As a new guitarist, restringing a guitar for the first time can be pretty daunting. So we’ve put together a step by step guide to help you guys out. It’s best to have someone who knows what they’re doing to be with you the first time you try. You will need to have your:
- New pack of strings (nylon or steel)
- Wire cutters
Step 1. Firstly, put your guitar in front of you on a flat surface with the strings facing up. Remove the low E (6th string) by loosening it with the tuning key on the guitar head until it’s drooping off the guitar. You will be able to tell if you are turning the right way by playing the string as you turn. It should be making a sound that is getting lower as you turn. If it’s getting higher, turn the opposite way.
Step 2. Once it’s extremely loose, unwind the string from the tuning peg at the head of the guitar and you should be able to pull the end of the string out of the small hole in the tuning peg.
Step 3. Once this is done, the string should be hanging from the bridge and not connected to the head of the guitar. The string will have been fed through the bridge with a ball end on the bottom side of the bridge to keep it attached to the bridge. Feed the string back through the top of the bridge (side closest to the acoustic hole) through towards the bottom of the bridge and you should be able to pull the whole string out from the bottom of the bridge by pulling on the ball end. If there is a bridge pin on the bridge, simply pull it out of the bridge to reveal the ball ends of the strings attached to the bridge
Step 4. Now, unpack the new string and uncoil it. Look for ‘6th string’ on the individual string pack to find the right one. Once it’s uncoiled, simply feed it through the bottom of the bridge and reattach the bridge pin if there is one.
Step 5. The string should now be hanging from the bridge the same way the old one was before you took it off the guitar. Now, take the other end of the string to the head of the guitar and feed it through the small hole in the tuning peg. Make sure the bottom of the string near the bridge is in the string groove as well as up the top near the head.
Step 6. Once the end of the string is through the hole in the tuning peg, start turning the peg and tightening the string. It’s recommended that you turn anticlockwise while tightening and make sure the string is tight around the peg as you turn. The string should tighten as you turn the peg and start being tight enough to pluck and hear the note get higher in pitch as you turn the peg.
Step 7. Once you think the string is tight enough, use the tuner to tune it up. Once the string is in tune, cut off the extra string hanging from the guitar head leaving a little bit in case you want to tune down the string to a lower note in the future.
Step 8. Repeat this for all 6 strings and then get playing. It’s best to have a couple of extra strings handy in case you break a couple while restringing. To avoid breakages, try not to over tighten the string before you tune.