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Question about protecting guitar during maintenance

good soil digital

Silver Supporting Member
This is a question for all you guitar techs/do it yourself guru's.

I recently created a really nice work space for my guitars. It's an old workbench and all my gear is either stored underneath or hanging from hooks above. However the tabletop is just a piece of wood. My question is what the heck do you guys lay your guitars on while working on them. I know martin makes an "axe mat" and i've found 1 or 2 small companies that make a similar product, but can't really find them anywhere.

I looked all over MF, Sweetwater, and my local GC and can't really find anything. I'm just a little hesitant to lay my unblemished d28 on the tabletop of the workbench without something under it.

What are you guys using?
Lotta guys just use a slab of carpet, and I have too. Trouble with that is if some sharp piece of something is lurking in the pile of the rug and you don't know it till you drag your newly blemished D-28 across it. I like this rubber mat stuff I have (dunno where i got it; it's like the stuff used to insulate plumbing, but in sheet form) and I just lay a clean towel over it. Towel gets well shaken before a gtr is laid on it. My favorite is a woodworkers vise that StewMac markets as "Our Exclusive Wonder Magic Repairman's Vise" (or something equally preposturous), that I bought at a tool store for about half of what S/M gouges you for it. With this, I can clamp onto the neck and suspend the body at whatever angle/attitude suits my needs. Then I don't ever have to worry about what to lay the gtr down on.

Jan Folkson

I keep a folded towel (that get's changed frequently) for the body along with a neck support that I made myself.


I actually have the perfect solution -- cheap and perfectly suited for this...

I use a portable "baby changing" pad. It's a nicely padded little mat, made to plant baby on while you... you know... smile at them? It rolls up to keep it clean when not in use, and the up (= baby) side is soft and made to wipe clean. Dimensions are about 1' x 2' which is about perfect for laying beneath the body. The neck can then be elevated any way you want -- I made some padded wooden "lifters" for the neck, but a rolled up towell works fine. The workbench itself is carpeted, but as someone else noted, stuff can catch in carpet and I prefer to use the changing pad to protect the instrument.



I'm actually using a yoga mat, I was looking at the one my wife uses and its about a 1/4' of this rubber stuff. They come pretty big so you can cut them to fit your workspace. They are also pretty cheap, (under $20) and you can wash them or wipe them down with a wet cloth if they get dirty. Works great for me.


I use a bathing towel and then use soft, baby flannel on top.
Its like $2.50 a yard a Walmart.
Also a cool tip.
When doing any soldering, cut a hole in an old towel like the surgeons do when operating.
Put the hole over the cavity or area where your soldering. This way, if you get a splatter, it wont mess up your finish.


Silver Supporting Member
Old towel, or an anti skid solid shelf liner, roll of paper towels wrapped in a T-shirt for neck support. I keep a couple of old T-shirts around to cover the body with if I'm wiring. Oh - and don't forget to take your wrist watch off. :AOK

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