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Old 11-12-2013, 08:57 PM   #1
JakeFrmStatFarm
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When Should you Replace the Strings?

I've already researched how to do it, but in doing that, I've heard a lot of conflicting things on WHEN to replace them. General consensus is quite often with regular play, but just today I heard from an amazing guitar maker (http://helsternguitars.com/) that you shouldn't replace your strings until one breaks, which goes against what I've read so far. However, he makes acoustic guitars, so I wasn't sure if the standard was different, or what. According to him, a lot of the good guitar players won't replace 'em until they break, due to how pliable they get?

Either way, I think I'll be replacing my strings soon because I need to learn to do it at some point, but for the future, knowing when to might be useful.

Also, since I don't see a reason to spam this forum with even more topics (I'm so sorry guys, but there's a lot I need to learn, and I figured I might as well do it now, so you guys can live in peace later.), is there any particular type of string that I should avoid/lean towards, or is it all personal preference, like how string thickness(weight?) tends to be?
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Old 11-12-2013, 08:58 PM   #2
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I change them when I play and notice "Damn, I should change these."
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Old 11-12-2013, 08:59 PM   #3
Mister A.J.
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I either replace strings every six months (also when I go through an inspection) or until one breaks, which ever comes first.
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Old 11-12-2013, 09:16 PM   #4
JakeFrmStatFarm
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Is quickly getting detuned a pretty good sign that they need to be changed? (I've only ever used this one guitar with this one set of strings.)
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Old 11-12-2013, 09:42 PM   #5
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Change the strings when they do not feel right to you. I always keep a few extra sets around just in case.
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Old 11-12-2013, 10:41 PM   #6
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I change my strings every 1 to 2 months, and I probably play about 6-8hrs a wk on average. They start to sound dull after about that long as far as my ears are concerned. String thickness is personal choice, I prefer mine thicker, mostly cuz I play predominantly in drop c / d standard. If your still learning then 10-46 is normally a good standard to start with
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Old 11-12-2013, 10:51 PM   #7
JakeFrmStatFarm
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So, really it's personal preference?
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Old 11-12-2013, 11:30 PM   #8
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Once a month for me. Or when I break a string.

It isn't just a preference thing, you can hear a difference between new and old strings.
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Old 11-12-2013, 11:37 PM   #9
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When I can scrape something off of them, it's changing time.
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Old 11-12-2013, 11:37 PM   #10
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Really, as soon as you can. New strings have all sorts of brightness and sparkle that gets lost to your sweaty corrosive hands. Soon, they start going out of tune, and bending feels like you're grabbing rebar.

Really strings should be changed every couple of days, but that's not very practical for most musicians.
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Old 11-12-2013, 11:54 PM   #11
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when gigging alot i try to change them eveyr couple weeks
when i have more money but not gigging i try to change them every month or so otherwise

im short on money atm and was hoping this set on my acoustic guitar would last a bit more than it did but i just broke my e string so its time to chage strings

when im broke i keep em as long as possible
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Old 11-13-2013, 12:05 AM   #12
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So... Anywhere from two weeks to six months. ) That clears things up!
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Old 11-13-2013, 07:10 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeFrmStatFarm
So, really it's personal preference?

Yes
When I'm not giging I leave them until they feel like they need to be changed. When I gig it is a new set every night
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Old 11-13-2013, 07:43 AM   #14
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How often I change strings depends on a number of factors.

First off, I use and highly recommend using Fast Fret before and after you play. Fast Fret is a string cleaner/lubricant that does wonders for strings life. It keeps your strings clean, helps strings retain good tone longer, and keeps your strings feeling fresh. It also has benefits for your playing, such as making legato passages a bit easier to negotiate.

If I'm just playing/practicing/writing at home and having my standard two rehearsals a week with the bands I'm in, I'll probably keep a set of strings on my main guitar for about a month, depending on how much use the strings have endured. The Fast Fret I mentioned is a factor here, because it really does significantly improve string life and allow me to feel comfortable keeping strings this long.

If I'm gigging along with my rehearsal and practice schedule, I'll change more often. As a general rule, if the strings on a guitar are more than a week old, I'll change before a gig. I do this just to prevent any string breakage on stage.
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Old 11-13-2013, 11:17 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeFrmStatFarm
So... Anywhere from two weeks to six months. ) That clears things up!


If you're a beginner just change the string when it breaks.

There's definitely a difference in tone with new strings vs well used strings. The oils and dirt from your hands makes the strings a bit muddy sounding over time (especially the thicker bottom 3 strings), but unless you're gigging or recording I don't find it a big deal. Some people prefer the tone and feel of worn strings.

If you want to be anal and sound ideal just practicing I'd swap them out every month or two, if you're playing 30mins to an hour a day.
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Old 11-13-2013, 11:26 AM   #16
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Why is this a discussion??

When the intonation goes whack or sound becomes dull you change them.

Why is the word "Should" even used?? Should for whom or what?

For recording I'd say is the only time you "should" change them, cause you know recording is permanent, so why not get the best in the details.
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Old 11-13-2013, 11:41 AM   #17
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Normally once every month if I'm playing the guitar a lot, or every 6 weeks for guitars that I've played a fair amount and those I haven't could be a couple of months. I'll change them when I want to start playing it again.

Obviously when a string breaks or if it doesn't hold the tuning anymore.
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Old 11-13-2013, 12:09 PM   #18
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If guitar strings feel dirty I replace them. Otherwise I just replace them when I notice that it sounds like I’m playing with the treble all the way down.

I change bass strings if the fretboard needs cleaning.
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Old 11-13-2013, 02:08 PM   #19
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Change em when they´re dull

.... basically, if you can´t hear when it´s time to change strings than you should just keep playing the ones you have tills they break....your just not good enough yet too hear the difference so why bother waisting the money

I´ll always change strings a few days before I have a gig so that they´ll be properly stretched come game day and not risk going out of tune. Every paying gig deserves fresh strings....when it comes to rehearsal i can usually get away with strings up to 2 months of use but I´ve gone in with dead strings thinking "she´ll be right"....and ended up spending way too much time annoyed with the tone and screwing around with my EQ to ever do that again
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Old 11-13-2013, 02:12 PM   #20
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some people can tell when strings go dead, others can't.

those who can tell typically change them when that happens.

those who can't tell change them when they corrode or break.

rule of thumb for me, if they feel dead they probably are.
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