#1
I'm not sure what section to put this on, but can someone help me? I'm getting really annoyed by this problem. So a couple of days ago, I decided to change my guitar strings for the first time because I noticed that it easily doesn't stay in tune. After changing my guitar strings, given my first time to do it, I did well. Since that, I noticed that it doesn't stay in tune almost every time. So my question is, is this really normal when the strings are new?
#2
New strings will go out of tune really fast, depends on how much you've played them, also what guitar you have, the nut might have ridges on it causing the strings to slip which send them out of tune, but if you've played it for a couple hours over the last couple of days then it shouldn't be the new strings, it could be because it's your first time that you've changed strings you might have twisted them, it could be a whole bunch of things but it's hard to tell without seeing and playing the guitar
"Music Without Emotion Is Like Food Without Flavour"
Paul Gilbert
#3
I never really had any problems with this and I'm horrible at changing strings. Could it be you put on a different gauge and the guitar needs to be intonated properly? What kind of guitar is it?
#5
The strings should be fine within a week at most, assuming that you play them every day. If they still lose their tuning really fast after this time, then the problem isn't the strings. How many days ago did you restring, and did much did you play it since then? There's a thread in the electric guitar forum on setting up and restringing guitars so they won't lose tuning easily, you should check it out(if you didn't use it as a reference guide in the first place). If you restring incorrectly your strings will go out of tune pretty much all the time regardless of what you do.
#6
I can't believe nobody's told you to stretch your strings yet...
Actually called Mark!

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#7
I'm with Steven on this one, lightly hold the string between your thumb and first three finger, give a light pull on the strings one at a time. Tune back up, repeat until the strings hold tuning.

Don't pull too hard, you are just looking to stretch the string a little and take some of the slack out of the turns on the post.

Also you need to make sure the turns on the post are done correctly. Making them neatly has 2 benefits, 1 it looks better, 2 it is more secure.
#8
Quote by steven seagull
I can't believe nobody's told you to stretch your strings yet...

^This. Especially since it's your first time changing strings, you might have done it poorly (not necessarily but still).

And if that's not the problem, it could be the tuners, nut or saddles. But if only playing part of the fretboard is out of tune, then you have intonation problems.
#9
Quote by decapitator15
I'm not sure what section to put this on, but can someone help me? I'm getting really annoyed by this problem. So a couple of days ago, I decided to change my guitar strings for the first time because I noticed that it easily doesn't stay in tune. After changing my guitar strings, given my first time to do it, I did well. Since that, I noticed that it doesn't stay in tune almost every time. So my question is, is this really normal when the strings are new?


With the exception of a nylon string guitar ( i.e. classical) , it is absolutely not normal for strings to detune after a few days.

Some practical advice from someone who's been there:

1) look up a you tube video on how to put on strings properly. I spent ten years doing it haphazardly and as soon as I started doing it right, no issues.

2) it should only take an electric and acoustic guitar less than an hour of playing for the strings to set decently and stay in tune, never a week. If you are on a nylon string guitar, than it can take several hours or even maybe a day or two since those strings take much more time to set.

3) if your guitar can't stay in tune after having put on a fresh set of strings properly ( as per a you tube video from a tech) then you need to bring your guitar to a local guitar tech and get him to review - be sure to mention what the problem is since he'll take care of a few troubleshooting steps he otherwise wouldn't bother with. Get a proper setup and see how your guitar handles that. If that doesn't solve the problem, then you probably have a lemon of a guitar and you need to get rid of it. If you do end up shopping for a new guitar, your number one priority should be it's ability to stay in tune and have proper intonation - that's the real test of a good guitar, the rest is secondary.
Last edited by reverb66 at Aug 12, 2014,
#10
It absolutely IS normal if you haven't stretched your strings
Actually called Mark!

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#11
Quote by steven seagull
It absolutely IS normal if you haven't stretched your strings


Stretching is important, but failing to do it doesn't make a guitar lose it's tuning a week later...that clearly isn't the issue here.
#12
I agree with all of the above. I often change my strings the night before a job and I don't have any problem because like noted on other posts, I stretch them (gently) after I put them on and let the guitar sit over night and gently strech them again the next day. I can then go out and play with no tuning issues. Like reverb66 I was just doing it haphazardly for many (many!!) years hoping to find a better way. I came across a video on YouTube where a guy does a thing using "three fingers" to measure the string length after going through the tuner hole. He backs up the string by that length and bends the strings so it won't slip, then turns the tuner till it takes up the additional slack (of which there is little). I have been using this method for several years now and this really works well for me. (I'll see if I can locate a link to that video and post it later)

No matter which method you use to put on new strings stretching the strings is a real key to staying in tune. There is a video of Joe Walsh on YouTube demonstrating the thumb and three finger string stretching described above.

There is no need to have a lot of excess string on your tuners , it only causes problems. Four full turns done neatly is all you need.

