I went crazy on Monday and spent the money on myself required to buy a couple of packs of strings for my guitars. I don’t know if any of you remember (partly cos I don’t know if I made much or any mention of it) but I was forming this band back in December, and getting together often to practice.
I began leaving my Strat (Fender Super Stratocaster, Deluxe line circa 2000) over at the singer’s house, as there was a basement full of guitars and equipment and it would be well looked after. My other electric guitar, a Vantage VP820, stayed home with me. I bought them both a new pack of strings then, but only the Vantage got strung – I managed to leave the strings behind when the band fell through and I brought my Strat home.
Anyway, lately it’s been more than apparently time to change the strings, on both guitars. But when I got the Strat un-strung and really took care to notice, I saw that it was in some dire need of cleaning. The gold hardware was covered in dust, maple neck etched with dirt and the body in general covered in fingerprints and sweat.
I began the process last night – I broke out Q-tips and toothpicks, an old toothbrush and rag, and I scratched and swept off every speck of dirt and dust from every inch of the thing. The process actually kept me up very late last night, but I got it finished and ready to be polished and strung tonight.
And I’ve just finished; the process was a real labour of love. I spent some 90 minutes scrutinizing and polishing the instrument, cleaning and buffing every inch of it several times. Then carefully threaded, measured, cut, wound, and strained each string, adhering to a compulsive routine. As I finished, tuning the guitar and looking closely over it’s restored luster, I imagined myself feeling very much like a man putting the finishing touches on his freshly polished hot rod.
And it’s gorgeous, it looks just like the day I finally received it from California… excepting the fretboard is a fair bit more worn down. I have the Vantage yet to string, but I don’t anticipate the process is going to be terribly similar…