For questions about keeping an instrument or related gear in playable condition.

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5
votes
3answers
335 views

Is it a bad idea to attach my strap just above the nut?

This question is mainly for my banjo but it seems to apply to my guitar as well. For me it is most comfortable to have the left end of the strap attached to just above the nut on the neck. Is this a ...
4
votes
1answer
238 views

Dip-polishing silver-nickel keys

I'm working on restoring an old clarinet. The keys are badly tarnished - I've been working on them using a cloth and metal polish, but: It's very time consuming; I'm finding it impossible to get ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

Guitar: No sound from second string, but other strings sound normal

I played a Squier Stratocaster last night, well, when I plugged into amp, which it's working, my guitar's second string didn't make any sound - well, a bit actually - but the rest of the strings sound ...
5
votes
2answers
878 views

Floyd Rose string tension and action question

I've been playing for quite some time, but have always owned and played non-trem guitars. These days, I'm in a kind of band where some whammy is of great use, so I picked up a Jackson Warrior with a ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

When does a guitar neck bend happen and how to prevent it?

We all know guitar necks bend and it is the worst thing that can happen to a guitarist but I would like to know what all the reasons that can cause it are? Some that I have heard are: (please explain ...
55
votes
20answers
33k views

Changing the strings: one by one, or by taking all strings off at one time?

The title says it all. Should I change strings one by one, or take them all at once? Does this matter at all? If I take all strings off, will it damage my neck in any way, because the pressure is ...
6
votes
2answers
8k views

Guitar's individual bridge saddle intonation cannot be adjusted further

I picked up a cheap (used) guitar on which the intonation was all out of wack. I've followed the instructions in this answer about fixing the intonation using the adjuster screws on the bridge. My ...
6
votes
3answers
565 views

Is it okay if I play guitar/bass with wet fretting hand?

I know to keep a guitar/bass is not to play with wet hands. But, is it okay to play just with fretting hand a bit wet? I'm thinking about the neck, will it affect the tone?
1
vote
1answer
742 views

Guitar making weird noise

I have a normal acoustic Yamaha Guitar (starter version). It was working fine until now (5 months). All of a sudden the 2nd string is making weird noises when picked but only when the 6th string is ...
3
votes
1answer
545 views

String buzzing even after straightening neck from shop

I had my guitar's neck straightened from a shop, the action now is very comfortable as compared to before but I'm still getting buzzing before the 12th frets on all strings but its too much in the G ...
3
votes
4answers
147 views

How can I make my guitar stay in tune when it is unused?

I wonder, when I put my guitar somewhere, without anybody else drop my tuning, the tuning sometimes drop down a bit. How to make the tuning just stick on the right tune? Is there any tips or tricks?
19
votes
4answers
2k views

When should I be concerned about calibrating the bias of vacuum tubes in an amplifier?

I think it would be useful to discuss the concept of bias as it pertains to guitar amplifiers. I have read some articles saying that you should always rebias your amplifier when you change the power ...
2
votes
2answers
416 views

Guitar bridge lifting should I take the strings off?

I was about to put my Great Divide acoustic guitar in the back of my car when someone said something to me and I got distracted (you can see where this is going). I then proceeded to back out of my ...
5
votes
1answer
642 views

Can Adjusting the Truss rod of the guitar crack the neck?

I wonder if anyone can help me here. I bought a used guitar from Ebay and it looked fine at first sight. The action needed adjusting and I tune to Eb so I decided to adjust the truss-rod. I turned it ...
10
votes
3answers
3k views

How do I set up a bass guitar?

How do I set up the pickups, neck, etc. in an electric bass guitar? I'm not concerned with producing a particular sound as I am with keeping the neck from warping, prevent string buzz, improving ...
3
votes
2answers
79 views

Finding guitar technicians

I’ve often seen advice to locate a good guitar technician or luthier to perform setups and routine maintenance. For example, Ali Maxwell advises, in “How do I set up an electric guitar?”: The ...
20
votes
3answers
2k views

How do I set up an electric guitar?

How do I set up the pickups, neck, etc. in an electric guitar? I'm not concerned with producing a particular sound as I am with keeping the neck from warping, prevent string buzz, improving ...
2
votes
3answers
373 views

How often should I wax my bass?

When I bought my bass, it came with a surface finisher (beeswax). I've been waxing my bass about once every month/month and a half. Why should I wax my bass and how often is it recommended I do it?
5
votes
1answer
473 views

What is a good string height for a mountain dulcimer?

27" scale, tuned DAd. Just ordered the nut and saddle and don't know how much I should sand them down as I'm not really a dulcimer player. Thanks in advance
6
votes
3answers
2k views

How do you identify string gauge?

A friend broke a string on her bowed psaltery (a small zither-like instrument) and needs to replace it. Problem: what gauge? The source of the instrument is unknown and it didn't come with spare ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Voice trills unintentionally when singing high-pitched notes

I'm not an experienced singer, so I suppose I've got plenty of knowledge missing when it comes to keeping my voice in shape. Whenever I try to sing a high-pitched note, my voice inadvertently starts ...
6
votes
6answers
3k views

Will steel strings wear out my nickel frets ?

I have bought some coated strings because I wanted to try that out. After my purchase I noticed that the package says the uncoated strings are stainless steel. Since my frets are made out of nickel ...
12
votes
3answers
5k views

How does the piano middle pedal work? Is there a standard symbol for it?

What are the mechanics behind the middle piano pedal? I have been using the middle pedal for a variety of music, it is wonderful, but I can't figure out how it works (I mean the mechanical process). ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Do instruments get out of tune when you place them near a radiator?

