Tips for restringing classical guitar

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Michael Lazar
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by Michael Lazar » Mon Jan 30, 2017 2:52 pm

JohnB wrote:I'm not sure about the method he uses when he secures the bass strings on the tuning rollers. (It seems a bit over-kill to me.)
I've used the same method as JohnB for 50 years on hundreds of guitars and find it to be easy, fast and very reliable. Two additional hints:

1. For treble strings at the bridge end, pull the end well clear of the guitar and pass the end momentarily through a flame (cigarette lighters work well). This will melt a nice little ball on the end which acts as extra insurance against slippage and a nasty string ding.

2. For the third and fourth strings (G & D ) loop the strings from the outside inward and wind them toward the outside of the peg head. This will help to keep them from pressing against the central web of the headstock and creating odd noises and/or impacting the tone of the string.

Colin Barnes
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by Colin Barnes » Wed Feb 01, 2017 8:43 am

The video was very helpful to someone new to CG. I did have a couple questions that weren't explained in the video:

1) Is there a reason for removing one string at a time? I have played ukulele for years and when I perform a string change I remove all the strings as it gives me the perfect opportunity to really clean the fretboard.

2) Which way do the strings go around the post? Do I wind them over the top, or under?

I just picked up a used CG and believe the strings could use a change. Thanks!

Aug308
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by Aug308 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 4:12 pm

Loved the video very clear and great information. I personally after winding the bridge take a butane lighter and heat the end of the string to create a ball end. Wait till the string is cool before setting the string on the bridge.
When setting the string make sure to allow the ball to be set close to the bridge.
This prevents the string from unwinding and also allows for better exchange of the vibrations onto the soundboard.
Others have posted this however I wanted to add this practice because I have had quite a few windings slipping on the bridge.
One factor I have always been amazed with is that a new stringning it takes a few days for most strings to settle into their tuning.

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Luuttuaja
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by Luuttuaja » Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:37 pm

Colin Barnes wrote: 1) Is there a reason for removing one string at a time? I have played ukulele for years and when I perform a string change I remove all the strings as it gives me the perfect opportunity to really clean the fretboard.
The Hal Leonard CG tutor tells to replace one string at the time, because this will keep the tension of the neck, bridge and soundboard more constant and that will be "less traumatic" for the guitar. But I know there are people who do the opposite as that makes it easier to clean the fingerboard when there are no strings.

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kertsopoulos
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by kertsopoulos » Thu Feb 09, 2017 10:36 am

Luuttuaja wrote:
Colin Barnes wrote: 1) Is there a reason for removing one string at a time? I have played ukulele for years and when I perform a string change I remove all the strings as it gives me the perfect opportunity to really clean the fretboard.
The Hal Leonard CG tutor tells to replace one string at the time, because this will keep the tension of the neck, bridge and soundboard more constant and that will be "less traumatic" for the guitar. But I know there are people who do the opposite as that makes it easier to clean the fingerboard when there are no strings.
It is worth to explain one of the the main reasons (and not the only one) why it is best not to untune all strings of the guitar at once but if possible change them one at a time. Many guitars (as the Spanish traditional method of construction has it) have their frets being engraved into their narrower sawn slot by tapping with a hammer and as the base of the fret sits into the narrower slot it provides a constant pressure to the fretboard at that point on each adjacent side of the fret. This procedure is done for at least nineteen frets, so the fretboard is really under tension in all its both sides of each fret being tapped in by a hammer into a narrower slot. Why is this done though? The traditional lutherie constructional practice has acquired this method so that the fretboard will have a continuous tendency to warp to move backwards contrary to the direction of the string's forward pulling tension and in this way the fretboard and the neck on which the fretboard is glued on will counterbalance the pulling tension of the strings that have a tendency to warp/move the neck into the direction of the string's pulling force. So, in a six string full tuning condition of the strings, the strings pull with their tension the fretboard/neck forward and the fret's applied pressure/tension push the system backwards counterbalancing the strings's tension and there exists a balance of the Newton's third law of action-reaction, where one equals the other. Now, in such an instrument where the frets have been tapped in by a hammer on a narrower slot/groove, where the system acts this way, it is easily understood that if one untunes all the strings at once subtracting the initial action of the provided string's pulling tension, according to the possible sudden relative humidity changes in the atmosphere (temperature vs humidity), the neck might warp/move backwards, because the frets keep on providing the backward move since each fret presses each adjacent side it belongs to and there is no reaction to these forces by the strings since these are not tuned. However, if there are no sudden relative humidity changes and if the time period in which one puts back the tesion of the tuned strings through the replacement of new strings is really short, the danger of the neck moving/warping backwards rarely/but not absolutely exists. One should consider the relative humidity stability of the atmosphere and consider also that also other constructional factors involving the torque release forces (that happens in a total untuning of the strings) in the saddle/bridge area that have an affect on the soundboard/body/sides of the instrument. In all cases great care must be taken when untuning at once the strings and if required to be done it should be done slowly, interchanging the untuning from 6th to 1st, 5th to 2nd and 4th to 3d, so that evenly and in a slow rythm the tensions are subtracted from the instrument, clean the fretboard immediately if possible and replace and tune immediately if possible the strings. The shorter the time period the guitar is left completely untuned the better.

JohnB
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by JohnB » Thu Feb 09, 2017 11:17 am

Colin Barnes wrote: Which way do the strings go around the post? Do I wind them over the top, or under?
Are you asking about how the strings should be attached to the tuning rollers?

