For Fans of Flatpicking Guitar Magazine
Strings. They say you should change them now and then.
Let me start with what this discussion isn't - favorite brand, model, color, material, coating, weight, or where you buy them.
This is about determining when a set of strings is at the end of their life "for you". As a newbie, I'm at the point where I can tell I left the strings on too long because when I put the new ones on, they sound a lot different (i.e. "good"). This isn't a very good approach because I end up playing on dead strings. I guess my ears haven't developed the ability to detect the "dead string" syndrome as it is happening. I certainly don't mind changing since I can now perform a string change in under a 1/2 day and the strings are affordable, but I would really like something to tell me it is time.
What tells you it is time to change to a new set of strings? Is it something you hear? Feel? Do you have a strum counter? Do you have a timer to track playtime?
Inquiring minds are, well, inquiring.