Playing the guitar isn’t as easy as strumming the strings. A lot goes into bringing the soothing and soft harmony of the carved piece of wood. If you are a beginner at using an acoustic guitar, let us first walk you through the basics.
An acoustic guitar is the most popular type of guitar and has six strings. Out of these 6, four are wound bass strings, and two are plain treble strings. The bass strings are responsible for the thicker and lower notes, while the treble strings are thinner and create a high-pitched tone.
When it comes to restringing an acoustic guitar, you need to understand the design of the strings first. This guide will walk you through all the details regarding restringing an acoustic guitar.
More About the Strings
As we just mentioned, an acoustic guitar has four bass and two treble strings.
When it comes to the design, the bass strings are thicker and feature a core wire. In addition, an additional outer wire is wrapped around the core wire. The outer wire features a combination of bronze and phosphor bronze.
The treble string, on the other hand, is thinner. It is made of nickel-plated steel and creates a high pitch and frequency of the sound after strumming.
Amidst all the strings in your acoustic guitar, the third or the G-string is the most common to break. So instead of panicking, it’s time you learn how to restring your guitar in a matter of minutes.
Step-by-Step Guide to Restring your Acoustic Guitar
As novice guitar players, we understand that the last thing you want is to break your guitar string. But, besides finding good-quality strings, the restringing process is even more complicated.
No one wants to sit down after a few days of playing guitar, trying to fix the broken string. But, if you are confused, this step-by-step guide should answer all your questions.
Your guitar string will likely break down in the middle and remain attached to the guitar’s head. So, the first step is to remove the broken string from the tuning peg. You can do that by slackening the strings first. If you can’t do it by hand, use a winder.
Next up, you need to push your string towards the pin. Doing so will move the string inside the guitar’s body so you can take it out easily.
If this doesn’t work for you, you must dig deeper through the sound hole. First, find the bottom of the string you wish to replace. Then, once you find it, pull it gradually from the inside.
Your next step is to remove the bridge pins. It can be a little tedious, especially because if you aren’t careful, the process can scratch the guitar’s wood. If you use pliers, cover the end with a cloth, so the metal doesn’t scratch.
Once the bridge pins are loose, you can pull them out without hassle. Again, the process is fairly simple.
Since you will restring everything, now is the time to clean. You can use a liquid and wood-friendly cleaner to clean out spots, gunk, and dust attached to the guitar and the strings.
Lemon oil works great for retaining the quality of your guitar while also cleaning it. Also, ensure that you don’t soak the guitar and wipe it out.
We’d recommend not applying the lemon oil on the saddle. This will make it difficult for you to reattach everything comfortably.
Once you have prepared your guitar enough, the next step is to get your hands on a new packet of strings. Again, always invest in high-quality, rust-resistant strings.
Next up, get the individual strings and create a 45-degree bend at the end of each one. This will ensure a snug fit and keep the ball in the correct position. Failing to do this will make the tuning process a lot more difficult.
Put down the bridge pin, ensuring that the ball end is downward. Also, keep the string’s tail in the bridge pin’s groove.
You have to do the same with the remaining five guitar strings too. For confirmation, pull at the string gently to check if it’s secured in place or not.
Before you restring it to the top, confirm that the holes in the individual machine heads are aligned straight down the neck of the guitar.
This is the most crucial step of the restring process of your acoustic guitar. Take the loose end of the string and draw it over the saddle until you reach the hole in the machine head.
Pull the guitar string tight against the machine head to create good tension on the string. The number of windings you put around the post determines the tuning stability. So, keep that into consideration as well.
You need to wind the excess wire in an anti-clockwise motion. While doing so, press down on the string to check the tension. You also need to tighten the strings once the winding finishes.
Once you are happy with the windings and the tension in the string, take a pair of wire cutters. Use this to cut the extra length of the string on the top.
You have to repeat all the above steps for the remaining five strings. Then, follow the tightening process around the machine head, as mentioned.
Also, once you have restrung the acoustic guitar, you can tune the pitch and tone of the strings according to your needs. Finally, give everything a light brush and wipe; your acoustic guitar is brand new.
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And, that’s how you restring your acoustic guitar. The steps might seem a little complicated at first. However, with the right tools and following what’s said, you should be able to sort things out without any hassle. Ensure that you invest in good-quality strings that live through the test times. Also, focus on wiping and cleaning the strings and the guitar regularly. Sometimes, dirt and sweat can also damage the guitar strings.