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Do not cut Newtone Strings????

One question that is commonly asked is ‘why does it say not to cut your strings before putting them on the guitar?’ This is quite a simple question and answering it gets to the very heart of what we do here at Newtone.

Most strings, even some of our own, are made using Hexagonal cores, and as you know they have an angular circumference. When the soft wrapping wire is wrapped around the core it moulds itself around the shape of the core and grips to each vertex of the Hexagonal core. So with every wrap the outer wire makes, it grips and stays in place. When using a Round core, the wrapping wire moulds itself around the core as it is wound, but without an angular surface it has nothing to hold it in place, and once the tension is removed from the wrapping wire it will spring back on itself and you can quite easily slide the wrapping wire up and down the length of the core. When making our strings we create a small rectangular cross section in the core where the winding of the strings will end, and when the wrapping wire passes over this it grips to it in the same way as a hex core, but only for that small section, and is enough to keep everything in place down the length of the string. If you cut the string to fit your guitar, there is no longer anything to hold the wrapping wire in place and the wrapping will come loose and result in a very dull, thud of a dead string. Next time you string up with our strings, try running your fingers over the last few inches of the string and you may be able to feel this flattened section, it is often more noticeable with the thinner wound strings. Once the string is installed on the instrument and is up to pitch, the tension on the string being wrapped around the machine head is enough to hold things in place, making it safe to cut off any excess string.

I hope this helps you understand a little better how we do things here at Newtone, and gives you something to think about next time you look down at your guitar and see all those wraps of wire, vibrating together making your music come to life.

We now have a video to illustrate the best techniques for string up with Newtone Strings:

8 thoughts on “Do not cut Newtone Strings????

  1. I’m either very thick or perhaps I’ve come up with a tangible problem that requires an explanation. Regarding round core strings, as Bass player, I know there are a number of different capstan sizes on the varying machine heads. For decades, I’ve cut my strings off leaving about three inches to go into the capstan hole, then the wrap being taken up by the machine head. As most strings are far too long and wouldn’t fit around the capstan (3 turns I’ve found to be the best), one has to trim before fitting. I’ve also found that to alleviate the potential for slippage or unwrap, I bend the string at its length at 90 degrees then fitting that bent part into the capstan hole. Am I doing the right thing or perhaps there might be another way? I’ve only been using round core for a short time. I don’t even know the advantages other than comfort on the fingers?!?
    Thanking you and kind regards.
    Den Finch

  2. Den.
    You are correct. Our bass strings do allow you to cut them first, however it is good practice to bend the string first. This is the best method for all machineheads of a similar design, be it bass or guitar.

  3. What about fitting round cores such as those from the Lucidity range (10 – 43 being my favourites it has to be said) on a Fender strat with traditional slot head tuners? The ones which require you to cut the string to length, allowing for some slack of course, before poking into the hole at the top of the tuner ?

    Kind regards

    Simon Bryan

  4. Hi. Please excuse what is probably a stupid question, but am I right in assuming that it’s safe to cut the string once it’s in place and up to pitch? Otherwise there’s going to be an awful lot of spare string waving around the headstock of my Faith Parlour.

  5. Hi there!
    What about soldering then? I used to solder the wrap before the head, with a tiny bit of soldering tin, to “lock” the wrap so to speak, and then bend it and cut it as much as I like AFTER that point. Is that a recommendation?

    I use to solder the ball end wraps to on the plain strings on electric guitar. So it doesn’t goes “kink” when bending with whammy bar. Works a charm. I don’t know if this is detrimental to the strings overall longevity though. Is this recommended or not?

  6. I have not heard of this being done before, I cant see that it will harm the string in any way, as long as not too much heat is used.

  7. I’ve been given a set of Newtone tenor banjo strings 10. 20. 30. 40. But can’t find that size on the web site. Can you advise please.

  8. You can email us to talk about ordering custom sets. Just drop me a line to info@newtonestrings.com

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