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  • #13360 Reply

    Isabel Martin
    Participant

    A fun fact thread for violinists new and old alike.
    What facts did you just find out? What facts have you known for all your life and want to share?

    1. Like to drink lots of soda? Watch out, your strings will rust!
    I drink lots of water now that I play violin.

    #13448 Reply

    Dianne Adkins
    Moderator

    Hi Isabel! I will have to give this some thought. But can you explain why lots of soda drinking will rust my strings? Very curious!

    #13646 Reply

    Isabel Martin
    Participant

    Well, a while back I thought my E string was getting very worn, so when I took it to the “violin doctor” to fix my chin rest, I asked about the string. He said if I drink a lot of soda, when I my fingers sweat and touch the strings, they’d cause it to rust before breaking, I guess because the sugar in the soda comes through the oils in your skin. Thought that was interesting, but I am sure it differs with different strings.

    #13651 Reply

    Dianne Adkins
    Moderator

    Hey Isabel, I never heard that! I’m not sure it’s not an old wives tale. Either way, sweaty hands (whether you drink soda or not) cause the E string to ‘darken’. When it becomes discolored like that, definitely time to change the E string.

    Meanwhile, here are a few fun facts about the violin:

    1) The violin is made up of over 70 pieces of wood.
    2) Violin strings were first made of sheep gut (commonly known as catgut).
    3) Violin bows typically contain 150 to 200 hairs.
    4) You burn 170 calories per hour playing violin. (Do you play at least an hour? 🙂

    It will be a fun thread, if everyone does a little research to find an interesting trivia fact about the violin!

    #13664 Reply

    Isabel Martin
    Participant

    I wasn’t exactly sure about the rusty strings either till I realized my E string IS starting to rust… I now try to drink more water… I am experimenting with it to see if that is how it works since I have only ever broken one string in the many years I have played violin.

    Those are interesting facts! I always loved that the violin bow is made of horse hair since the horse is my favorite animal.

    #13892 Reply

    Space
    Participant

    Violin Frequency Chart
    Interesting fact: Look at all these overtones! For anyone who can’t read graphs like above, the “peak” that’s all the way to the left, is the note that you’re actually playing. The following peaks are all the hidden overtones that make a violin sound like a violin!
    Below is a comparison between the flute’s overtones and a violin’s.
    Violin overtones compared to flute

    #13990 Reply

    I’ve never heard of the soda thing before either! Interesting…

    #14102 Reply

    Space
    Participant

    As far as the soda thing goes, I’m fairly certain that if it does contribute to strings rusting, it’s not because “the sugar in the soda comes through the oils in your skin”, but it could be a combination of other factors.

    The main cause of excessively rusting strings could just be the moisture in your sweat. If you sweat quite a bit, perhaps you’re getting nervous during performances, that can contribute to string rust.
    Another factor is the amount of salt in your sweat. If your salt intake is high (odds are, it is), the salt in your sweat will make it more corrosive. Soda contains salt, and is not as effective in countering salt in your body as just plain water, which might be one origin of the myth.
    If it’s bad, wash your hands and dry them before you play, wiping down the strings afterwards may help, along with other general healthy habits.

    #14139 Reply

    rebecca
    Participant

    Interesting topic, setting up a fan on low can help keep cool but be careful not to blow the music off the stand!

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