Keep your instruments happy!

Keep your instruments happy!

One of the joys of having a guitar or other stringed instrument is how good it makes you feel to pick it up and play it. You'll smile outwardly and inwardly when it's performing nicely and you're making music with it. Keeping your instrument happy will keep you happy, too, so check in on it occasionally. Are all the notes up and down the fingerboard playing well? Is the instrument looking good all around? Take a minute if you haven't already.

This time of year, with winter just (hopefully) ending, is when the signs of your guitar being too dry will show. Acoustic guitars often have spruce tops that shrink when they get too dry. The shrunken top makes the action drop too low, causing notes to buzz. And then there's the risk of cracks starting in. Many electric guitars and basses have maple necks, which sometimes bend backward when too dry, just enough to make you wonder why it doesn't seem right. It's always best to catch these things early before they get worse. And, of course, it's essential to keep those fine acoustic guitars humidified through the winter, either with a room humidifier (you'll want the room to have 40% or higher humidity) or an in-guitar humidifier.

And not to put too fine a point on it but when you're not playing your instrument, where it belongs is in its case. It's not decoration, it's not art (well, maybe), and it's not something to keep on display to impress others. It's a musical instrument, and it deserves the best care. A time-proven fact is that if a guitar is constantly left out, the likelihood of it eventually jumping off the stand or wall hook of its own accord in the middle of the night is directly proportional to how much you love it. The best story I've heard on this phenomenon was from a woman who told me that her Roomba ran amok and attacked her guitar on its stand, leading to inevitable tears.

So........ check in on your guitar (it's such a good friend) to see how it's doing. In our sixty years of repairs and restorations, we've seen many very dry and neglected guitars, some valuable vintage pieces with cracks and/or internal braces that had come loose, and more. We've brought them back to life, to original spec and top playability, to the happiness of their owners. If you discover that your instrument is dry and needs attention, our repair shop is taking appointments to ensure it will be ready for Spring.

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