Restringing A Guitar

It’s not enough to simply learn how to play the guitar.

You also need to learn some helpful skills to make your playing experience more enjoyable. One factor that can affect the sound quality of your guitar is the strings. An electric guitar requires frequent restringing compared to an acoustic guitar. Therefore, it is important that you learn how to restring a guitar. Don’t worry though, restringing is a simple task. You won’t need any special skills to complete the job and this post will guide you through it with these easy steps.

What You Need

  • Tuning Machine
  • New Strings
  • Wire Cutters
  • String Winder

Prep

When restringing your guitar, the area should be clean so you will not lose anything. Keep in mind that this task involves little pieces that you might lose during the process.

It’s also important that you work in a quiet place so you can tune your guitar easily. Prepare everything you need and make sure that it is placed in an area that is easy to reach.

If restringing a guitar on a table, you may find that the head is heavier than the body so the the guitar becomes unbalanced. You can place something soft, like a cushion, between the table and the neck to keep the guitar from tipping. Now you’re ready to restring…

Restringing An Acoustic Guitar

Step 1: Loosening & Removing The Tension Of The Strings

Restringing Guitar HeadTurn the tuning pegs on the guitar to loosen the tension of each string and take the pins out of the bridge using the built-in notch of the string-winder. After removing the pin, you can now remove the string from the guitar bridge.

Note: Make sure that the end of the ball of string is secured to the underside of the bridge to sustain a tone. The ball end should not sit on the pin tip or it will become loose.

 

Step 2: Put The String And Bridge Pin

Restringing A Guitar - Bridge PinsTo place the string and bridge pin on the 6E bridge hole, slide the pin along with the string on the sound hole. Pull the string using your other hand and push the pin into the hole as you put it in place. Put the string into the tuning post around 3 inches and tighten it; pulling the string towards the bridge.

Note: Cut the string about two inches from the machine head so you can poke it into the machine head shaft.

 

Step 3: Use A String Winder To Wind The String

Restringing A Guitar - WindingWith the use of the string winder, stiffen the string on the right tuning key but you don’t have to tune it right away. Just tighten the strings to make sure that you have placed it correctly.

Tighten the remaining strings. Follow this sequence 5A, 4D, 3G, 1E to achieve a better result. Stretch each string to make sure that they are set appropriately.

 

Step 4: Tuning Your Acoustic Guitar

Restringing A Guitar - TuningFor beginners, using a tuning machine to tune the strings is very helpful. You can ask the help of the staff of a local music shop where you purchase the tuner on how to use it.

Use wire cutters to cut any extra string as leaving excess string to hang might cause difficulties with playing.

 

 

Restringing An Electric Guitar

Prep

Just like with the acoustic guitar, you need to support the neck of your guitar as you place it on a flat and solid surface. You can also position the neck of your guitar against your torso as you unwind the strings.

Step 1: Cutting The Strings

To cut the wire form some slack and sever the strings using wire cutters from the middle of the guitar’s body or by the neck pickup. After cutting, remove the string and hold the guitar firmly so it doesn’t drop.

 

 

Step 2: Place The New String One By One

If you have a Gibson style guitar, place the new string into the tailpiece found underneath the body. If you have a non-locking Fender guitar, place the new string into the tremolo activity. Most string packs these days will give you a helpful colour guide. Matching the ball-end and the string colour on the chart provided, then feed the string through the bridge.

 

Step 3: Feeding The Strings

Make sure the eye of the hole is aligned with the neck. As you pull the string through the eye of the hole, allow about 3 inches of slack for winding. Turning the string back towards the headstock, you can loop it under the string and then fold it around over the top of the string. This will lock the string, keeping it sturdy and in tune.

 

 

About the author

Rajs instrument of choice is a baking tray since nothing looks as good as cake tastes. But despite this less than musical 'instrument' choice Raj is very creative; writing, painting and designing in her spare time.

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