How To String a Guitar

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Table of contents

  1. Empty
  2. Why Should You Change Your Guitar Strings?
  3. Things You’ll Need to String a Guitar
  4. How to String a Guitar — Acoustic Version
  5. How to String a Guitar — Electric Version
  6. Wrap Up

Empty

{"blocks":[{"key":"bihhc","text":"Whether you’re a beginner or pro guitarist, learning how to string a guitar can be a very helpful skill to ensure proper sound quality every time you play.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":155,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":155,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":155,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":155,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"amj76","text":"In this article, we’re sharing a simple step-by-step guide on how to string a guitar, be it acoustic or electric. Let’s get started!","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":132,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":132,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":132,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":132,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Why Should You Change Your Guitar Strings?

{"blocks":[{"key":"3oasp","text":"Like most things in life, guitar strings wear out over time. This is why changing your guitar is important to maintain a consistent playing performance.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":152,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":152,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":152,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":152,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"e516r","text":"If you play every now and then, consider changing your guitar strings once per month. But if you’re actively playing and your jamming sessions are usually long, it’s better to change the strings every two weeks.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":211,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":211,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":211,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":211,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"ft3j6","text":"Even if you just got a brand-new guitar, chances are you’ll need to change its strings because they may already be months old by the time you get your hands in the instrument. Not to mention, restringing is the fastest and easiest way to enhance your guitar’s tone.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":265,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":265,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":265,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":265,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Things You’ll Need to String a Guitar

{"blocks":[{"key":"a5ok7","text":"A pack of strings — make sure you get the right set of strings for your guitar. If you’re using an acoustic guitar, buy acoustic guitar strings, and if you’re using an electric guitar, buy electric guitar strings.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":213,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":213,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":213,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":213,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"r8uh","text":"You should also consider that strings are available in different gauges, which indicates the thickness level of the strings.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":124,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":124,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":124,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":124,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"1pfu0","text":"As a rule of thumb, the thicker the string gauge, the fuller the guitar sound. However, this will result in higher string tension that’ll make the guitar a little harder to play.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"d8fm1","text":"Of course, there’s a lot more to get into when choosing strings for a guitar, but this topic deserves a whole other article on its own.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":135,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":135,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":135,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":135,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"b80qa","text":"A tuning Machine — this depends on your skill level. If you’re a beginner, a tuning machine can be extremely helpful, but if you’re an experienced musician, you may be able to tune the instrument by ear without aid from a machine.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":230,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":230,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":230,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":230,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"5db8i","text":"String cutter.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":14,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":14,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":14,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":14,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"fm3mp","text":"String winder.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":14,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":14,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":14,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":14,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

How to String a Guitar — Acoustic Version

{"blocks":[{"key":"4lqkc","text":"1. Find a clean and quiet area to string your guitar. This way, you won’t lose any of your tools and you can tune your guitar without the interference of background noise.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":171,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":171,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":171,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":171,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"76pvt","text":"2. Gather all your tools.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":25,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":25,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":25,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":25,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"9gv0p","text":"3. Balance the neck of your guitar by securing it with something soft and curved such as a piece of polystyrene. Alternatively, you can buy a special piece of equipment for this purpose at a guitar store. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":205,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":205,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":205,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":205,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"cim1o","text":"4. With a tuning key, loosen the tension of each string. Once loose, uncoil the string off of the tuning post and remove it.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":124,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":124,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":124,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":124,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"4bimq","text":"5. Using the built-in notch of the string winder, remove each pin to take out the string from the bridge of the guitar. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":120,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":120,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":120,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":120,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"beh88","text":"Be sure to secure the ball end of the string against the bridge to maintain tone. ","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":82,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":82,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":82,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":82,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"3p3rc","text":"Don’t let the ball end sit on the tip of the pin or it’ll easily get loose.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":75,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":75,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":75,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":75,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"8d0vb","text":"6. Place the string and bridge the pin through the 6E bridge hole.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":66,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":66,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":66,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":66,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"b4rau","text":"7. Take the string through the tuning post (tighten about 3 inches) and pull it towards the bridge.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":99,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":99,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":99,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":99,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"4ggtq","text":"8. Cut the string about 2 inches from the machine head to poke it through the machine head shaft.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":97,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":97,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":97,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":97,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"4l7mt","text":"9. Using a string winder, tighten the string on the correct tuning key but don’t fully tune at this point.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":106,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":106,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":106,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":106,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"e2kal","text":"10. Tighten the rest of the strings, preferably in the following order: 5A, 4D, 3G, 2B, 1E. Stretch the strings to make sure they’re properly set.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":146,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":146,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":146,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":146,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"fur2u","text":"11. Tune your guitar.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":21,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":21,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":21,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":21,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"4kefc","text":"12. Using a string cutter, remove the excess string. This will make it easier to move your hand as you play.\n","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":108,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":108,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":108,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":108,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