If so, I am sure that the method given by the OP video works but IMO the more "standard" method is to, with the guitar facing you, feed the string through the hole in the roller then pass it back OVER THE TOP of the roller, not underneath it as shown in the film. With the bass strings this means all you then have to do is to pass the loose end of the string underneath the string entering the roller once - pull taught - and wind the roller until the tension holds it in place. With this method the tension on the string acts to secure the string in place.

Same principal for trebles but you need to wind the loose end round the string entering the roller two or three times to ensure that it holds.

This shows the technique clearly: http://www.frets.com/FretsPages/Musicia ... cstr3.html.
Hermanos Conde 1968, Stephen Frith 2007 "Guijoso"

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riemsesy
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by riemsesy » Thu Feb 09, 2017 1:05 pm

kertsopoulos wrote: It is worth to explain one of the the main reasons (and not the only one) why it is best not to untune all strings of the guitar at once but if possible change them one at a time. Many guitars (as the Spanish traditional method of construction has it) have their frets being engraved into their narrower sawn slot by tapping with a hammer and as the base of the fret sits into the narrower slot it provides a constant pressure to the fretboard at that point on each adjacent side of the fret
<cut explanation> (I've read it :) )
5th to 2nd and 4th to 3d, so that evenly and in a slow rythm the tensions are subtracted from the instrument, clean the fretboard immediately if possible and replace and tune immediately if possible the strings. The shorter the time period the guitar is left completely untuned the better.
When you build a guitar, and I've seen you build fabulous guitars, can you notice the neck bending backwards after fixating the frets in their slots?

I did notice the bending of the neck somewhat when stringing the guitar, but when removing the strings, doesn't the neck just bend back to its natural position?

When I change the strings, I unwind them all untill there is no tension left on the strings. Then I just cut the strings off at the bridge and at the rollers, so I don't have to pull the complete string through the holes at the bridge.
Then it's time to clean the fretboard and the soundboard at the bridge.
After putting new strings back on (the old ones are a bit short now :) ), I bring them back under tension smoothly and evenly.

I never do this
Image
I've the experience that because of the thickness of the thicker strings the smaller strings can come loose or are not so fixed as can be.
Best regards,
Richard Frank

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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Thu Feb 09, 2017 5:44 pm

Time to blow own trumpet again, if I may; my video(s) on this topic can be found here. The general emphasis is on advice to the less experienced, so there are some techniques not mentioned ...

https://youtu.be/hpEbw-bUBP4

https://youtu.be/QEdvN5OTwhM
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)

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MhyrrBenz
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by MhyrrBenz » Thu Aug 17, 2017 5:47 pm

MhyrrBenz wrote:
Tue Dec 06, 2016 3:39 am
I just ordered a Ernie Ball PowerPeg RECHARGEABLE String Winder for $10 more on e - b a y. I was dreading changing strings all month since every last time strings were changed flash as a drunken, sweaty adventure . . . I don't drink either! I find placing the CG on the ironing board works as well as a carpenters table. The manual winder was adding to a mounting CTunnel issue, definitely not a cause of it, but by hand, YES . . . and anxiety provoking. Last string change I knew the E string D'Addario 45 EXP was not stable at high notes and easily propelled outward . . . but I hung in there all this time waiting for my motivation, so it will be the arrival of the new tool . . . I can't take feeling so insecure everytime, outside to inside, one or two loops, how did it get so hot and humid so quick? :oops: Oy Veyerszmeir! :chaud: I can't wait, but I will, b/c if this is as good as they say . . . :mrgreen: I am cool with that.
With the String winder, I've cut off so much time and so much stress on wrists and fingers; I have more time now to discern whether strings are good and have decided I was wrong about the EXP45. Having given them a yearlong test, I find I can't do without them now. I tried a few others but rushed out to replace with exp45's asap. :contrat:

gjj
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by gjj » Sat Sep 02, 2017 6:00 am

Very helpful. I will try this method next time. Thanks.

Peskyendeavour
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by Peskyendeavour » Sat Sep 02, 2017 12:14 pm

Haven't got the bandwidth to see videos right this moment in time, but a related question from a beginner (I see the videos are aimed for beginners like me) when do you need to change strings? These strings been on my guitar for a year since new seems to be doing great and fine... how do you determine that the string has had it and needs changing?

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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:48 pm

Peskyendeavour wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 12:14 pm
Haven't got the bandwidth to see videos right this moment in time, but a related question from a beginner (I see the videos are aimed for beginners like me) when do you need to change strings? These strings been on my guitar for a year since new seems to be doing great and fine... how do you determine that the string has had it and needs changing?
When the basses lose their richness of tone, often at the same time as they lose their strongest tendency to squeak. Visual clues are that they have changed from bright and silvery to dull brown, often with extra marks around the frets. Its normally the D string that loses out first, and you may find the string around the 2nd fret get quite worn or even break through the winding - then its definitely been on far too long!
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)

Peskyendeavour
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by Peskyendeavour » Sat Sep 02, 2017 11:52 pm

Thanks Stephen...
My basses are WAY too old then...
And I thought the less squeaky the better - and that they just got broken in! Oops...... :oops:

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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Sun Sep 03, 2017 8:54 am

Peskyendeavour wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 11:52 pm
...
And I thought the less squeaky the better - and that they just got broken in! Oops...... :oops:
Well it also depends on the precise make of string, some are incredibly squeaky when new and few players can control the excess noise, so its best to use them after a few hours play, but the point is after a while one is losing a whole load of tone after the squeaks are long gone. Its such a gradual process for most people, the exact point of that loss is impossible to pinpoint.
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)

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StGeorge
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Re: Tips for restringing classical guitar

Post by StGeorge » Sun Sep 03, 2017 11:34 am

I also have the Ernie Ball PowerPeg String Winder. It's really great! 8)
StGeorge, Slayer of Dragons.

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