Stems and flags

    Stem direction

    Default stem direction

    MuseScore aligns the stems of voice 1 notes according to the rules of music theory. By contrast, voice 2 and voice 4 stems always point down; and voice 3 stems, up. Voice 1 note stems automatically flip upwards in the presence of voice 2 or 4 notes.

    Flipping stem direction

    1. Select either the notehead, stem or attached beam (if any);
    2. Use any of the following methods:
      • Press X;
      • Click on the "Flip direction" icon in the toolbar, Flip direction
      • Select a position from the "Stem direction" section of the Properties panel.

    This action will flip any attached beam as well.

    Changing stem length

    1. Select the stem;
    2. Use one of the following methods:
      • Press / to extend or shorten the stem;
      • Change "Length" in the Properties panel.

    Creating stemless notes

    To hide the stems of individual notes:

    • Select one or more noteheads and check "Hide stem" in the Note section of the Properties panel.

    To hide all stems in an instrument part:

    1. Right-click on the staff and select Staff/Part properties;
    2. Click on Advanced style properties;
    3. Check "Stemless".

    Stem and flag properties

    Properties specific to stems and flags can be edited from the Stem tab in the Note section of the Properties panel:

    Hide stem:
    Stem direction: Choose Auto, Down or Up.
    Flag style: Traditional (default) or straight.
    Thickness: Stem width.
    Length: Stem length.
    Stem offset: Move the stem in a horizontal and/or vertical direction.

    Stem and flag style

    Stem thickness and Flag style (traditional or straight) for the whole score may be set in FormatStyleNotes.

    See also

    Beams