goes flat

Postby Djwini » Mon Jan 08, 2018 10:49 pm

Thanks, i think the last post is the real issue. My melody and middle strings are all the same guage. I will try getting one a little thicker
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Re: String goes flat

Postby FidPup » Tue Jan 09, 2018 1:39 pm

For a “normal size” Dulcimer, tuned DAD, I would try .012” for the melody string(s) and .014” for the middle string.

The bass string can be anywhere from .020” to .024” (wound).
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