marcelaguiar
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2006
1,744 IQ
#1
How far can you up-tune a guitar before the strings break? A whole step? Two whole steps? I figure I won't be doing any string bending if i tune it up...
whoomit
Join date: Jul 2006
1,492 IQ
#2
Really depends on the particular guitar and the strings that are on it...

I've gone a step up before (on electric) though, never tried higher.
stepchildusmc
Registered User
Join date: Jul 2011
413 IQ
#3
i've seen a snapped off headstock or 2 from people trying that.
if i remember correctly, i've read about a pedal or program that will change the pitch of your guitar without having to potentially damage your axe. if you have an electric acoustic, i would highly recommend using that. i'll search aroound a bit and see if i can find it again, unless someone else here knows what i'm referring to.
sk8board3r
Just call me Gary
Join date: Apr 2006
957 IQ
#4
The Digitech Whammy and other similar pedals will do that. Listen to David Gilmours 'Marooned' to hear it in use. TS, try it and find out for yourself !
Reverend Reeves Gabrels Sig
Fulltone
Dunlop
BOSS
Deltalab
Orange
Hughs & Kettner

https://soundcloud.com/gary-vanluling
Check out some of my home stuff !
UX1 & Ez Drummer

(listen to the Ode to Tarantino!)
KG6_Steven
Eats ponies for breakfast
Join date: Nov 2006
3,132 IQ
#6
Either use a capo or find an octave pedal that plays an octave up.
stepchildusmc
Registered User
Join date: Jul 2011
413 IQ
#7
now why would we want to do something that makes complete and utter sense???? capo ! hmmppphhh !
azrael4h
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2012
214 IQ
#8
When I first started, with a Harmony acoustic I got out of a flea market, I did just that (in ignorance), and split the neck right at the joint. I over-tightened the strings I put on. Thankfully, my grandfather also plays guitar and he taught me how to tune the thing. I still had to get another guitar, but as we all know, you always have to get another guitar. Else you won't have enough guitars to fill your closet!
Butt Rayge
UG Resident
Join date: Jan 2009
2,788 IQ
#9
I've used open tunings before that required tuning strings a tone or semiton up, but I wouldn't go further than that. Especially not on a steel string acoustic.

If you're using .012's on a steel string, which is "standard" (in the same way .010's on electric is "standard") then I wouldn't really tune up at all. If you were using a lower gauge you could try it, but don't go more than a tone above.
Elderer
UG Member
Join date: Dec 2011
1,208 IQ
#10
Ive tuned B to D. Went a little sharp on D then the string snapped.
tom183
Registered User
Join date: Mar 2006
471 IQ
#11
Depends on the guitar and the strings. I can't recall ever going beyond 3 semitones.
Captaincranky
Registered User
Join date: Sep 2011
288 IQ
#12
Actually, with no feedback from the TS, I'm wondering why people are still posting to this thread.

Oh well, I'm not going to let that stop me either.

The topic does beg the question, "why the heck would you want to do that anyway"?

There's a circular sort of answer to the question, "which key is higher, G, or C". Well, depending on who is singing, either one.

With that said, the G-3 octave string of a 12 string is intended to be tuned to G-4. (3rd fret, e-1 of a 6 string in E standard tuning). If you're a piano person, that's G above middle C.

I expect a full electric set, based on a .008 e-1 should make 3 semitones, Or what you could loosely "G standard". Am I sure, no.

This GHS set: http://www.musiciansfriend.com/accessories/ghs-gbul-boomers-ultra-light-electric-guitar-strings is gauged from .008 to .038. I personally can't picture wanting to listen to this set on an acoustic, but they likely would make the tuning you're asking about. Come to think of it, the OP never referred to an acoustic guitar anyway.

Lacking any further input from TS, I'm thinking this may have been a rhetorical question anyway. Something along the lines of, "why is there air", or "does the stork really bring babies".
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jan 2, 2013,
alangton1997
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2012
523 IQ
#13
The highest tension tuning that I have ever used would be either Open E - (Lowest to highest) ebeg#be and open A - (lowest to highest) eaeac#e
marcelaguiar
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2006
1,744 IQ
#14
Im sorry for not responding earlier, I totally forgot I posted this. I need to check in the setting if there is a way to get email responses after getting a response on here. I have a capo. I was just curious as to how much punishment a guitar could take. Also I have a irrational fear of string snapping.
Captaincranky
Registered User
Join date: Sep 2011
288 IQ
#15
Quote by marcelaguiar
Im sorry for not responding earlier, I totally forgot I posted this. I need to check in the setting if there is a way to get email responses after getting a response on here. I have a capo. I was just curious as to how much punishment a guitar could take. Also I have a irrational fear of string snapping.
That's understandable, if it weren't for the emails it generates, I'd have gladly forgotten about it myself.

OTOH, what is a purer and more gratifying pursuit than worthless academia.. Knowledge for its own sake, is its own reward.

