Violin Cleaning?

April 24, 2004 at 05:07 AM · How do you clean your violins and bows? Especially "touche" (I don't know how I can say in English :))

Replies (12)

April 24, 2004 at 06:05 AM · Touche = fingerboard

It's good to use only the special liquids that you can find at luthiers. I usually get the cleaner out, pour a little on a soft cotton rag (away from the instrument) and then clean the fingerboard. A few things first, I take the strings off from the tailpiece and place a heavy duty towel between fingerboard and body of violin so I don't have any accidents. Rosin will come of quite easily. Then I use polish on another soft piece of cotton and rub it in gently. After that I wait for a few minutes then polish the violin with a very soft rag. Do not use cleaner on the body, let the luthiers do it. Bow stick is to be cleaned also by luthiers.

April 24, 2004 at 08:27 AM · Quite important:

#1) to clean, go against the grain.

#2) to polish, go with the grain.

I don't mind the Hill cleaner/polish solution; it's not waxy.

April 24, 2004 at 08:31 AM · Rubbing alcohol is good for cleaning the fingerboard, as is plain water, being careful to not drip any onto the instrument.

April 25, 2004 at 04:15 AM · I don't suggest using rubbing alcohol on the fingerboard. Many times I've cleaned my strings and dripped the alcohol ON the fingerboard and it took off the finish!


April 25, 2004 at 10:22 PM · Quick trick... Use a good lens cloth for your violin- I recommend Pentax. For the hard to reach bits, e.g. under the fingerboard and around and in the f-holes, use a goose feather. For strings use gauze dipped lightly in gin, but make sure that you clean you strings holding your violin belly-side down to avoid any aforementioned disasters of fingerboard finish disolving.

Happy cleaning ;-)

Best wishes


April 26, 2004 at 08:37 AM · A good violin has no finish on the fingerboard, just top-notch ebony. Foresaid rubbing alcohol does a great job in cleaning up the muck from touche and strings, no trouble. Only the cheapest fiddles have softish non-ebony painted fingerboards and yes, this paint will easily come away with sweat, friction, cleaning.

April 26, 2004 at 03:44 PM · I use pledge

April 27, 2004 at 11:52 AM · Marty what is pledge?

April 27, 2004 at 08:14 PM · Tee hee( he was joking) - Lemon Pledge is a commercial U.S. furniture polish (full of wax and chemicals)made by a huge chemical co.What it wouldn't strip off would probably be pretty shiny!

April 27, 2004 at 09:44 PM · Yes, I was kidding...please don't use pledge!

May 1, 2004 at 05:22 PM · Would pledge be good for polishing our terracotta tiles on the floor? After I wash them they look dull. Thanks for telling me about the stuff......

May 2, 2004 at 07:47 AM · He may have meant the "lemon pledge" product that's dishwashing soap, actually. Slippery when wet!

This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.

Facebook Twitter YouTube Instagram Email is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music

Yamaha Silent Violin
Yamaha Silent Violin

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

Find a Summer Music Program
Find a Summer Music Program

Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases
Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases Business Directory Business Directory Guide to Online Learning Guide to Online Learning

Dominant Pro Strings

Antonio Strad Violin

Bay Fine Strings Violin Shop

Bobelock Cases


Los Angeles Violin Shop

Nazareth Gevorkian Violins

Metzler Violin Shop

Leatherwood Bespoke Rosin



Johnson String Instrument and Carriage House Violins

Potter Violins

String Masters

Bein & Company

Annapolis Bows & Violins

Laurie's Books

Discover the best of in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews. Interviews Volume 1 Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn Interviews Volume 2 Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine