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Mr B

Mythbuster; Restringing your guitar "correctly"


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Hey all,

 

As I wander about the internet, sometimes you come across different thoeries on how to do things. Everybody has an opinion that "this should be done THIS way" or vice-versa.

 

One myth I've come across is about restringing your guitar. Some things I've read say that you should restring one string at a time, as it doesn't stress the neck as much (or at all). Other versions say this doesn't matter... "Hey, the thing at one time had NO strings on it, so it's not a problem."

 

What's your thoughts?

 

I've always taken them all off and used the opportunity to do some cleaning while I have the access. Now that I've got a guitar that is actually worth me looking seriously into this (my G-1275, specifically the 12 string neck), I thought I'd ask. If it truly is best to do them one at a time, I'd do that, at least on the 12 string neck, and think about doing it that way on both, and any other guitars I have.

 

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and opinions.

 

Brian

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Ok, I voted for cheese. It really depends on the guitar or whether I feel like going all the way with the cleaning. Floyd Rose or stopbar/tailpiece I usually do 1-3 strings at a time so the bridge doesnt fall off. I'm kinda lazy sometimes. If I'm feeling saucy, I take 'em all off and clean the whole guitar.

 

IMO, the idea that briefly taking all the strings off causing damage to the neck is hoo ha. Maybe that was the case before the days of the trussrod? Sometimes they HAVE to come off. PUP change? Stings come off. Fret polishing? Strings come off...etc.

 

And also, by that logic, the whole theory behind the Floyd Rose trem (i.e. divebombs) would destroy the neck eventually due to the constant release of string tension.

 

Cheese, please. A one-pound block of Cabot sharp cheddar.

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the only guitars I remove one string at a time are ones that have a floating tremolo systems (floyd / Kahler).... And Archtops with non-anchored floating bridges..... Everything else "snip snip here and a snip snip there".........

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Might need more frequent truss rod adjustment? Seems like things could "shift" a little due to the change in tension . . . O:)

 

Yes, but thats ok. I need the practice.

 

Heh. Forgot about archtops. That could be the exception. Never owned one.

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I don't know how "correct" it may be, but I usually change them out one at a time, unless I'm going to clean the fretboard (which isn't very often). I find it faster to re-tune that way since it's already close to being in tune. It's definitely more convenient method when dealing with a Bigsby trem and especially a Rickenbacker 12-string.

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You beat the cr4p out of it, lean it against the wall, haul it from venue to venue and generally make it work pretty hard in some horrid environments, even for timber and steel. Way I see it is restringing is just another thing it has to survive, so they all come off, it gets cleaned and eyeballed for problems and then more strings go on. No big deal, it's timber and steel. It's a guitar, made to survive all that stuff. Leastways it should be.

 

'course there are some old and fragile acoustics that rarely leave the house and ARE fragile things - they get the one at a time treatment just to avoid overworking the joints and stuff.

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It's true! The only guitar I do "one string at a time" is the Gretsch. That bridge is just too much of a PITA to re-set every time. Threading that Bigsby is not exactly a picnic either!

 

JIm

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I take them all off, but on an acoustic guitar I put them on from outside-in... E then e, A then B, D then G. It's mostly so the saddle doesn't have a lot of pressure on one side and none on the other. I don't know that it would do any damage, but with under-saddle pickups (and an expensive one at that) I'd prefer not to risk it.

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All at once, steel wool the frets (and board if it's really groady), grease up with lemon oil and restring. Also check intonation and action. If it's a Floyd Rose or floating bridge all bets are off.

 

Cheese is yum.

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I normally take them all off and give it a good clean because I'm not technical enough or own an expensive guitar enough to care about tension on the neck. But I do loosen the strings evenly so it reduces large changes in neck tension

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Wow....there's some really great replies, and definitely some "cheezy" food for thought... :-({|=

 

A couple of good points;

 

....also try doing all at once on a Floyd Rose' date=' doesn't work out well . . . :) [/quote']

 

That seems to be a common theme. One at a time on Floyds, floating bridges (archtops), and guitars with trapeze tails. Very understandably why...makes a lot of sense for those particular guitars to do them one by one.

 

Ok' date=' I voted for cheese..... IMO, the idea that briefly taking all the strings off causing damage to the neck is hoo ha. Maybe that was the case before the days of the trussrod? Sometimes they HAVE to come off. PUP change? Stings come off. Fret polishing? Strings come off...etc.

 

[b']And also, by that logic, the whole theory behind the Floyd Rose trem (i.e. divebombs) would destroy the neck eventually due to the constant release of string tension.[/b]

 

Cheese, please. A one-pound block of Cabot sharp cheddar.

 

(My "bold")...interesting thought. One might wonder how Ywngie's necks hold up, being scalloped as deep as they are and the heavy tremelo use he employs....

 

A 1 lb block of Cabot?!?!? While I must say you have good taste in cheese, I must also wonder what on God's green earth you'd do with a full pound block of sharp cheddar.... Hijack a truck full of Ritz crackers lately?? LOL

 

You beat the cr4p out of it' date=' lean it against the wall, haul it from venue to venue and generally make it work pretty hard in some horrid environments, even for timber and steel. Way I see it is restringing is just another thing it has to survive, so they [i']all[/i] come off, it gets cleaned and eyeballed for problems and then more strings go on. No big deal, it's timber and steel. It's a guitar, made to survive all that stuff. Leastways it should be.

 

Sounds a trifle harsh when phrased that way, but that's prety much how my line of thought has been as well. But then, I've never had an axe that's really worth worrying about until now....

 

I take them all off' date=' but on an acoustic guitar I put them on from outside-in... E then e, A then B, D then G. It's mostly so the saddle doesn't have a lot of pressure on one side and none on the other. I don't know that it would do any damage, but with under-saddle pickups (and an expensive one at that) I'd prefer not to risk it.[/quote']

 

I normally take them all off and give it a good clean because I'm not technical enough or own an expensive guitar enough to care about tension on the neck. But I do loosen the strings evenly so it reduces large changes in neck tension

 

Two (to me) good points.... That's how I've always done it... De-tune all strings evenly' date=' remove them all, and restring from the outsides in.

 

I like mozzarella myself...

GC

 

Me too. One thing that does surprise me though...no one made the connection. Strings....cheese. String cheese. Hmmmm... :-({|=

 

Thanks for the replies....keep the tips and tricks comin'

 

Brian

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Mythbuster? Only myth is that there is ONE right way.

Hey man, if your guitar can't withstand 15-30 minutes with no strings on it --- IT'S A FAKE!

 

Cheesy-ist poll/thread of the week..., I'll vote for Danish Blue/Roquefort on German 12 grain bread.

 

Hit every BLUE NOTE baaaby..., I'm going to play on:-"

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