I went into a guitar shop today (not my regular one, this one's a bit further away), and I was trying out some guitars, as you do. The guy in there asked what sort of thing I was looking for, and what I wanted from a new guitar. Amongst other specifics, I mentioned that I change tunings a lot. He got very shocked by this and explained how it will destroy my bridge. I've never heard about that sort of thing before. He also talked to me about how heavier gauge strings were made for down-tuning. I wanted to punch him at this point as he was talking as if I was stupid.

My question is, what exactly happens if I change tuning often? And is there any sort of guitar or a particular way one could be set up so that I would be able to change tunings regularly without worrying about it raping my bridge?

You're = You are
Your = Belongs to you

There = Not here
Their = Belongs to them
They're = They are

Quote by Tim the Rocker
Good grammar is like sex. It feels good.
Rubbish. Your bridge will go only if its made of cardboard.
EDIT: ^ only applies for hard tails. An FR will go phut if you don't know how to handle it. A FLOYD ROSE CAN KILL (or at least break a few bones). So don't **** around - dont take all the strings off without blocking it or you are gonna have your nerves raped.
Last edited by GS LEAD 5 at Sep 3, 2009,
thankyou =]
You're = You are
Your = Belongs to you

There = Not here
Their = Belongs to them
They're = They are

Quote by Tim the Rocker
Good grammar is like sex. It feels good.
I suspect he was talking out of his ass. Never heard of that before! I think you risk breaking strings more often if you regularly change tunings, but I doubt it'd have any effect on your bridge.

EDIT: Damn, beaten.
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Awesome guy right here
Somebody kill that man.
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oh yeah? well larry king the slayer guitarist owns bc rich guitars. (i think)
The only thing that might potentially be damaged is the nut from string friction (happened on my first crap guitar). However, remember it was a crap guitar, and unlikely to happen on anythihg that's decent quality.

Also, make sure the string tension doesn't change massively, or your neck won't be pleased.
Well, iv been jumping around between standard, drop d, drop c and even drop b on normal guage strings for a long time, and I change alot, every couple of days usualy. I havnt noticed anything giong wrong, my strings havnt snapped and the neck is still perfectly straight. I have a standard fixed bridge, I imagine if you had a floyd rose it could mess it up but from what iv seen, its only the strings and neck that could be effected by constant re-tuning.
Screw Ignorance... Indifference is bliss.
It's fine lots of people do it. Anything lower than drop B and you might need slightly heavier gauge strings though.
Yamaha F310 acoustic
Ibanez RGR321ex
Peavey Vypyr 30
I always change my tunings from Standard to Drop D. I change them everyday. Nothing has happened to my guitar except the tension on my 6th string is starting to get suckish.
Heavier gauges aren't necessarily made for down tuning, though they are useful for retaining tension in lower tunings. It's also true that you may reach a point you find uncomfortable if you try to tune to standard with some heavier gauges. You will find strings very taut, and the lighter ones may snap due to this extra tension.

Unless your guitar has a very poorly made bridge with poor quality metal, changing tunings isn't going to do an awful lot. Do not worry, and don't ask for that guy's advice ever. You might get through strings slightly faster if you are constantly changing tension by retuning though, so bear that in mind.

Just remember though, if you are changing tunings, always make the proper adjustments to neck and bridge if necessary. i.e. intonation, and more importantly, make sure your neck is not under excessive duress, and the truss rod is adjusted to suit the tension created by the strings correctly.
Last edited by Mazzakazza at Sep 3, 2009,
Its amazing some of the garbage theories spouted by people working at music stores who should actually know something about what they are selling.