There are a few things that should be Bible to every guitarist. One of them is to know when, and how to restring your guitar. Not knowing when to tune your guitar, or tuning your guitar incorrectly is one of the basic fundamental mistakes a beginner guitarist makes.
The others include ‘how to polish your guitar’ and’ how to run from your landlord after being a bit too loud. However, for the sake of this article – we will focus on restringing a steel string guitar.
Step 1 – Let’s Get Started
First, get a substitute string that you want to replace with your current one with. Normally you would want to change all of your strings, but is up to you.
Then, find a nice, level surface with plenty of real estate (or room – I was trying to be fancy) to work on. You don’t want your guitar to be scratched or scuffed, so putting down something soft like a piece of cloth should protect your guitar.
Also, try to keep the top of your guitar in a stable position. You should find a support for it as well. As when you will change strings, this would keep the guitar steady and in one place.
Step 2 – String Removal Time
Now we need to detach the strings from the guitar.
Relax the string at the head of the machine, also known as the tuner of the guitar – until it is completely unwound. Then, gently pull the string from the hole.
Tools such as string winder will help to accelerate this process significantly. If scan your guitar downwards, you will find a lifted portion of the guitar called the bridge. This has pins attached to it; which holds the strings. Simply pull these pins and pull up the strings.
If you feel like you can’t pull the pin out. Then you may use a plier or scissors to pull them. However, this might damage the pins, therefore I would recommend getting a pin removal for this case.
Step 3 – Optional Cleanup
Normally, this is the best time to give your guitar a little maintenance. clean the body of the guitar along with its fretboard. and give some maintenance to your guitar.
A great and a cheap way to condition the wood of your guitar is by applying lemon juice. You may use cleaners to clean the guitar. In fact you should use a guitar cleaner, but can also get away with this.
Step 4 – Insert The New Strings
Remove and unroll your string from its package.
Place the pin of the bridge in loosely. You want the string to easily get inside it. Then gently place the string ball inside it.
Then, press the pin gently down, while pulling up the strings at the same time.
Step 5 – Some Additional Work
Make sure that the hole in the tuning post faces the bridge at the headstock of the guitar. Then make sure that the string goes up through the hole. Leaving a decent amount of’ string to be wounded on the tuning post is a good idea.
A good method to do this is to pull the string off and then use your fingers to insert some extra string length.
Step 6 – Securing The Turning Post
Then, take the additional string – which should be poking through the tuner. And then pull it inwards. You should do this by force if needed, as the string need to be tight at the end.
Now, this would leave the strings strong enough with almost no movement.
Step 7 – Wind It
Hold the string near the nut of the guitar, place the string in its designated slots. Make sure there is tension in the string at the tuning post. Then simply rotate the tuner, and then just ensure that the string goes from inside out.
Do this until the string is tight.
Step 8 – Tune The Way You Like It
Now, you are ready to tune the string to your desire tone. Once you are satisfied with the sound the string makes, you can cut the additional string from the tuning place.
Step 9 – Go Back To Step 1
Now, you must follow these steps with each and every string. After this, you will be done with tuning.
How Often Should You Tune Your Guitar.
It depends upon how much you play with your guitar. However, as a beginners golden rule, you may change the strings of your guitar after 100 days or when you feel that that they have gone bad.
If you have a child guitarist at your home, then it is your job to not only help him maintain his guitar, but teach him these fundamentals as well.