How to String a Guitar — Electric Version

{"blocks":[{"key":"9s52g","text":"1. Find a clean and quiet area to string your guitar. This way, you won’t lose any of your tools and you can tune your guitar without the interference of background noise.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":171,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":171,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":171,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":171,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"26uhc","text":"2. Gather all your tools.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":25,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":25,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":25,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":25,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"demgf","text":"3. Balance the neck of your guitar by securing it with something soft and curved such as a piece of polystyrene. Alternatively, you can buy a special piece of equipment for this purpose at a guitar store.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":204,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":204,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":204,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":204,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"1tb2t","text":"4. Use wire cutters to cut the strings after creating some slack. Sever the strings either by the neck pickup or by the midpoint of the guitar's body. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":151,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":151,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":151,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":151,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"7k8cj","text":"5. Once cut, remove the string.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":31,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":31,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":31,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":31,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"8p86l","text":"6. Pass the new string through the guitar.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":42,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":42,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":42,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":42,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"bcmau","text":"In a Gibson-style guitar, pull the new string through the tailpiece underneath the body.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":88,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":88,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":88,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":88,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"8rf8h","text":"For a non-locking Fender-style, pull the new string into the tremolo cavity.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":76,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":76,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":76,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":76,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"1crg0","text":"7. Using the tuning key, turn the hole in the post perpendicular to the neck of the guitar.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":91,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":91,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":91,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":91,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"1uu8p","text":"8. Tighten the string 3 inches from the bridge to allow for winding.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":68,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":68,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":68,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":68,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"e7m4h","text":"9. Twist the string in an 'S' shape using one hand above the post and the other below then swiftly twisting the string clockwise.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":129,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":129,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":129,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":129,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"8ki8g","text":"For high strings on 3 + 3 headstocks, twist in the opposite direction.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":70,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":70,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":70,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":70,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"15b3u","text":"10. Slip the string between the nut and the post by taking the top part of the 'S', turning it into a 'P', then pulling it through the bottom part of the 'S'.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":158,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":158,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":158,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":158,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"98s4i","text":"11. To lock the string into place, loop its two ends, crimp, then tighten towards the top of the headstock.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":107,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":107,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":107,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":107,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"c6e9e","text":"12. Secure the lower part of the string with your thumb and tighten using a string winder. Place it on the tuning key and turn clockwise.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":137,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":137,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":137,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":137,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"dheir","text":"13. Tune the strings, stretching them meanwhile.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":48,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":48,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":48,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":48,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"7cnp6","text":"14. Repeat this process as you need, using the 5th fret to start. Note that the string will give as you stretch, so you should repeat the process until the string doesn’t slip anymore.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":184,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":184,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":184,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":184,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"ca1pm","text":"15. Using a string cutter, remove any excess string once you’re happy with the stretching.\n","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":90,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":90,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":90,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":90,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Wrap Up

{"blocks":[{"key":"5flq9","text":"There you have it, a step-by-step guide on how to string a guitar. If you own an electric guitar, keep in mind that you’ll need to restring it more often than an acoustic guitar.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"7haer","text":"Related: Talk to Someone Specializing in Guitar Lessons ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":55,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":55,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":55,"style":"fontsize-medium"},{"offset":0,"length":9,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"},{"offset":0,"length":7,"style":"BOLD"},{"offset":9,"length":46,"style":"fontfamily-sans-serif"}],"entityRanges":[{"offset":9,"length":46,"key":0}],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{"0":{"type":"LINK","mutability":"MUTABLE","data":{"url":"https://sidetrain.com/categories/Music-Lessons/Guitar-Lessons","targetOption":"_self"}}}}