Question about string spacing….

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    Danamarie on #187237

    I was just wondering if anyone could help me . I currently have a Salvi Ana 38 string harp which isn’t easy to transport. I am looking for a portable 30-34 string harp which I can take with me in my car but I just love the concert spacing tension between the strings on my Salvi. Does anyone know which portable harp is closest to a Salvi Ana string spacing–concert spacing distance between the strings? I have briefly tried a Triplett Sierra 30 string which I find is very very close to the feel and string spacing……
    Any help would be appreciated. Are there smaller portable Salvi harps which also carry concert spacing similar to that of a pedal harp?

    balfour-knight on #187239


    I do not know about the other harps you mentioned, but I do know that Dusty Strings uses standard concert spacing on all their harps, and medium to firm tension which is just a bit lighter than concert pedal harp tension. Check out their website for all the details. I love my Ravenna 34, and I can easily go back and forth between her and my L & H pedal harp. My Musicmakers Large Gothic does not have standard string spacing, but has a bit wider spacing, so it takes a little longer to adjust to. Hope this helps!

    Best thoughts to you,

    Biagio on #187240

    Many if not most lever harps are designed with “concert spacing” but that’s really not a set standard, more of a reference. Typically the spacing gets wider to allow for thicker strings and more vibration as one progress to the bass. A very common measure for reference is that across two middle octaves: 8.5″/21.6cm from C to C “concert spacing.”

    I’d expect any gut strung harp at or near concert tension would have similar spacing. The L&H 34 string Ogden suggests itself (Lyon & Healy is owned by Salvi). Another possibility would be the new Dusty Strings Boulevard, also a 34. I can’t think if any smaller harps at concert tension off the top of my head.

    Hope that helps.

    balfour-knight on #187241

    Great answer, Biagio! I have often read that no string spacing is actually “standard,” but I do know that the Ravenna 34 and the L & H 85 GP (44 strings) are exactly the same for the given 34 notes they share in common. This is NOT true for larger pedal harps–the bass strings are further apart, as I have measured on concert grand (47 string) harps at The Atlanta Harp Center. This is all very interesting, and is a fascinating study!

    balfour-knight on #187271


    Just thought to measure from middle C up to the next C on my L&H 85GP–it is 4 inches. From there up to the next C is only 3 and 3/4 inches, for a total of 7 and 3/4 inches. On my Musicmakers Large Gothic, these two octaves are 4 inches and another 4 inches giving a total of 8 inches. I thought your measurements sounded a little wide for the middle octaves of the harp, but lower down on the harp, the spacing is wider. I can measure those for you if you like.

    Best wishes,

    Biagio on #187272

    Hi Balfour,

    Well I did say “about” heh heh. I suppose it depends on what we are calling the middle two octaves and of course what string diameters and therefor specific spacing the designer came up with. Still a two octave stretch from C below middle C to C above gives one a fairly good idea of the rest of the string spacing: 8″-8.5″ sounds about right to me.


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