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Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a used Guitar   You are logged in as Guest
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roberte1

 

Posts: 5
Joined: Apr. 13 2013
 

Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a use... 

Hi,

I just purchased a used but relatively new student flamenco guitar that is in mint condition. My question is how do you guys and gals clean guitars when you purchase them used? Also considering the pandemic what should I use to clean it? Your suggestions are appreciated. Thanks
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 16 2020 23:17:06
 
Echi

 

Posts: 826
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to roberte1

Hi there,
“Student guitar” tells me that your guitar is not shellacked, am I right? Usually studio guitars are sprayed with polyurethane or synthetic finish.
If I am correct you can use one of those products to clean wood forniture or even a rug with few drops of alcohol.
Shellac dissolves in alcohol though.
Lemon oil is usually suggested for the fretboard.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 17 2020 17:38:42
 
RobJe

 

Posts: 711
Joined: Dec. 16 2006
From: UK

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to roberte1

The surface of all guitar finishes can be cleaned with a slightly damp (not wet)soft cloth. Just sprinkle a few drops of water on the surface of the cloth. It’s the safest way to get surface grime off. The most serious muck on a guitar is on the fingerboard. As Echi says you can clean this with lemon oil. For the avoidance of doubt, lemon oil has nothing much to do with lemons. It is a mineral oil, sometimes coloured yellow and sometimes with a hint of lemon scent. Look for something that is marketed specifically for cleaning guitar fingerboards. I sometimes use (carefully) some very fine wire wool to help (on the fingerboard only).

Rob
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 17 2020 19:07:18
 
Echi

 

Posts: 826
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to roberte1

Robje, you are right but I think Roberte1 asked for a method to get rid of germs etc.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 17 2020 20:24:35
 
roberte1

 

Posts: 5
Joined: Apr. 13 2013
 

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to Echi

Thank you for the replies.

This is all new to me. I am sorry I can't tell what type of finish the guitar has but it was made in 2020. I checked the website and it only states high gloss or matte finish. I have sent them an email and I am currently waiting for a reply

And yes my focus was with the germ aspect. I do have a microfiber towel and would use that first, followed by a second barely damp microfiber towel wiping

Would a polish such as Stew Mac Preservation Polish help? I realize google can be both good and bad -LOL.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 17 2020 21:00:52
 
RobJe

 

Posts: 711
Joined: Dec. 16 2006
From: UK

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to roberte1

Advice given by Felipe Conde is pretty standard.

The guitar should be cleaned with a soft, dry cloth, which may be dampened slightly for stubborn marks. Never use solvents, alcohol or other chemical products habitually used for cleaning, even if these are designed for use on wood. We advise that you clean your guitar with the cloth provided after each use in order to eliminate sweat or other residues that could in the long run damage the varnish.

Polish might be harmless but unnecessary - at best.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 17 2020 22:50:42
 
roberte1

 

Posts: 5
Joined: Apr. 13 2013
 

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to RobJe

Thank you. I believe I have what I need now
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 18 2020 3:57:22
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 3012
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to Echi

quote:

ORIGINAL: Echi
Lemon oil is usually suggested for the fretboard.


I used to clean fretboards with lemon oil. Now I just use (dry) very fine steel wool. Cleans the fretboard and polishes the frets.

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 18 2020 3:59:27
 
Echi

 

Posts: 826
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to roberte1

Lightly wet micro fibre fabric is what I usually go for.
When I buy a 2nd hand guitar I want to have it cleansed and disinfected properly though and therefore I understand Roberts’s point.
I respect Felipe Conde but probably his disclaimer serves mainly to avoid issues and warranty claims as some cleaning products in fact may end up being aggressive or just not indicated.
Common sense is to identify the kind of finish in the guitar and to use an harmless product with respect of that specific finish.
My point is that the risk is very low with industrially sprayed guitars.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 18 2020 15:46:50
 
timk

 

Posts: 12
Joined: Sep. 12 2018
 

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to Echi

The easiest option is to let the guitar air out for a couple of days. If the concern is over the virus, it has been shown that it dies in a few days. Or perhaps this is the most difficult option - letting the guitar air out in view while not being able to touch it.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 18 2020 16:54:39
 
JasonM

Posts: 1565
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to Richard Jernigan

Do you guys think French polish is really that sensitive if you were to give it a quick wipe down with alcohol based cleaner? As a test I just cleaned the side of my French Polished guitar with a cloth and acetone. Didn’t notice any stickiness afterword and coronavirus and Ebola are now eliminated. Not saying it’s not best to play it safe but we use naphtha and petroleum solvents to remove glue with no problem either. That’s got to kill germs too. Personally, I like to use eyeglass cleaner that is alcohol based with a microfiber cloth.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 18 2020 17:13:42
 
Tom Blackshear

 

Posts: 2188
Joined: Apr. 15 2008
 

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to JasonM

Jason, it all depends on how old the shellac is when you use alcohol on it but to be safe, the other solvents don't soften shellac. Alcohol definitely does.

It could be that your eye glass cleaner is not strong enough to cut the shellac.

_____________________________

Tom Blackshear Guitar maker
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 18 2020 20:38:54
 
roberte1

 

Posts: 5
Joined: Apr. 13 2013
 

RE: Bit of a germophobe - Cleaning a... (in reply to Tom Blackshear

Hi Everyone,

The guitar arrived, and took several days in shipping.
Since it took a few days for delivery I figured i was in the clear as far as the virus was concerned.

Initially, I took a plain micro fiber cloth and wiped the whole guitar, followed by a lightly damp microfiber cloth.
I also wiped the strings with the damp cloth too (so I could try it )

I will be removing the strings, and adding new ones later today.
But, just before adding the new ones, though, I will clean the fretboard too - (not sure about lemon oil don't want to smell lemon lol)

I did get the Preservation polish, and while I understand it wont be necessary, I will apply a little bit

Thats it!

Thanks for all your suggestions, I appreciate it

Robert
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 19 2020 14:10:45
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