If you just got an acoustic guitar and want to find out how to take better care of it, what follows are a few good tips.
You've got to admit it. It's a basic thing 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 another thing to actually become proficient in it. And it's not just about the basics of learning. You really 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 changes in weather, such as super heat or extreme cold. It's dead easy for parts of the guitar to warp or otherwise become damaged depending on how you house it and what it is exposed to daily. Think about the old cassette tape and how it would warp into a useless mess if left on the back seat of your car on a sunny day.
One of the primary needs for most instruments is a good case. It really should be water resistant but also provide protection from heat. Dark colored cases will absorb heat more than lighter colored enclosures, so keep that in mind when shopping for one for your guitar. You'll have the choice of soft shell cases and hard shell cases. In almost all 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 decide to use 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 wouldn't be good for your instrument. 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 this 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 a minimum two guitars, one that you use for practice and another that you keep for performances. Your practice guitar doesn't have to be great, something in the hundred dollar price range. You won't have to replace the strings on it as much as the one you use for performances.
When cleaning your guitar, never 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 part of this is letting it get used and worn in an everyday fashion.
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