Stretching Guitar Strings

After restringing a guitar, some guitarists like to stretch their guitar strings. Simply apply a bit of tension by lifting each string an inch or so off the fretboard then tune the string back up. This makes it so you don't have to retune a new set of strings as many times while they adjust to their ideal elasticity. Especially if you plan on doing a lot of bending in your play.

Stretching a new set of strings does two main things to them.

  1. The applied tension removes the elasticity of a new set of strings and forces them to stretch.
  2. It forces the string's wind around the guitar pegs to become tighter, removing any rigidness, loose loops, or unsettled overlaps.

Some guitarists prefer not to do this and allow their strings to ease into their final resting state over time, retuning a new set of guitar strings frequently. Some guitarists say you should never do this while others swear by it. It is a bit debated so do whatever works best for you. I've found it saves time and speeds up the natural stretching of the strings. A word of caution however, like all things, you can overdo it. So go easy and find the sweet spot. I do about two to three light stretches on each string.

Stretching Guitar Strings