Just a comment on cosmetics: Maybe it is just me but I hate it when strings are not trimmed off and are flapping around the headstock. I played with a guitarist who was convinced there was some reason he should not cut them after putting on new strings and tunning up. He played with about five or more inches of string dangling off the headstock. I recently saw another guitar player do the same thing. There is no technical reason I have ever read or seen not to cut them and I think it's distracting visually. For some reason it seems to me acoustic players do it more often.
#13
Quote by reverb66
Stretching is important, but failing to do it doesn't make a guitar lose it's tuning a week later...that clearly isn't the issue here.

Nope that's exactly what happens if you don't stretch strings.

There's an incredible amount of elasticity in strings, particularly the thinner ones, it takes a hell of a lot to take them to their elastic limit and stabilise them. Spending a few minutes stretching them out after re-stringing is all it takes to get them to hold their tuning. If you're hoping that "just playing" will be enough to take them to their elastic limit then it can easily take weeks, or even longer depending on your playing style and frequency
Actually called Mark!

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#14
Quote by steven seagull
Nope that's exactly what happens if you don't stretch strings.

There's an incredible amount of elasticity in strings, particularly the thinner ones, it takes a hell of a lot to take them to their elastic limit and stabilise them. Spending a few minutes stretching them out after re-stringing is all it takes to get them to hold their tuning. If you're hoping that "just playing" will be enough to take them to their elastic limit then it can easily take weeks, or even longer depending on your playing style and frequency



I 'm with you on the importance of stretching the strings properly. My playing style makes it a bit of a moot point since I bend like crazy on every string except the low E and play hard, but if the OP plays a lighter style, than it could be causing his issues.A week is a long time though, depending on how much he plays.
#15
OP: Another factor that just popped into my head is that guitars do go out of tune sometime due to changes in the weather etc. Sometimes it's very little, others it could be a fairly big change. If there is a big difference in temp or humidity from where the guitar has been to where it is being played, give it time to adjust in the case before playing (might not be relevant to this situation entirely, but good practice anyway). i.e. going from your warm house, to the boot/trunk of a car in the snow to a not-so-warm venue, give it a chance to adjust. I've played a gig where we sound checked in the afternoon, but then played in the evening at an outdoor venue, had to do a fairly big re-tune due to the temp difference.
#16
I have a problem with my Les Paul, which I recently purchased, going out of tune. The Stratocasters I have will go almost forever without needing to be retuned.

The Strats have slightly heavier strings. I don't know if that would make a difference. All of the guitars get full step bends.

The OP's guitar is an Epiphone. Could it be something with the design?
#17
I have 2 LPs (one Epi, one Gibson) and both hold tuning fine unless as stated there are big temperature changes. I use Ernie ball 10s (regular slinky) and stretch the strings after putting them on. One turn above the hole the rest below. I don't think it's a design issue
#18
Quote by Monkeyleg
I have a problem with my Les Paul, which I recently purchased, going out of tune. The Stratocasters I have will go almost forever without needing to be retuned.

The Strats have slightly heavier strings. I don't know if that would make a difference. All of the guitars get full step bends.

The OP's guitar is an Epiphone. Could it be something with the design?


Take it to a tech. It could be a problem with the hardware ( bridge/tuners). Hopefully it's not more severe than that.
#19
I have one Gibson Les Paul (1973) and four Epiphone Les Paul's, a Standard, an Ultra ll, a 1960 Tribute Plus and I just bought a Korean made Epiphone Les Paul Custom (made in 2005, got it from an Ebay seller). All my Les Paul guitars stay in tune well (and I bend a lot). I think it's just a matter of finding a better way to put the strings on and stretching them well.
I also use Ernie Ball Slinky 10's on all my guitars but I don't know how much that matters.
Last edited by Rickholly74 at Aug 13, 2014,
#20
Quote by Rickholly74
I have one Gibson Les Paul (1973) and four Epiphone Les Paul's, a Standard, an Ultra ll, a 1960 Tribute Plus and I just bought a Korean made Epiphone Les Paul Custom (made in 2005, got it from an Ebay seller). All my Les Paul guitars stay in tune well (and I bend a lot). I think it's just a matter of finding a better way to put the strings on and stretching them well.
I also use Ernie Ball Slinky 10's on all my guitars but I don't know how much that matters.

That's a lot of les pauls
#21
Quote by reverb66
Take it to a tech. It could be a problem with the hardware ( bridge/tuners). Hopefully it's not more severe than that.


I can see how the tuners would affect it, but how would the bridge affect the strings going out of tune?
#22
Quote by Monkeyleg
I can see how the tuners would affect it, but how would the bridge affect the strings going out of tune?

Same way the nut can affect tuning. If the bridge saddles aren't properly filed, when you do say, a bend, the string gets stuck (kinda) in the saddle and you end up sharp.