String Changing--what makes you decide it needs to be done?

Discussion in 'Fred's Barcalounge' started by Flouswa, Feb 12, 2019.

  1. HypotenusLuvTriangle

    HypotenusLuvTriangle Country Gent

    Oct 27, 2010
    Whittier, Ca
    When they break.
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  2. Jockabilly

    Jockabilly Gretschie

    Sep 15, 2018
    I tend to change when I break a 3rd string in a 'strong' bend which usually means a couple of months continuously using the same guitar. I don't like the bright, dry sound of fresh strings.

    Funny thing is that, in the guitar world the general consensus seems to be the fresher the better where, in the banjo world I also dip a toe in it tends to be 'leave those suckers until they're crusty'.
  3. Beardog

    Beardog Synchromatic

    Apr 15, 2018
    Nova Scotia
    It's about the feel, one minute i'm playing and everythings good. Next minute i know it's time
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  4. LongJohn

    LongJohn Gretschie

    Apr 22, 2016
    Queens, NY
    3 or 4 time a year. I don't gig or play for hours daily. My after play routine involves either Dunlop 65 string cleaner/conditioner or GHS Fast Fret and a general whipe down as well as detuning 1/2 turn for each string.
  5. Frank_NH

    Frank_NH Synchromatic

    Mar 25, 2013
    Lebanon, NH
    I was going to say when a string breaks, but that was already taken. :D

    Actually, that’s not quite true as I occasionally break the high E and will replace it and get some additional mileage out of my remaining strings. But I usually change them all every two to three months.

    By the way, I use Elixir nanoweb coated strings 10-46 for all my electrics. Seem to last a while and sound great.
  6. TSims1

    TSims1 Friend of Fred

    Jun 18, 2013
    I only use Elixir Nanowebs on all of my guitars(in various gauges), so when they begin to’s time. I love that fresh brand new bright string tone, so Elixirs are the ticket for me.
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  7. Roger49

    Roger49 Country Gent

    Feb 18, 2015
    String Changing--what makes you decide it needs to be done

    I change strings before every gig.
    Sorry, I'll rephrase that - I did before I gave up gigging a while ago.
    It was the only way I could be 99% certain of not have a string break on me during a concert.
    Apart from that, if your solos are Shadows tunes then the strings have to ring like a bell and that is only possible with new strings.
    However I didn't do it with my Ricky 360/12 V64 for obvious reasons.
    Flouswa likes this.
  8. Bertotti

    Bertotti Country Gent

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    I forget and usually don’t change them until I notice an issue, with the D’Addario XL I would notice a flat or metallic sound. then change them, with the NYXL they would go 9 months then I started hearing a buzzing and a strong change fixed it. Now I have TI Jazz Swings on the Penguin and I haven’t had to change them yet. I’m betting I will get a year out of them.

    This is funny on my Mandolin I was playing and had some bits of metal on my finger tips. Turns out I played them until the windings wore through and started coming off in pieces. I watch them closer now.
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  9. Henry

    Henry Gretschified

    Apr 9, 2014
    Whenever. I used to keep the same strings for years, though I didnt play much. I have always put more effort into playing than messing with the guitar. My first electric is now 26 years old and I've never touched the bridge saddles.

    Ironically, I use TI flats now and they're supposed to last longer but I like to change them every 3 or 4 months as I like the new string snap and thump.
    Flouswa likes this.
  10. Flouswa

    Flouswa Synchromatic

    Elixir is my string of choice for sure. Unfortunately I tend to wreck them quicker because of my oily skin, even with cleaning them regularly. But they do sound so darned good, especially on my acoustic.
  11. somebodyelseuk

    somebodyelseuk Country Gent

    Jan 22, 2013
    Birmingham, UK
    New strings every gig, otherwise...
    ...back when I used to practise a lot, I could wear a set of strings out in less than a fortnight. I'd find they'd get harder to bend and the intonation would go... basically they'd reached their limit of elasticity and were close to snapping.
    These days... actually thinking about it, I don't know. I just have a 'sense' that they need changing.
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  12. wildeman

    wildeman Gretschified

    May 10, 2015
    When they loose all zing, I'm ok with a little dullness but a dead thud don't do it for me.
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  13. larryb

    larryb Gretschified

    Oct 29, 2012
    Greenville, SC
    They last forever too!
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  14. Bertotti

    Bertotti Country Gent

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    I put them on my first Strat but really thought the Strat sounded muddied and a weird wrap kept unwinding. I had them on for a few weeks then just cut them off. Funny how we all have our favorites, odder still I can hear someone else play with those strings and to me, they sound great but when I use them I don't like the tone I get.
    pmac11 likes this.
  15. Robbie

    Robbie Country Gent

    Jun 17, 2013
    Sarnia Ontario Canada
    After 2 gigs. If it’s a guitar that has only been used in rehearsals every 2 months.
  16. larryb

    larryb Gretschified

    Oct 29, 2012
    Greenville, SC
    I love their acoustic strings....not their electrics
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  17. rich724

    rich724 Gretschie

    Apr 16, 2013
    Linden, MI
    When they loose their shine.
  18. stevo

    stevo Country Gent

    May 1, 2012
    Am I the only one who finds that really old acoustic strings are very tuning stable? Maybe that's because I don't do much bending with acoustic?
    Flouswa likes this.
  19. speedicut

    speedicut Country Gent

    Jun 5, 2012
    Back when I gigged ( Strat and Les Paul), I would put on new strings before every practice and gig.
    Now, usually only when I want to clean the fretboard or something...for some reason strings sound great longer on a Gretsch for me.
    Maybe my hands don't sweat as much as they used to?
    Flouswa likes this.
  20. stevo

    stevo Country Gent

    May 1, 2012
    A true story: we have a band around here called the Packway Handle Band. They are a group of four that play throwback folk music and they were all four standing around one mic - guitar, mandolin, fiddle and upright bass. The guitarist broke a string mid song and proceeded to change it while singing. I still can't re-visualize how he did it, never seen anyone do that before or since.

    Also, the Guess Who came up with the riff for "American Woman" when Randy Bachman broke a string during a concert and while tuning back up, just spontaneously started playing the riff. Burton Cumming immediately recognized it would be great for a song and told him to keep playing it.
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