The string makes this "pinging" sound

General troubleshooting

The string makes this "pinging" sound

Postby Bob Lewis » Thu Dec 10, 2009 5:14 pm

Problem with C # on Diatonic G/D
On my WWF....a Diatonic G/D ....the C# string has a "pinging" sound...no matter how
I try to tune it, cannot correct it.

This WWF has new strings, wooden chord bars, felts and really love it...this "pinging"
just started so don't have a clue what is wrong. I will confess that is was left in a
cold room over night last weekend...was really outta whack when I brought it home, but
all other strings ( notes) are just fine.

Any advice from you experts ?

Thanks

[Bob]

What does "pinging" mean? Is it a bridge noise or a string noise? Is it actually a harmonic
or is it more mechanical? Is it a felt, more of an "eeeeyow", that is too close to a
vibrating string, either above the string or by means of an opening in the felt that
doesn't provide enough room for the string to move freely?

George Orthey taught me that if you simply replace the string, mechanical problems, a
screeching sound, usually go away without any exact diagnosis or fuss. If the problem
is chronic, there may be a burr where the string vibration ends...a bridge or bridge
pin. Smoothing that point of contact can often help. Combining the two, I smooth bridge
pins (or rods) while the string is off, just in case. That usually works.

Sometimes the fine tuner cam is the problem, with the string having a fuzzy or inexact
terminal point on the cam crown. Cocking the cam forward or backward to provide a new
spot, then retuning, often works. This is where reworked and well regulated cams are a
real asset. Then the cam is fully seated and the string height remains pretty much the
same, whether cocked forward or backward.

Maybe it is just a harmonic caused by having more chord bars, and one of the bars
sounding a harmonic, probably a 1/4 node (felt damping at ~1/4 the vibrating length
of that C# string). If a mild noise, you might have to just get used to it, assuming
chord layout change or moving the whole bar set is not going to be considered. It's
an autoharp. The former single D with only 6 bars was much simpler.

Bob Lewis ♫
boblewis@autoharpworks.com
Bob Lewis
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