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Cleaning Strings


Rampdog

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Years ago, when I was just a Ramp puppy, I played out 4 to 6 nights a week. Main guitar was a 59 Tele... I used to change my strings every 2 or 3 days (cause I loved the highs) but I would wipe them down after every gig with some alcohol on a t-shirt. It never seemed to hurt the fret board but I think you guys said it wasn't good. Now I change my strings about once a month and I don't really clean them as I'm not sweatin' all over them on stage anymore... What do you guys recommend to clean strings? I know there's alot of products out there but are they just gimicks to get you to buy them? There has to be a safe home remedy to use...
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I really don't take care of my strings except I'll wipe them down with a soft cotton cloth every now and then. I usually change my strings out once a month.

 

Sometimes I'll put some "Fast Fret" on them but not to clean; rather, I'll use them if my fingers/strings sound too squeaky when doing slides.

 

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I do nothing special with the strings...other than clean/oil the fretboard...and the strings with it.

 

After playing a guitar...I'll just give it a quick wipe with a cloth that has some cleaner/polish on it...to remove the finger smudges...thats' all.

 

miroslav - miroslavmusic.com

 

"Just because it happened to you, it doesn't mean it's important."

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Like you, when I was gigging I changed the strings often. But I still wiped them down after every gig. I was living with a nurse, and she turned me on to those individually wrapped alcohol wipes that hospitals use. (she also turned me on to using throwaway surgical scrub brushes as vegetable cleaning brushes.. little nylon bristles get the dirt of the potatoes better than anything else I ever tried....) Now I use the wipes you get in chicken joints to clean your hands.

 

But I also treat my fretboards periodically with lemon oil. I wipe it on heavy, let it sit a long time to soak in. Use a toothbrush to clean the frets, then wipe the old oil off, re-oil a cloth and wipe the fretboard down good, then rub it all out with a soft dry cloth, trying to get as much off as possible.

 

Bill

"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

 

Steve Martin

 

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.

 

 

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Ah strings !!!!! well when playing a lot then change them about every week / week and a half. Wipe them down with a Vileda cleaning cloth (no fibre loss) Once i have the strings off about once a month, clean the fretboard with lemon oil, apply let it soak in then wipe off residue with soft dry cloth,

I see a couple above have used alcohol based wipes etc... I would have to ask if this get on the fretboard (obviously not in large volume) but surely an alcohol based wipe or fluid will dry out the wood on the fretboard, but maybe a small amount doesnt hurt???

G

Love life, some twists and turns are more painful than others, but love life.....

 

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemusic.cfm?bandID=592101

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I see a couple above have used alcohol based wipes etc... I would have to ask if this get on the fretboard (obviously not in large volume) but surely an alcohol based wipe or fluid will dry out the wood on the fretboard, but maybe a small amount doesnt hurt???

G

This is what I was wondering about...

Thanks all for your input...

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I never really wiped down my strings, and I have always changed them once a month. As I mentioned in the previous thread, it's very dry here, so you can squeeze extra time out of your strings and they don't get dirty as easily, unless, say, you play your guitars after eating a grilled cheese sandwich. However, recently, to keep up maintenance on my new Tele, I bought one of those Dunlop cleaning kits, and low and behold, it comes with one of those string cleaner-conditioner bottles, so I figured what the heck. I'll let you know how everything works out with that when I have more time to see the results.
Shut up and play.
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On my maple fingerboard Strat, I would spray WD-40 down the fingerboard over the strings and wipe. Kept the strings from rusting. They got changed every 3 days as I was playing 6 nights a week.

 

Not sure how that would affect a rosewood or ebony fingerboard, but 20 years later, the maple fingerboard is still fine.

 

I'm sure somebody will say :eek: that's a really bad thing to do.

A Jazz/Chord Melody Master-my former instructor www.robertconti.com

 

(FKA GuitarPlayerSoCal)

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I'm a lazy bum when it comes to cleaning my axes. :o

 

I use Elixir strings, so the grime that comes off my sweaty fingers isn't an issue, sound wise. Unfortunately, that doesn't help the fretboard. :freak: But rosewood or ebony sure goes a long way to hiding the dirt. ;) (I'm so... wrong. :o )

 

On my electrics I should take more care. I don't use webbed strings there. Cheapest ones I can find, generally.

It's easiest to find me on Facebook. Neil Bergman

 

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fntstcsnd

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My luthier told me to use Pledge furniture polish to clean the strings, but NOT to use it on the finish. Go figure.

 

Huh? :eek: That's all I've ever used on the finish.

 

I don't know why a pure wood-type polish would be used....99% of all guitars are sealed with polyurethane or some other type of finish. :confused:

A Jazz/Chord Melody Master-my former instructor www.robertconti.com

 

(FKA GuitarPlayerSoCal)

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I don`t see why alcohol would be bad as long as you use protection for the fretboard-I use a backing cloth myself, don`t have to take the strings off. I prefer the pure lemon oil in the little bottles from health food stores, etc. but after discussing this before I`ve decided against letting it soak on the fretboard directly-it is after all a solvent, it will loosen the frets over time if you use too much. Cloth only for me.

Same old surprises, brand new cliches-

 

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www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemusic.cfm?bandid=602491

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for $23.00 at gc I picked up the "Guitar Player Repair Guide" I highly recomend it. It talks about string cleaning, among other things, and they sugest a cloth called "String Care" by Blitz

 

http://www.guitarpuppy.com/2450069.html

 

The book also shows you how SRV, Jeff Beck, Albert Collins, Buddy Guy, and BB King like their guitars set up.

 

 

all chucks children are out there playing his licks

 

*Bob Seger

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