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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 8/6/2005 8:22:09 PM EDT
I have been playing guitar for about 6 months using the same set of strings. I don't wipe them down after playing. Is it time to change? Recommendations for steel string accoustic? Thanks.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 8:24:23 PM EDT
You can if you want to. Definetly don;t have to. You can check and see if your guitar still has good intonation.


If you change them they will sound brighter. If you leave them they will be darker.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 8:24:24 PM EDT
When you do a power chord.....And they snap.... That's when.



If you were really rock and roll, you'd know.



Link Posted: 8/6/2005 8:31:20 PM EDT
It really depends on how much you play the guitar.
If you just strum a few chords once a month, the strings
will last for at least 2 years.
If you practice every day, about every 3-4 weeks.
My brother has been playing guitar for the last 20 years.
He knows his shit.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 8:33:19 PM EDT
Back when I was playing every night in a band, I changed them almost every night, if not every night. I also bought them by the case and I had extra single strings in my rack. Of course, I had a drawer full of picks that I would flip into the crowd. I was playing the better part of six hours a night. Oh, I also had 4 or 5 guitars to string. The work horse got restrung every night.


You should wipe your neck down after every session and polish your guitar every now and then. Makes it easier and better to play.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 8:34:40 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/6/2005 8:36:06 PM EDT by MissouriBob]
I practice at least 30 minutes a day. I'm not sure it's helping.

ETA: Anything special you wipe it down/polish with other than a soft cloth?
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 8:35:07 PM EDT
I changed my bass strings each month, more if I was really playing more than 3-4 hours a day. Guitar is a bit different, but you dont have to pay $65 a set like I was paying
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 9:19:53 PM EDT
Back when I played every day I would change them under two circumstances.

1) Whenever a string broke
2) Whenever I was going to play a gig
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 1:09:36 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 2:11:45 AM EDT
My fingers are apparently some corrosive mamma-jammas. For normal practicing and playing around the house, I change them once a week. When I was gigging, every day.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 6:48:16 AM EDT
Since you are still relatively new to playing, I'd suggest playing it for about an hour, then re-string w/ new ones. See first hand what new ones feel like, then judge for yourself the frequency of changes for future reference.

When I was playing in bands (all thru middle school, high school, half way thru college), I would have to change mine out (bass player) about once every 3 weeks or so, or 2-3 days before a gig to let them relax and stretch (so they wouldn't lose intonation during shows).

One thing I noticed after a while, that after a couple of weeks, my plectrum (the brightness/crisp/snap) was definitely not as bright as new sets. This varied from brand to brand. The GHS and Labellas were crisp, but did not hold their brightness as long as the Dean Markley Blue Steel, which is what I swore by (unless I was tight on $$$).

And a high-hearty +1 on the $$$. My bass strings were definitely not cheap (cost wise), but damn if they were not worth every penny....


Link Posted: 8/7/2005 6:55:20 AM EDT
If you practice daily and wipe your finger oils off you can get about 4-6 months of good tone from a set, but like others said the brightness will diminish over that time. I use a combination of sound and visual inspection to determine when it's time to change (or when I pop an E string trying to play some SRV run). I wouldn't change them out too frequently either, it is not necessary and brand new strings won't hold tune as good until they're stretched in.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 7:15:54 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 7:20:34 AM EDT
For my electrics, even with new strings on, more than once I've broken strings during the first set of a gig. Always nice to have a back-up ready to go.

Don't play a lot of acoustic except for some practice now that the a**hole neighbor called the poo-poo on me for playing my electric guitar one evening through my little 1-12" practice amp so I'm not really concerned about the acoustic's tone too much. However, if I was I would be changing strings on a regular basis. Now, to hook up the Marshall stack and play the "Star Spangled Banner" for my neighbor......

Other than that, your finances and time plus the amount of playing and tone you're looking for should help determine when you change your strings. Do wipe them down after every session no matter what. Always keep a spare set in your case. If you change them a lot or have multiple guitars, it is best to buy strings in bulk.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 7:33:06 AM EDT
As noted, oils in your hands/fingers are very corrosive. Wiping down your strings/neck after playing will greatly increase the life of the strings.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 10:41:46 AM EDT
When I played a lot, I used to wipe the strings down with rubbing alcohol. My fingers are failry acidic, and destroy stings. Always wipe your stings down when you're done playing...that is half of the battle right there.

My favorite strings are Elixers. They have a polyweb coating on them which helps to lengthen their life-span, and also produces a slightly richer tone, in my opinion. If you have a high end guitar (say a hand built one from a reputable luthier), then you shouldn't skimp on stings. Strings are cheap...change them as often as you feel like. My guage is usually how they sound, not how they look. I hate dull sounding stings. Playing is so much more enjoyable when you get the best sound possible.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 2:04:01 PM EDT
Wipe the steel or bronze strings down with a tiny dab of Flitz or Brasso
and a rag.
They will last longer.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 2:08:20 PM EDT
Back when I played a lot, and played in a band, I'd change strings about every month, if not sooner. When you develop your ear, you can really tell a difference in the tone between old and new. When you get even better, you'll hear when the strings start sounding old. They'll also become tarnished and dull looking (you should wipe down your strings when you're done playing, helps them last a little longer).

Aside from that, since I don't play much anymore, my acoustic has had the same strings on it for about 2 years. They don't sound good, but they still work.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 2:11:08 PM EDT

Originally Posted By PBIR: (or when I pop an E string trying to play some SRV run).



