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How long does it take you to change all 6 strings?

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  • How long does it take you to change all 6 strings?

    Because it takes me 23 minutes and I feel so slow its annoying

  • #2
    I've never actually timed it but I've often done it in between sets at a gig - I would guesstimate 10 min if I hurry.

    As a human being, you come with the whole range of inner possibilities
    from the deepest hell to the highest states.

    It is up to you which one you choose to explore
    .

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    • #3
      Depends on the guitar and whether or not I'm giving the fretboard a good cleaning at the same time.

      If it's just a string change then I'd say maybe 15 minutes or so for all strings, maybe 20. I don't really think you're taking an exceptionally long time....what's the big deal? It's not a race.

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      • #4
        depends where you measure your time. just changing the string in a hurry and tune one time can be done under 10 even 5 minutes....
        but bending the strings, retuning, bending so they get somewhere where all strings stay in tune take some time...
        20 minutes is not unusual

        but if it annoys you why do you change them? i only change a string if it breaks and not all six...

        some of my guitars have their strings already for years on, but yes they do not get much play-time

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        • #5
          I take my time with string changes. It's ritual like in a way. I could save several minutes by clipping the old strings but don't.
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          • #6
            just changing strings, about 10 mins.

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            • #7
              I've never timed it but 20 minutes sounds about right
              http://www.surrealisticpenguin.com

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              • #8
                I take my time because I'm in no hurry and I have a specific method I prefer. I open the new strings and put a drop of CA to glue the ball ends first. This prevents slippage and prevents the strings from unwinding. I do allot of string bends and this is very important to maintain tuning stability.

                When I remove the old strings I inspect the frets for wear and about every 4th or 5th set I may need to polish the frets. Again, this is because I bend strings allot and I'm very hard on frets and prefer a glassy smooth fret.

                When I reinstall strings I use some graphite on the nut to prevent tuning issues and I also make sure they aren't twisted end to end. Twisted strings can cause a number of freaky issues with how they sound and feel and this usually helps to prevent many weird string buzzes.

                When cutting the new strings I carefully measure the length of string that will wrap around the posts. Since the strings get progressively thinner I make sure the excess string that wraps around the posts gets progressively longer. The goal is to have the bottom of the strings end up the same height on the tuning pegs and in the case of 3X3 tuners the same height off the headstock.

                This insures I have a consistent break away angle from the nut after each string change and the feel of the strings when playing on the lower frets is consistently the same.

                Its also helpful in maintaining relief on thin necked guitars that can change relief with variations in the string breakaway angle and I find I don't have to jack with the action and intonation in the process.I even have a few unique guitars where this break away pressure on the nut is important to prevent strings from jumping out of the nut under vigorous playing conditions.

                I can usually do all of this in 30 to 60 minutes, but like I said, I'm rarely in a hurry and may even be watching the tube when doing this.

                What does take longer is stretching the strings and breaking them in. The thinner strings have more wraps around the tuners so they do tend to stretch a bit more. The good part is they also tend to remain elastic longer on the thin strings I bend allot so there's less chance of breakage as they age.
                Last edited by WRGKMC; 08-22-2014, 05:13 AM.

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                • #9
                  About 20 minutes on a guitar with a trem...less if it is a hard tail.
                  Besides being a guitar player,
                  I'm a big fan of the guitar.
                  I love that damn instrument.
                  -Steve Vai

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                  • #10
                    I really wish Les Paul and Leo Fender, as engineers, had gone straight for double ball arrangements and set a standard.
                    I take maybe 20 -25. I cut them these days, use a winder and spend time stretching and tuning. as well as cleaning everything down whilst they are off. Hate having like 6 'syringe needles' of wire at the headstock and still get the occasional pierced fingertip tidying it up.
                    Fortunately I prefer older strings which seem closer to sinusoidal ( to my ear ) without all the jangly harmonics. The only drawback, of course is that if you break one you have to change them all
                    Last edited by Chordite; 08-22-2014, 08:15 AM.
                    .

