If you have an acoustic guitar and would like to learn how to best take care of it, what you will find here are some useful tips.
You've got to admit it. It's not too difficult to learn how to play acoustic guitar. That's probably one of the many reasons there are so many guitars sold each and every year. However, it's another thing to actually learn to be a pro at the art. And it's not just about the basics of learning. You really need some information about the instrument itself and what you need to do to take care of it.
Most acoustics are made of wood and are usually hollow. They are sensitive to changes in weather, such as super heat or super cold. It's dead easy for parts of the guitar to warp or otherwise get damaged depending on how you store it and what it is exposed to on a daily basis. Think about the old cassette tape and how it would melt into a useless mess if kept on the dashboard of your car on a hot day.
One of the major necessities for most instruments is a good enclosure. It really should be water resistant and also give protection from heat. Black cases will absorb the sun's rays more than lighter colored enclosures, so remember that when selecting one for your guitar. There are soft shell cases and hard shell cases. In most situations, I would recommend the hard shell case unless you can't afford it.
Guitar strings are sensitive to heat and cold as well. Have you experienced how quickly guitars go out of tune, especially with a new set of strings? The neck of the guitar will give and let go depending on the type of strings you use, and if you settle on a particular gauge of string, it's probably the best thing you can do, as the shock of going from one type of string to another isn't good for your guitar. Also, never take all the strings off your guitar at once, as that might cause warping of the neck. Change them one at a time, as that will keep the tension on your instrument's neck constant.
If you can, it's a great idea to have at least two guitars, one that you use around the house and another that you keep for performances. Your practice guitar doesn't have to be expensive, something in the hundred dollar price range. You should't have to replace the strings on it as much as the one you keep for performances.
When it is time to clean your guitar, don't use water or furniture polish. Just use a clean cloth and wipe the dust. Try to not wipe so hard that you affect the finish of your guitar. And don't go nuts. Your guitar should develop its own natural character, and the way to let it do this is letting it get used and worn in an everyday fashion.
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