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Discussion Starter #1
Time to clean my guitars and not sure of what products to use.

I have been giving them a wipe down with a dry soft cloth but it still leaves the skin oils behind.

Looking for a product to clean the wood, strings, and maybe a oil for the fret board.

What do you guys use? Old wives tips too please.
Bev
 

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a mixture of vinegar and water (1/3 vinegar 2/3 water) followed by a soft dry wipe down works wonder on skin oil, grime, dried beer/rum etc. For the fretboard I buy a fretboard oil. Regular furniture polish oils are too thick and tend to gum up the fretboard pretty good. When I'm changing strings and have the time I take a regular old pencil eraser and clean the frets with that. It works really well, is non-abrasive and cleans the frets up shiny.
 

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be very careful if you have any nitro finishes.

For really bad gunk I'll use naphtha (lighter fluid). If it's not too bad, a bit of spit on a cloth, or fog it with your breath.

I use the Fender Meguires polishes, except on the back of the neck I use a Guild mist polish.

Make sure you use clean rags, toss them often. Most scratches come from you pushing dirt around on a cloth.

Fretdoctor (or bore oil) on the fretboard.

You can clean strings a bit by tightening a bit of rag around them and running up and down till clean. That'll help get you through to the next string change.
 

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For hard stuff lighter fluid followed by a quality guitar cleaner - Martin, Dunlop, etc... Strings? just change them; isn't your guitar worth it? Wipe them down after playing and you can extend the life of them a bit. To me cleaning strings is like trying to clean paper plates so I can use them again. Just not worth the trouble.

When you change the strings I recommend Dr. Fret bore oil for your fretboard. If you can't get that used lemon oil. NEVER, EVER use anything with silicon in it like Pledge or other household furniture polishes.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks

Went with the water vineger after pulling the strings, then eraser on frets followed by lemon oil.

Feels and looks much cleaner, now I just need to get some fresh strings for my bass and some of that wax.

Bev
 

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I use dish liquid on an old T shirt. Work it in and squeeze out the water and dry with a soft cloth. If your fretboard is really gummy then gently scrape it off with the side of a soft pick and follow up with lemon oil.

Scott
 

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For cleaning and polishing the Virtuoso products are amazing. For fretboards I also use the tried and true water, vinegar, naptha/lighterfluid routine.
 

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I use planet waves products for all my guitar cleaning needs. Best thing on the market for the price !!
 

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Always start with clean luke warm water on a well wrung out lint free rag. If that doesn't work well, use light (heavily diluted) Windex followed by water. If the finish still needs some "enhancing" use Meguiare's. It's important to remove dirt and grime before using any sort of polish.

My most beloved guitar's finish got so hazy from sweat that I once had it buffed out by a luthier. Looked almost new again.

One of my students has what was originally a matte finish A&L cedar folk. She applied some sort of lemon oil like cleaner/polish to it and buffed like crazy. For a while it kinda smelled like the polish and felt a little oily, but within a month or so it became a really nice durable shine. I wouldn't advise it but in her case it worked.

Peace, Mooh.
 

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I use Tres Hombres Lemon Oil--but I don't think it's sold anymore--I bought a large bottle years agao, and a little goes a long way.

It's made for guitars--I wouldn't use furniture oils/cleaners on a guitar.
 

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the rickenbacker people like the scratch X and zymol combination

actually one of the members on the beatgearcavern forum had his 4001 ric ruined by a child (with doodles in sharpie marker); in the end, scratch x saved his bass...not a trace of the sharpie!
 

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i like naptha- but i keep isopropyl alcohol and nail polish remover here as well.
i soak toothbrushes in naptha to get at fretboard gunk. ive worked on 50 yr old instruments that havent been cleaned since forever, and it works-in time. windex is like pissing on yur guitar - without the smell- and fretboard oils i avoid- maple and rosewood dont need it- whoever says it does is either lying to sell yu something, or doesnt know what hes talking about
 

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I've been using Dunlop 65 on the body.

If the fretboard is really grungy (like caked on dry goo) I'll use very fine steel wool to clean it off.

The fretboard gets some lemon oil after that. And new strings of course.

These are cheap guitars though.

<waiting for the freak-outs re: steel wool>
 

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its about the little bits of steel wool that end up in the pickups, so you have to take care.
 

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i duuno if this is good for the wood on the guitar or not.... but im using rubbing alchohol to clean it down... it does the job great but i dunno if it will ruin the guitar in the long run.....
 

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i use steel wool a lot- just the 000 stuff tho lol- great stuff
i like rubbing alcohol too- alcohol based stuff evaporates, so it wont leave a greasy film like oil stuff.
it will dry out rosewood a bit tho- so be sure your not storing your guitars in a real dry environment
 
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