Changing strings on your electric guitar. Not a big deal. You have probably done it several times. But if you are just starting our on the guitar, it can be hard to know if you are doing it the best way. With the different type of bridges, tremolo system, and tail pieces that various guitars have and you find that one system does not necessarily fit all.
If I am changing string on a guitar with a fixed bridge, like a Telecaster, or a tune-o-matic bridge like a Les Paul, I usually take all the strings off at once. This takes less time and I have not found that removing the strings tension, for a short period of time, has any adverse effect on the shape of the neck.
For floating bridges, like a Strat, I usually replace one string at a time and get them close to tuning. While this takes a little longer than removing them all at once, it is easier to tune. If you remove all of the strings at once, the tension is taken off the tremolo springs and tuning can take a while. Each string you install and tighten will change the bridge position and all the strings will need retuning.
The video playlist below contains videos from Elixir Strings. Each video demonstrate replacing strings on a different type of bridge. These videos do a good job of describing how each type of bridge works and how to best change the strings. The following lists the videos and the type of bridge covered in each one (yes, we even included the bass!):
- How to Restring Your Stratocaster
- How to Restring Your Telecaster
- How to Restring Your Tune-O-Matic bridge guitar
- How to Restring Your Bigsby style bridge
- How to Restring Your Floyd Rose Tremelo system
- How to Restring Your bass guitar
Select the drop-down menu in the upper left corner of the video to jump to the one you want to watch. Or watch them all and learn about the different type of bridges. The first few seconds of each video is an intro that gets a little repetitive. Other than that there is some good information here. Especially for anyone just getting into guitar.
I hope you find these video informative. Let us know if you have any string changing suggestions you think others might find helpful.
Enjoy and stay In-Tune.