Do instruments get out of tune when you place them near a radiator when the radiator is hot? If so, why? Also, is there anything else that happens when you place an instrument near a hot radiator?
7
votes
2answers
227 views

Storing a flute

I haven't played my flute in several years, but it is a fairly high-quality open-holed silver instrument. During this time, it is already a bit tarnished and grimy, and I want to make sure that I am ...
12
votes
1answer
882 views

How should I inspect a used piano prior to purchase?

I am considering finding a used grand (or baby grand) piano to purchase. This will be a standard acoustic piano, not an electronic version that "looks like" a grand piano. I am an experienced ...
2
votes
0answers
65 views

Is there a way to lengthen the lifespan of my strings? [duplicate]

I have acidic fingers and my strings wear out rather quickly. I am using Elixir which is a lot better than most other brands, but after around two weeks it loses the clean sound, becomes hard (or ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

With a Floyd Rose bridge, how big of a difference in string gauge will require a new set-up?

I have a new Schecter Hellraiser Extreme that came with stock 10-46's. I prefer a hybrid 9-46 (only the thinnest 3 strings are different guage) -to bend a bit better.... Is that minor enough change ...
5
votes
3answers
8k views

Switching my strings from 10's to 9's - am I in for more fret buzz?

So, I'm playing an Agile 200 Les Paul copy (tune o matic bridge). I've had 10's on it and sadly it has some fret buzz. I recently got it set up to eliminate the buzz and the tech got it pretty close. ...
1
vote
2answers
306 views

Is there a chance for heavy violin strings to harm the instrument?

Is there anything like that that heavy or other kinds of violin-strings should break down the instrument?
7
votes
2answers
192 views

cleaning trombone slide where outer slide is under the inner slide

I have been playing for some time, but have never found a good way to clean the inner slide up inside the part where the outer slide is under the metal in first position I've tried tooth picks and ...
5
votes
2answers
208 views

How to disassemble a tuba for cleaning

When I remove the valves of a piston tuba, do I remove the spring also?
4
votes
1answer
427 views

Electric Violin care

I'm a beginner violinist. I'm planning to buy a used electric violin, but I don't know much about them. Is the maintenance for an electric violin the same as with the acoustic one? Any tips on how ...
2
votes
3answers
162 views

Bass guitar amp power socket issues

I have a rather unusual question. I have a Fender Affinity Jazz Bass starter kit and it comes with a 15W amp - "Rumble 15 Bass Combo Amp". I also have a cat in the house, and every time I don't cover ...
3
votes
1answer
665 views

Is it safe to use silicone spray as valve oil?

I used silicone spray to lubricate my trumpet's pistons. It's easier to spray the lubricant on the valves, but can silicone spray damage my trumpet? What about other general purpose lubricants? I ...
4
votes
1answer
68 views

Should I oil my woodwinds?

I have a clarinet and a recorder, both made of wood. The clarinet is five and the recorder 25 years old. I just learned that I should oil from David Pino's "The Clarinet and Clarinet Playing". ...
2
votes
2answers
74 views

Instrument self polished from contact with body

My mahogany guitar came unpolished from the factory. After several years of play, certain areas are now quite shiny -- from self-polishing due to contact with my body during play. Especially the back ...
7
votes
1answer
444 views

Should I replace unwound strings on my acoustic guitar as often as the wound ones?

The wound strings wear off quite fast, and start sounding dull even faster, so I replace them quite often. But whenever I do so, I replace the unwound strings as well, even though at that point, they ...
5
votes
1answer
571 views

How to stop my double bass pedals from squeaking?

I have had my double kick pedal for at least a year and a half now and I've started to notice a squeaking when the left pedal is pressed (the slave pedal.) I've tried oiling the bearings and it hasn'...
6
votes
1answer
651 views

Acceptable temperatures for an electric guitar

There are plenty of subjects related to storing a guitar in various conditions, but most talk about exposure to direct sunlight or other notable sources of heat or are a bit vague. My problem is that ...
2
votes
4answers
2k views

Using bass strings on guitar

Would it be safe to use a 0.065 bass string as a B string(tuned to Bb) on a 7 string guitar with a scale length of 26.5?
10
votes
4answers
379 views

What is a guitar truss rod?

What is the "truss rod" on a guitar? Do truss rods vary for an acoustic, electric, or classical guitar?
2
votes
2answers
69 views

Drumkit maintenance

I was reading questions randomly and this one grabbed my attention: Piano Maintenance Accordingly, you put glasses of water in the piano to help keep the humidity steady, so that its wood lasts ...
6
votes
3answers
169 views

Piano Maintenance

What should be done to maintain an upright piano? I am not asking about tuning it, but what can be done so it does not have to be tuned as often? I heard someone once say about a particular piano ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

Do acoustic or classical guitars need to be set up?

Obviously acoustic and classical guitars don't have external pickups that need to be setup, but are there any other adjustments that need to be done on a regular basis? There doesn't seem to be a ...
6
votes
5answers
1k views

What am I doing wrong when tuning the violin using a web application?

I don't know anything about violins, and I won't have time for a tutor until much later. When attempting to tune my violin, I was advised to get a digital violin tuner. Alright. But before I go get ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Saxophone sometimes out of tune by nearly a fourth

Our band's saxophonist has a bizzare intermittent fault with his soprano sax (so normally uses his tenor or alto sax). Sometimes it's fine and sings beautifully, but other times it'll be out of tune ...
7
votes
2answers
908 views

What purpose does adjusting the violin bow tension serve?

A violin bow has a screw that allows you to adjust the hairs' tension. Like a tuning peg so to speak. When I just got mine, I didn't pay attention to it. I worked with the tuning pegs because I knew ...