Guitar Cleaning

After a three year stint playing lead guitar for  Bradford based hard rock covers band Full Tilt, I began to know all too well what a dirty guitar looked like.

I sweat a heck of a lot on stage (yes I know – how lovely) and by the end of the first set me and my guitar we usually completely drenched. Then came my penchant for blowing mouthfulls of beer into the air in ridiculous theatrical fashion at key moments in some of the songs. The bit in metallica’s “Enter Sandman” where the riff comes back in after the quiet section? That was one of them.

At the end of the gig I would usually be too drunk to care about my filthy guitar and it was simply chucked back in its case without even a wipe down, and left before the next gig. This was, of course, in my early days with the band – before I knew what sweat, beer and muck will do to a guitar.

Basically, if a guitar is filthy, it’s not going to play very well for very long. Even if you clean the strings or replace them regularly, the dirt from the guitar will still go onto your hands and then back onto the strings. Once I started to clean my guitars regularly I noticed that the strings lasted much longer and stayed in tune better.

If you don’t clean your guitar and you sweat on it a lot, you will notice that over time it will practically start to go rotten like mine did. Your sweat will begin to corrode the finish on all the metal parts. The screws, pickup pole pieces, bridge parts, neck bolt tops, neckplate, frets, switches etc etc will all start to discolour. Once I started to enjoy the feel and look of a beautifully clean guitar there was no looking back for me.

I regularly clean guitars as part of my Full Beans extensive setup process, but you can have your guitar cleaned without any other work if you really want. Please go to the Full Beans setup page and read from “Remove Strings” to “Reassemble & Restring”.


I will need to see the guitar before I can quote accurately, but it will never be less than £20 or more than £40.