A few tips on care for the new member of your family.
Whether you are purchasing your very first guitar or if you are a seasoned player and building a collection, getting that new guitar in your hands is as exciting as being handed a first place trophy when you were kid for something that you had worked so hard for. Now for all of you seasoned players who are married, we can all agree that we can get very creative when convincing our other half that we simply must have this guitar. It is the answer that sends our next album to double plywood!
Care for your guitar starts with the environment that you keep it in. What I mean is temperature controlled. Acoustics can be affected more with changes in humidity. If you store the guitar in a case, you can find a portable humidifier that fits right into the case or in the sound hole of the guitar. This is highly recommended for winter months. If you display your guitar either on a stand or hang on the wall such as I do, it is wise to make sure the room has proper humidity. I have noticed when I go into any boutique, or big box music store, the acoustic room is always shut off from the rest of the store and you have to go through a door to get into it. When you walk in you almost always will see a small humidifier on the floor for the guitars. The tops of the guitar can have a tendency to split due to dryness in the wood. The tops are made of a very thin piece of wood. If your acoustic guitar develops a crack in the top you should get it repaired as soon as possible to keep it from getting worse.
Another thing to consider when you’re not using the guitar is to either keep it in the case, on a stand, or hang it. Bottom line, never lean the neck against a wall, chair or anything. You never want to rest the guitar using the neck. It’s not good for the neck and is more prone to be knocked over and serious damage could occur.
The majority of electric guitars have a solid body and will experience what is known as paint checking. That is where the finish shows cracks, or little lines throughout the body of the guitar. This does not hurt the playability or sound of the guitar. In today’s world, manufactures attempt to make that happen to make the guitar look like it is very old. They call this relic, road worn, or vintage.
In my opinion a guitar is a tool. If you make a living with it, it is your tool of the trade. With this being said, do not be afraid to get a scratch or a ding. You don’t play the finish. This is going to happen the more you use it. It’s a good thing. The important part here is that you are the one giving it its first scratch or ding. This makes it a lot easier for you to handle as opposed to someone else doing it for you.
Words to remember, “use not abuse”. If you take care of it it will take care of you. It’s no different than any tradesmen that has their favorite tool. They know when they grab that tool it it’s going to be there for them. So don’t be afraid to play that guitar in fear of denting or scratching. Look at all the greats...their guitars look like they have been drug behind a truck. That is from countless hours of playing and loving their instrument.
Play your guitar! That is what it’s for.
“Use not Abuse”
In conclusion- taking care of your guitar is just as important as the buying and playing process. If you take care of it right it will always take care of you!