How to Restring An Acoustic Guitar With Bridge Pins

How to Restring An Acoustic Guitar With Bridge Pins?

  1. Unwind the strings that are in place on the guitar and remove bridge pins. Remove the strings. 
  2. Place the ball end of the string into the bridge. 
  3. Take the bridge pin and set it into the hole; stop pressing down when you feel resistance. 
  4. While holding the bridge pin, pull the guitar string taught, twisting the bridge pin until the ball end of the string reaches the top directly under the bridge pin.
  5. You will know this is complete when lightly pulling on the string will not remove the bridge pin from the hole.
  6. Run the thin end of the string through the hole in the tuning peg.
  7. Leave a tuner size amount of string as slack. 
  8. Make a bend in the string clockwise around the tuner.
  9. While holding tension on the string, twist the tuner knob and winding the strings around the tuner.
  10. Remove the excess string with wire cutters once the string is in tune and played for a few minutes.

The most challenging part of this process will be keeping the pins in the holes on the bridge plate while tuning. It is imperative to make sure the string’s ball end has fallen into the slot inside the bridge pin. That is what will keep the pin in the hole during tuning. The rest of the process will be just like any other guitar. 

How to Restring An Acoustic Guitar With Bridge Pins

Are Acoustic Guitars Different?

Stringing acoustic guitars with pins will be the same as any other guitar. The 6 pins are arranged in a specific way on the bridge to hold the strings in place. 

Remove the pins and the old strings. Place the string’s ball end into the hole and place the bridge pin on top. Make sure the string ball end is flush against the bridge pin. Then begin to string the guitar as usual.

Replacing Bridge Pins

Unwind the steel string from the tuning peg. You can hand twist the knob or use a guitar string winder. With one hard on the bridge pin and the other on the string right outside the pin, pull the string directly upwards to remove the bridge pin. You may need to wiggle the bridge pin loose as well. 

Replacing the bridge pins on your acoustic guitar is very important; this feature is what keeps the string in place. When bridge pins become loose or damaged, they will create a buzzing sound in the string while you play. Replacing them will create a new tight seal that will keep your strings sounding crisp.

Return the bridge pins into the holes they were in previously. Sometimes, the wood can warp and take on slightly different shapes. Even the slightest chance in size can create bridge pins to get stuck inside the hole on the bridge.

Old And Worn Bridge Pins

Bridge pins are not interchangeable between all acoustic guitars. They are made out of many different materials and come in different shapes and sizes. You will need to check with your guitar manufacturer to find which bridge pins will fit your guitar. 

If the bridge pin is stuck in the bridge, try to unwind the string and pull upwards on the bridge from the inside. Be careful not to damage the pin by bending it or splitting the top. If this method does not work, you may need to use pliers to remove the pin.

Which Way Do They Go?

Bridge pins go in the bridge with the thin end in. The ball on the top of the bridge pin will be exposed outside the hole when properly installed. There is a slot inside the bridge pin that that ball of the string will fit into to keep both secure and align this slot with the string. 

What Are Their Purpose?

Bridge pins allow the string to retain enough tension to keep it in tune. Bridge pins also keep the guitar string in line with the tuner peg. These keep the string from shooting out of the bridge while playing the instrument. 

The hollow body of the acoustic guitar is what resonates with the sound to amplify it. Bridge pins also relay the vibration from the guitar to the strings of the instrument. These pins are like a receiver between the strings and the instrument’s body.

What Will Happen If The String’s Ball End Isn’t Set When Tuning?

If the ball end of the string isn’t completely flush with the top of the bridge pin, your string is likely to pop out of the bridge when tuning. Once enough tension has been applied to the string during the tuning process, it will slowly start to remove the bridge pin from the bridge.

You will see this beginning to happen when tuning. It’s a good idea to keep one finger on the bridge pin while winding the string to ensure that the string is in place. This will also keep the string from popping out while tuning. 

You may need to readjust the string inside the bridge if it starts to come out while tuning. Just unwind the string a bit to relieve the tension and reapply the ball end of the string flush against the inside of the bridge. 

What If They Aren’t In Line When Installed?

Bridge pins may not sit completely flush with each other along the bridge when installed. Some may be slightly higher than the others. This is why it’s essential to use the same bridge pins for the same hole. Differences in string size and tension may make the pins sit in different positions. This is normal and is not a cause for concern.

What If They Are Loose In The Holes? 

This is another normal circumstance where the pins are loose-fitting inside the holes. Once the strings are installed, the tension and pressure will keep the pins in place and snug. If the bridge pins are still loose after proper installation, you may need to try bigger bridge pins. 

Bridge pins are not universal and come in different sizes. It’s best to check with your manufacturer to see what size pins your guitar utilizes. Try the next size up to see if the new bridge pins fit more snuggly into the holes. 

You may need to have the holes professionally repaired. Wood can warp over time, and you may need to bring your guitar to a specialist who can either make the holes bigger or smaller, depending on the situation. 


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