I’ve changed my strings!

I put new strings on both my acoustic and electric this afternoon. I used the non wrap over system. I’ve used both the wrap over the peg and non wrap over methods and don’t really see any advantage in either system as they both seem to work equally well.

On my acoustic I pull the string through to the next peg and approximate that on strings 3 and 4.
Because the pegs are closer together on my electric I give it a little more on each string with perhaps twice the distance on strings 1 and 2 as they’re so thin.

The first time I changed the strings on my SG the tune-o-matic bridge and stopbar fell off and clattered to the floor as I didn’t realise they were held in place by the strings. I now leave string 4 on and loosen it off so I can clean the fretboard and body round about it. I also have to be really careful not to move any of the height adjuster screws on both the bridge and stopbar when cleaning round about there with a cloth. Leaving a string on helps avoid that.
Once I’ve put on one of the new strings I take the last old string off.

Wow, what a difference. I’ve left it too long - almost 6 months. My acoustic sounds so much better, the electric not so noticeable, but both guitars feel great under the fingers. Lovely smooth, clean feel to the strings.

Note to self: Don’t leave it so long next time.


Shall we start a new category ?



I tell myself that every time…and then leave worn out strings on too long, again…

Anyway, congrats on the string change. It does, indeed, make a big difference.

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That new string feeling is so good. Worth experimenting with string types too because that can have a big effect on the sound.

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How nice do they feel! I also changed my strings on my electric guitar yesterday and can’t believe how good they feel and look. Shiny and smooth. Hopefully it will make my playing shiny and smooth too. :rofl:

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NSD for me!

I put Straight Up Strings heavies on for a try. They are 13s, with the tension of standard 12s sort of. A big jump from lights, but I figured it was better to try them before mediums in case I needed to step back (I have a set o f mediums). They make “ultra heavies”….I am not ready.

I like the heavy strings! They are a bit harder to play, but if I up my game they sound and feel great!

While I was at it, I put on some McKnight fretboard conditioner. That is some excellent stuff. McKnight is a USA based boutique luthier and make this goop for the fretboard and bridge. No volatiles I’m it so it won’t dry the wood out. This was my first try of it, so I’ll see how it goes.

Then, I wasn’t entirely happy with the action, so I adjusted the truss for the heavier strings, fixed the nut (first time ever! :scream:) mostly (needs another go, when I am less lazy) and sanded a titch more off the saddle bottom. Also probably need as a little more, but better to be cautious. I would now call my action “medium” and a tiny bit higher at the 6th string. I am worried about flipping from brilliance to foolishness (we know how quickly that can happen, so here, hold my beer :man_facepalming:t3:).


Go Joshua, as I understand it heavy strings, plus tuned a half-step down is a part of the magic that is SRV’s tone.

Probably a question with an obvious answer, nevertheless: is this on an electric or an acoustic?


I’m assuming when you say you sanded a little off the saddle that it’s an acoustic.

Just be careful not to overdo things that can’t be undone in case you ever want to revert to lighter strings again.

I’ve left it too long - almost 6 months.

And here I am. My acoustic strings once we’re ~8 years old before I finally changed them. I mainly play electric, but those usually don’t go off till they’re broken too.

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I’ve not been hugely adventurous with string types. When I first got my acoustic I asked them to put 11’s on as that’s what Justin recommends for beginners. I think they were Elixirs.

Next couple of times times I put on D’Addario EXP26 coated phosphor bronze 11’s.

Then I tried D’Addario EXP16 coated phosphor bronze 12’s. They gave me a better tone and I didn’t find them any more difficult to fret than the 11’s, so I stuck with them for a few changes.

D’Addario stopped making the EXP 16 so next time I tried D’Addario NB nickel bronze 12’s. I found them very harsh sounding, so they were quickly changed and I went with D’Addario EJ16 non coated phosphor bronze 12’s and stuck with them for a few changes.
I didn’t really hear any difference between the coated and non coated strings although in truth I suppose in the early stages of playing you’ve got so many other factors in your sound. Poor fretting, strumming etc.

I’m currently using Martin authentic acoustic SP MA 540 non coated 12’s which I really like.

