About Us

Established, Owned, & Operated by Experienced Musicians & True Aficionados.

Strings By Mail became a company that offers strings for virtually all instruments in addition to a complete line of accessories, sheet music, and recordings, by identifying a need.

1999 - Inspiration To Create Strings By Mail

As his abilities as a guitarist grew Rick Cyr came to fully understand that string choices have an extremely high impact on a players success. They change one's sound, impact ones technique, and effect the maturing of one's instrument. As he started his search to find the perfect option for him and his instrument he realized there was no single source, for no brick and mortar store could carry all the important string options necessary to serve every guitarist's needs and no internet source existed. In 1999 this became his inspiration to create Strings By Mail [SBM].

2005 - Expand The Effort

That same inspiration, to make guitarists lives easier by bringing every necessary option to one source, led the next owners, brothers and guitarists Brad & Scott DeRoche, to both expand the effort to include the necessary options for acoustic and electric guitarists and to pioneer providing detailed data on string tensions, materials, and specifications to their customers.

2009 to present - Serve All String Players and Include An Extensive Offering

Now, under the leadership of John Wunsch since 2009, the mission has continued and expanded to serve all string players and include an extensive offering of accessories, sheet music, CDs and DVDs. With a database representing over 20 years of testing and cataloging the characteristics of strings and an offering of over 15000 products - in stock, on sight, and ready to ship - SBM is established as a worldwide leader in service to string players. Those resources, in combination with excellent personalized customer service from professional musicians, allow SBM to help each customer reach their fullest potential. Please call 800.523.8271 or contact us for guidance and consultation. Special orders are always welcome.
Now presenting SBM employee pets representing their owners!


John, a lifelong guitarist, cross country skier, and sailor has been classical and jazz guitar instructor at the Interlochen Arts Academy for 15 years, founded the Interlochen Guitar Festival Workshop and purchased SBM in 2009. He now gets the pleasure being lead dog for the best staff in the string, music, and guitar supply business. He finds the hat of the proprietor of SBM to be a perfect fit.

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Here is one of John's guitars. It is a 1989 Dake Traphagen giant of a guitar with a 663 scale length and steel pin bridges. The body is Indian Rosewood, the top is Engleman Spruce, and the neck is Cedar.

"The strings I use are Hannabach Silver 900 Set 200 Medium-Low tension. They are very expressive and nicely darken down the tone of this very bright guitar. She is a bit beat up from some flamenco taps and blues snaps before she got a tap plate, but she maintains the "cannon" like power one can expect from a long scale length paired with what was the hottest thing for power and brightness in the 80's, steel pins standing directly on the faceplate.

You might also notice a couple of interesting modifications, a little strip of soft leather on the back that made it easy to walk on stage already playing, and a strip of velcro on the upper right bout where I attached my custom guitar support pad." - John

Audio Sample of John's Traphagen


Ben, a rocking guitarist, song writer, singer, former guitar instructor, and for 12 years the solo house musician at Bowers Harbor Vineyards, is a totally devoted family man. For many years, he also performed as a solo classical guitarist for weddings and other events. As an acoustic player, has been deemed the house musician for SteelCase and Priority Health for several years.

Ben has been the Operations Director at SBM since 2009, keeps the SBM website in tune, heads up IT and never stops having better ideas.

Check out Ben's electric guitar and bass playing in Part 2 of D'Addario Balanced Tension strings.

You are also invited to visit his YouTube page youtube.com/@benricheyguitar.


Matt's skill and experience as a professional classical and rock guitarist are a perfect fit with his role as our lead customer service representative.

He's a problem solver with a wealth of information ready to help you find the ideal information or product, and ready to make your SBM experience the best you could ask for.


Jim is a true aficionado of most music styles, our mystical master of the magical numbers, and an economic poet. Other companies might call him the accountant, but that just doesn't cover what he makes happen at SBM.

It helps that he plays a little guitar and knows a few chords too!


Jaci brings the perspective of one who has owned and run her own Internet company, as well as great skills for any Internet business. From photography to photoshop and HTML to spreadsheets she's been using the tools of the trade for years. Jaci is a key member of our project team refining data and enhancing presentation of products at Strings by mail. She is also a critical member of the Strings by mail fulfillment team.

