Keeping strings clean?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by waylay00, Jul 25, 2008.

  1. waylay00

    waylay00 Member

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    I changed my strings (D'addario 10s) on my Strat earlier today. Brought it to a jam tonight, and when I got home, the strings already have plenty of blackened regions. But the thing is, I wash my hands thoroughly before I play. I wipe my strings down as much as possible with a clean microfiber cloth. Yet my strings still get filthy in such a short period of time! What is going on?
     
  2. devilrob1979

    devilrob1979 Member

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    Your sweat probably has a low PH meaning it's acidic. There's not a whole lot you can do. I have a buddy like that. Anytime he touches one of my guitars the strings get changed the next day. You might try fingerease or Dunlop String Cleaner. It might help.
     
  3. waylay00

    waylay00 Member

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    I could have sworn I typed that I use Finger Ease too! Wow...

    I guess I'll just have to live with it. :(
     
  4. realityczech

    realityczech Senior Member

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    OCD


    Just kidding

    Wash your hands after you go and before you eat.
    Worrying about your string health is whacked.
    Every once in awhile use some ronsonol (naptha) to clean the scum off the strings.
    Rock!
     
  5. waylay00

    waylay00 Member

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    Hmm, I was reading about acidity in sweat, and it can be caused by natural body levels of higher acidity, usually caused by an imbalanced diet. Raw, green vegetables are the key to preventing this apparently. Maybe I should have been eating them all along :D.
     
  6. MartinC

    MartinC Member

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    I can keep strings on my guitars for months and I get zero black stuff. I never wipe down afterwards either. I change strings when there are dents in them from fretting and/or when the tone loses its snap. I have a friend who's sweat eats strings. Luck of the draw.
     
  7. BurnoutBright

    BurnoutBright Member

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    You might want to try the polymer coated strings, there are several companies that make them. I have the same problem as you, I can kill non-coated strings in one night. Another problem is dirt accumulating under the string, I don't have that problem since I switch. There is a slight tone difference ( less brighter compared to new strings ) and feel slicker, but it doesn't bother me. I like the Elixir nanoweb. Hope this helps.
     
  8. teleman55

    teleman55 Member

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    Wipe them from the underside with a good cotton cloth (teeshirt, i.e.) semi soaked with rubbing alchohol or vodka.
     
  9. Sikor

    Sikor Member

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    I am in the same situation. I wash my hands, I wipe strings after every playing (with EB Wonder Wipes) and my string lasts for 2-3 days before they got that blackened regions.
    This is how it is and You have just to get used to that :(
     
  10. LaXu

    LaXu Member

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    Same here. If acidic sweat is a problem then I'd give the better diet thing a go. It's not like I eat particularly healthy or anything but I do stay away from crap like McD etc (I'd rather make a good burger myself).
     
  11. jim lavender

    jim lavender Member

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    I have the same issue and I use Tri Flow spray with teflon to clean off the crud.
     
  12. Paul Conway

    Paul Conway Member

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    Try DR Stringlife. And +1 for nanowebs. My sweat is so acidic, I could join the X-men.
     
  13. sixstring531

    sixstring531 Supporting Member

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    Maybe my PH is balanced, but I use fast fret before and after I play and my strings seem to last quite a while.
     
  14. RJM/rydog2223

    RJM/rydog2223 Member

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    For me the Elixir's and Fret Fast work pretty good.
     
  15. RJM/rydog2223

    RJM/rydog2223 Member

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    Paul how do you like this stuff?? Looks pretty interesting.
     
  16. candid_x

    candid_x Supporting Member

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    Ernie Ball string Wonder Wipes work quite well, and come in small containers designed to fit into cases.
     
  17. Sikor

    Sikor Member

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    I was using Fast Fret too (still using on old strings).
    It makes strings feel nice, but is not protecting from darkening :(
     
  18. Blue Strat

    Blue Strat Member

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    I have toxic sweat that makes metal corrode. When I'm being diligent, I wipe down the strings, one by one by wrapping the cloth around each one, with a treated dust cloth. Works as well as anything I've tried.
     
  19. rongtr

    rongtr Member

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    I have acidic sweat also. My strat is a maple neck, and the strings seem to tarnish quicker on it than on a rosewood board. I think it's because the rosewood is pourous and absorbs some of the sweat. I use Elixirs on my Taylor, but just can't bring myself to use them on the strat (I have DR Pure Blues on it.) I tried putting talcum powder on my hands last night at an outdoor gig. It helped a bit, but I'll still have to change strings by tomorrow. The store I teach at gives a really good discount on strings, so I guess I'll just keep changing every gig.:AOK
     
  20. Bluewail

    Bluewail Tone curmudgeon Silver Supporting Member

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    I've posted this before but I'm really pleased with a new discovery - Blitz String Cleaning Cloths. Apparently Blitz is a company that makes a variety of metal cleaning and polishing products for everything from cleaning jewelry to polishing brass instruments. The sting cleaner cloths are an impregnated cloth that you simply wipe once or twice across the strings and the use a separate non-impregnated cloth to wipe of any excess. I don't believe I suffer from excessive oxidation problems from my hands but nevertheless, the stuff works really well and it's cheap. Check it out.
     

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