All Tanglewood Guitar Company UK guitars are crafted from carefully selected tonewoods. Nearly all of our guitars feature solid tops, and several models feature all-solid wood construction - a characteristic of some of the world’s most highly acclaimed guitars. Solid wood guitars offer better volume, projection and tone than laminated guitars. They will actually improve with age as the grain structure loosens, allowing the guitar to resonate more freely. Solid wood guitars, however, are more sensitive to their environment. Wood expands and contracts in response to changes in temperature and humidity. This type of movement can be very traumatic to a guitar, and can cause a number of imperfections to appear. Cold weather climates are generally more challenging for wood products, and require certain precautions to be taken.
When not in use, your guitar should always be stored in its case. The case slows down moisture loss in a dry environment, and moisture absorption in a humid environment. It will also minimize the possibility of accidental damage.
HUMIDITY AND TEMPERATURE
To avoid shrinkage, cracking, swelling, and warping of your guitar, we suggest keeping it in an environment that provides fairly constant temperature and humidity. The humidity level can be closely monitored with a quality hygrometer, available at many music stores, as well as hardware and electronic stores. Ideal humidity is 40-55% relative to an ambient temperature between 55° and 80° Fahrenheit (12° to 27° Celsius). In practice, 40% is sufficient at high temperatures, and 50% required for low temperatures due to less moisture capacity of the air.
Using a sound-hole humidifier is highly recommended when storing your guitar.
Generally speaking, if you are comfortable in your environment, your guitar will be comfortable too!
When changing your guitar strings, it is best to remove and install one string at a time. This will minimize the shock of releasing all the string tension on the neck. We strongly recommend the use of Light or Medium gauge strings. String sets with a low "E" larger than .54MM are not recommended.
Strings will last longer if wiped down with a dry cloth after each use.
When transporting your guitar in a car with either heat or air conditioning on, we suggest you place the guitar in its case inside a large airtight plastic bag (a garbage bag works fine) to seal in moisture and protect against excessive dryness. Do not leave your guitar in the passenger seat, trunk of a car, or anywhere else where sunlight can overheat it, or where it can freeze. It is important not to shock the guitar or subject it to environmental extremes!
If your guitar has been cooled, and is being moved to a warmer environment, do not open the case until the guitar has come up to room temperature. This acclimatization can take as long as 5 or 6 hours, depending on the differential temperatures.
PLAY WITH YOUR GUITAR AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE
Not only will you get hours of enjoyment and improve your playing skills, but the more you play your guitar, the more the solid woods will improve in their tone. Playing often will also keep you familiar with your guitar, allowing you to better judge any maintenance that should be required.