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D type strings
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Violin family
Viol family
-- Lutes --
-- Guitar --
-- Fret-gut --
P.O. Box 82761
Portland, OR 97282-0761


Because of the large variety of instruments within the lute family, it isn't possible to suggest any standard stringing. Please supply all of the following information and I will calculate your gauges:

  • Type of instrument
  • String Length
  • Renaissance or Baroque
  • Top string pitch
  • Pitch center of instrument, i.e. a=440hz
  • Current string tension if known
  • Unison and octave disposition of courses
  • Type of string, existing, and desired (plain gut, wound Type D, nylon, Nylgut, etc.)

Lacking detailed information we will follow our own experience.

Upon request we supply complete string sets for Baroque Guitars, Mandoline, Hurdy-Gurdy and Medieval instruments (Harp, Fiddle. Rebec etc.).


If you are a Wintel user and would like to be able to figure your string tensions accurately, quickly, and easily, please visit this site and download an excellent free string calculation program. I use it all the time. Thanks Oliver!

4/5/2010 update. Even though Oliver hasn't updated the program since Windows 98, it works with Windows XP. I still use it all the time as it is about as good as it gets for doing lots of complicated calculations and the program works well on XP execpt for a glitch that occurs if one changes a value for tension in the 'list view' and then clicks any button other than one of the other tension windows. A fatal exception message will appear and the program will close. Not what one wants when one has just set up the calculations for a 13 course baroque lute with two riders, so I always remember to observe this necessary precaution against a crash. I don't know if it will work with Windows 7. If anyone is using it with Windows 7 successfully, let me know and I'll update.: Oliver Wadsworth's StringCalc


this information is provided to inform players about the various sets, available from retailers listed on the ukulele page

PERLA - Traditional set available in medium or high tension presenting high overall levels of performance. The first three strings are made of perfectly rounded, smooth, gauged nylon monofilament that possesses excellent acoustic and mechanical properties. The Nylon used for these strings is not from DuPont and sounds better than DuPont. Almost all other brands of Nylon string use essentially the same Nylon, purchased from DuPont. All Nylon is not created equally. The basses, overspun with silver-plated copper, consist of a core of Nylgut multifilament that ensures not only a high resistance to tensile stress but also a low absorption of both atmospheric humidity and perspiration. This makes for rapid and stable intonation, as well as greater durability. Suitable for the highest quality guitars.Medium or Heavy Gauge. Perla shares the same basses as Alabastro.

ALABASTRO - The first three strings are polished Nylgut. Its features include promptness of attack, acoustic projection, excellent timbre and a truly remarkable stability of intonation, not to mention an admirable evenness of tone with the overspun basses. The basses, wound with silver-plated copper wire, consist of a core of Nylgut multifilament that ensures not only a high resistance to tensile stress but also a low absorption of both atmospheric humidity and sweat. This makes for stable intonation, as well as greater durability. Medium or Heavy Gauge. Alabastro shares the same trebles as Alchemia.

AMBRA 900 - Up to the middle of the 20th century, the only available strings for guitar were plain gut for the trebles and silk core, wound basses and their acoustical performance was quite different from that of modern stringing. The characteristics were presence, response and brightness typical of the thinner gut strings (certainly superior to plain nylon and in some respects closer to PVDF or carbon) while the basses, on the other hand, possessed an exquisitely vocal quality. Not so bright as, and with less sustain than, modern wound on nylon strings, and with more fundamental. The Ambra set was developed keeping in mind this historical fact, in order to best re-create, by means of modern synthetic materials, the sound of Llobet and Tàrrega. This set consists of Nylgut® for the trebles, adopting the representative mean diameters as indicated by Pujol in his "Escuela Razonada de la Guitarra" from 1934, while for the basses (silvered copper wires wound on Nylgut® multifilament core) we tried to find the right balance between wire and core, which would recreate exactly the typical sound of the wound silk strings of the time. These strings must not be tuned above a=430hz!

19th CENTURY ROMANTIC ERA STRINGS-AMBRA 800 - Available in Nylgut. The gauges of these sets are based on information from Sor and Carulli, primarily that the top three strings are the same gauge as violin.

BANJO STRINGS- Available for Classical 5 string banjo, and Minstrel banjo. Classical banjo sets are available in D B G D G tuning, light or medium gauge, Nylgut with wound 4th string or all Nylgut in medium gauge only. Minstrel banjo strings are available with wound 4th string, medium gauge only, tuned D G D F# A.

CHARANGO, RONROCCO, TIMPLE CANARIO, CUATRO- Until the 1950s, only gut strings were used for the Charango, Ronroco Timple canario and the Cuatro. The quickness of the response and brilliance of tone of the gut strings created a sound very different from the nylon strings available today. Aquila's investigative work has always had the objective to produce a synthetic string that had the same acoustic properties as gut strings, without its typical defects (short life time, high price, excessive sensitivity to atmospheric changes). With Nylgut® Aquila has eliminated these shortcomings, reproducing the original sound and tone of the Charango, Ronrocco and Cuatro and at the same time assuring excellent stability of pitch, far superior to any Nylon strings.

OUD- Aquila oud strings are available for Turkish ouds in these 4 tunings: all sets have d, a, e top strings and choice of these bass string tunings (BAE) (BF#C#) (BF#E) (BAC#), and Arabic oud in these tunings: all sets have c, g, d top strings and choice of these bass string tunings (AFC) (AFD) (AGC) (AGD). We stock medium gauge only. Light gauge is available by special order

ROSIN from 18th Century Recipe

Aquila rosin has achieved something of a cult status among bowed instrument players. For all instruments except double bass it works better than anything else, period. $18.00 per piece, no extra surcharge, packaged nicely in a small suede bag. It lasts a very long time.

FRET GUT 200cm, 2 100cm lengths per package


55 $9.90
60 $10.35
65 $12.15
70 $12.15
75 $13.50
80,85 $14.70
90,95 $17.30
100,105 $18.80
110 $19.15
115 $23.15
120, 130 $26.00
140 $30.30
Order Here