E string break...saddle issue?

Choice of classical guitar strings and technical issues connected with their use.
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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Fri May 18, 2018 1:43 pm

OldPotter wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 7:53 am
What gives me food for thought is that more than one string seem troubled (the separated windings). I am wondering whether there was abuse when mounting the strings, e.g. bending or pulling to hard. Where the strings at some point tuned very high?
There are also some of the core fibres that look as if they were cut, I would want to check the saddle with a magnifying glass. I also wonder why the wrap is separating at the saddle, is it the way the strings were installed or do Augustine put the wrap on less closely?

New strings now at least.
I don't think it's the Augustine strings (unless it was a bad set) as this doesn't show up on my GC-10. I checked back on the photos I received of the top damage that occurred during the first shipping from Japan and there are similar winding separations. That may implicate the string mounting method or the shipping stresses. Although the Hamamatsu Custom Shop may have had a bad batch of strings.
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Fri May 18, 2018 1:45 pm

es335 wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 8:33 am
Please take a close look at the A string in your picture and you will see, that the wire wrapping has opened where the loop contacts the straight string.

This surely has happened to the E string just to a greater extend, which enabled the loop wire to get in contact and cut through the Nylon floss core. Probably a string issue that the wrapping might be not sufficiently tight.

Look where the d string passes over the bridge inlay. The wire wrapping has opened there too and doesn’t look very trustworthy. :wink:
D'accord!
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Fri May 18, 2018 1:50 pm

riemsesy wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 8:54 am
the wire wrapping will open up when the nylon core fibers stretches or are at breaking point.
The winding doesn't have any strength to prevent that.

It will also open up when it's bent, but that is normal
string_bent.png

I agree that the d-string also looks like it can break soon.
Ah! So! And given that the condition was present when I received the guitar, the strings have lasted an unexpectedly long time.
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Fri May 18, 2018 1:56 pm

Michael.N. wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 9:07 am
OldPotter wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 7:53 am
What gives me food for thought is that more than one string seem troubled (the separated windings). I am wondering whether there was abuse when mounting the strings, e.g. bending or pulling to hard. Where the strings at some point tuned very high?
There are also some of the core fibres that look as if they were cut, I would want to check the saddle with a magnifying glass. I also wonder why the wrap is separating at the saddle, is it the way the strings were installed or do Augustine put the wrap on less closely?

New strings now at least.
Some strings are made that way, loosely wound for the last couple inches or so. Best avoided at the saddle end.
Run your fingers across the saddle. You should be able to feel whether it's slightly rough or a little bit too sharp. Of course flipping between D and E tuning wouldn't help but that's probably not the issue here.
The looser section is at the tuner roller. Yes, there is a slight roughness but I don't think that caused the separation.
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Fri May 18, 2018 1:57 pm

es335 wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 11:32 am
Another factor is the technique how you tie the end of course but I suspect Beowulf is experienced enough to rule this out. :wink:
I didn't tie these strings...that was done in Japan.
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

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joachim33
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by joachim33 » Fri May 18, 2018 2:28 pm

Beowulf wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 1:57 pm
es335 wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 11:32 am
Another factor is the technique how you tie the end of course but I suspect Beowulf is experienced enough to rule this out. :wink:
I didn't tie these strings...that was done in Japan.
So, I understand you don't know the history of these strings, their brand and model, how old they are, how long they are under tension and whether they have been abused. Considering that two strings (5A and 6E) on your picture have issues well separated from the saddle I am not inclined to think there is an issue with the saddle.

I suggest to restring the instrument in the fashion you always did (and as I understood never gave you grief) and see whether you get the issue again. I wouldn't read to much into the strings that came with the instrument.

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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by es335 » Fri May 18, 2018 3:08 pm

joachim33 wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 2:28 pm
... Considering that two strings (5A and 6E) on your picture have issues well separated from the saddle I am not inclined to think there is an issue with the saddle.

I suggest to restring the instrument in the fashion you always did (and as I understood never gave you grief) and see whether you get the issue again. I wouldn't read to much into the strings that came with the instrument.
Joachim, 6E an 5A strings have resp. had issues at the tie block, before the saddle which is most likely due to the tying process. But the 4d string has an issue at the saddle.

Otherwise I totally concur to simply replace the strings and see what happens with the new strings tied with 50+ years of experience! :D

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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Fri May 18, 2018 4:28 pm

segobreawill wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 12:40 pm
Hi Doug,

Nope, I've never had the 6th string snap on me. Plenty of 4th string snaps though. I even had a set of Hannabach 815 HT where the 4th snapped on me and then the 5th too! I haven't bought a set of 815's since.

I too notice those string winding separations over the saddle and tie block of my guitar. Sometimes they occur immediately while I'm putting on new strings as they begin to stretch as I'm tuning them up. I can't say if there's a problem with your saddle but imho I really don't think that's the case given the calibre of the model you have there. I don't believe that even the slightest detail wasn't looked at before it was shipped out from the Yamaha shop in Japan.

As the string is being tuned, the point of contact over the saddle can cause the string to "catch" at certain times, and then maybe slip over the saddle at other times - this may be a cause for the string winding separations over the saddle. As for the separation around the tie block, well it's the same scenario imho but with the loop of the string causing a "noose-like" grip over the part of the string that passes through it and goes over the saddle. I don't know if such separations in the windings (which admittedly nag the hell out of most guitarists) can be totally avoided?

