INDIAN MUSIC FORUM ARCHIVES: Sitar Forum: #4 MA

 

Author Message
Jette
#4 MA Nov 18, 2002 05:18 p.m.


Is there an improvement in the string quality available now? What type of music wire do you use? And what gauges do you use?

Yes, we use a little thicker string now, for the tone. I prefer English wire. German wire is a little thinner, and strength-wise, I think English wire is better. I use #4 steel wire for the ma string; that's very heavy.

Hello from Jette. This is from an interview with Nikhil Banerjee. Would his reference to a #4 ma string be a .013 gauge?

Lars
Re:#4 MA Nov 19, 2002 12:37 a.m.


Yes, I think Nikhil used a .013 or .014 wire.....very thick and loud and also hard on the fingers.....
I use the Pyramid strings, I find them to be the best and have tried all the others.....

Lars

Jette
Re:#4 MA Nov 19, 2002 10:12 p.m.


Thanks Mr. Lars, What are the positives and what are the negatives of using such a thick wire?
Jette
Lars
Re:#4 MA Nov 19, 2002 10:16 p.m.


Well........positives are you get a louder sound and a different response, maybe more in a sense but would depend on your finger strength.
Negatives are it's hard on you finger when doing meend. Personally I prefer the 3 gauge at .012 or maybe a shade lighter....

Lars

Amitava
Re:#4 MA Nov 21, 2002 01:42 a.m.


Another negative is that your jawari will wear out faster.
K.K.
Re:#4 MA Nov 21, 2002 03:30 p.m.


Hi All: On the subject of jawari wear - Some professional players slide a piece of thin acetate, mylar or other plastic, in between the strings and the jawari area of the bridge while they're practicing. This way they can practice on their concert instrument but save the jawari for the concerts:) - K.K.
Amitava
Re:#4 MA Nov 21, 2002 07:55 p.m.


A film negative has worked well.
Jeff
Re:#4 MA Nov 23, 2002 01:42 p.m.


How long does a Jawari last? Say you practice 12 hours a week, are you looking at 1 year, 3, 5 years or longer? Has anyone here actually wore out their bridge? And if so, did you resurface the original bridge or start with a new one? And do you do the jawari yourself or have it done for you? Thanky.
Jeffrey R King
DaveP
Re:#4 MA Nov 23, 2002 03:35 p.m.


The more you play the more fussy you become. I practise around 2 hours a day and find that I need to at least touch up my jawari every 3 or 4 weeks otherwise the sound gradually becomes more choked and nasal. I've worn out quite a few bridges (been playing since the late 60s).
In India we use to have jawari work as well as a string change performed every month as well.
Lars
Re:#4 MA Nov 23, 2002 04:43 p.m.


Jeff, you can do jawari yourself with a lot of luck and patience.......or send it to Brian at Silverbush, he's the best.......
I did one of my sitars jawari and it turned out great but have been trying a little with my teak sitar and not happy yet. I used a dremel tool on the first one but having been using a chisel and mill bastard file for this other one.....the article in the Junius book is very helpful and there is an article on the silverbush site also that's less detailed but gives you another view of the process........

Lars

Jeff
Re:#4 MA Nov 23, 2002 09:14 p.m.


Hi DaveP, Can you explain a little about the "touch up" process. And Lars, how long did it take for you to perform your jawari? I think you may have told me this before, but I'm not sure. Thanky. Oiiioii
Jeffrey R King
jette
Re:#4 MA Nov 23, 2002 10:20 p.m.


Lars, I see from some of posts you like a nikhil banerjee jawari. yes? did you have to close your jawari yourself to accomplish this? or jawari came already closed or came already open?


Jeff, you can do jawari yourself with a lot of luck and patience.......or send it to Brian at Silverbush, he's the best.......
I did one of my sitars jawari and it turned out great but have been trying a little with my teak sitar and not happy yet. I used a dremel tool on the first one but having been using a chisel and mill bastard file for this other one.....the article in the Junius book is very helpful and there is an article on the silverbush site also that's less detailed but gives you another view of the process........

Lars[/quote]

DaveP
Re:#4 MA Nov 24, 2002 02:24 a.m.



Jeff (Nov 23, 2002 09:14 p.m.):
Hi DaveP, Can you explain a little about the "touch up" process. And Lars, how long did it take for you to perform your jawari? I think you may have told me this before, but I'm not sure. Thanky. Oiiioii

Hi Jeff. By touch up I mean following the original shape of the jawari without flattening the bridge first. Just carefully file (religiously following the original contours) until the string grooves disappear. This probably won't be very successful on a heavily grooved bridge, in which case you should start from scratch. I use an 8 inch bastard file for almost all my jawari work. I was lucky enough to study the technique at Kannailal Brothers shop in Calcutta. I went every day for a week in 1976 where Kannailal's son explained his techniques (part of the deal was that he make me a couple of sitars). Since then I've been honing my skills. There's also a lot of really good advice from the Silverbush and Buckingham websites. I live in New Zealand and as there's absolutely nobody here who does jawari I have always been forced to do it myself.

Lars
Re:#4 MA Nov 24, 2002 03:36 p.m.


Jeff, first time jawari took me 20 hours! Ha ha......oh well, I'm a perfectionist.
Jette, every sitar I've had has had closed jawari....you just open it up until you get the Nikhil Banerjee type sound. With my Hiren Roy it had been done improperly by the previous owner. The simply filed down the wooden feet at an angle to change jawari so I had to fashion some cedar to the legs and then remount on the tabli which was the hardest part because this sitar is very old and has worn spots on the tabli, then I resurfaced in the manner Dave just described........

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