In the meantime, why not buy a set of acoustic mediums and one of them thar battery powered peg winders, and let us know what you come up with...
mymartind35
Guitarist/Vocalist
Join date: Sep 2007
15 IQ
#16
I never tune up. When I play in open "E", I tune to open "D" and capo on the 2nd fret. It feels a LOT better also. The amount of pressure I put on the neck for any tuning is less. I tune down and capo.
1979 Martin D-35
1979 Ovation Adamas W597
Ovation Custom Legend 2079 AX CCB
Ovation Pro Series 1773AX Classical
Takamine EG334C Natural
Takamine G406S-VS New Yorker
(also the occasional G.A.S. guitar)
Dan477
Registered User
Join date: Jul 2010
440 IQ
#17
Assuming you have a full size acoustic steel guitar, with regular strings (12-54) probably no more than a fourth with most strings. Some strings strings are stronger. Low E you could reach C# maybe even D. The highest note on a standard 25.5 scale you can tune an open string is G#4, the fourth fret of the hi e,although you may have a shot of reaching A 440, but you will have no chance of reaching G# if the string is old.
Last edited by Dan477 at Apr 29, 2013,
Captaincranky
Registered User
Join date: Sep 2011
288 IQ
#18
Quote by Dan477
Assuming you have a full size acoustic steel guitar, with regular strings (12-54) probably no more than a fourth with most strings. Some strings strings are stronger. Low E you could reach C# maybe even D. The highest note on a standard 25.5 scale you can tune an open string is G#4, the fourth fret of the hi e,although you may have a shot of reaching A 440, but you will have no chance of reaching G# if the string is old.
Glad to see someone still putting some careful thought into this thread, especially since today is its 4 month anniversary.
dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
3,265 IQ
#19
Happy 4 month "anniversary!"

I personally have guitars tuned to NST, which is CGDAEG. Originally, Robert Fripp intended NST to be perfect fifths, and tried it that way for a while, but found that the high string kept breaking.

I've personally seen gauges as light as 006, and someone told me of octave4plus, a site that sells gauges as light as 004s, any of which could let you get even higher tunings.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Apr 29, 2013,
rotoball95
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
903 IQ
#20
I've experimented with this before. On my friend's squier mini, the high E got to a B before snapping, so did the B string. The G got to an A, the D got an octave higher, the A, an octave higher, and the low E, a G. On my 25.5 inch scale acoustic, the low E can usually get an octave and a step up, the A can get to a D, D gets to G, G gets to B, B gets to G or G#, and the high E will sometimes get to an A. On my electric, my plain steel .024 string made it an octave and a half step. By the time it was about to break, I could barely move the tune peg anymore. This was about 2 years ago. I used to do this experiment a lot...
Dan477
Registered User
Join date: Jul 2010
440 IQ
#21
Quote by rotoball95
I've experimented with this before. On my friend's squier mini, the high E got to a B before snapping, so did the B string. The G got to an A, the D got an octave higher, the A, an octave higher, and the low E, a G. On my 25.5 inch scale acoustic, the low E can usually get an octave and a step up, the A can get to a D, D gets to G, G gets to B, B gets to G or G#, and the high E will sometimes get to an A. On my electric, my plain steel .024 string made it an octave and a half step. By the time it was about to break, I could barely move the tune peg anymore. This was about 2 years ago. I used to do this experiment a lot...


That's pretty high. On my 25.5 full size acoustic guitar I got my .053 low e up to C# before snapping. I got my .042 A string up to E Flat before snapping. I got my .032 D string up to G. I got a .024 Wound G up to B Flat and it snapped. I got my b and hi e up to G#. I did get a .010 string between G# and A. I don't think you can tune a regular acoustic string a whole octave. You might get away with it on electric guitar. I got the A and Low E up to the 11 fret on electric. That's a hair short of an octave. What guages where you experimenting on your acoustic?
Last edited by Dan477 at May 1, 2013,
rotoball95
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
903 IQ
#22
Quote by Dan477
That's pretty high. On my 25.5 full size acoustic guitar I got my .053 low e up to C# before snapping. I got my .042 A string up to E Flat before snapping. I got my .032 D string up to G. I got a .024 Wound G up to B Flat and it snapped. I got my b and hi e up to G#. I did get a .010 string between G# and A. I don't think you can tune a regular acoustic string a whole octave. You might get away with it on electric guitar. I got the A and Low E up to the 11 fret on electric. That's a hair short of an octave. What guages where you experimenting on your acoustic?

I used 12s as well. They go higher if the strings are newer. Try it with newer strings, and you may be able to get the low E an octave. I may do this the next time I get strings to see what happens...
revolution24
Registered User
Join date: Feb 2013
140 IQ
#23
An idiot I know spends his whole life doing this and destroying strings. Constantly tuning up to "capo two".
Dan477
Registered User
Join date: Jul 2010
440 IQ
#25
Quote by rotoball95
I've experimented with this before. On my friend's squier mini, the high E got to a B before snapping, so did the B string. The G got to an A, the D got an octave higher, the A, an octave higher, and the low E, a G. On my 25.5 inch scale acoustic, the low E can usually get an octave and a step up, the A can get to a D, D gets to G, G gets to B, B gets to G or G#, and the high E will sometimes get to an A. On my electric, my plain steel .024 string made it an octave and a half step. By the time it was about to break, I could barely move the tune peg anymore. This was about 2 years ago. I used to do this experiment a lot...


I got a 42 elixir nanoweb 80/20 A up to an E on my fender acoustic. Think I can get my 32 up to A on my 25 guitar since I can get the low e and a up to the fifth fret without any damage. without breaking? I did get an elixir 32 d string up to g on my yamaha acoustic.
Last edited by Dan477 at Jul 30, 2013,