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Author Topic: How do I stop my strings from rusting?  (Read 704 times)

Offline dwest2419

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How do I stop my strings from rusting?
« on: June 07, 2014, 11:55:17 AM »
My strings keep rustings every month and I have to spend $10 replacing them a month!

How do I help stop them rusting or corroding (or whatever they do?!)

 Things I might be doing wrong:
 1. Keep my guitar in a bag 24/7 whenever I'm not playing it
 2. Always keep the window open
 

 I need some pointers on how to look after my strings!

Doors are open for discussion

Offline gtrdave

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Re: How do I stop my strings from rusting?
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2014, 04:23:41 PM »
Keeping the guitar in a case or bag is not a bad thing. I have some guitars in the case for months at a time.
Keeping the window open might be a problem IF you live in an area that experiences high humidity. I live in Delaware and it can get humid here at times, especially in the summer, so I keep the windows to my studio closed most of the time.
Still, the fact is that some people have more acidic sweat than others and they cause the strings to rust prematurely.
My buddy Tim is like that; dude plays his guitar once or twice a month, but the strings rust immediately after he touches it and puts it down.
Three things you can do to help lessen this:
1. always wash your hands and dry them before playing
2. always wipe the strings down with a clean cloth when you're done playing
3. use Elixirs or other coated strings. They might cost more, but you might be changing them less often.
Music theory is not always music reality.

Offline dwest2419

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Re: How do I stop my strings from rusting?
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2014, 06:11:35 PM »
Yeah man, tell me about it! I know what your friend is experiencing. I just bought a pair of Ernie Ball Cobalt strings (which were $10 bucks), and after playing about a hour or so, I've already started seeing brown rust developing on the strings already! So I guess I will have to try getting Elixir strings. But the thing with Elixir strings is that the High E string would pop on me every time I would play. So I had my worse experiences with those strings. Are there any other brand that are some how coated strings?

Doors are open for discussion

Offline Sonar

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Re: How do I stop my strings from rusting?
« Reply #3 on: July 13, 2014, 05:17:08 PM »
Yeah man, tell me about it! I know what your friend is experiencing. I just bought a pair of Ernie Ball Cobalt strings (which were $10 bucks), and after playing about a hour or so, I've already started seeing brown rust developing on the strings already! So I guess I will have to try getting Elixir strings. But the thing with Elixir strings is that the High E string would pop on me every time I would play. So I had my worse experiences with those strings. Are there any other brand that are some how coated strings?

Doors are open for discussion


Know that the highest strings (unwound) used by Elixir are no different that any other guitar strings. They have no special coating. Only the wound strings get the coating.

AND those "cobalt" strings you're using have the same deal...NO difference in the unwound strings from regular guitar strings. The unwound strings are the same as normal unwound strings in Ernie Ball's other string sets which is a specially tempered tin plated high carbon steel.


You probably just have a body chemistry that makes keeping strings clean a problem. Change strings more often. Buy reqular quality guitar strings like D'Addario EXL110 (10-46) by the three pack for under $10....and change them as needed.

Most of these expensive guitar strings and coatings flooding the market are like putting high test premium gasoline in your car that runs just as well on regular. Why waste money? Cobalt? Seriously?

There ARE specialty strings that solve problems or make a planned difference like using expensive Thomastik-Infeld strings on a jazz box for the studio. BUT for regular use, follow GTRDAVE's advice and stop eating KFC during set breaks. Wipe down your strings and guitar after use.


If you're breaking any string regularly, have a guitar tech check the guitar to discover why. Save the broken string to show him HOW and WHERE it's breaking. It's a clue. You might have a burr on your bridge saddle. Whatever. Figure out why it's breaking.

Offline Mysteryman

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Re: How do I stop my strings from rusting?
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2014, 02:48:09 PM »
Mane you've got to stop practicing in the sun and eating cinnamon rolls.  :D I hardly practice guitar and I don't see rust. Sounds like you practice all day everyday.
Vision without action is just day dreaming. I miss practicing.
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