De tune strings when not playing guitars?

Discussion in 'Standard Guitars' started by vejichan, Jan 27, 2020.

  1. vejichan

    vejichan SS.org Regular

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    If you are playing your guitars once a week or once a month should you de tune the strings when storing them in their cases or keep them tuned up? I have all my guitars tuned to pitch and stored in their cases but wondering if this does more harm than good.
     
  2. T00DEEPBLUE

    T00DEEPBLUE SS.org Regular

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    Leaving them tuned up doesn't hurt anything.
     
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  3. GRUNTKOR

    GRUNTKOR - GRANKOR

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    It's literally designed to be under constant tension
     
  4. Fred the Shred

    Fred the Shred Shrederick

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    There is no valid reason whatsoever to detune your guitars when storing them unless you have some very old steel strung guitar with no truss rod and showing signs of structural fatigue. I'd wager that isn't really the case.
     
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  5. Lemonbaby

    Lemonbaby SS.org Regular

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    I always detune my classical guitar when I have bass strings on... :congress:
     
  6. ixlramp

    ixlramp SS.org Regular

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    Repeated application and release of tension from a guitar will cause structural fatigue and constantly mess with instrument setup.
    Bad idea.
     
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  7. Wuuthrad

    Wuuthrad Well-Known Member

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    I'm guessing you're asking about electric guitars only. In this case I think it doesn't really matter.

    An electric guitar neck is probably the only thing to worry about really, if at all. If it's exposed to wide temperature and humidity differences or being shipped then a detune might offer a bit of protection against warping or breaking. But overall it's probably not that big of a deal.

    Comparatively, from an engineering perspective, Acoustic guitars are a collapsing box.

    Classical guitars for example usually have no truss rod, so detuning them in storage can help prevent their inevitable demise to a certain degree, although it's debatable.

    Steel string acoustics are generally thicker tops, X bracing and not as susceptible to top warping.

    But electric guitars generally are much more solid and I'd say it's probably not that important.

    But for some reason I almost always tune my guitars to A420 which is a pretty low A. I just like the sound better, and it's a bit of a detune.
     
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  8. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    It's better to leave things tensioned, even acoustics and especially acoustics without truss rods. The string tension pulls the neck in a fairly predictable, even way, generally. That's preferable to the neck being able to bend any which way, which can often be in ways not easily corrected.
     
  9. Wuuthrad

    Wuuthrad Well-Known Member

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    ^

    The tension of steel strings is much higher than nylon strings, so it's fair to say it's a different equation altogether, and probably not even a fair comparison on my part.

    Also when considering the concern of a classical soundboard cracking or warping with string tension or temp. and humidity over time, it's not really the same problem, and hardly one that applies to electric guitars.

    I guess maybe this concern about de-tuning is sort of leftover from days past of acoustic or classical times. Seems like it might be, and would make sense.
     

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