Stretch or play em in?

Discussion in 'Sidewinders Bar & Grille' started by revtime, Oct 24, 2021.

  1. revtime

    revtime Strat-Talker

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    Do you stretch the chit out of your strings when you do a change or play em till the tuning stabilizes?
    I am the most living room player of all. I think pulling hard on strings hurts the strings, the guitar, and your hand. I change em tune em and then play for a bit. Tune again and play for a bit. 15 to 20 mins of this and I am golden.
    If you stretch why? Is it because some dude on youtube told ya to or is there a valid reason based in science?
    If you break a string at a gig that is different in my opinion. You need stability NOW not in 20 mins.
     
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  2. jbylake

    jbylake Fabulously Famous Nobody Gold Supporting Member Silver Member

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    No I don't stretch the "Chit" out of them. I do pull up on each string firmly and run up and down the string between my pointer finger and thumb. This is usually all of the stretching I need to do, but occasionally one or two might go out of tune in the first 15 minutes, and a tweak on the tuning head is about all it they need, in my case, to "settle" in. No quantum mechanics or theoretical physics knowledge required.:p:p
     
  3. Voxman

    Voxman Strat-Talker

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    Put them on, tune them up, bend them a lot, tune again, bend some more, tune again, then pretty much keep playing from there
     
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  4. Cesspit

    Cesspit Strat-O-Master

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    Stretch them, retune, play and adjusts as you go until I restring agin.
     
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  5. train

    train Fender 1 —the met. Silver Member

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    Play em in. The tremolo players like to give em a proper going over I have noticed .
     
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  6. Will Lefeurve

    Will Lefeurve Most Honored Senior Member

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    I do stretch them now, but that wasn't always the case. A friend who I'd class as semi-professional got me into the stretching routine. However, I do take your point, as back in the day when I was gigging I'd never stretch strings, just played them in as you say. I don't remember any great dramas.

    Mind you, I've never been one of those who needed a second job to pay for new string requirements, I play em until they are well and truly dead.. :thumb:
     
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  7. Higgins1980

    Higgins1980 Strat-O-Master

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    I’m a home only payer as well I stretch mine for about 60-90 seconds or so before final tuning.
     
  8. Howard Emerson

    Howard Emerson Strat-Talker Gold Supporting Member

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    Steel strings, be they nickel or bronze wound, or plain, do not actually stretch.

    When steel actually 'stretches' it has deformed, and is on its way to failing.

    It's the residual 'lash' of the windings around the tuner post, the possible friction in the nut slot or saddle/s, the tailpiece/anchor, the ball end finding its final setting place, etc, that causes the pitch to go lower, and it's even worse on acoustics with bridge pins.....but you all knew this, right?

    :)

    HE
     
  9. ThreeChordWonder

    ThreeChordWonder Senior Stratmaster

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    I tune mine 2 notes above, leave them a couple of hours, maybe overnight, then slacken and tune.
     
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  10. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Senior Stratmaster

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    You can't hurt anything unless you pull like a gorilla, certainly not the neck or the hardware of the guitar. As I tend to get annoyed with my guitar going out of tune, my routine is stretch and then play em in.
     
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  11. henderman

    henderman Dr. Stratster

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    first thing a cat and dog does when they wake is stretch. so should you.

    nature has all the answers.
     
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  12. jbylake

    jbylake Fabulously Famous Nobody Gold Supporting Member Silver Member

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    Damn, that sounds like the hard way....:p
     
  13. Jimbo99

    Jimbo99 Strat-Talker

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    Play them in is my vote, Standard tuning becomes a lower tune and eventually they play in & hold tune. To me, pulling on them is a trick to get to played in immediately, but it also pulls on the tuning pegs, bridge & screws. A lifetime of that and is there any wonder the wood strips out or the head stock cracks ?
     
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  14. StratMike10

    StratMike10 Dr. Stratster Silver Member

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    There is no such thing as stretching the strings, you're just tightening the wind and seating the lug at the bridge. You tune the strings, yank each of the strings to about the equivalent of a 1-1/2 bend a few times each, retune, repeat until things stabilize. 2 or 3 go-arounds is usually sufficient.

    This is not hurting anything. You are not pulling any harder than you would during normal playing and you're not overstressing the guitar in any way, that's just silly.
     
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  15. StratUp

    StratUp Senior Stratmaster

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    I install, rough tune, pull reasonably per gauge, tune accurately, repeat pull and tune, bend heavy and tune. Play from there and they are usually stable.

    I don't think you're ever stretching the steel. You're just settling them in on the posts and bridge.
     
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  16. dirocyn

    dirocyn Most Honored Senior Member

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    When its nylon strings I stretch them. A lot. If you just tune up and start playing, they go very flat (sounds awful) within seconds, and they will keep doing so for months. With some hard stretching they can be playable within minutes. They'll still go a little flat overnight, but by then you can tune up and go.

    With steel strings I'll give em a gentle tug until they quit going flat. 3 or 4 times and not any harder than a two half-step bend. It really doesn't take much.
     
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  17. SIngles Forever

    SIngles Forever Strat-O-Master

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    I don't know if it's just my guitars, but I find that the guitar is impossible to play in tune without at least 40 seconds of hard pulling per string.
     
  18. Stratoman10

    Stratoman10 Dr. Stratster Silver Member

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    When I stretch mine I hold them on the first fret to try to take some pressure off the tuners and headstock. So tune, stretch, retune, stretch again and go play. It'll take a little adjustment after that but not much
     
  19. Wrighty

    Wrighty Dr. Stratster

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    Stretch them, not necessarily the **** out of them, but do stretch them. I think most of the initial settling in is down to the strings tightening onto the pegs and only marginally to the strings stretching. Locking tuners cured the former for me.
     
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  20. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Dr. Stratster

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    When you're not a bedroom player, and you need to perform on stage and having your tuning be as perfect as possible, YES, they get new strings that day (of the gig) and they get stretched for a good 20 minutes until the notes never drop again. It would be stupid to go out there without things setup properly. A good guitar tech for a pro is worth their weight in gold.
     
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