Caring For Your Instrument

The CB is a handcrafted instrument made from hand-picked materials. My instruments are intended for the advanced musician or collector who appreciates the quality of a hand-crafted instrument. Here are some helpful hints in caring for your CB instrument. These hints are also helpful in caring for instruments created by a lesser maker. CB Guitars takes no responsibility for the work of other makers.

  1. Never let your instrument get hot. I use heat when I take an instrument apart. Any temperature above 98 to 100 degrees is starting to do damage. It only takes about ten minutes in a car or trunk of a car to start heating up an instrument to a dangerous level. Even the sun shining down on the case or the instrument can heat them up surprisingly. Also, never store your instrument in an attic.

  2. On the other hand, never let the instrument get too cold. Freezing temperatures can cause finish cracks and loose spots in braces. I wouldn't play a quality instrument in temperatures under 55 degrees. Think about it: when your fingers get cold, they are hard to move. The same thing happens with a quality instrument; the colder it gets, the harder it becomes to make it vibrate. This puts undue stress on wood and glue joints. If your instrument does get cold, bring it into a moderately warm area in the case. Leave the case closed and let the instrument warm up gradually inside. This usually takes about 3 or 4 hours.

  3. Never let the instrument get damp or wet. This can cause warping, loose braces, loosened bridges, split seams, etc. If your instrument gets damp, wipe it down immediately and leave the case open (in a safe place) for several hours until it dries out. Never store a fine instrument in a basement or other damp area.

  4. If you live in a dry area or you have dry heat, I recommend you get a quality humidifier. Dryness can cause cracks and splits in the wood, and it can cause glue joints to loosen. Dryness also makes lacquer fail and check. In the winter or when you are using a lot of heat, I recommend you leave your instrument in the case, get a case humidifier and follow the instructions carefully.

  5. For cleaning instruments, I recommend Lemon Pledge®. Just lightly spray on a soft cloth (not directly onto the surface) and wipe the instrument. For heavier build-up, use a warm, damp (not wet) cloth, wipe the area and immediately dry with a soft, dry cloth, then use the Lemon Pledge®. Remember that the finish on a CB instrument is only 6 to 10 thousandths of an inch thick, much thinner than on most production instruments. It doesn't take too much to go through.

  6. Always use medium or light gauge strings on your instruments. A set of heavy gauge strings on a fine instrument may make it sound like a cannon briefly, but any quality instrument will be destroyed by such abuse. Also, never tune your instrument above "standard" tuning, as this puts undue stress on the top and neck. All CB instruments are constructed with scalloped braces, therefore heavy gauge strings or high tuning will cause damage to the braces and the top.

I hope these tips will help you take care of your CB. If you follow them, you won't have any problems and your fine instrument will outlive both of us. If you can't follow these guidelines, maybe you are not ready for the responsibilities that go with owning a quality instrument. Thank you for considering my instruments; if you do purchase a CB and follow these tips, I know you will enjoy many years of pleasure with your CB.




Last modified: March 20, 2019


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Last modified: March 20, 2019