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Care For Varnish Finishes | Ken Miller Guitars

Care For Varnish Finishes

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Varnish finishes are typically a little softer than Lacquer or Catalyzed finishes. On the down side this means that they are more subject to minor dings and scratches. On the positive side, they are self-polishing - so your Instrument will likely be shinier next year than it is now. Also varnish finishes do not crack from sudden temperature changes as heavy lacquer finishes can. Finally, this very softness facilitates and contributes to better sound vibrations - the musicality of the Instrument.

We recommend three levels of care as follows:

  1. OFTEN - wipe down your Instrument when you finish playing, with a soft cloth.
  2. OCCASIONALLY - wipe down your Instrument with a soft cloth that has been dipped in warm soapy water then wrung almost dry. Then do the same with a soft cloth that has been dipped in warm clean water and wrung almost dry. Lastly wipe down the Instrument with a clean and dry soft cloth. Avoid getting water on unfinished surfaces such as the bridge or fingerboard.
  3. ONE OR MORE TIMES A YEAR - Do step 2, then wax the Instrument with a high quality paste wax, such as "Johnson's Paste Floor Wax", or a similar quality wax with a high Carnauba wax content. Avoid getting wax on the fingerboard as wax will kill your strings.