Fitting Full Size Violin with Viola Strings

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Barbara Stafford said: Jul 28, 2014
Barbara Stafford
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
Plano, TX
59 posts

Do any teachers out there have any experience or knowledge about fitting a full-size violin with viola strings? I would like to recommend this to a student so they can get a nice cheapish violin ($300) while they are waiting to “grow into” a nice viola they own that is currently way too big for them. I have noticed some 14” violas string tension appears to be way too loose to me. But, please let me know any thoughts you all might have on this, as well as string tensions on viola, etc. Thank you!

Sue Hunt said: Jul 29, 2014
Sue Hunt
Suzuki Association Member
Viola, Violin
390 posts

These three are good.

For 13″-14″ violas: Corelli Crystal 230. These are quite stiff strings. The C is very powerful.
Thomastik Dominant viola ½. Needs a bit of playing in to get going.
D’Addario Helicore short length
Pirastro Tonica viola ½—¾. I particularly like this one. It is easy to play on and very warm.

Danielle Gomez Kravitz said: Jul 29, 2014
Danielle Gomez Kravitz
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
59 posts

I second D’Addario’s Helicore. Those are my go-to when first starting a viola student. Do make sure that the instrument has fine tuners as the strings can be a little finicky until broken in.

Jennifer Visick said: Jul 29, 2014
Jennifer VisickForum Moderator
Suzuki Association Member
Viola, Suzuki in the Schools, Violin
998 posts

Helicore C strings come in full size violin string lengths. Tension should be OK if you get the right size!

Barbara Stafford said: Jul 30, 2014
Barbara Stafford
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
Plano, TX
59 posts

Thank you guys I appreciate this help!

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