Acoustic Guitar Restring
Restringing is a really awkward thing to do for a lot of people. We see loads of guitars with strings tied on, wrapped the wrong way around the post and overlapping in a bundle around the machine head. This greatly affects the stability of the guitars tuning and when the break angle across the nut is affected tone will also suffer.
It is therefore important to try and work on a good technique which will have no overlap, maintain break angle and lock the string in place.
I have spent years working with guitars and have found a brilliant method I'd highly recommend using. Have a look at our YouTube video below.
It is much quicker if you can have the guitar on a bench or table and use the right tools. A peg winder makes a huge different to the stringing process and having the guitar on a surface with a headstock stand is highly recommended.
D'Addario DP0002 Pegwinder, Cutter and Bridge Pin Puller.
D'Addario PW-HDS Headstock Stand.
The strings used in this setup are D'Addario Nickel Bronze 11-52. They are a new development and are absolutely brilliant.
All of our stock guitars are restrung with these as are my own Acoustic instruments. The stability is second to none and the tone is fantastic. We have also seen extended life from them even thought they are not coated.
The Bridge Pin
Put a curve in to the end of the string, this will ensure the ball end presses in to the bridge pin correctly and stop it from pulling the pin out so easily.
I have created a video to help explain why this works.
When inserting the bridge pin, line up the groove of the pin with the string. If you let if go in at an angle it can affect the way the string goes on to the bridge, changing the string spacing.
The example on the right shows a bridge pin misaligned causing the A string spacing to be incorrect.
Line Up Machine Head Hole
To make it easier to string line the machine head hole up. Pull the string through the hole ready to wrap.
How Much String To Wrap
In the video I was stringing a 3+3 guitar headstock and would usually expect to judge the amount by using the next machine head on as a gauge.
It isn't absolutely critical but what you are wanting to ensure is there is enough winding to make sure the string won't slip and also that there is not so much that it overlaps at all.
If you have a 6 inline headstock you may want to go 2 machines heads up. Keep note of what you do to perfect it the next time.
This is a very difficult thing to explain so probably best to use the video.
It worth looking at the below images so you can see how to keep the tension on the string as you put the wind on.
Try and keep tension on the string at all times as you wind. It also helps to initially hold the string down behind the nut. We all use different techniques in here but here is how I do it.
On the nearest side I use my right hand to hold the string at tension and wind with the left.
On the far side I use me left hand to hold the string and tension and wind with the right.
Stretch The Strings
After you have fitted the strings it is always best to stretch them. I normally tune the guitar to pitch at this point, place a hand across the strings at the 12th Fret and pull each string with the other hand so settle the string in to place. This ensures the string has seated itself and also give the metal a stretch beyond normal tension. You will be able to hear the drop in tension from this. By having the guitar at pitch before you stretch ensures the string is brought above normal use tension which therefore makes it more stable. Repeat the process if required.