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Help! Broken string!


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#1 OFFLINE   Miss Bleuet

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 07:33 AM

ack!

I was in the middle of tuning (still new at this) my guitar and I busted my 1st string (in both senses of the term) and I am freaked and very sad! Can I just bring it in to my guitar shop to repair?? Will it cost an arm and a leg??

Very, very sad Miss Bleuet :crying2:

#2 OFFLINE   starsailor

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 07:56 AM

Hi Miss Bleuet, Is your guitar acoustic or electric, if you've just broken the string and there's no other damage you can replace them yourself, if you have a set of strings that have been on for a while it would be best to change all of them, if you've been having problems with tuning or if you have an electric with a more complicated bridge like a Floyd rose and don't feel confident about changing the strings on it you could go for getting a set up done at your local guitar store, don't know how much it is in Canada over here a basic set up is about $60, here's a link to string changing.

http://www.guitarfor...m/restring.html
You don't stop laughing when you grow old; you grow old when you stop laughing.

#3 OFFLINE   allthumbs

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 08:27 AM

What star said. Remember when in doubt whether you have gone past the correct tunning, always loosen the string back off a few turns till it is obviously too low and start again. Use the 5th fret tuning method and cross check it by using the harmonic method at the 5 and 7 fret. If you have a tuner, use all three.

#4 OFFLINE   thodwris

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 08:29 AM

Well said there Chris!...Don't worry about braking a string,it happens.It is a ggod chance to change the strings that are on your guitar and try something else on just to see how it feels.The price of strings is low and since you haven't done it yourself,I suggest you go to a local guitar shop and get some help.It will all be all right and in a matter of minutes you will be good to go again...
All the best,
Theo

#5 OFFLINE   Miss Bleuet

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 04:03 PM

Hi Starsailor!

Thank you for the advice. It's an acoustic and since I am new to this, I ran over to the guitar shop and the dude their re-strung (?) it for 5$. I watched him do it and realized it's a pretty simple procedure and I should learn how it's done. I am still pretty new to the guitar, so these things will make me panic, especially when I am still learning how to tune- tuning strings 1, 2, and 3 still confuse me as I tend to twist the wrong bottom pegs (?). I will check out the link you sent me . Thanks again!

#6 OFFLINE   starsailor

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 04:47 PM

Miss Bleuet said:

Hi Starsailor!

Thank you for the advice. It's an acoustic and since I am new to this, I ran over to the guitar shop and the dude their re-strung (?) it for 5$. I watched him do it and realized it's a pretty simple procedure and I should learn how it's done. I am still pretty new to the guitar, so these things will make me panic, especially when I am still learning how to tune- tuning strings 1, 2, and 3 still confuse me as I tend to twist the wrong bottom pegs (?). I will check out the link you sent me . Thanks again!

Hi Miss Bleuet, Pleased you got it sorted the guy in the guitar shop sounds cool, always worth knowing how to do it as you never know when a string will break, retuning is a bit stressful, I broke a few strings tuning nothing unusual there, don't know which tuner you're using but here's a useful lesson from X4StringDrive on tuning with a tuner, a string snapping always makes you jump so it is a bit nerve wracking:winkthumb:

http://www.guitarfor...ps-using-tuner/
You don't stop laughing when you grow old; you grow old when you stop laughing.

#7 OFFLINE   karcey

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 05:26 PM

G'day Miss B, Welcome to the forum. Everyone breaks strings when they start out. Some of us keep breaking them. Here's a handy hint which may save you the frustration of not having a guitar to play because of a broken string.
The big strings don't break very often, so tune from that side. Tune the thickest string with your electronic tuner, or tune the next one with your tuning fork, whichever you prefer. Then tune the rest by ear, (Do you know how that's done?) This way is much safer that trying to tighten a string until the needle moves to the right place. When you have it sounding OK, then get out the electronic tuner and give it the finishing touches.
All the strings should feel about the same tension, so if one feels very loose, you're probably tuning it a whole octave lower than it should be. Of course the converse applies ... if you're tuning it an octave high, it'll break, which is probably what happened to your first string.
It is not old fashioned to tune by ear, rather than electronically. It's a skill every serious guitarist should have.
Keep in touch.
"The music matters more than the instrument on which we play it." Jason W. Solomon

