Bouzouki strings

Bouzouki strings

I have a celtic bouzouki and one of my strings are a bit broken so i decided to buy a new set of strings.
I found this irish string set from D’Addario:
http://www.juststrings.com/dad-js81.html
But then i see that the thickness of the D & G string are the same. On my bouzouki right now i have a thick and a thin string on both D and G. I got them when i bought my celtic bouzouki.

The question is - what am i supposed to use when it comes to irish music and a bouzouki?
I can buy these strings instead:
http://www.juststrings.com/dad-j97.html
But they doesn’t seem to be irish?

Re: Bouzouki strings

Those strings are for Greek tuning. If you go Elderly.com they have GHS light and medium sets of Irish bouzouki strings with octave (vs unison) courses in the G and D. Or you could just jot down the gauges and buy loop ended singles from Just Strings to make your own sets.

Re: Bouzouki strings

I need to have them this week. Maybe you know an UK site or something where i can order?

Re: Bouzouki strings

custys

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Re: Bouzouki strings

I won’t get them in time.
I’m going to England next week, do they use to have bouzouki strings in the musical instrument stores over there?

I also wonder if they use to have mandolins, tenor banjos, bouzoukis etc at the shops?

Re: Bouzouki strings

It sounds like your bouzouki is strung with octave strings gG dD aa dd) rather than unison (GG DD aa dd. Many players still use octave strings as it gives a bright jangly sound, however Irish players tend to prefer the unison strings for the bass notes as they sound better when doing bass runbs and double stops.

I think you might have to alter the nut if you want to re-string to unision (I had to on my Hullah) so might be best off sticking with octaves for the time being, unless you can do it ypourself (careful!) or find a luthier.

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Re: Bouzouki strings

Another good reaon for using unison strings is that octave strings tend to be out of tune the higher up the neck you play. Incidentally, what does a ‘bit broken’ string look like?

Re: Bouzouki strings do NOT go out of tune…

Can we just nail this myth once and for all ?
Not on my PacRim ‘zouk with a compensated bridge, certainly.
And stick to octaves on the bottom, my friend, I use the John Pearse sets, and they give you the choice, with two each of the heavy guages, and three of the light ones, so you can string in unison or octaves. You could always rush round to your shop and buy the extra light ones seperately for the moment.
Oh, and I get mine from Hobgoblin, many major city outlets plus mail-order.

Re: Bouzouki strings

Those are pretty cheap, Saint, but they’re light strings for a different tuning.

I do shop at juststrings.com for both my bouzouki and banjo strings, and I buy bulk guitar strings for both, which makes it REALLY cheap! I use Stainless Steel on my banjos, and Phosphor Bronze on my zouk. If you know the gauges that work well on your instrument, buying packs of 12 is the way to go, even with shipping charges, they’re inexpensive.

My banjo sets cost me about $2.75 a set (including shipping), and my bouzouki sets cost about $4.75 (for the 5 course instrument)

Pete

Re: Bouzouki strings

(although, I’m not sure what juststrings charges to ship to Europe… I have an English friend that always has his strings shipped to my house, and then he comes and picks them up when he comes over for festivals).

Re: Bouzouki strings

I can’t believe his savings cover the cost for the trip !

Re: Bouzouki strings

Guernsey Pete, are the two octaved strings (in a pair) of different length? I mean, does the bridge compensate every single string or just the four courses?

Re: Bouzouki strings

Patriarch K
Ok I could be wrong again but ,firstly what part of the UK are you going to? Look up the net for shops in that area or look up the members on this site who are in that area and ask them for a string surely someone will help the UK is almost advanced as Ireland these days.

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Re: Bouzouki strings do NOT go out of tune…

No, the compensation is just for the pairs, and I’ve checked intonations right up the fretboard, and even at the octave the difference on my ‘zouk is only ever one chevron on my Onboard Research Corps Intellitouch tuner. If that is a discernible difference to you, that would cause aggravation and distress, then " just don’t come to our sessions ! " is all I can say. I regularly capo up the fingerboard, to the 5th or 7th frets for various reasons, and don’t find the variation in tuning sufficient to distress me. It’s much worse sitting next to a fiddler with sloppy intonation.
You must remember that, using GDae, the higher octave string is of course tuned a tone lower than the pair of strings of similar gauge. Don’t know if that helps, as a slacker string may rise more in pitch when fretted than a tighter one, so having a slightly longer scale, because the whole bridge is slanted slightly back from treble to bass as well as the compensation carved into the bridge ( D and e strings from the front edge of the bridge, G and a strings rebated back 3 or 4 mm ), may all help.
Anyway, I say, they don’t go out of tune.

Re: Bouzouki strings

Pete, I have no doubt your bouzouki is perfectly in tune if you say that. Mine isn’t, and it’s not octaved, but is a very low quality one. I’ve built a compensated bridge for it, made out of a piece of ebony, and that improved intonation a lot, but it’s still far from perfect. I suppose there are a few things you can do to make your zouk better, but there is a limit, if you don’t want to build the whole thing.

Re: Bouzouki strings

Hi I play a Joe Foley Bozouki and i get my strings from Joe They are Lenzner and the guage is 12-17-32-46 and they are brilliant i would not think of changing
Michal Keown

Re: Bouzouki strings

A quick follow-up question regarding octave strings:
When you guys write (gG dD aa dd) does that mean that the first g from the top is the thinnest string, followed by a thicker string?