The oud is a beautiful and versatile instrument that originated in the Middle East and has a rich history and tradition. Oud pegs are similar to tuning pegs in the violin family. By turning the pegs, you can adjust the tension and pitch of the strings.
Oud pegs are usually friction pegs, which means they rely on friction between the peg and the peg box to stay in place. This can make them prone to slipping or getting stuck, especially if the wood expands or contracts due to changes in temperature or humidity. Therefore, it is important to take good care of your oud pegs and use some techniques to prevent them from slipping.
How to Tune the Oud?
It is vital to understand that in order to tune the oud, you have to simultaneously turn the peg and push it inside. In that way, you are stretching the strings while making sure that the peg will be pressed inside, therefore staying inside without moving. We suggest you to sit straight, with the neck of the oud sitting on your left knee.
Here are some steps to follow when tuning your oud:
- Hold the oud between your legs with the bottom of the oud on the ground and the peg box up so you can see which string is attached to which peg.
- Pluck the lowest string and check its pitch on your tuner device or app. If it is too low, turn the peg clockwise while pushing it in. If it is too high, turn the peg counterclockwise while pushing it in.
- Repeat this process for each string until they are all in tune according to your desired tuning system.
- Check the tuning again by playing some chords or scales on your oud. If some strings are out of tune, adjust them slightly by turning the pegs gently.
- Play your oud for a few minutes and check the tuning again. If it is still stable, you are done. If not, repeat steps 2-5 until you achieve a stable tuning.
How to Prevent Pegs from Slipping?
- One of the most frustrating things that can happen when playing the oud is having your pegs slip and lose their tuning. To prevent your pegs from slipping, here are some tips you can try:
- Use good quality oud pegs that fit comfortably into your peg box. You can buy them online or from a local music store. You can also consult an oud maker or luthier if you need help choosing or installing them.
- Keep your oud in a stable environment with moderate temperature and humidity levels. Avoid exposing it to direct sunlight, heat sources, or cold drafts. You can also use a humidifier or a dehumidifier to control the moisture level in your room.
- Apply some chalk or soap on your oud pegs to increase friction and prevent them from slipping. You can rub some chalk or soap on the part of the peg that goes into the peg box before inserting it. Be careful not to use too much or too little, as this can affect the tuning stability.
Tuning your oud and preventing your pegs from slipping are essential skills that every oud player should master. By following these tips and tricks, you can ensure that your oud sounds great and stays in tune. You can also enjoy playing the oud more and express yourself better with this wonderful instrument.