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Most Detailed Instructions For Cutting Guitar Strings – How To Cut Acoustic Guitar Strings Before Winding During String Changing Process

Over a long period of use and exposure, the strings of the guitar will rust, tarnish, stretch, etc. Newbies sometimes wonder why their guitar is losing some tone without realizing the problem is just by changing one or more strings. As soon as the old strings are changed, the sound will be completely new and better. But in the process of changing strings, if you do not cut the strings before winding them, the excess of the string will make you confused. Moreover, cutting guitar strings will reduce the case that the excess strings will scratch the guitar and also your hands. But, how to cut guitar strings correctly without making the strings too short?

To answer the above question, as experienced guitarists, we will show you how to cut the strings before proceeding to thread the string through the peg and wind it. Note that this only applies to acoustic guitars.

In the article, we will show you the definition of acoustic guitar and it’s characteristics; the materials needed for implementing the whole instructions; step-by-step instructions for cutting guitar strings; and the FAQs about how to cut guitar strings. 

What Is An Acoustic Guitar? How To Distinguish Acoustic Guitars From Other Kinds Of Guitars?

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What Is An Acoustic Guitar?

To have the most accurate and specific concept or definition of an acoustic guitar for everyone to understand is not a simple matter. According to the information that we found out, most experts still haven’t had a clear concept of an acoustic guitar. Therefore, we are able to know the acoustic guitar as the following information.

The acoustic guitar is often used in accompaniment. Also, the sound emitted when playing acoustic guitar in accompaniment is resonant and has a regular speed of sound.

cutting guitar strings
Most Detailed Instructions For Cutting Guitar Strings - How To Cut Acoustic Guitar Strings Before Winding During String Changing Process 9

Characteristics Of An Acoustic Guitar

A special feature of an acoustic guitar is often in the strings. Therefore, to distinguish an acoustic guitar from the same-shape classical guitar, we often rely on the strings.

  • The acoustic guitar always comes with metal strings.
  • The metal strings give the instrument a resonant sound that is suitable for accompaniment.
  • Acoustic guitar strings are wound on the small upright iron shafts (also known as the pegs) on the neck.

However, the 3 above characteristics will be inadequate for you to distinguish. You can also consider the following features to find the correct acoustic guitars.

  • The frets: Classical guitars usually have 12 frets and acoustic guitars usually have 14 frets.
  • The neck: Classic guitars often have larger necks than acoustic guitars.
  • The body: Classical guitars often have round bodies. On the other hand, acoustic guitars usually have recessed bodies.
  • Like other guitars, the structure of an acoustic guitar still includes the main parts such as strings, head, neck, and body.
  • The strings of this guitar line are made of metal, so the strings are often tenser, and the sound is also sharper and more resonant.
  • The head of the acoustic guitar will have some small iron shafts lying vertically (also known as the pegs), this is the position to wind one end of the string.
  • Usually, acoustic necks are smaller than other guitars. But the body of the acoustic guitar is larger in size.

Materials For Cutting Guitar Strings

Necessary materials

  • Acoustic guitar
  • A new set of 6 strings

Alternative materials

  • 3-in-1 guitar restring tool
  • Wire cutter
  • Nail clipper

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Further Information About Alternative Materials

3-in-1 Guitar Rest Tool

Currently, the 3-in-1 guitar rest tool is sold a lot on the market. This is a tool with up to 3 functions in just one tool: cutter, winder, and pin puller. This tool is not only inexpensive but also multi-functional. Therefore, I think you should buy one to make the process of changing the strings easier.

Wire Cutter 

If you do not have the above tool and you also do not like to combine too many functions in one tool, you can use the wire cutter available in your home to cut. You can rest assured because the wire cutter perfectly produces sharp cuts like the above-specialized tool.

Nail Clipper

In case you absolutely do not have the above 2 things, you can use a nail cutter. We firmly believe that you must have at least one nail cutter in your home, so now you don’t have to worry about not being able to cut the string anymore. However, for strings 1 and 2, nail cutter cutting is not a problem. But for the 4 rest strings, we’re a bit worried about the age of your nail cutter. It will also cut them, but it will chip easily. Therefore, we suggest that you should buy one of these 2 above tools if you have an acoustic guitar in your home.

