Taking Care of your Instrument

In order to protect your investment, here are some tips on how to take care of your instrument. Many simple things that can be overlooked will cause damage or wear to the instrument that can make it loose its value, good looks, ease of playability, and sound quality.

 

  1. Keep a cotton cloth on top of the instrument when it is lying in its case. This helps protect from of the instrument and can also double as cloth to wipe off rosin.
  2. After each use, the instrument and bow should be wiped down with a soft cloth to remove rosin. Wipe off the top surface, strings, fingerboard, bridge, and the stick of the bow. Rosin left on an instrument for long periods of time can cause damage to the varnish on the instrument.
  3. Loosen bow hair after each use. Bow hair can stretch and make the bow unusable if it is left tight, especially in humid weather.
  4. Do not use too much rosin on the bow. Rosin need not be applied every time an instrument is played, only when the bow begins to slip across the strings.
  5. Do not leave an instrument or bow on a chair. It is easy to forget that it is there and to sit on it.
  6. Do not leave an instrument in the case with the lid closed and the case latches open. It is easy to forget that it isn’t latched, and to then pick it up and have the instrument fall out.
  7. If you put an instrument down, the best place for it is fully inside of a case with the lid open, or inside of a closed and latched case.
  8. Do not leave your instrument in a hot or cold car or trunk. Extreme temperature changes can cause cracks in the wood. Heat can cause damage to the varnish.
  9. Do not pull broken hairs out of your bow. Pulling a hair out of the frog or tip ends of the bow can loosen more hairs. It is best to cut the loose hair off using a scissor, knife, or nail clipper.
  10. Never step over an instrument.
  11. Take great care when you place your instrument on the floor at group class or your lesson.
  12. When in doubt, wait for help. If you are not comfortable with tuning your instrument, I will gladly help you get it back in tune.
  13. Never lean a cello or bass up against the wall. They can fall over when you least expect them to, and the damage is usually costly.
  14. If a string breaks, let your me help you figure out if it was normal wear and tear or a problem with the instrument. If you are not comfortable replacing your own strings, just bring a new strings to your next lesson and I will put it on for you.
  15. If you notice your bridge is tilted, please show me. If the bridge leans too far, it can warp, break or fall. I can put the bridge back in place at your lesson.
  16. If your instrument is buzzing while you play, investigate if it is something loose on the instrument or a crack or loose seem. Cracks and loose seems should be fixed immediately. If the neck comes loose or the bridge falls down, loosen the strings immediately and take the instrument to a  .
  17. Pegs that are made of ebony and well fitted for your instrument should stay in tune. If the pegs are poorly fitted, your instrument will go out of tune and you will have trouble practicing at home. I try to recommend that students get an instrument that never has this problem to begin with, however, if this becomes a problem, new pegs should be fitted.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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