Gut Strings Expert ready to help!

Thank you so much for your strings tips. I am amazed at how easy it was to change a gut string on a viol!! I used three of your videos and I did it! You give out so much fantastic informations for free. Thanks to you, we will have much better educated musicians, and in the end it's the music that profits. Thank you.

Kate Walpole

Freelance Baroque Bassoonist, Teacher at UWA and WAAPA, Amateur cellist

Perth, Australia

The passionate interest of Daniela Gaidano for the world of authentic stringing, and her study and investigations in that field, have impressed me since the time I met her. It is important for today's musicians using period instruments, to be well informed about the different historic possibilities and best solutions for the instrument they use - I do not hesitate to recommend Daniela's knowledge and help to anyone who wants serious basis to refer to.

Sigiswald Kuijken

Artistic Director of La Petite Bande

Honorary Professor at The Hague and Brussels Royal Conservatories

The Nederlands

Working with Daniela is essential not only for musician and luthier who long to find a relevant historical performance but also for every musician and luthier because understanding the reality of the gut string from her advice could change your attitude of the performance and making forever. 

Takumi Takakura

Violin Maker

Director at Takumi Violin Making School, Hannou (Saitama prefecture)

formerly Teacher at Shimamura Music Techical Academy, Tokyo

Japan

Gut Strings Tips:

The Mersenne's Test

 

Described from Marin Mersenne in Harmonie Universelle (1636), this test is used by string-makers to check if the string is even or false, by watching if the fuse of the string is regular or not.

 

But there's something more for a sensible musician: try to do it with your eyes closed. Don't you start to feel in your hands the vibrations of the string? it's like when you touch the soundbox of your cello while playing, you feel the vibrations. Same thing here.

If you concentrate you can guess the quality of the sound. You can feel if the vibrations come to you evenly, smoothly, or if they are rough, not regular. Then open your eyes and check if what you felt is confirmed by the fuse you see.

 

If you exercise a bit you'll know the sound of your strings even before installing them, which could be a pretty good advantage!

The Loop Knot

 

How to make a professional loop knot to your plain gut string.

 

This is the official pro technique.

 

The one I use for my personal use strings is slightly different: instead of the pencil I use my teeth to keep the loop open, more practical.

 

How to install correctly the String in the Peg

 

You need to be as tidy as possible, because an overlapped string could break the pegbox if there's not enough space behind the peg. 

 

At the end it's nice if you come out with the last spire just close to the peg side (from the side of the peg) so that it keeps the peg tight. On the other hand, if the string ends too far from the side, it will simply pull the peg out.

 

Never do this with a wound string because it would break easily, same as with a modern stiff pure gut. In these cases, simply juxtappose every spiral.

Save money and overcome Moisture with Oil soaking

 

Concerned about the short life of your gut strings? Do they get hairy so soon in the summer?

Your strings could last much longer, you need only some olive oil, and some time....

 

It may seem complicated, especially if you are always touring and you are never at home... but think for a while, if your strings could last three or four times as they last now, wouldn't your life be more simple? 

Wouldn't it be nice to save money, and have more reliable strings?

 

Warning: don't do this with wound strings!!

How to use correctly a Micrometer

 

There's a common mistake about how to handle the Micrometer while measuring the string, and it can affect the result.

 

This is a very short video but it can make the difference!

Can I put Gut strings on my Modern violin?

 

Yes, of course you can! ...and I believe both your violin and your playing will get a big advantage from this.

Gut strings in fact will reveal you a new voice.

I am speaking about the paste of the voice as well as of course articulation and phrasing. 

 

When (and if) you will turn back to modern strings this new voice will stay with you and you will be able to find it also in the evenness of modern strings. Resulting in a richness of colors and expression which will make you enjoy much more your playing!

 

In the membership you'll find the full post with a useful checklist!

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Daniela Gaidano is very thorough and enthusiastic researcher in the world of early stringed instruments. Her endeavours have included visiting elderly string makers in remote areas to preserve memories of the old ways of string making, archival research, and long practical experience with Aquila strings, recognised throughout the world as leading pioneers in the struggle to recover the lost sounds of the old instruments 

Chris Goodwin

Secretary, The Lute Society

Great Britain

Daniela Gaidano's book "Evolution of Strings in the Violin Family"  is a treasure trove! The combination of historical facts and her years of experience as a sought-after string maker turns this book into a fascinating read and an indispensable part of any dedicated library on performance practice on original instruments!

Philipp von Steinaecker

Conductor

Germany

I met Daniela many years ago when she was a student of baroque viola. I was very pleased to share her sensibility and competence about making and using gut strings. Her passion is driven by the desire of empowering artists with more freedom of expression through a deeper knowledge of their tools, being the strings among this tools.

Enrico Onofri

Violinist, Conductor, Teacher

Italy

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