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                    • #11
                      I first check the calender and weather reports before I start, I don't want the moons gravitational pull or a ridge of high pressure screwing things up.

                      Then I remove each string from its pack and check its specification with a micrometer Each string is then graded for actual size depending on its percentage over or under spec. Any that are outside accepted tolerances I send back to the manufacturer with the instructions on how to re-calibrate their equipment.
                      I then make them into matched sets, ensuring they are all the same make of string.(I wouldn't want my G string giving me a Dire Straits tone and my B string giving me a Jeff Beck tone, What a fool I would look.)
                      I then braze the ball ends to stop them unwinding. I bend a lot and this is essential to staying in tune. (I used to use glue but when I shredded instead of bending they tended to melt.}

                      I test the frets with a friction gauge and any with a reading higher than Teflon get ripped out, replaced, polished until in spec , coated in silicon , then polished and checked again. This is essential as I bend a lot.

                      When I fit the new strings I always cut a new nut, with a laser, to exactly match the measured diameter of the new strings set. I bend a lot so this is essential to stay in tune.

                      After winding the new strings, before fully tensioning, I adjust the height of the tuning posts. I have modified these with dual locking nuts so I can vary and fix the height. I find they have to give a break angle which is constant within a tolerance of 1 minute. I failed to do this once on a Strat and it twisted the neck making it impossible to set the relief. { I told Fender about this but they seemed to think their headstock was OK, fools, it will never catch on! } The added bonus is that it equalises the pressure required to bend. To keep this constant I adjust the break angle for different types of strings. I bend a lot so this is important.

                      I am very careful when stretching them in, using an adapted torque gauge so I don't pull too hard. Obviously If I break one I start the whole process again. Uniformity is essential, because I bend a lot.

                      This is the only way to do the job properly.
                      I can usually do this within a week. But that's me, most of you will take at least a month.

                      After changing strings that way the only pedal I need in my chain is this.

                      “One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it's worth watching”
                      Gerard Way

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                      • #12
                        20 minutes with string stretching.
                        MIA Fender Strat / Gibson Les Paul Studio / Custom Telecaster / Washburn WI66 / Custom Stratocaster / Martin D15S / Guild D55 / Simon & Patrick Cedar / Martin HD16R LSH​

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by 1001gear View Post
                          I take my time with string changes. It's ritual like in a way. I could save several minutes by clipping the old strings but don't.
                          I like to do that to when I can but not if I'm in the middle of a show.

                          I've realized that dealing with broken strings is a regular part of my life so I'm prepared. I'll have spare strings tucked under the handle of my amp along with the cut off end of a low E string so I can quickly push end of the broken string through the body of a strat or tele - I've also remove the back plate from my strats.

                          I prefer consistency in feel and tone from string to string so I'll change the broken string when it breaks and replace the others during the next break.
                          As a human being, you come with the whole range of inner possibilities
                          from the deepest hell to the highest states.

                          It is up to you which one you choose to explore
                          .

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by onelife View Post

                            I like to do that to when I can but not if I'm in the middle of a show.

                            I've realized that dealing with broken strings is a regular part of my life so I'm prepared. I'll have spare strings tucked under the handle of my amp along with the cut off end of a low E string so I can quickly push end of the broken string through the body of a strat or tele - I've also remove the back plate from my strats.

                            I prefer consistency in feel and tone from string to string so I'll change the broken string when it breaks and replace the others during the next break.
                            I'm curious to the brand of strings you use and how long they last before breaking. I'm brutal on strings but they rarely break. They have to be super old and brittle for that to happen. I usually change them when the wrapped strings get notches worn through at the frets so maybe that's before the unwrapped strings get ready to break. I also bring at least one backup so I don't have to deal with changing strings at a show, but I realize that's not always an option for many.
                            Last edited by WRGKMC; 08-22-2014, 12:24 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Sometimes I can change a set of strings in about five minutes, sometimes it will take me twenty minutes, it's like I have a difficult time doing anything and everything sometimes....I attribute the difficult times to alcohol and drug abuse during my younger years.
                              Geezer Brigade Trooper #30
                              1st generation Irish

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