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PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2013 11:09 am 
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So, I just won an e-bay auction for a Lyon and Healy tenor that dates back to the early 1900's. I'm very excited and want to set it up for Irish tuning right away. I already ordered a couple of sets of DAddario Irish strings, but does anyone have any suggestions for set-up? Should I replace the bridge, and if so, any preferences? Is it likely that I will need to re-slot the nut?Any other insights? Thanks and Happy Holidays to all


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2013 3:34 pm 
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Location: Clayville, RI
By "Irish" I'm guessing you mean GDAE tuning? Either way, it's hard to say until you get it and see what it needs. Off the bat, when you string it up set the bridge up so it's the twice the distance between the nut and 12th fret, then you'll probably need to angle the bass side 'longer' so the 12th fret note matches the harmonic at the 12th fret.

It's hard to put this stuff into words, but it goes for any instrument with a floating bridge.

The checklist includes: bridge, nut, tuners, head, tensioners, fret wear. It might be a good idea to get a new head and make sure it's tap tuned to D.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2013 10:11 pm 
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Octave mandolin string are also good investments. You get 2 sets of strings in each set.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 12:30 am 
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After experimenting with string tension calculators and different combinations of gauges on my 1927 May Bell, I ended up settling on the D'Addario Irish nickel wound set, too. A bit light on the bottom but OK, and convenient since I'm only a very casual banjo player. I didn't have to recut or fill the nut from the original CGDA setup. Have fun!

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 12:11 pm 
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Thanks to all. That helps a lot.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 04, 2014 1:55 pm 
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The hardest thing I had to deal with was finding just the right gauge for the G string. Irish tuning seems to be at or just a tiny bit below the low limit for a lot of banjos and keeping the low G from being wonky was the challenge for me. Don't get discouraged or too concerned, but just keep experimenting with single strings if you have to.

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