Well anyway, so these days I only pick up my lute once in a while - sometimes we get on very well, sometimes I put it away
again quite quickly...
today, for the sake of enquiry I installed that .019 5th course octave in place and it seemed perfectly correct (all bearing in
mind tuning it to C at a 580mm string length) but I changed it back to unisons quite soon after because I don't like octaves
on 8 course lute... except I think on the 7th and 8th I'm finding them okay -
(and I'm enjoying my lute very much today
however, I remember I once had octaves from 4th to 8th courses and I remember finding the La Bella octaves supplied far too
floppy... ridiculous in fact, and the gauges provided seem far too thin. At that time, for a while I decided to leave the 7th and
8th as single strings - easier for a beginner I thought. Later I changed all to unisons and was very happy with that.
Currently, as said, octaves on 7th & 8th, but I followed my own instruction, the gauge on 7th being now .028 (same as usual classical 1st), and 8th has .030 for its octave...
though what I used is probably very naughty, nylon fishing line - no idea what's best, installed last December, MEMOR-X (ultimauk.com) 50 lb = .028, 60 lb = .030 ... I believe. (to use the same material for 5th course while sorting things out,
rather than breaking more of the more expensive stuff - MEMOR-X 30 lb = .020 gauge).
I find I need to retune these at beginning of a session whilst everything else stays quite well to pitch from month to month, perhaps this is the 'memory-free' aspect of this fishing line - I know nothing of these matters, perhaps just normal classical
1sts would be better for both 7th and 8th octave... but fishing line's enticingly cheap and easy to find locally and I had to experiment for myself, having read stories about line... on line.