Removing the old strings on a guitar and replacing them with new ones is a fairly routine task that many guitar players eventually learn how to do for themselves (although many do it wrong so perhaps could benefit from a lesson all the same). When the old strings are off, it’s a great time to clean the guitar – maybe think about that too before reading on.
Restringing a guitar is often one of the first things a new student learns how to do (along with tuning the thing!) so it’s worth getting it right from the start.
It can be quite tricky for the uninitiated so I do offer a restringing service for those that aren’t 100% confident of doing it. However, I like to restring guitars with the client in attendance so I can show them how it’s done. Once you’ve seen it once or twice, you’ll be fine to do it for the rest of your guitar playing career, I promise.
COST OF RESTRINGING LESSON – £20+ cost of strings
This equates to the rough cost of a one hour guitar lesson. It will probably take about an hour, and I might let you practice on a cheap guitar of mine if your guitar is especially nice (as we don’t want to scratch it). This applies to electric and acoustic guitars and basses with all kinds of bridge systems EXCLUDING fully floating tremolo systems – more on those in a sec.
If you don’t need or want a restringing lesson, that’s okay too. I will be able to work a lot faster as I won’t have to show you as I go along. I might still be able to do it while you wait.
COST OF RESTRINGING – £10+ cost of strings
Last but not least is the thorny issue of restringing guitars with double locking Floyd Rose type tremolo systems. These are quite a bit more tricky to restring (as you may have found) and it is well worth learning how to restring one of these types of systems as it will increase both the life AND tuning stability of the strings. Being more frank, it can make the difference between having a guitar that plays well and in tune, and a heap of unusable junk.
COST OF RESTRINGING FLOATING TREM LESSON – £30+ cost of strings
This will probably take about 90 minutes and is quite a bit more in depth than restring a standard guitar. You learn to use some tools and even learn to spot particular aspects of your guitar’s setup that may need looking at after the restring.
Again, if you don’t want or need to know how it’s done, that’s fine. I can do it for you (maybe even while you wait regardless) and it’s cheaper as I don’t have to explain it as I go along.
COST OF RESTRINGING FLOATING TREM – £15+ cost of strings
Strings are usually around £5 per pack for regular 6 string electric, and good bass strings can be had more cheaply than you would imagine. Please speak to me if you are not sure as I can recommend a set and supply them for you. If you have a brand you prefer you may need to supply them as I may not stock them or have easy access to a shop where I can get them.
For what it’s worth, I have always used either Ernie Ball Regular Slinky or Skinny Top/Heavy Bottom on 6 string electric guitar, and Adagio strings from eBay for bass guitar (available in 4 string or 5 string packs).
If you’re restringing a guitar that’s had heavy use, maybe now is the time for a Full Beans setup? If the guitar isn’t excessively dirty and beaten up, a regular setup (or click HERE for floating trems) might be in order?
Don’t forget to check out my guitar tech blog!