top of page

Harp String Patch Test Update

I have been practicing on my concert harp quite a bit and then I left it for a few days. Do not worry, I was not in a harp free zone, I just enjoyed playing my lever harp for a few days. Current concert harp repertoire includes some Spohr and Godefroid, so my right hand and these strings have been given a nice breaking in.

Here is a picture of me having weekend lever harp fun.

weekend lever harp fun

Now, for the Harp String Patch Test update.

No. 11 (second octave B, Vanderbilt gut) was just a little out of tune. It has held tune well though, as to be expected for a gut string. I have had no problems with this string. It is starting to show signs of the beginning of pitting at the mechanism. This seems to be happening rather soon but it could just be a reflection of the amount of play time and the current state of my harp's regulation.

No. 12 (second octave A, Bow Brand Natural gut) This string was also out of tune, but again normal for a newer gut string. It sounds good. Again there is the beginning of pitting starting to happen. Not as bad as the Vanderbilt string, but still present.

No. 13 (second octave G, Savarez Fluorocarbon) It was out of tune of course, nylon type strings are much stretchier than the guts. It was still not that bad. I am loving this string. I am thinking of restringing my upper registers in these. No pitting yet.

No. 14 (Second octave F, Savarez Gut) Ahh, the dreaded blue string. The blue wore off so badly that I have to take a Sharpie marker and paint it back in. I noticed immediately how much coloring in the string changed the tone of the string. It made it sound deader. I had to do it though because I could no longer handle practicing on it the way it was. The Sharpie has worn off a bit and as it has the string has sounded a bit like it's pre-marker self. Bonus for this string. It held tune for the three days I left it. It was the only string in the patch test that did. No pitting.

No. 15 (3rd octave E, Pirastro Nylon) Being a nylon string it did need a bit of tuning after being left, but totally normal. The sound has developed as something lighter than the Fluorocarbon string. It is nice. I am currently preferring the Savarez Fluorocarbon though. No pitting.

No. 16 (3rd octave D, Premier gut) Not holding as well as the other guts. Still sounds great though. I am liking this string, but not sure about it right now as far as it is holding tune well. I need to live with it longer. Strings settle, develop and then age, It is interesting to follow this one as its life progresses. No pitting.

No. 17( 3rd octave C, Burgandy gut) Held tune really well, looks great, sound okay. I have used Burgandy for these reasons in the past. they are reliable and inexpensive. True, the tone is not resonant in the same was as the Bow Brand Natural or the Premier, but they hold up and stay in tune. Honestly, the honeyed tone of my old L&H 23 makes up for the resonance these string may be lacking. Good practice strings or for lots of background gigging. No. pitting.

bottom of page