A few tips on guitar maintenance
Now that you bought your first guitar you need to know how to maintain it. these are some things I have learned from other players or seen online or just figured out myself. No matter if you bought it new or used the first thing you might want to do is take it home and clean and set it up to look, feel and sound better.
The first thing I like to do is clean it up and change the strings out with a good set that I like to use. “If”you bought it new they come with strings already on them or you get a set with them but, There really not very good. So I just get what I like to use and be done with it. “If” you bought a used guitar its hard telling how long they been on there. So, get a set and start out fresh.
To get started;
You need to remove the strings. Just loosen the strings one at a time by turning the tuner keys on the head stock at the top of the guitar. Once it is loose enough; Just pull the string out of the hole then slide it out of the bridge at the bottom. Do all 6 strings the same way. Be careful not to touch the body or anything that’s painted with the strings. You could scratch it.
If have an acoustic guitar you’ll have pegs instead of a metal bridge. You need a peg puller or you can use a pair of pliers to pull them out but, Be supper careful using pliers. The pegs dent and break very easily. “If” you can get a peg puller I would use that instead.
While you have the strings off you can give it a good cleaning. Use a soft slightly damp cloth to clean all the dirt and build up off the guitar. Try not to get the electronics wet. Dry it off with another soft dry cloth.
“If” want to give it a good polishing like I do at this point; Get a good polish and fret board cleaner and a lent free cloth. There is a ton of polish’s out there so, Its really hard to tell what is the best one to use unless you tried them all, Which I have’nt. I use the Gibson Pump Polish For Guitars, Banjos and Mandolins spray for the body you can buy it for about $35.00. But, It lasts for a really long time. I use the NOMAD F-ONE Fretboard Oil for the frets. You can buy a 3 piece set of the NOMAD polish for the body and frets together for around $15.00. It does a really good job. I like to use it. It’s really up to you on what you like best. This is just what I use.
To polish the body;
Spray about 2 or 3 pumps of the polish on the cloth and wipe the body and the back of the neck down real good. This polish is safe for electronics. So, it won’t hurt them if you wipe them down too. Then take another clean cloth and wipe it all down again. Do Not wipe the fret board down with the polish. It’s not made for that.
Next, Put just a little fret oil on another cloth and wipe down the fret board. Try not to get it on the body. Use the clean side of the cloth and wipe any oil left over off.
Now you can put the strings back on. Be sure to put the bottom of the strings in first. Do one string at a time. Just get them snug till you get them all back on. Make sure you look at the numbers on string pack so you know what string goes where. The bottom E string is the number 1. Just work your way up till all 6 are on. Then you can tune it up and start playing!
You can do this every time you change the strings or just give it a good wipe down. I polish mine every other time I change strings and just wipe it down the other times. Back and forth. Depending on how often you change your strings. I change the ones I play the most about every 4 to 6 weeks and the others I dont play as much about every 6 months. It all depends on how much you play it. The more you play it, The more you should change them.
Properly Storing Your Guitar
There’s a few ways you can store your guitar when your not using them. You can hang them, use a guitar stand or put them in there case. Be sure not to hang them in a place people can run into them or bump it and knock them off the wall. It dont take much to break it. Even falling over on a stand can break the neck. “If” you use a stand make sure its out of the way like a corner or next to a wall with no trafic that can bump into it. Putting it in a hard case is the safest way to store them. You can lay it down and slide it under a bed or stand it up in a closet or corner where it won’t fall over. If it did get knocked over in the case, It has a way better chance of not getting hurt than it would be just being on a stand. I really dont recamend putting a guitar in a gig bag laying down or just in a corner. Unless you have something next to it to make sure it dont fall over. I had one in a gig bag that fell over and cracked the neck. The bags don’t really protect it that much. There more for easier transporting around. After you get done playing with it; Dont Ever just set it up agenst something and leave it. Just a thump in the floor can make them fall over. Always have a stand next to you when your playing incase you have to get up for any reson. Dont just stand it up agents the wall or table. Supper bad idea!
Humidifing Acustic Guitars
I just learned about this here awhile back about humidifing acustics. Acustics have to have a little bit of moisture in them to keep them from drying out to bad and becomeing weak and cracky. “If” live in an area that the humidity is very low then you shoud get a humidifier for you acustic. You can also make one. Here is a youtube link that can show you how to make it.
How to make a home made acustic humidifier