Hi there,

I have just put 10s on my strat (had 9s before) and been getting a few nut sticking problems (its graphite) which I didn't with the 9s. I have discovered that not using the string trees (metal part on the headstock which anchor the strings down for those who don't know ) has solved the problem. It seems to much angle makes the nut grab the string more.

My question is, do I need to use the string trees, they're obviously there for a reason. Is this going to alter the intonation or playability of the guitar?

"Sit your ass down in that f@%$ing chair and drink your GODAMN TEA!!" - Cid, FFVII

Gibson Les Paul Standard (trans amber, 60s neck)
USA Fender Strat
Westfield acoustic
Washburn 12-string acoustic
Encore bass
Aria acoustic bass
not the intonation but you might pop the string out of the nut cut, during a bend.

you can also put on a graphtech nut and tree.

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String trees apply downwards pressure to increase the string's break angle over the nut, which can prevent the strings from resonating and losing energy. This sometimes makes the top E and B sound a bit lifeless, tohugh in your case it seems okay.

I had a similar problem with friction, so I ended up fitting a bar retainer from a locking-trem-equipped Ibanez, as you can see on the right of this pic:

It's made my guitar feel a little more responsive, and the screws mean you can actually adjust the break angle to taste. The only disadvantage I can see is it'll leave two small screw-holes on your shiny headstock...

See if you can pick up a bar retainer from your local guitar tech/store, and give it a go. Don't set it too low though, or you may introduce more tuning problems than you solve