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glynn

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Reply with quote  #1 
My Hiren Roy surbahar from the late 80s has a problem with fret tuning on the pa and low sa strings. When the frets are set in tune for the main and sa strings, the pa and low sa are too high when playing on the frets......
Does anyone know how to explain this and maybe has a solution too!
Many thanks!
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Sitarfixer

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Reply with quote  #2 
It's a common problem with the bass strings. Putting a block of bone or similar at the nut under the offending string about 1/2" or a bit more shortens the distance from that strings new departure point to the frets thus creating a lower pitch " now in tune ". Lowering the string slot if room between the open string and first fret allows will help a lot too if the fretted note isn't totally off the charts in the too high range. Don't go too low obviously.
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glynn

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Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks for the advice Sitarfixer! Do you know why this is a problem with some instruments and not with others....? Seems to be somewhat mystifying!?
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Sitarfixer

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Reply with quote  #4 
Handmade as these babies are including eyeball measurements, variances in tuning calibration, general alignments, etc, consistencies run rampant. The bass string on sitar is a relatively new innovation. It allows the traveling musician to avoid schlepping a sur-bahar around. Great idea but keeping that string in tune is not easy. Soft wire tuned low set against the same frets with the tighter steel strings becomes a conflict of tuning. A bass block for the kharaj string gets it closer to the frets which lowers the notes ( in tune ). Lowering the slot on the nut that the kharaj string sits in will help if room permits. Be sure not to go too low - obviously.
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barend

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Reply with quote  #5 
I thought surbahars had less intonation problems on the lower strings than sitars? But apparently that is not the case?
I haven't seen much surbahars with bass blocks....
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