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desh

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Reply with quote  #1 
Hi ,

I have a new Sanjay RR Gandhar Pancham sitar which I love. It is a smaller instrument and I tune it close to D.

The problem it that the Jor String keeps breaking at the nut when I am practicing Sargams.

I realize I am tuning a little on the high side and striking relatively hard . I have had Jor strings break before but never with the frequency they are breaking with now.

Any suggestions ??
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fossesitar

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Reply with quote  #2 
Breaking at the nut or at the 2nd nut? I assume there are 2.
Anyway, take some 200 grit sandpaper and hold in the slot
with about a 45 degree pull on each side and just work it
back and forth lightly 2 or 3 times. Repeat for the other
side of the slot, see if this helps. You are just BARELY
radiusing the edges of the slot, leaving the main slot
width the same as it was. An I do mean barely.

You can always do more but here less is more. GF
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fossesitar

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Reply with quote  #3 
had another thought Desh that may be of heelp to you. Since jor is bronze, and is also meended, there often exists a binding between the 2nd nut (the one with holes in it that holds the strings down on the main nut) and the nut itself. This is fatal to bronze strings especially when meended. I was having similar breakage issues on my jor and so simply did not crimp it into the 2nd nut at all, just ran it over the top. I was able to maintain sufficient angle by using one of the side pegs rather than the two on the top. If you are able to do this without buzzing (a sign of insufficient angle) that should resolve the breakage issue entirely. If you are not able to get enough angle this way then take a round, flexible hacksaw blade or some similar round and flexible abrasive item - anything you can squeeze between the 2 nuts - and simply (GENTLY !!) raise and round (upwards on both sides) the round hole the jor is crimped into. Gentle and slow, little by little. The idea is to provide a gentle rounded notch on the upper part of the 2nd bridge hole for the jor string, raising it a little so as to reduce the crimping stress and reduce the angle over the main nut for this string. Hope this helps. GF
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povster

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Reply with quote  #4 
I had a similar problem with a sitar that had a bend to the peg, as in ghandar pancham where the joritar is directed at an angle to the peg usually associated with the panchm of a kharaj/pancham sitar.

It turned out the angle to the peg (the top one on the player's side) caused the string to pass over the headstock and make too much of of an angle before it hit the peg.

I am not sure if you have actually kept the broken string on the sitar and pulled it with pliers to its full length to determine exactly where it broke.

But if it turns out if broke past the 2nd nut, you may simply place a piece of leather or similarly thick material underneath the string where it cuts into the headstock on its way to the peg.

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desh

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Reply with quote  #5 
Thanks to povster and fosse sitar for the suggestions so far. I am inclining to believe that the hole guiding the string to the peg is a little low and may need to be raised as fosse suggests.
I have attached a picture to illustrate exactly my string keeps breaking.

Attached Images
jpeg sitarNeck.jpg (16.33 KB, 4 views)

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Sitarfixer

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Reply with quote  #6 
It's also possible that the slot for that string is narrow and causing a tight wedgie fit. With that, tightening the string is only tightening the string between that slot and the peg shaft. This is a guaranteed string break. Similiar situation with taraf eyelets. Those eyelet holes get a slot cut over time. The string gets wedged and locked in. Tightening the peg is only affecting the string between the eyelet and the peg shaft. Again - broken string. If this is the case, widen the slot for that string and also angle the bottom of that slot down towards the peg side just a bit.
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fossesitar

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Reply with quote  #7 
What a nifty old sitar. Well I believe your assessment is correct so give some thought to a safe way to raise the top of the jor hole in the 2nd bridge. It looks like the jor string is going to one of the two pegs on top, not one on the side?? If so, another possibility is to get a small brass eyelet and pre-drill a 1/16" hole about 2" in front of the peg the jor goes to. Then you could SLOT straight down from above the jor hole on the 2nd bridge with a wide saw or even a file, allowing the jor string to pass naturally through the slot (thus eliminating use of the jor hole in the 2nd bridge entirely) and simply thread the jor string through the small brass eyelet 2" in front of the peg and angle should then be much shallower but still adequate. Many would not attempt this because it defaces the instrument somewhat from original. But it would work and might be the method I would use. But then I am infamous for defacing instruments.......
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nicneufeld

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Reply with quote  #8 
My first, and so far only, string break was meending on the jor (also at the time tuned to D) and at the time as I recall I was counselled that not much meend should take place on the jor. Not sure from who, or if I misread it...but since I've abided by it and usually don't do more than a semitone on the jor (whereas before I would pull rather extensively, several steps worth IIRC). Just curious but are there differing opinions on this? How much meend is generally done on the jor, ie, how far is considered normal?
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