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What should I use to clean my violin?
Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 (1 votes) 
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JiminTexas
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April 29, 2019 - 4:28 pm
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What is the recommended cleaning agent for general cleaning and for removing resin dust from my violin, a Cecilio CVN 500. Does it matter what type of finish is on the violin, i.e. bright varnish, rubbed oil,  not sure, whatever. I also have a vintage violin on the way. I have not yet seen it in the flesh, but should old violins be treated differently?

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AndrewH
Sacramento, California
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April 29, 2019 - 5:27 pm
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A soft, dry cloth. Nothing else. This goes for all violins. If anything is more stubborn, breathe on that spot and use the very slight amount of moisture to clean it. If it gets really dirty, take it to a luthier for cleaning, which should rarely be necessary -- at most once every couple years.

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BillyG
Brora, North-east Scotland
April 29, 2019 - 5:33 pm
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@JiminTexas - little and often is generally the answer - with a dry cloth (or "micro-fiber cloth kind of thing) - i.e. don't let it build up - just dust it down regularly.

Avoid using detergent or any alcohol or similar spirits-based substances - that can potentially damage shellac/varnish finishes ( may not matter on some "low end" instruments - but - I wouldn't risk it - yes - I have a couple of "low-end" fiddles as well as some "nicer" ones - none of them are treated any differently - a gentle wipe-down and dusting-off with a fine cloth before any residue starts to build up)

I have to admit - on one of them I actually used furniture polish ( I tested it out on a small area of the back first ) on a 100 year old fiddle I got from e-bay with a lot of grime, rosin dust and general crud stuck to it....   that turned out fine... but probably NOT generally recommended other than in extreme circumstances !

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
April 29, 2019 - 5:38 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
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Andrew is right but I've always used Hill Polish and Cleaner. It's been around for a while and has a good reputation.
Usually not just for the rosin dust that you mention but for the more stubborn cleaning and built up rosin.
Use small amounts and do not saturate, especially not in cracks which I feel certain that your Cecilio doesn't have yet. 🙂

You can also try using just a little mineral oil.

https://fiddlershop.com/produc.....sh-cleaner

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Irv
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April 29, 2019 - 6:06 pm
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Taking a Cecilio to a luthier for a surface cleaning is precious.  The reasoning may be more sound on the one you have coming.  A micro fiber cloth works well (avoid the use of paper towels since they contain abrasive).  I really want to try a Mother’s clay bar on mine, but do not try that until you hear back from me.  

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AndrewH
Sacramento, California
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April 29, 2019 - 6:25 pm
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Irv said
Taking a Cecilio to a luthier for a surface cleaning is precious.  The reasoning may be more sound on the one you have coming.  A micro fiber cloth works well (avoid the use of paper towels since they contain abrasive).  I really want to try a Mother’s clay bar on mine, but do not try that until you hear back from me.  

  

If there's already an upgrade on the way, it's likely the Cecilio won't be used long enough to ever need that kind of cleaning.

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x Coach
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April 29, 2019 - 10:29 pm
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I use a microfiber cloth on my soloist after playing. Every once in a while, I use a dab of hill polish for a nice shine.

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MoonShadows
Stroudsburg, PA
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April 30, 2019 - 1:27 am
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I've only had my Fiddlershop concert violin for 3 months, so I haven't really thought too much about cleaning/polishing it. Is there a recommended cleaning/polishing schedule, or is it just one of these things you do when it looks like it needs a sprucing up?

On the other hand, my teacher's fiddle looks like something the American Pickers found in the corner of an old barn after sitting there for decades. I'd recommend sand-blasting! rofl(AP is a TV show for those who don't know.)

I wipe mine daily to get excess rosin off of it with my handy-dandy Fiddlershop polishing cloth that came with my violin.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks - Adventures in Learning to Play the Fiddle as an Adult

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