Problem with one lever on a new Camac harp

  • Participant
    eva27 on #196994

    I have just begun playing the harp, and have a brand new Camac Excalibur which I bought in June this year (3 months ago). I am currently unable to get a lesson with any teachers nearby so cannot ask a teacher or harp player for advice on a problem I am experiencing with one of the levers.

    The lever in question is on the E4 string. The problem I have is that this lever sounds the string whilst being engaged. Having watched closely, I can see that as the lever is pushed up, the string seems to knock the edge of the little groove it rests in when the lever is fully engaged. This produces a sound from the string. When the lever is fully engaged, the string rests properly in the groove. It seems as if the whole string is no longer connected between the peg and the lever at the correct angle- the string is slightly to the left of where it should be in order to hit the groove at the right angle.

    I have been playing on this harp every day for the past few months and never experienced this issue. The only thing that changed is that this evening I finally got an electronic tuner and was able to tune it properly. When I used my electronic tuner I realised that the strings were all flat by a whole tone so I gave them all a good tightening. It was after this that the problem with the lever occurred, but I cannot see why this would be! None of the other levers have been affected.

    I am sorry if this is hard to follow, but I would really appreciate some advice from a more experienced harpist or harp maker!

    Many thanks,
    Eva

    Participant
    eva27 on #196995

    I forgot to add that I’ve tried loosening the string and making it slack, then retightening it to see if that would reset the position, but it hasn’t helped at all.

    Participant
    carl-swanson on #196996

    If I understand you correctly, the lever is not correctly lined up with the string, causing the string to first catch on the edge of the lever and then to slide into the groove.  You have to loosen the screw or screws that hold the lever mechanism to the neck and reposition the lever so that the groove is exactly lined up with the string. Then tighten the screws back down again. That should take care of the problem.

    Participant
    eva27 on #197000

    Yes that is exactly the problem! I will try this once I can find the right type of screwdriver.

    Do you have any idea of why that would suddenly happen after tuning? It’s possible that I may have accidentally tuned with the lever engaged, would that have put pressure on the lever and pushed it out of alignment?

    Thank you for your help!

    Participant
    Tacye on #197007

    Just in case you haven’t already checked – the string is still going through the groove on the nut or bridgepin the same as the others?

    Participant
    eva27 on #197008

    Thank you for your response- I checked that as well because I assumed that was the problem, however it looks exactly the same as the others. I’m going to have to wait to get the right screwdriver tomorrow and then I’ll try adjusting the lever.

    Participant
    eva27 on #197036

    I was able to fix it today. Strangely, I had to readjust the vertical positioning of the lever. I have no idea how that could have been affected by my tuning, unless the screws were slightly loose and I accidentally tuned with the lever engaged?

    I made sure to check that the lever still sharped the string by the right amount. The position I put it in is different the position it was set to by the manufacturer, but the readings on my tuner  are accurate and show that my position is fine. This was the only way I avoid the string catching, and I realised that the string was being damaged at the point where it was hitting the edge of the groove. It looked as though the string was just to the left of where it should be, so I moved the actual lever mechanism downwards a little bit and that has solved all my problems. I am just very confused as to how this could have happened! Apart from this, I have had no issues with my harp, and I highly recommend the Excalibur.

    Thank you for your help!

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