I’ve been playing guitar for 30 years and probably haven’t broken a string for the past 20. However my G string consistently wears out much faster than all other strings; the wrap wears on the frets from bending and the tone and resonance of the string suffers noticeably. I’m not a frequent string changer, obviously, and actually prefer the tone of aged strings to that of fresh ones. Some times the wrap will actually break and the string will then buzz. Not optimal. Nowadays, when I start to feel little bumps over the frets of the G string, I know it’s almost toast, and I’ll change the whole set. Generally I use phosphor bronze 12s.
I’ve considered loading up on extra G strings, although I’ve never tried to buy single strings and I’m not sure how available they are. Plus I’m not sure how well the fresh G will sound next to the other aged strings.
Another consideration would be to use an unwrapped G string, something I’ve never tried. This might actually also benefit the aforementioned bending, but I’m not sure it would be sonically optimal for rhythm playing.
I’d like to know if anyone shares this dilemma and what your solution to it might be.
Addendum: A minute or so of this will show how much of a workout that string often gets.