Hey all,

Only been playing since last May. My CBG came with a new set of strings on it. I have an extra set just in case. It should be noted that I play every single day, and have gotten alot of mileage so far out of this first set of strings. My question is: how do I know when it's time to change strings? LOL, I say this as a former drummer who ONLY put a new head on a drum if, and when, I put a hole in it...which was rare. So what about strings??? I have noticed that certain areas of the strings over the frets, down near the nut, are black-ish. Some days the CBG sounds better than others, but I suppose temp and humidity play into that as well. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

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Some change them frequently, some not till they break, blackish means time to change them, usually they won't hold tune as well either, and you're right, humidity plays a big factor as well. To give your strings good life, get a tack cloth of some kind and keep it with your git, whenever your done playing, wipe the oils from your hands off the strings each time, the oils play a big part in corrosion.

Well, that's a pretty open question.

Some guys who play professionally will replace acoustic strings weekly. I'm not one of them.

If you play a lot, then the strings are likely to get dirty (finger grunge in the windings) and that will take away the brightness of sound.

Also, brass/bronze strings will oxidize fairly quickly because of the acids and oils in our fingers. Oxidized strings will sound dull and lose volume,

I suggest that you take out a new set of strings and compare a couple of the new wound strings to those on your guitar. If the set on your guitar look like dull, grungy crap next to the new string, then play the old set for a few minutes, then change to the new strings and take a listen. My guess is that you'll hear a brighter sound and more sustain. If you hear no difference, then maybe just play the strings till they fall off.

I'm sure there are as many opinions on string changing as there are people playing these things. Do a little testing and decide for yourself.

Cool. Thanks guys.

Okay. How about tips, or advice, in actually changing the strings, as I have never done this before?

Pretty simple, but rather than a lengthy explanation, go here ---> String replacement

Ignore the parts that don't pertain to a CBG, but for the most part, this is one of the best tutorials in my opinion.

Thanks Richard!

I bought my first CBG in September, didn't like the strings (or the poor workmanship of the instrument, which is why I started to build them myself). The strings it came with were already corroded and making my fingers black so I decided to put on new strings. The builder had actually put the strings through the peg hole then tied a knot before winding them! Imagine trying to change strings tied in knots, in a hotel room, with no tools. I must have lost a pint of blood lancetting my fingers on the unwound strings.

Anyway, I googled how to properly put a string on a tuner and this is the first video I found:

I've gone through about 15 packs of strings in the last 2 months, just trying different brands, materials and gauges. I love this method; it's fast, easy and I think it helps with staying in tune because it locks the string (without a knot, lol) and requires fewer windings on the post.

If you can actually hear a difference that the strings have gone dead and lifeless - maybe, depends on your ear and how much it takes the pleasure out of your playing.

Break one or you see it fraying and ready to break soon, - definitely

 I usually wait until it breaks . Then I only change the broken string. I will wipe them down when they start to blacken my fingers or show signs of being dirty, I spray them with armour all and wipe . Only if I am not happy with the sound or the way the instrument feels will I change them.

I don't think there are any real rules about this. I read somewhere that the Stones have a guy who changes strings on every guitar every day regardless if its even been played. The other end of the spectrum is the change them when they break method. I guess anywhere in between is the right way.

I have a lot of guitars and I change strings whenever I pick one up and it doesn't feel right or sound right.

I know that strings will get to a point where they won't stay in tune, and acoustic strings get to a point where they are dead.

Strings are cheap so change them when you think they need it. 

Thanks guys. Sometimes my strings sound like they are losing their brightness...that nice clean ring. I had just noticed the black areas on them and was wondering how long I should keep them on. When I played the drums, I chopped up my sticks when I played...always waiting for them to snap...and then I grabbed a new one.

String changing day is also called Inauguration day in the USA ..... falls once every 4 to 8 years depending on your luck...

I would say monthly, depending how much you play your guitar. 

I've been cheating, I got a Guitar Center String club membership for $20 USD. Where you get a $5 dollars a month to set of strings. the acoustic strings I buy comes to $5.38, so I am paying 38 cents for a pack of strings.


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