Off the job Jaci is a master of many crafts with specialties in jewelry and ornaments and continues to pursue a lifelong passion for helping animals through supporting rescue of English sheep dogs - untilyoufindme.com.


As our shipping and receiving manager, Chris brings the perfection of his many years of custom house painting to the all-important process of getting the right product to our customers. And he brings the full spectrum perspective that 13 years as the owner of the locally famous D.O.G. Bakery gives him to everything he does at Strings By Mail.

When he's not keeping the orders rolling and getting product on the shelf, Chris may be dreaming up the next plot twist to his novel and will often be found on Kayaks with his wife and Betty, their Dachshund Yorkie Rescue. But on Sundays he'll always be seen and heard rooting for the Detroit Lions.


Beth combines her innate drive to thrive with a little customer service jujitsu, and a healthy dose of google translate to help our international customers track and find what can sometimes be elusive packages in any country. And with a background in computer science, statistics and accounting, she can jump in on projects as needed too.

But the love of music from age 3 that carried her from Piano to Grandmother's mandolin, clarinet, oboe and then every other instrument in the orchestra, makes her a perfect fit here at Strings By Mail. And it makes her a natural at understanding how important those shipments are to our customers all around the world, so she is motivated to Help!

And, face it, a woman who got an acoustic guitar as her engagement ring is totally musician, and once you have been a piano tuner, you "get" the beautiful simplicity of 6 strings.


When Strings By Mail needs to know about speed, David has more than enough experience to offer. His years of road racing everything from formula V race cars to go karts, including winning a SCCA national championship, gave him a sharp edge he brings to fulfillment at Strings By Mail.

He keeps his background as a player exercised playing in duet with his wife Malu (sudo-name appears on the headstock pictured) on Uke in nursing homes and open mic nights and took the skills he gained building his own race cars to repairing guitars. Completing guitar tech training at the Galloup Guitar School set him up to work on guitars and make sure all the guitars sold from Strings By Mail go out with just the right set up.

In his down time, he likes to track the progress of his 3 kids, as they navigate service in the US Air Force and studying in Europe


Tim's deep knowledge of music comes from years of playing, coupled with over a decade as an on-air Classical Music Host at WIAA on the campus of Interlochen Center for the Arts - and it makes him hard to beat during the occasional "SBM name that tune" contests! Before joining the Strings By Mail team, Tim studied guitar building and repair at the Galloup Guitar School. When he isn't shipping or receiving, Tim is hard at work tying out paperwork from our hundreds of vendors.

He's also a man of the land, heating his home with a wood cook stove and working to keep in shape by splitting and stacking firewood. During his off hours, Tim still works on stringed instruments, and enjoys performing music with his daughter as a member of the denim-clad duo "Jean Pool" (pun intended!)


Handling hundreds of orders each week from our more than 360 vendors is no cake walk, but with a background that stretched from being a security Access Control Specialist and field investigator to warehouse work and supply chain logistics for a national internet communication company, gave Tyler the goods to deliver as our purchasing clerk at Strings By Mail. As one can imagine though, with over 15,000 music-oriented products to handle, being a real player is critical to doing the job on the highest level.

As a dedicated metal guitarist, Tyler is the man, and when he hits the stage, powers up his ax, and lets his hair down it's hard to recognize this Strings By Mail team member.


Talk about being qualified to bat clean up, Josh has operated their cleaning company with his wife Sandy for 15 years, has experience in shipping and receiving, and now keeps the boxes rock-and-rolling in and out on our Ship-Shop. His younger years freelancing as a roadie and lighting and sound technician may have been a hint that he had a future with a music-oriented company like SBM, but until he landed on our team, he managed to be the only member of his family to neither play, and/or service instruments.

We like to think the Strings By Mail team vibe was the missing piece that led him to now play both bass and guitar, and we are all jealous of his mint condition Höfner Beatle Bass.


Nate's diverse work background, from nursing assistant, to cook, baker and die setter was always framed by his passion for all things guitar. He started playing at 15 and ever since has played, repaired, and modified his guitars as well as his friends and family's guitars. So, it was a perfect segue to land at Strings By Mail, where his guitar knowledge makes him a great addition to our fulfillment, projects, and customer service divisions.

Add to that his experience with audio and video recording and software, and you have a multi-dimensional team member that can jump in on the many video and recording projects here at SBM as well. Don't be intimidated by the mohawk, this big guy is really a gentle giant.

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