Are you taking proper care of your violin? Below, violin teacher Ruth V. shares some tips on how to maintain a healthy violin…
Learning how to properly care for your violin is important for many different reasons. First, it ensures you get the best sound when playing the violin.
More importantly, it helps protect your investment. Violins are expensive, and the last thing you want to do is carelessly tarnish your instrument by not taking care of it.
Below are five tips that will help keep your violin healthy so you can sound your best while playing the violin.
1. Wipe violin down
After playing the violin, rosin residue will start to cake on the instrument. It is very important to wipe down your instrument with a small soft dry cloth after each practice.
You want to make sure you wipe the fingerboard, under the fingerboard, on the body of the instrument, between the sound holes, and last but not least, your strings.
Never wipe rosin off the bow with just your fingers, because the oils on your hands could transfer on to your bow. A soft dry cloth is strongly recommended.
2. Loosen bow hairs
It is essential to loosen the bow hairs after you’re done playing the violin, as this will help preserve the instrument’s life span.
Avoid getting polish or touching the bow hair with your fingers. Doing so may damage the bow hairs, which can be expensive to replace.
Typically, bow hairs will last for around 120 hours of violin playing, which means your bow should be rehaired once every six months or so.
3. Tune pegs
Tuning pegs is not the easiest thing to maneuver, especially when you’re first learning the violin. If your pegs are turned too tight the string may pop causing pain to one’s self or nicking the instrument.
Nonetheless, effective tuning is a vital skill for a musician to acquire. When tuning, start with your A string then move onto your E string followed by the D and G strings.
If you’re unsure of how to tune or care for your pegs, ask your violin instructor to help.
4. Store violin in cool, dry place
Keeping your violin in a cool dry place is extremely beneficial to the life span of your instrument.
Heat and/or direct sunlight can cause the wood to expand or warp. After playing the violin, store it in a safe place away from air conditioners or heaters in your home.
And always remember to unload your violin from the trunk or backseat of your vehicle!
5. Don’t forget to store violin accessories
Your violin accessories—such as rosin, tuner, shoulder rest, stand, and carrying bag—should also be stored properly.
Make sure to always remove and place your shoulder rest in your bag after each use. Keeping the shoulder rest on the body of the violin for too long may cause chips and/or nicks on the body.
What’s more, tuners should always be turned off after each use and placed in an easily attachable bag. Don’t forget to keep a pencil with all the accessories as well.
A clean violin is a happy violin. Use the tips above to maintain the health of your instrument. If you have questions or need guidance, consult your violin teacher.
Photo by Andreanna Moya Photography