Guitar Strap Locks: Are They Worth It?

by | Nov 19, 2023

GS guitar neck detail inlay, guitar strap locks button

If you are wondering what an inexpensive guitar upgrade is, yet one that helps a great deal, then think guitar strap locks. The strap lock is a simple yet effective way to upgrade your guitar and one that I believe every guitar player should have. Here are my thoughts on why you should put a strap lock system on your guitar.

First things first: Using a strap lock system with your guitar strap provides a secure way of attaching your guitar to the strap. It also helps that the strap locks lock the guitar strap and allow easy and secure handling. It comes especially handy when playing live gigs, when packing and unpacking your guitar, or if you wish to do tricks on stage.

How Does a Guitar Strap Lock System Work?

The guitar strap lock system works in a simple way: it mechanically securing the guitar strap and the strap button using a simple spring mechanism. The strap lock affixes to the corresponding strap button using a pull pin system that is easy to put on and take off, but when in use, it is very secure and holds the guitar attached to the strap no matter how vigorously you move on stage.

Also, if you have a favorite guitar strap and use several guitars, then installing an identical strap lock system on all your guitars makes your guitar strap interchangeable. You get to use the same guitar strap with all your guitars and have the peace of mind of a properly secured guitar.

I need to be clear that there are several guitar strap lock systems on the market now, but the most common and most used ones are the Schaller S-locks, Fender Infinity Locks, Dunlop Straplocks, D’addario, Planet Waves, etc.

How to Install Strap Locks on Your Guitar

Most, if not all, strap lock systems for sale out there are effortless to install. Usually, you can install guitar strap locks by yourself at home, as you probably have all the tools necessary to fix this. However, if you have doubts, or run into any problems, you can ask a guitar tech to install them for you. Now, here is my short instruction on how to change and install a new guitar strap lock system on your guitar:

Strap locks come in two parts – one that goes on your guitar and the other that installs on the guitar strap. To install the part on the guitar, first remove the existing strap button; you will need a screwdriver to unscrew the strap button. Then, simply screw in the strap lock button on your guitar, using the exact placement and the same holes.

Installing the strap locks on your guitar strap requires some skill, but it is straightforward to do this. For most models, you will need a pair of pliers and a small wrench (you’ll have to measure the size of the strap lock nut. Note that two thin washers go on either side of the guitar strap. Installing everything requires placing the washers in the correct order and tightening the retaining screw and nut on both sides of the guitar strap.

What Guitar Strap Locks to Select?

I’m always advising my customers to stay away from bottom-shelf products when it comes to upgrading their guitars, and the same goes for strap locks. If you buy the cheapest option, you are not improving your guitar but are putting it in a vulnerable position, as cheap strap locks are prone to breaking.

Instead, what I can advise you is to purchase a set of strap locks from a reputable brand. Even the best guitar accessory brands offer quality guitar strap locks at reasonable prices, so this will not set you back much money. In fact, you can get a quality strap lock set for about €/$30, which is not a high price for such a helpful upgrade.

You can install strap locks on any guitar or bass guitar and have a more secure way of hanging and handling your instrument. One of the best things is that all strap locks fit any strap. These are universal fasteners that are one of the most affordable upgrades to make and improve your guitar.

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