How To Cut Guitar Strings Before Winding During The Guitar Restring Process – Step-by-Step Cutting Guitar Strings Instructions

Step 1: Measure And Cut String No.6

After attaching the string to the guitar with the bridge pin, you straighten the string to the top of the guitar. Instead of threading it through the peg and winding it up, you cut the string first. You now have to take measurements to be able to cut it exactly. 

With the string number 6, you straighten it and put it on the 5th peg. You will cut the 6th string right on top of the 5th peg.

However, don’t forget to hold carefully 2 sides of the string to avoid it being thrown away or splashed into the eyes. After cutting the 6th string, you should push it to the left to avoid confusion.

Step 2: Measure And Cut String No.5

Step 2 will be the same process as step 1, in other words, the 5th string will be measured and cut like the 6th string. You have to put string number 5 on peg number 4 and cut it at peg number 4. Also, after cutting, don’t forget to push string number 5 to the left.

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Step 3: Measure And Cut String No.4

With the 4th string, you will straighten it through the 4th peg to the point that is 5cm longer than the guitar head. You will cut the string at a point that is longer than the top of the guitar 5cm and leave the string to the left like the 2 steps above.

Step 4: Measure And Cut String No.3

The 3rd string will be similar to the 4th string. You straighten the string through the 3rd peg to the point that is longer than the top of the guitar 5cm. You will cut the 3rd string at a point that is 5cm longer than the head of the guitar and leave the string to the left.

Step 5: Measure And Cut String No.2

Note that the 2nd and 1st strings are the two thinnest strings on the guitar. Because it does not have a copper outer layer, when winding the wires 1 and 2 are more drifting. Therefore, when cutting, these 2 strings will be cut at little longer points. 

The 2nd string will be straightened through the 3rd peg and cut at a point that is 3cm longer than the 3rd peg. After that, you should also push string 2 to the left.

Step 6: Measure And Cut String No.1

The 1st string will be straightened on the 3rd peg and cut on the 3rd peg. Be careful not to mistakenly cut the 1st string on the 2nd peg.

Now you have completed the 6 steps of cutting guitar strings.

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FAQs About Cutting Guitars Strings Before Winding Them

Q: After cutting the string, can I still continue to wind it as usual?

Of course, you can completely wind the strings as usual. In addition, cutting them before winding makes your winding process easier. Extra strings will not stab your hand or scratch the guitar anymore.

Also, you can consider the steps in the video below to change the strings for your guitar. Although the string measurement of the men in the video is a bit different from ours, after cutting strings our way, you just follow the restring ways of the video to get the best result. Due to our years of experience with guitar, we are confident that our measurements will give you a guitar with all the strings that are wound as they were when you first bought the guitar.

Q: What should we pay attention to when following the cutting steps above?

You should note that you need to hold the end of the string when cutting to avoid the string splashing in your eyes or splashing around. Also, as I have mentioned again and again above, after cutting you should leave the string to the left to avoid confusion.

Furthermore, you have to pay attention to all details that we have provided such as the string no.1 and no.2 will remain a bit longer than 4 other strings.

Can we apply this way of cutting guitar strings for other kinds of guitars?

The answer is no. Each kind of guitar will have different kinds of characteristics or be constructed differently. This way is just applied for acoustic guitars. 

However, if you want to know the way to cut other kinds of guitars, please let us know by commenting. We promise to bring you the most useful information.


You want to change the strings regularly so you can make the best sounds like a real guitarist, but you are worried that you will damage or scratch the guitar. Now you don’t need to worry anymore because you already know the esoteric way of cutting strings of guitar makers. We’ve shown you how to cut guitar strings before winding in the most detailed and specific way of changing strings to keep your guitar like a new one. Hope that you guys can become an artist to be able to successfully change strings for your own acoustic guitar.

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After reading this article, you are very excited and want to practice right away, right? But now you are wondering which strings are the best quality, best suit your guitar, and produce the best sound. Click here for more details on the finest strings which have been re-purchased by guitarists over and over again.

Last but not least, if you have any feedback, don’t hesitate to comment below. Your comments can not only help us improve the website, but also provide more information for other readers.

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