Gut strings and fine tuners
I was looking through some posts about using gut strings with fine tuners. From what I've read, people say it's not worth it because it's too big of a stretch, but people say it with synthetic core, too.
Would it damage the gut string if I just leave a fine tuner on the A or try to tune with it, or would it just not be very useful?
It wouldn't damage the string, but it wouldn't be very useful. You could crank the tuner all the way down and not alter the pitch significantly.
If you use a micrometer tailpiece, such as a Wittner, it is possible to have wound gut G and D in combination with steel A and E (the "Russian" setup). I've successfully done this with Eudoxa G and D. I find that the loop knot at the end of these wound gut strings fits comfortably into the recess in the tuner where the ball end of a string would usually go. I tune the G and D from the pegs, as usual with gut, but of course use the fine tuners for the steel A and E. I've never tried an Eudoxa A with a tailpiece tuner, but I would expect it to behave in the same way as the D and G, and because of the higher tension of the A fine tuning with the tuner would probably be successful.
I wouldn’t use fine tuners for wound gut, and definitely no to fine tuners when using plain (unwound) gut.
Mechanical pegs and gut strings go together like peas in a pod.
I played at an orchestral concert today where it was hot and my hands were sweaty. My G string went a whole semitone flat right during the fast piece that happens to be in G major, because of my perspiration. You think I could have fixed it during my one bar of rest with a traditional wooden peg? Fat chance!