#8 OFFLINE   Miss Bleuet

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 05:59 PM

Hi there Karcey,

Good advice indeed! I will employ your technique this very evening after I get in from work. The only thing is, I do not quite know how to tune by ear, although, of course, that is how my teacher does it, I have become too reliant on my tuner. How does one become "atuned" to one's strings? (bad, bad pun, I know!);)

#9 OFFLINE   Doug

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 06:59 PM

The standard way is as Karcey said, start with either the low E or the A string and then tune across on the fifth fret (except for the B string which is the 4th fret of the G string).

But the most common problem with this is that if you are consistently flat or sharp as you go the error accumulates and by the time you get to the top strings, they are no longer in tune with the lower strings.

But one of the neat things about the guitar is that the same notes appear all over the neck. Either the exact same note or the same note an octave higher or lower. You can use this to help cross check your tuning. Mention this to your teacher and (s)he will show you what I mean. For example, if you play the low E string (fattest string) open, then fret the A string (2nd fattest) at the 7th fret - they should sound the same, just an octave higher.

The hard thing is to not allow creapage or the accumulation of errors as you go from the lowest to the highest string. The way you can check for that is by playing a note on a low string and then the same note on a high string. The easiest example is the low E and the high E (top and bottom strings) they should sound the same - just dfferent octaves. Or you can play the A string (second fattest 5th string) on the second fret and it should sound the same as string number 2 - the B string (the second skinniest string). And that same note should sound the same as the first string 7th fret.
"we don't see things as they are, we see things as we are" - Anais Nin

#10 OFFLINE   johnnydoxx

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 07:05 PM

Here's how we learned to hear intonation in high school band (although not for guitars, but it applies). Not sure I can put it into writing well.

Once you get the lowest (referring to pitch, not to location up/down) string tuned, then start on the next highest one.
But start it so it is lower in tone that where it will eventually end up. Then tighten it.
As you approach the proper tone, there will be a 'clash' that you should hear - a vibration (I need a better word than that, maybe oscillation) in the air. The clash is generated by the disparate waves from the two strings. As you keep tightening, the vibration will oscillate more slowly as you approach the proper tone.

When the tone is proper the vibration disappears.

If you go past the proper tone, then the vibration will occur again, but it is easier to identify as you approach the proper tone from below than trying to start from above.

Having said that, I don't pretend that I can do it that way. I use the red and green lights on my tuner ...

#11 OFFLINE   eddiez152

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 11:30 PM

Miss Bleuet
Lots of good info up there by everyone. But here is some more and plenty of others to look at. Including the use of tuners as well.
YouTube - Guitar Lesson - Tuning Your Guitar
Nothin sweeter than the sound of music comin out of a 6 string box - EZ me Music / ASCAP "Music is a social act of communication, a gesture of friendship,the strongest there is"-Malcolm Arnold

#12 OFFLINE   Sentry

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Posted 22 August 2008 - 02:55 PM

Everyone breaks strings now and then, even pros. I was at a Metallica concert when I was a teenager and Kirk Hammet, their lead guitarist, broke his high-E right in the middle of a song. James Hetfield, their rhythm guitarist/singer, led the entire audience in a rousing chant of "Kirk is an a**hole" because Kirk insisted on replacing the string on his favourite guitar instead of grabbing one of the band's many spare guitars. So we all chanted happily away while Kirk replaced the string. It didn't take long.

Poor Kirk. I can understand wanting to play one's favourite guitar. Anyway, the point is that it's nothing at all unusual to break a string.

The 1st string breaks the most frequently due to obviously being the the thinnest and weakest, so I keep one full set of spare strings in my guitar case and one additional high-E as well. Most guitar shops will sell individual strings for under $1.





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