My electric came with factory fitted 9’s. I found I was getting too many sharp notes from pressing too hard although as before, this is a beginner error.
I changed to D’Addario EXL 110 nickel wound 10’s and have stuck with those.

The problem is that the string degradation is very gradual so you don’t tend to notice until it gets really bad. I find that when my guitars don’t stay in tune it’s time for a change of strings.

I need to change my strings and I always leave it too long before changing them. I started using power slinkys (11s) as I was just learning rhythm, lead was too complicated at the time. I love them but I have started learning some solos, this week I started learning another brick into wall pt 2 solo and there are a few double bends which are, for me, very difficult on the thicker strings. Tried it on my other guitar with std slinkys and it was much easier. So I might be reverting to standard strings, and maybe another step down at a later date

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I am 100% sure I am changing strings way too often. It is inexpensive, fun and a learning experience trying to find what I like.

Interestingly, I do not have big strong hands, but find myself gravitating to heavier strings on both the acoustic and electric. 13s on acoustic now and one electric with 10s and the other with 11s and the seem to thin. I doubt I will go over 11s on the electric, though.

I think my next guitar, when I have a bit more learning to play under my belt, will be a baritone acoustic. I may but a cheap baritone neck on an electric first to test the waters.

Acoustic. Thanks! I am being very cautious, but am pretty comfortable doing these sort of things. The strings gauge shouldn’t affect action outside of the truss adjustment, so I shouldn’t screw it up unless I screw it up.

When I got the acoustic (Larrivee OM2) it had a messed up saddle because (I think) an amateur put in an under saddle pickup and trimmed the saddle wrong. It wasn’t low enough because the bottom wasn’t flat. I fixed it myself pretty well, but was too cautious and there still is room to bring it down.

Guitar plays great and my experienced guitar friends are amazed at its playability (and sound, it’s a nice guitar).

Worst case scenario i need a new nut and or saddle. Less expensive than you think, but I would prefer not to go that far.


New String Day for me…! :grinning:

The intonation had been annoying me for ages so nudged on by some of the encouragement (in particular on the kit guitar thread) I was going to have a go at fixing but realised I should change the strings first.

Not surprisingly the intonation is much better and it sounds much better!

Lesson learnt as while I had changed strings on an older guitar - I hadn’t braved it on my main one that I actually like to play… :upside_down_face:


Haha… I seen this post this morning and thought… I haven’t changed the strings on the Hummingbird since I got it six months ago. So spent this afternoon changing them and made that mental note to myself too.

Since that original post was six months ago, you haven’t left it another 6 months?

I might have the record for longest time between string changes- 14 years! Haha. To be fair, I wasn’t playing it at all during any of that time. It sat in a corner. I changed out the original strings for the first time, and I did it myself! I was so nervous but it ended up not being bad at all. Quite easy, in fact.

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No I changed them on both guitars middle of June, which was almost six months!

Like your new avatar. You were a bit of a mod were you?

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Almost 6 months… I’ll give you a nudge in September :wink:

Yeah, I was definitely a bit of a mod. I would have given anything to have grown up in the 60s.

Unfortunately, I never got to see many of the bands perform live but at least got to see The Who play in Glasgow and my local pub when I lived in London was the home of The Kinks.

Since @TheMadman_tobyjenner is a big Who fan I’m eagerly awaiting the diary episode where he recounts some of his tales and plays one of the numbers from the who tab website he found.

Work In Progress

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Changed my strings yet again. I may have spent enough in strings to have bought another guitar by now.

I tried D’Addario xl 11s and 12s, Martin Retro Monels 12s, GHS round core 12s and am back to the Straight up Strings mediums (12s).

I really don’t like anything less than 12, but like the lower tension. I would love to try some Santa Cruz Parabolics, but they are expensive and probably similar to the SUSs.

I think the SUS are what I will stick with. I liked the heavy feel of the 13s, but they were too much, so I am going with the medium 12s.

No changed the strings on my acoustic for 2 years, infact I’ve never changed the strongs on an accoustic only the classical & electric. I’ll do it Manyana.