Violin String Broke! Now What?
“OH NO! While tuning the violin I snapped a string. Can I fix it? Or does it go back to the violin shop?”
No need to panic. We can fix this! Click here to replace your snapped violin string.
Here are seven things you can do to prevent breaking strings prematurely and to minimize inconvenience when breaks occur:
1. As a violin parent, learn to tune the violin properly. The easiest way to break a string, especially an E string, is to tune it too high. Don’t ask your 5 year old student to perform this operation!
2. Before installing new strings, lubricate the 2 contact points at the bridge and nut of the violin with a small amount of pencil lead.
3. Be sure that your instrument has quality tuning pegs that operate smoothly. Pegs that slip make you tune the strings more frequently, adding stress and reducing their life.
4. When tuning, gradually raise the pitch of the string to the required note, but not more than a small amount above. On student violins, use the fine tuners to make small adjustments, in lieu of the tuning pegs, which can be more difficult to operate.
5. Use an electronic tuner when learning how to tune. Tuning by ear is risky, if you’re not trained in that approach.
6. Practice often, and tune at least once at the beginning of every practice session. A neglected violin is more likely to lose its tuning by a large amount.
7. Purchase quality strings that are correctly sized for your instrument. Keep a spare set in your case, and perhaps more than one spare on the E string.
About the Author
Bill Alpert is a performer, teacher and author with a unique focus on personal development and mindfulness viewed through the lens of violin study. Mr. Alpert's resume includes recordings, performances and film scores with artists such as The Moody Blues, Pepe Romero, Tina Turner and Johnny Mathis. The co-founder of the award winning Alpert Studio of Voice and Violin in California, he is professionally active in the American String Teachers Association and the Suzuki Association of America.