If you have a new acoustic guitar and want to learn how to take better care of it, what follows are some useful words of advice.
Let's face it. It's not rocket science to learn the acoustic guitar. That's one of the reasons there's so many guitars sold each and every year. But remember, it's takes something else to actually become a pro at it. And it's not just about the basics of learning. You also need some information about the instrument itself and how to take care of it.
Most acoustics are made of wood and are usually hollow. They are sensitive to differences in climate, such as super heat or super cold. It's very simple for parts of the guitar to warp or otherwise get damaged depending on how you house it and what it is exposed to daily. Remember the old cassette tape and how it would melt into a useless mess if left on the back seat of your car on a sunny day.
One of the major necessities for a guitar is a good enclosure. It should be water resistant and also give protection from heat. Dark colored cases will absorb the sun's rays more than lighter colored cases, so remember that when selecting one for your guitar. There are soft shell cases and hard shell cases. In most situations, I would endorse the hard shell case unless you can't afford it.
Guitar strings are susceptible to environmental changes as well. Have you experienced how quickly guitars go out of tune, especially if you put on a new set of strings? The neck of your guitar will give and let go depending on the type of strings you use, and if you decide to use a particular gauge of string, it's probably best, as the shock of going from one gauge of string to another wouldn't be good for your guitar. Also, never take all the strings off your guitar at once, as that might cause warping of the neck. Change your strings one at a time, as that will keep the tension on your instrument's neck at a constant level.
If at all possible, it's a great idea to have at least two guitars, a beater you use around the house and another that you use for performances. Your practice guitar doesn't have to be great, something in the hundred dollar range. You won't have to replace the strings on it as much as the guitar you keep for performances.
When cleaning your guitar, don't use water or furniture polish. Just use a soft cloth and wipe the dust. Try to not wipe so hard that you affect the finish of your guitar. And don't go crazy. 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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