Prof Dave’s String Changing Tips

Prof Dave’s String Changing Tips

To make your guitar or bass sound better, perform better

& last longer, consider the Professor’s advice.


  1. 1.     Before you even change the strings – when was the last time you had a professional setup? If the neck is out of line or intonation is incorrect, new strings won’t help. If you don’t know when the last setup was, it’s probably time  to get a setup.
  2. 2.     If you change string gauges (for example go from light to extra light), be aware this may necessitate a setup all by itself. It’s common, string tension, pressure and size can make a huge difference on the neck and intonation.
  3. 3.     After removing your old strings, clean the areas that you can’t get to like on the body under the strings, the bridge, fretboard, headstock and tuning machines.
  4. 4.     Use fretboard cleaner and conditioner on an ebony, rosewood or ironwood fretboard to clean and treat the wood. These products may be lemon oil, teak oil, walnut oil or turpentine (pine oil). NEVER USE FRETBOARD CLEANING PRODUCTS ON A MAPLE FRETBOARD. Rosewood, ebony and ironwood are treated during manufacture, not finished. Maple fretboards are finished and fretboard cleaners will make a big mess on finished surfaces.   On a maple fretboard, and the rest of the guitar, use a regular guitar cleaner – polish.
  5. 5.     While the strings are off, use a wrench and gently tighten the tuning machines. This is often overlooked and they can become loose over time. Remember: GENTLY!
  6. 6.     Use a stringwinder when putting strings on. It not only makes the job quicker, but helps the strings wind evenly.


Get more tips online at and click on “blogs” and then Prof. Dave’s Guitar & Bass Buying Advice

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