String height question.
I have one violin which has a string height of 5.6 mm at the G string and 3.5 mm at the E. The string width from the G to E at the bridge is 34 mm.
My second violin is 4.0 mm at the G and 2.3 mm at the E with string width of 35 mm.
The second violin needed a wedge under the fingerboard and it came back with that set-up which I quite like now. It is much easier for me to play. Other than left hand pizzicato (which I do not need to do) what are the disadvantages of having the string height set lower than ''normal'' ?
Is it true that English violinists tend to have their strings set lower than American violinists (classical music) ?
The strings will start buzzing against the fingerboard, the second violin is too low, you shouldn't go below 4.7mm for G and 3mm for e
Steel strings like Helicores can tolerate a lower string height. You neglected to say what kind of strings you’re using. It’s relevant to this discussion.
I am using Tonicas. There is no buzzing anywhere on the fingerboard.
Shaving the top of the bridge can help, but can accentuate harshness in the violin.
It would appear that one bridge is a bit high and I can easily shave a bit off that one ; I have done it before. But the other bridge is a bit low and I cannot do much about that...other than have a new bridge cut.
Brian Your first violin is not a bit high, but rather set pretty much at optimum level for string height, a lot of pros like it a tad higher.
I have done a quick fix on a low bridge by super-gluing tiny rectangles of bristol card under the feet. A colleague asked why my bridge hand little white socks.
I was thinking of of doing something similar by gluing shavings of timber from a new/spare bridge to the base of my (too low) bridge. Nice to know somebody else has already done this !
Sounds like the first violin is set up for gut strings and the second for steel strings.
I use actually Tonica medium with E Gold.
String height is not the only factor to consider. If it doesn't buzz and rattle when you play, it isn't too low. If it hurts and tires out your hand, it might be too high, but it might be too high with excessive scoop coupled with high-tension strings.
If your ruler has 1mm increments, its not hard for a woodworker to estimate tenths of a mm by eye with fair level of accuracy, I don't see why that should be a problem??
And, Lyndon, when a customer comes in and says that their E string is 3.7mm off the board and they prefer 3.6mm and ask you to lower it, what do you do?
measure it and see what it is, of course