I hate it when that happens... :P

I've never yet heard of ANYONE who plays anywhere near SRV with .012s. I'd use .009s on my Strats and .010s on my LP copy, and that's about as heavy as I'd go!
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 2:19:16 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/7/2005 2:20:36 PM EDT by Daytona955i]
Good acoustic strings? If you have money, get some Elixers or Dean Markley's Blue Steels, Phospher bronze, I like the 10 set, I think those are mediums.

If you don't have money, D'ddario's mediums are my favorite when I don't feel like dumping money into the acoustic(s).

I put Ernie ball slinky's on my electric 6 string, and my basses get mixes of GHS, Fender, and D'ddario's.

I replace my strings once every 6 months, or whenever one breaks, unless they are a pretty new set, then I just get a single string, or whenever they sound dead.

I like my bass strings to be a little broken in, I'm not looking for twang or crispness, I'm looking for punch. I want my electric guitar to be crisp so with a lot of playing they tend to get replaced every month almost, but I can replace those strings almost 5 times for the price of my bass strings.

I also tend to buy new strings before a big gig, or after a well paying one.

Link Posted: 8/7/2005 2:24:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By teknofear:
The GHS and Labellas were crisp, but did not hold their brightness as long as the Dean Markley Blue Steel, which is what I swore by (unless I was tight on $$$).




+1 on the Blue Steels. I play electric guitar and use 11-52's . . . super crisp and long lasting.

I usually change my strings every two weeks. I play at Church weekly (2 services and a practice a week) and by then they are shot.

Nothing has the tone of Blue Steels. Elixers always sound dull to me - the attack of the note is just screwed up.

Disconnector
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 2:29:26 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 3:49:53 PM EDT

Originally Posted By teknofear:

One thing I noticed after a while, that after a couple of weeks, my plectrum attack(the brightness/crisp/snap) was definitely not as bright as new sets. This varied from brand to brand. The GHS and Labellas were crisp, but did not hold their brightness as long as the Dean Markley Blue Steel, which is what I swore by (unless I was tight on $$$).




There fixed it for ya.

A plectrum is a pick.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 3:52:16 PM EDT
Thanks for a lot of great replies. One thing is certain, I'm sure I'm way past needing to change them. I think I'm going to order three different strings from those mentioned here and see which ones I like the best. I've seen some of the polyweb strings and now they have something called nanoweb. Same price and general description. Might try one each. Thanks again.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 3:56:32 PM EDT

Originally Posted By FredM:
You can if you want to. Definetly don;t have to. You can check and see if your guitar still has good intonation.


If you change them they will sound brighter. If you leave them they will be darker.



I agree with this.

I like the duller sound of old strings on my strat. I only change them when I notice either tuning or intonation problems.

I use the .11 ga d'addario roundwound set with an unwound third string.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 4:28:39 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/7/2005 4:29:21 PM EDT by Swervedriver]
New guitar? New to you? If you've still got the strings that came with it, I'd change 'em.
Link Posted: 8/9/2005 7:43:46 PM EDT
I changed them out last night. Put on a set of Elixer nanoweb mediums. BIG DIFFERENCE. Thanks again to all that answered.
Link Posted: 8/9/2005 8:21:44 PM EDT
I tried elixers once. Yeah, they last longer but to me they sound different.

Just go with Martin's. Elixer's are so much more expensive that you don't save any money (imo) by using them for the longer life.
Link Posted: 8/9/2005 8:28:14 PM EDT
Bought Dean Markley Blue Steel Med Light for my next change. I figure I'll try various types/prices until I find a good balance between price and quality.
Link Posted: 8/9/2005 8:29:57 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/9/2005 8:36:32 PM EDT by Spitfire75]
I change my strings when they start to get dark and sound dull. I can also feel when they get rough from corrosion. I also change them when I'm going nuts on the Floyd Rose and the high E goes SNAP!


ETA: I use D'Addario Light Top/Heavy Bottoms on my Ibanez S1220WNF and Super Lights on my Jackson Dinky XL.
Link Posted: 8/10/2005 5:54:08 AM EDT

Originally Posted By jadams951:
Back when I played every day I would change them under two circumstances.

1) Whenever a string broke
2) Whenever I was going to play a gig



Damn, I NEVER changed strings before a gig...way too much trouble keeping it in "chune" for the first hour or so.

GHS Boomer 10s for me...the ONLY way to fly! I think the ones on the 2 Strats I play all the time are at *least* 18 months old hehe.
Link Posted: 8/10/2005 5:54:41 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Goonboss:
When you do a power chord.....And they snap.... That's when.



If you were really rock and roll, you'd know.




+1
Link Posted: 8/10/2005 6:09:27 AM EDT

Originally Posted By BigJ491:

My favorite strings are Elixers. They have a polyweb coating on them which helps to lengthen their life-span, and also produces a slightly richer tone, in my opinion. If you have a high end guitar (say a hand built one from a reputable luthier), then you shouldn't skimp on stings. Strings are cheap...change them as often as you feel like. My guage is usually how they sound, not how they look. I hate dull sounding stings. Playing is so much more enjoyable when you get the best sound possible.



I highly recommend Elixir's also. More expensive, but hold their bright tone much longer. It's also easier to keep the strings clean.
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