PDA

View Full Version : re: cleaning da ukulele...



daboss
10-05-2010, 03:10 PM
Aloha Folks-

Thanks for all your help in directing me to some brand of strings I can use with my old Martin tenor. Mine is from the 1930's so I am a little careful with it but it is time to do some cleaning. And I thought since I need to change out the strings now is a good time.

So, I am hoping you Martin owners and owners of vintage ukuleles can chime and with some do's and don'ts in regard to cleaning and what kind of cleaners I can use, polish or oil if any.

Thank you in advance.
Mahalo!

ukeeku
10-05-2010, 03:22 PM
I own several vintage instruments and all I ever use is the Martin guitar polish. Just make sure that you spray the cleaning cloth, not the instrument. as and added protectant I also use Gibson Luthier's Choice Fretbaord conditioner to make sure that the fretboard does not crack (I do it maybe 2 times a year)
Beyond that make sure that the instrument stays humifified (40% -50%)

daboss
10-05-2010, 07:08 PM
Aloha Ukeeku-
Thank you for your reply. I was wondering about the Martin guitar polish, thanks for that tip as well as the one for the Gibson fretboard conditioner. I was wondering about that because I had heard folks talk about using mineral oil on the fretboard but was not sure how that would react to our materials. Thanks again.
Mahalo


I own several vintage instruments and all I ever use is the Martin guitar polish. Just make sure that you spray the cleaning cloth, not the instrument. as and added protectant I also use Gibson Luthier's Choice Fretbaord conditioner to make sure that the fretboard does not crack (I do it maybe 2 times a year)
Beyond that make sure that the instrument stays humifified (40% -50%)

clayton56
10-05-2010, 10:32 PM
I've always used whatever edible oil I have, usually olive oil, to condition a fretboard or my clarinets. Seems to work fine.

Brewerpaul
10-06-2010, 12:16 AM
A local fine guitar shop tells me to clean stringed instruments with a bit of Windex. Spray it on a cloth, wipe it on, wipe it off: don't let it sit, and don't spray it on directly. I've used this on guitars, mandolins and ukes with great success. It's cheap and effective.
They don't really recommend polish, as most of those leave a deposit on the surface.

mm stan
10-06-2010, 12:19 AM
Aloha Folks-

Thanks for all your help in directing me to some brand of strings I can use with my old Martin tenor. Mine is from the 1930's so I am a little careful with it but it is time to do some cleaning. And I thought since I need to change out the strings now is a good time.

So, I am hoping you Martin owners and owners of vintage ukuleles can chime and with some do's and don'ts in regard to cleaning and what kind of cleaners I can use, polish or oil if any.

Thank you in advance.
Mahalo!

Aloha Daboss,
Actually I myself like to use Nu finish automotive polish....for me, it's stronger finish and it lasts longer......stay away from wax based conitioners...
Good luck! MM

SailingUke
10-06-2010, 03:09 AM
My luthier always recommends Gibson guitar polish.
I have used it with great success for many years on both guitars and ukuleles.
I also have some 100% carnuba wax (not auto wax with silicones) that I use for a longer lasting protective coat.
I use lemon oil on the fret boards and on ukuleles with no finish.

bazmaz
10-06-2010, 07:16 AM
A good quality guitar polish on the body.

For fingerboard - I would not recommend lemon oil unless you can find real lemon oil. I would though recommend bore oil from somebody like Fret Doctor - its natural mineral oil, no additives, nothing synthetic - used by those conditioning woodwinds, and bagpipes.

For fingerboards though - only treat if noticeably dry and dont overdo it

daboss
10-06-2010, 08:23 PM
Aloha Everyone-
Gosh, what a great site. I wish I had 10 ukuleles, that way I could use everyone's system!

My tenor is old, probably from the 1930's. The finish is not perfect, got a couple of nicks, worn areas so I hope the Martin guitar polish will work all right on the body. Stan, I like your NuPolish suggestion! People do not realize that even though we have some humidity, cooled off by da trade winds, the air has salt in it from the ocean. So, growing up the joke with the kids was who was going to clean/polish the brass! So, just wondering if the NuPolish puts on "dat" supa-man coating!

Again, thank you all for your help.
Mahalo


A good quality guitar polish on the body.

For fingerboard - I would not recommend lemon oil unless you can find real lemon oil. I would though recommend bore oil from somebody like Fret Doctor - its natural mineral oil, no additives, nothing synthetic - used by those conditioning woodwinds, and bagpipes.

For fingerboards though - only treat if noticeably dry and dont overdo it

mm stan
10-07-2010, 08:25 AM
Aloha Everyone-
Gosh, what a great site. I wish I had 10 ukuleles, that way I could use everyone's system!

My tenor is old, probably from the 1930's. The finish is not perfect, got a couple of nicks, worn areas so I hope the Martin guitar polish will work all right on the body. Stan, I like your NuPolish suggestion! People do not realize that even though we have some humidity, cooled off by da trade winds, the air has salt in it from the ocean. So, growing up the joke with the kids was who was going to clean/polish the brass! So, just wondering if the NuPolish puts on "dat" supa-man coating!

Again, thank you all for your help.
Mahalo
Aloha da boss,
I've used Nu finish on all the Martins and Kamaka's I've had.....it gives the best protection possible the lasts...like their
commercial says ...the once a year polish.....I've seen it protect the wear of the clear coat that comes from the wear and
perspiration...it's a supa duper polish....that lasts...... been using it for years....MM Stan....
Takes out fine scratches too....

Tudorp
10-07-2010, 11:44 AM
I wouldn't want to recommend anything to anyone with a vintage martain unless I was an expert on that due to the value most those have. But, I have always used Lemon Oil on all my guitars for years and thats about it.

Strummingbird Stu
10-07-2010, 04:10 PM
I'd like to report a happy ending to a problem that I had with my uke. I have a Kala solid koa uke with satin finish. I had a few autographs on it with permanent black marking pens. Recently I began regretting that I had used it for autographs, and wanted to take the ink off. I searched some of the previous UU treads on the subject and found some great suggestions for removing the ink. I started by wiping it with alcohol - some of it came off, but I couldn't get it all off. To make a long story short, when I used a little dab of toothpaste and carefully rubbed it - walla! the ink came right off without damaging the finish!

I'm thrilled to have my almost-new uke back, and so grateful for the great advice I found here in the UU forum! :D

itsme
10-07-2010, 04:41 PM
I really can't give any tips for cleaning a vintage instrument, but just want to add that you need to take precautions with any instrument. I always wash my hands before I play anything, and then wipe down the strings and the top a bit when I'm done.

Seriously, you shouldn't eat Cheetos while you're playing an instrument. ;)

mm stan
10-07-2010, 04:44 PM
I really can't give any tips for cleaning a vintage instrument, but just want to add that you need to take precautions with any instrument. I always wash my hands before I play anything, and then wipe down the strings and the top a bit when I'm done.

Seriously, you shouldn't eat Cheetos while you're playing an instrument. ;)
I have friends who drink beer and eat snacks while playing their ukes...never let them near mine....didn't want to be rude so I bought them a cheap Rogue soprano for $24.99 MM Stan..