E string is already black??

September 17, 2016 at 02:05 AM · I got my strings like one week ago. They are Jargar Superior strings. I was looking at my violin and noticed that the part that I touch the e string is black, and there are parts of the normal silver color throughout the fingerboard. The place between the fingerboard and the bridge is still nice and silver, but the place where my fingers meet the strings are black. Is it from the sweat? Can I clean it?

Lydia, thanks for that advice, I should start thinking about getting a new e string. What e strings do you guys recommend? Goldbrokat Thick? Jargar or jargar superior? Evah pirazzi e?

Replies (5)

September 17, 2016 at 02:29 AM · That's tarnish. Your sweat is corroding the coating. If that's the case, you'll probably have to change the E string in another week or two; it will likely go false.

I kill regular Jargar E strings in 2 to 3 weeks in exactly that way. I'm guessing the Jargar Superior E is similar.

September 17, 2016 at 02:36 AM · Maybe it will prevent it maybe not, but washing your hands before playing is just a good idea in general

September 17, 2016 at 12:36 PM · I used to go through e strings pretty quick. I heard once it has to do with sweating more than others through your hands and/or having more acidic/corrosive sweat. Never really looked into it much but I've found some e strings last longer than others for me. I tend to stay away from gold plated unless I can change them often. Lately I've been using Passiones and they've lasted a good amount of time.

September 17, 2016 at 01:32 PM · Just checked strings on all three fiddles. None of them show evidence of this problem. I divide daily practice/play time about equally among them -- 45-60 minutes per instrument. I don’t know how many hours a day you play; but my E strings -- currently all Goldbrokat medium, a steel variety -- last 5 months at this rate.

Your individual chemistry may well be a factor. I agree with previous poster’s advice to wash hands before playing. Also, in hot, humid weather, I run a compact floor fan on low speed 10-15 feet away from me. This keeps moisture from building up on my hands.

About which E string I’d recommend: I really don’t know, though I’ve tried quite a few -- you’ll have to experiment. Some dealers -- Quinn is one -- offer sampler packs of miscellaneous E’s so you can get a comparison. I tried Jargar Forte E about 10 years ago, but it and Westminster Heavy were too loud for me. The above-mentioned Goldbrokat has served me better and gives me the sheen I want in high notes without excessive volume.

September 17, 2016 at 02:25 PM · Write to Jargar and ask them to change name to Inferior 8;)

Probably not their fault... I have been using their regular medium E for some time now and no corrosion whatsoever.

You may want to consider a coated string, but do not get surprised if it whistles. The "finest" the string, the more probability to whistle.

Also re-visit your diet and consult with dietitian / Ayurveda practitioner. Rusty string may be your least worry in the long run.

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