One of the most talked about, yet neglected, topics discussed at Animato HQ is the cleaning and maintenance of instruments. Taking good care of your instrument is so easy, can prevent costly repairs and costs next to nothing to do.
The easiest way to take care of your instrument is to give it a quick wipe over. After you finish playing for the day, gently wipe the fallen rosin off your strings and instrument belly with a soft cloth. Tido Polishing Clothes ($6.90) are very popular (you can buy them online here) but any clean, soft cloth will do.
For a squeaky clean finish, try a little polish. Specifically designed to make the most of your instruments varnish, Viol Varnish Cleaner ($18.95) is effective and easy to use. Pop a small amount onto your cleaning cloth and lightly buff in little circles over the entire body of your instrument. Any leftover rosin, dirt or grime will dissolve easily leaving a beautiful, clean finish.
For a more thorough check-up, take your instrument to your local luthier. Here, they can check the position of your sound post and bridge and the functionality of your pegs and fine-tuners. Over time, the sound post and bridge tend to move. Correcting these assures structural integrity and chances are, you’ll probably come out with a nicer sounding instrument!
So Stringies, tell us what you think:
Do you maintain your instrument as much as you’d like to?
Do you have any other cleaning/maintenance tips or tricks?