Installing Cello Strings

Installing cello strings is not complicated and every string player can easily install new strings to a cello easy and relatively quick. The cramped space inside the pegbox can make the job a little challenging, but it gets easier with a little practice. A pair of needle-nose pliers can come in handy when pulling the string through the hole.

Some Follow ups –
Do not remove all the strings at once because the bridge is held in place only by string tension. The bridge will move or fall over without string tension.

Before installing the string, lubricate the grooves in the bridge and nut with a graphite pencil. Sliding smoothly through the grooves will improve tuning and extend string life.

Clean the string with an alcohol wipe to remove any oil or dirt from manufacturing.

Attach the string at the tailpiece. (Look at the old string before removing it.)

The string goes over the nut and then over the peg and through the hole.

Take one to two turns toward the narrow end of the peg.

Cross back over the wound string (locking the string in the hole) and wind the rest of the string toward the thicker end. Check the bridge and nut to make sure the string is seated in the grooves.

The last turn should be close to the pegbox wall (which helps prevent the string from “jumping”), but not crowded against the wall, which can stress the string or cause a crack in the pegbox.

Tune the new string up to pitch, but not much higher. Over tightening can damage strings, though string designers have differing opinions on the amount you can tune up without damage.

Lots of tuning can pull the top of the bridge and bend it forward. Stop to check the angle of the bridge after changing a string or two and then straighten the bridge if necessary. Installing cello strings made easy !

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When I was four, we had to choose a musical instrument to play at school, and I chose the cello. I played until I was 18, and although I found it nerve-racking to play solo, I loved playing in an orchestra. When I left school I didn’t carry on with it, which I regret.

— Emilia Fox