String Makers Discussion

just found this amazing video:

That is an interesting method but I feel this is far too cumbersome and slow for mass quantity production without requiring a tonne of time and physical effort.

The phases for string making (IMO) are:

  1. LOAD (putting thread onto the rig and preparing to twist)
  2. TWIST (applying the initial twist)
  3. FOLD (folding the string in half)
  4. KINK (second twist that creates tension)
  5. CLEAR (removing all detritus in prep for next LOAD)

You want to MINIMIZE the steps involved IN and BETWEEN each of these phases to mass produce with the minimal amount of sweat and effort.

The coolest part is the 5 camera motors but even then the need to have to change LOAD systems is bothersome. Also, having to FOLD each string one by one is rather labour intensive.

/old guy

so how do you automate the folding?

I would add CUT & TIE (That’s the time killer for me.)

Curious factoid: Each time Paul posts, 10 or more people go into the string business. :wink:

I am happy to help anyone make THEIR string better.
Tell me how you do it and we can improve it together.

However I will not share my rig or thread secrets.
…I think that’s fair. :wink:


Here’s what I do:
Left hand pinches string at the top while right hand snips it above right next to pinch; keeping scissors in hand, invert right hand and pinch just below original pinch while grabbing string with left-hand ring and pinkie fingers. Twist right hand upright to form loop very tight against left hand pinch, with right index finger tip showing and slightly pushing through loop. Left hand pinched end is pushed into the center of the loop with left thumb against right index, and then the end is pinched by right thumb and index, still keeping left thumb against the right pinch while the right middle finger comes up behind to pinch the back of the loop against the right index (and incidentally dragging across the right side of the left thumb tip because everything is done so tight together). The middle finger helps stabilize and tighten the loop to make the knot as close to the right hand pinch as possible. At the same time, the left index finger pinches the string against the left thumb to pull the knot tight. All this is done while moving the string to the hanging place. So, it ends up being about 40 seconds to cut and tie 10 strings.

It sounds like a lot, but it’s just a lot of words to explain a simple thing that you would do intuitively. Maybe I should have made a video instead.

I have messed with a way to melt and cut the ends, but the consistency of joining the two ends of the twist and the fumes has put a damper on that one for now.

So I just got into making my own strings and wanted to know if there was a particular brand or type of thread that worked best for making strings?

It was not easy to follow that. :slight_smile:
Can you simply not tie the knot and THEN cut the strings?
Without seeing your setup I simply cannot be sure this is viable.


Make string with whatever you can afford/find at the start. Then try other materials.

As time goes on you will see what has the play properties you like.

I mix threads of different weights into each of my strings to get the playability I desire.


Yeah, I guess it really should have been paired with a video, but all it would really show is the way I tie for speed. My issue is that the tying represents the bulk of time and I haven’t been able to reduce that significantly since back when I starting tying with the scissors in hand.

As suggested, I could tie the knot and then cut the string just above the knot (I am assuming you mean first cut it off of the rig, tie the end and then trim with a second cut), but that would entail more time for the second cut and slightly less consistent string length for me I imagine.

Maybe I am just trying to reduce something that doesn’t have much room for it.

I will PM you about the setup, as it sounds like we work similarly.

I want to try these new tieing techniques, I think I understand them, I hope they’re faster than mine

So far, when I make a batch of ten strings, I’ll twist, kink and tie one string but leave it attached to the rig. Then twist, kink and tie the next string, and so on until I get all ten strings. Then I just cut the big bunch of thread off the end and I’ve got ten separated strings of approximately equal length. I need to make a rig that twists the strings all at once with swappable springs for tension, so I just have to kink and tie them. I’ve got a bunch of old bike chains and sprockets laying around… Hmmmm…

You could be The String Pedaler!

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Haha yeah!

Bingo! New boutique string company, comin’ right up! ;D I’d probably actually hook up a small motor to one of the sprockets, because I’m too lazy to build a bike frame and pedals into the rig (not to mention having to pedal it!). But those came to mind because there’s a bike shop near my house that’s given me permission to dumpster-dive, and they throw away tons of old sprockets and chains. Come to think of it, they probably throw away enough parts to build whole bikes…

I’ve been making strings for nearly 3 years now. I stopped making strings after I tried kitty strings, because I realized I was using the EXACT same thread, and kitty strings has more reliable tension.

I’ve been wanting to make a rig for awhile, but I could never figure out a good design.

Plus the fact that I suck at building things AND that I have no room to put a rig.

For me, the obstacle that was the downfall of my string making enthusiasm was making the rig, I bought a 10 ft board to make a rig and that was too short.

Making a string rig is hard.

I can definitely respect stopping string-making because you found a string you like - in that case, making your own strings is rather pointless (unless you’re doing it for the cheapness). But if lack of a rig is the only thing holding you back, that’s easy to fix! My current “rig” is a lag bolt in the wall of my garage with a carabiner attached to it, and ten hooks in a slight arc (so they’re all the same length) screwed into the wall about 10 feet away. It’s really not that complicated - you just lay out thread for the strings you need, and twist with a drill or Dremel.

For ease of use, you can bend some little C-shapes out of coat-hanger wire to wrap the string on, instead of directly on the wall hook or drill hook, and that makes it easier to transfer the end of the string from one place to another. I’ve also put a pencil mark or a piece of tape on the wall to gauge when I’ve twisted far enough, and it’s plenty consistent for my purposes. Again, not as efficient for production as a standalone rig that does the twisting for you, but for making your own strings it works.

I am trying to start up a company, Dead Threads. If I can no longer make them because I wasn’t making enough money to keep selling, I would keep making no matter what. I would just make them for myself or make it a more local company. I love making string and BYYS HAS SOME AWESOME STUFF!!! :stuck_out_tongue:

I always get bad tension with any speeds and tightness help?

Did you possibly mean to say: