Guitar straps are helpful for increased mobility and comfort while playing. However, attaching it can be challenging, especially if your guitar doesn’t come with the necessary pieces to install a strap.
Here are some tips to help you attach guitar straps easily.
Using Two Strap Pins
If you look at your guitar strap, you’ll notice that each end has leather (or a similar material) tips with a circular hole and slit.
Now, search for two small pins on your guitar. Most guitars have one on the bottom of the guitar body, exactly where the guitar touches the ground when you leave it upright, leaning against a wall. The other strap pin is usually on the top of the guitar’s body, behind the neck heel.
All you need to do to attach the guitar strap is slip the opening on each end over the pins. Pull gently on the material to check that you securely attached it.
What If Your Guitar Has Only One Strap Pin?
While many guitars – acoustic, electric, and electro-acoustic – come with two strap pins for an easy attachment, some guitars have only one pin on the bottom. Because certain guitars have a unique shape, the manufacturers may leave out the top button strap for structural or aesthetic reasons.
In this case, there are two easy ways to connect your strap: installing a second pin or using thread.
Installing a Second Strap Pin
Visit your local music store or online shop to purchase a second strap pin at a low cost. Each package usually comes with two buttons, two washers, and two small screws.
Ideally, talk to a professional, like a music store owner or your guitar instructor, about where to install the second strap button. This is so that you have the perfect fit and don’t damage the integrity of the guitar.
The most common locations include the side or back of the neck heel (base of the guitar neck). Once you choose your desired location, mark it by drawing a small dot on a piece of masking tape. Then, drill a hole the size of the screw that comes with the pin.
Next, put the screw through the button and washer and screw it into the hole. If the washer is metal, you may opt for a piece of felt between the pin and the guitar to prevent any damage.
Now that you have two strap pins, you can attach the strap as mentioned above.
If you do not want to drill a hole into your precious guitar, you have another simple option: using string or thread.
You can look around your house to see if you have one lying around, or you can buy some at your local store. Make sure the thread that you choose is sturdy yet not too thick. Some straps may even come with a strong lace that you can use.
Thread the string through the hole on one end of the guitar strap, then tie it around the neck of the guitar right above the first fret. Put the thread under the strings, ensuring that it does not touch the strings.
This method is extremely straightforward, but it is not as sturdy as using a pin. However, you’re connecting the strap to a different point on the guitar, which might make it more comfortable for you.
One sturdier version of this method is investing in a guitar strap with a loop at one end to thread under the guitar strings. However, these types of straps are usually more expensive.
What If Your Guitar Has No Strap Pins?
Yes, some guitars do not come with strap buttons! In this case, there are a few different methods if you want to know how to put on guitar straps without the pins.
You can install both pins, one at the bottom of the guitar and one at the neck heel. Or you can drill just the one on the bottom and use the string method to attach the other end of the strap.
Another option is to invest in a different kind of guitar strap, so you don’t have to drill into your guitar. Several prominent manufacturers produce straps that have the main loop attached to sting with a small hook at the end.
You can use the large loop over your shoulder and under the opposite arm or simply around your neck. Let the strap hang straight down, and place the guitar on top of it. Pull the string end of the strap out from under the guitar, and bring it up to hook on the edge of the soundhole.
While this may look slightly strange, it is a simple way to use a strap with classical guitars that you don’t want to damage by installing strap buttons.