When it comes to playing a string instrument, maintenance is something we often forget. This is why I've come up with a list of FIVE tips, including a handy guide that will help remind you to take care of your instrument and show it a little TLC.
Change Your Strings. It's important that you change your strings regularly, otherwise they can begin to sound dull and even unravel. Every 6-8 months is a good timeframe for this, but if you don't play as often, once a year may be enough.
Have Your Bow Re-Haired. This is another thing that is important for us string players. If you play frequently, your bow is being put to work! So, give it a little love and take it into your local violin or music shop for a re-hair every 6-8 months. Especially if you are noticing more hair breakage than normal, it may be time to take it into the shop.
Loosen Bow Hair. If you're not already doing this, it is a great habit to get into. Your bow hair should be loosened whenever it is not in use, otherwise the stick can begin to warp.
Clean Rosin Dust From Instrument. This is another great habit to get into, and one that is super easy to do! Just keep a cloth or rag in your violin case, and wipe your strings, the fingerboard, around the bridge, and any other place rosin dust may have accumulated.
Schedule A Maintenance Check-Up. This isn't something that has to be done as often, but I'd recommend taking your violin to a luthier for a "check-up" every 1-2 years. They will use their professional eye to carefully check your instrument for any scratches, cracks, open seams, and can polish up or apply glue and varnish as needed. If there aren't any issues, they can also do a thorough cleaning and polish to make your baby good as new!
Check out this handy, printable guide below for a reminder of these tips!