are all harps tuned high from the factory?

I have always noticed that my harps are tuned an average of about 10-20 hz high from the factory. That includes Seydels, Special 20s, Suzukis etc. There must be a reason for this but as I play more with string insturments the more it becomes evident. AND yes, you can make a constant effort to bend them down just a little and it helps but considering that the exact tunning should make bending easier as you start at a closser point you can’t help but wonder what the logic is to this. I have tuned a few notes down to standart 440 but am still confused as to why you would have to do this to be in tune. Well, I hope someone can shed some light on the theory or why.

It has something to do with the chordal playing. I don’t quite understand it yet. I found this, hope it helps: http://www.bluesharmonica.com/specail_20s_1_4_blow_holes_too_high_tuned

Paul and any concerned harpers. Don’t tune all your harps down just yet. I tried some other forums (thanks) and there is indeed a reason or two that they are tuned that way on purpose. I’m gonna check them out and file a report on it when it proves correct.

OK! Did a little experimenting. Checked the tune then warmed them up and it didn’t change. Mosturized the same harmonica and the tunning dropped a few cents. What I decided to do was to check and note the tune with harps dry then bring the highest ones that were as much as 20 cents high down to around 10 over. This works well and eliminates a few high spots. Better plyability. There are also some harmonica sites that show ways to tune a certian way to provide certian harmonics. Maby try that on one next.

Yes, they are all tuned high. You are checking them at A=440Hz reference pitch. You need to check them at 443 or 442. Your 1 blow is the reference. The two blow will be a little flat, three blow a little sharp. That’s what the chord thing mentioned above is. But they are all tuned sharp. that’s because everybody plays them way too hard and don’t relax the bend embouchure when they aren’t bending. I tune mine at 442.