I am currently looking to replace the strings on my Seagull SWS with a new set of steel strings. I have never replaced strings before so I am not sure what I should be looking for in terms of brand and string size. I'm afraid of getting strings that will damage the guitar by warping the neck. Can anyone give some insight on what would sound good and be safe to put on the guitar.

I do a lot of strumming and some finger picking. I am also looking for something that would be easy to work with (not something too hard on the fingers or hard to push down).

Any suggestions would be great.

ernie ball and daddario are good, you could look at 0.10 upto 0.12 sets. changing strings is easy but can be time consuming for some people, to find out how have a look in the lessons section of ug or look on youtube
You don't have to worry about your neck warping from changing strings; I think you're confusing that with neck bowing, which can happen when you change string gauges. That can be easily fixed by adjusting the truss rod (assuming you know what you're doing). Chances are, if your guitar was new, and you never changed the strings on it, your guitar probably came with .12's on it, so If you liked those, than I'd say you should stick with them.
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First of all, ignore the comment above that states that Ernie Ball makes good acoustic strings - they produce some of the worst acoustic strings you can find.

That being said, slap on a set of 12-54 DR Sunbeams. They have round cores, and are therefore more flexible than other strings of the same gauge, and they sound so good and last so long a bunch of people over at AGF (Acoustic Guitar Forum) swear by them. If they feel too flimsy, feel free to try a set in a 13-56 gauge - they should feel more similar to a regular 12-54 gauge, and you'll also get a meatier tone with them.

By the way, which SWS do you have, and how is it? I was looking at either the Folk or the Mini Jumbo.
Last edited by i_don't_know at Aug 21, 2009,
I agree with "i_don't_know" on all of his points.
Ernie ball acoustic strings aren't too great...I bought their...Earthwood I want to say? Anyways, they're not great by any means.

DR Sunbeams. Those are worth buying.
Okay, this isn't really contributing to the thread in anyway shape or form, but Stupified, you have an awesome avatar. All I needed to say.

anyways, if you're looking for strings easier on your fingers, maybe try some .11s, or maybe even .10s. They're lighter, so they're easier to push down, less force needed to exert yourself on.
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Let's take it one step further and add a slogan:

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I just have the standard Seagull Maritime SWS High Gloss
Ill check out the sunbeams.

i love d'addarios for acoustics. not too expensive.

and about ernie balls... yeah, they don't sound great, but like most ernie ball strings they will last a long time. most higher end strings start out sounding great and end up awful in a month or two. while acoustic strings aren't meant to last forever (or any strings really...) if you have trouble changing them you might opt for the ones that'll last a while.
Warmoth Telecaster Deluxe. Warmoth Strat. Seagull Artist Portrait Acoustic.

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Unfortunately, the whole point of having long-lasting strings is to retain good tone - Ernie Balls don't even sound good when they're new.

Sunbeams last a hell of a long time. Trust me.
I say you should just try different strings. Tommy Emmanuel once said something like:

"The best strings are the strings that your guitar likes."

My guitar plays best with Martin and D'addario strings. You may enjoy different strings.
If you liked how your acoustic sounded with the stock strings, then track down some Godin strings. That's what they're wound with factory.

Anways, I'd stick to Light guage (.012) strings at the very least on acoustics. Any less than that and you start sacrificing tone. My favorites are D'Addario, and I've heard good things about Martin strings as well.
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