So frustrated. I can't even restring my Gibson SG, let alone set it up!

Five Horizons

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,255
Yep, another +1 for the Bill Baker method. That 3 finger technique works flawlessly. Perfect amount of string around the posts every time. Strings consistently stay in tune once I pull the slack out of 'em and tuning is so much easier with the string "locked in" by kinking the string against the post. I went over 10 years without knowing how to tune the right way and the Bill Baker method really changed everything for me. It's crazy to think how something so small can have such a large impact.
 

NashSG

Member
Messages
4,020
That Bill Baker method is pretty much what I do. Only thing I do different is that I always have the first wind go over the string through the post then the rest below the string through the post.

Adding a bit of lubricant to where the string goes over the bridge and nut is a good thing on a Gibson.

I also like to drop the tailpiece as low as it will go, as that gives it the maximum angle going over the bridge.

I think going up to 11s helps too tuning in standard, but not everyone can get with those. I think if you play 10s on a Strat, 11s on an SG feels fairly close.

Bigsby stringing gets easier if you use a capo to help hold the string.

I think getting the strings out of a Strat can be a pain, especially if it breaks down at the bridge and you have to end up pulling off the back plate.
 

guitarrhinoceros

Senior Member
Messages
2,543
THANK YOU, EVERYONE!

I really, really mean that too. I wasn't sure what type of response I would get to my initial post, but happily, I came home to nothing but helpful remarks. I sincerely appreciate everyone taking the time to set me straight.

I was really freaking out today and probably let the heat (and my A-type personality) get in the way of being productive. On a positive note, I just had one of the best shows ever and am riding high on the wave of rock and roll euphoria.

Thanks again. I am going to give the guitar another go tomorrow. I'll post my results with pictures.

Cheers!

:band
 

CyberFerret

Member
Messages
10,035
Check out the Bill Baker method that birillo highlighted above. I switched to this method last year and it is totally brilliant. Almost makes restringing guitars a pleasure. It's quick, works all the time, is secure and importantly, easy to remove for the next restringing...

 
Messages
5,466
Try this-I've been using this simple and quick method for over 40 years.

1. Thread string through tailpiece as normal.
2. (And it helps if you are seated with the guitar between your knees, headstock facing you, so you can use both hands). Take the string, and keeping it taut put one or two winds around the tuner post BEFORE...
3. ...you put the free end through the post hole and ABOVE the winds you just made.
4. Pull the free end tight to lock the string.
5. Tune to pitch, stretch the string and repeat until there's no slack left in the windings, then snip off excess string length.
6. Job done.

This is so simple and it eliminates all the totally unnecessary over and under knotting and bending manoevers. Also, because you didn't put the string through the post hole first, you have also eliminated a potential string-stress point; the edge of the post hole, (which will encourage metal fatigue and early breakage), because the string now leaves the post, on its way to the nut, at a tangent.
As you tune to pitch you'll see the string windings rising up the tuner post to further lock-off the string at the hole, encouraging the string to stay in tune.
 

ProII

Member
Messages
568
Is tough to describe how to hold the string where your pinky and ring finger are providing upwards pressure at the nut to take up the slack in the string. And your thumb is pressing down at the crown of the post keeping tension on the string while guiding the wind down the post.

Basically the objective is to keep the string both taut and at a shallow angle to the tuner with one hand while you wind with the other. Anyone with basic motor skills can figure out their own way of doing it.
 

Five Horizons

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,255
One thing that seems to confuse people is when you start hearing about "strings winding at a downward angle". Even Bill Baker's string locking technique won't help you if you have sloppy winds around the posts. If you don't get the winds neatly around the posts (aka partially layering on top of each other), they won't grip properly and will lose tune (especially when faced with tension). The good news is that it's a piece of cake to do (just requires a little extra attention). To make sure each wind goes beneath the previous one neatly, simply press down on the string you're tuning all the way down to the headstock right by the tuner post and hold it there while you're tuning. That will create that proper lay of the string around the post to ensure you stay in tune. I know this is fairly obvious to most people, but I know it was something that confused me initially and figured it would be worth clarification. For some reason, I've had mixed results holding it by the nut like Bill showcases in the video. I'm sure it's simply a feel thing, but I've found holding it right by the tuner makes it foolproof (which is good for a guy like me ; ) ). FWIW, I use my thumb to hold it in the nut groove and use my middle finger to put pressure on that string right by the tuner while I'm tuning with the other hand.
 

-=Scorch=-

Senior Member
Messages
631
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BEACHBUM

Member
Messages
3,425
As far as set up goes the same basic techniques apply to all guitars no matter what the brand. What specific set up problems are you having?
 

Soul Driver

Member
Messages
450
Check out the Bill Baker method that birillo highlighted above. I switched to this method last year and it is totally brilliant. Almost makes restringing guitars a pleasure. It's quick, works all the time, is secure and importantly, easy to remove for the next restringing...



+1 this is the method I use as well.
 

Singlecutz

Member
Messages
169
Try going to the store where you bought it and I'm sure someone will show you how to restring the guitar. If the guitar needs a complete setup, then it may be worth the $ to pay a professional to do it the first time while you watch so you know what to do next time.
 




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