Then of course, there is the string itself: 1) How was the winding process done, as some windings on some strings are more slanted than others? 2) What type of alloys were used - more/less copper content, more/less silver content - and so on? 3) What is the 'tension' built into the string during the manufacturing process? Perhaps my wording here is somewhat inaccurate but what I mean is that I notice that for example on some sets, the 4th string is very loose and takes many turns to tighten, while some 4th strings are very tight and I almost fear that if I turn the tuner too much the string will snap right there! This too, can have an impact on the level of "resistance-to-separation" between the string windings - again, IMHO.

But, how about this for a cause: What about the strings' age? How old are the strings when we purchase them? Can that be a factor too?
Hi Gene,

Thanks for the thoughts.

I will check for winding separations when I restring and see if my method of providing a slight lift in front of the saddle during the "tuning up" reduces the winding separation. As well, with the string ties there is no loop and the contact tension is taken by the tie block hole.

Right, the break angle and the position of the loop will also have an effect. I have sometimes gently pushed the loop lower to decrease the angle of the string entering the hole.

"To these aging strings boy, those angles look too sharp..."... :mrgreen:
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Fri May 18, 2018 4:32 pm

joachim33 wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 2:28 pm
Beowulf wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 1:57 pm
es335 wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 11:32 am
Another factor is the technique how you tie the end of course but I suspect Beowulf is experienced enough to rule this out. :wink:
I didn't tie these strings...that was done in Japan.
So, I understand you don't know the history of these strings, their brand and model, how old they are, how long they are under tension and whether they have been abused. Considering that two strings (5A and 6E) on your picture have issues well separated from the saddle I am not inclined to think there is an issue with the saddle.

I suggest to restring the instrument in the fashion you always did (and as I understood never gave you grief) and see whether you get the issue again. I wouldn't read to much into the strings that came with the instrument.
I do know the brand and model: Augustine Regal/Blue. I will post another picture after restringing.

Thanks to everyone for all the suggestions! :merci:
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Fri May 18, 2018 7:50 pm

So here we go: restrung (Augustine Regal/Blue) with Diamond String Ties and looking much better. There are no separations over the saddle and only slight separations at the tie block holes for the A and D strings.
GC82S Restrung with Diamond String Ties.jpg
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1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

djqsrv
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by djqsrv » Fri May 18, 2018 9:29 pm

Looks great. I recently started using the diamond string ties and am loving them. I understand the physics of the steeper angle helping drive the top but if it did change anything it was way to small a difference for my ears. I just love the ease of stringing (not that tying a loop was hard) and the clean look of the bridge block.
Anyway, hope that this resolves your string break problem.
“I've been imitated so well I've heard people copy my mistakes.“ - Jimi Hendrix

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dta721
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by dta721 » Fri May 18, 2018 10:05 pm

Hi Douglas,

I just found out about your topic, recalled that I did have the same 6E string break at the saddle with good section end (loose end at tuner), AND it was the same Augustine Blue string. That was back in January when I posted a comment in this topic:
viewtopic.php?f=43&t=117741&p=1252834&h ... g#p1252834

My theory, as stated "especially with bass strings D, A and E, care should be taken to make those loops and tuck the strings at the bottom of the bridge to avoid excessive kinks. Once a bass string is looped and undone to make a perfect knot (I did that, kind of a perfectionist :( ) , weak point(s) would have developed right there so that a bass string will break prematurely (shorter than the expected life)!"

From then on, I never redo a knot on a bass string, for fear it would result in a premature break.

Just one more data point on Augustine Blue, but it may be one more too many?
Dave

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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Sat May 19, 2018 12:27 am

djqsrv wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 9:29 pm
Looks great. I recently started using the diamond string ties and am loving them. I understand the physics of the steeper angle helping drive the top but if it did change anything it was way to small a difference for my ears. I just love the ease of stringing (not that tying a loop was hard) and the clean look of the bridge block.
Anyway, hope that this resolves your string break problem.
My interest in the Diamond String Ties has to do with the slightly increased feel of resistance to right hand attack. I will be experimenting to see if I prefer the action on the 650mm scale GC82S with them, as I am used to a higher tension feel on my 662mm scale GC-10.

I am quite sure now that the problem was to do with the stringing method, the age or particular set of strings and/or shipping stresses.
Last edited by Beowulf on Sat May 19, 2018 12:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

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Beowulf
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by Beowulf » Sat May 19, 2018 12:32 am

dta721 wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 10:05 pm
Hi Douglas,

I just found out about your topic, recalled that I did have the same 6E string break at the saddle with good section end (loose end at tuner), AND it was the same Augustine Blue string. That was back in January when I posted a comment in this topic:
viewtopic.php?f=43&t=117741&p=1252834&h ... g#p1252834

My theory, as stated "especially with bass strings D, A and E, care should be taken to make those loops and tuck the strings at the bottom of the bridge to avoid excessive kinks. Once a bass string is looped and undone to make a perfect knot (I did that, kind of a perfectionist :( ) , weak point(s) would have developed right there so that a bass string will break prematurely (shorter than the expected life)!"

From then on, I never redo a knot on a bass string, for fear it would result in a premature break.

Just one more data point on Augustine Blue, but it may be one more too many?
Dave
Hi Dave,

Excellent points! I now wonder (looking at the slight winding separation on the A and D strings at the tie block hole) if luthiers ever slightly fillet the upper edge of the tie block holes to reduce the stress on the strings?
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

SteveL123
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Re: E string break...saddle issue?

Post by SteveL123 » Sat May 19, 2018 1:32 am

How about a sleeve over the string where it goes inside the loop to protect it? Sources of sleeves are electrical wire insulation. Find the right gauge wire for a snug fit over the string.

A metal tubing sleeve would also work and provide better break angle at the same time. Smallest diameter section of a telescoping antenna may just be the right size. I think it's made from thin wall brass tubing nickel plated.

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