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Attach the String to Its Tuning Pin

After tying the knot as shown above, follow the steps below to attach the upper octave gut or nylon string to the tuning pin. This method is not necessary for the heavier gauge strings and steps 2-5 may be eliminated for the 5th octave strings.

Step 1

Feed string through hole in tuning pin.

Step 2

Pull on string below tuning pin away from the harp with third (or ring) finger.

Step 3

Hold string as indicated on sketch and start tuning pin in a clockwise direction with the aid of the tuning key.

Step 4

Continue turning until string has overlapped to the position shown.

Step 5

Hold on to the string and swing it toward the neck of the harp to a point parallel with the instrument.

Step 6

Continue turning.

Step 7

Stop turning and let go of the string when the tension has reached a semi-tight stage.

Step 8

Place string in groove on stationary pin.

Step 9

Keep turning tuning pin until correct pitch has been achieved, making sure that each wind moves toward the frame of the harp and does not overlap.

Step 10

Cut off excess string approximately ½” from tuning pin.

Important Note

Because of the stretching factor in gut and especially nylon strings, the number of winds on (or times the string is wrapped around) the tuning pin tend to build up and eventually press against the neck, causing the pin to gradually become too tight. When this occurs the string should be released and the slack pulled up through the tuning pin hole and then retuned (3 winds around the pin is a good number).

You’re Ready!

Now that you have instructions for replacing string. It’s time to purchase harp strings and make some beautiful music.

Shop for Strings

How is Replacing a Wire String Different?

Because wire strings are sold with the anchor already attached, they are inserted from the backside of the soundboard.  Care must be taken to allow enough slack in the wires to give two complete turns on the tuning pin.  If this is not done the string will break before it has reached the proper pitch.  As shown in the graphic, in moving the middle of the wire to the corresponding string in the next octave, that degree of slack will give you approximately two turns of the wire string.