#1
Hi.
I'm in the process of giving my 1988 Fender Strat a really good clean before I start setting it up properly and attaching a MIDI pickup.

It's only been played for the last couple of months after having been in storage for about ten years, but was played regularly (but not cleaned as often!) for the ten years before that.

The bridge is - well, it's disgusting, so I'm going to give it a REALLY good clean.

I've now taken it apart, but wondered if it would it be safe to give the parts a scrub with a toothbrush and soapy water, followed by a good dose of WD-40?
Is this a good or bad idea?
It's the 6 screw tremolo bridge.

I'm not sure what metal it is, but it doesn't seem to have rusted; just got grimy and covered in scratches.

Any advice?
Right handed guitarist trying to learn to play lefty after a ten year break, and a severe left-hand injury!

Wish me luck ;-)
#2
Take off all the saddles, then get the worst of the grime off of the main bridge surface. Make sure it's as clean as possible, then get some good metal polish. I use Brasso, but any brand will do, really. Wipe it on, then buff it off, and buff it good - you should notice a mirror shine. Go over the saddles and screws with the same stuff, but use pipe cleaners so you can get in all those nooks and crannies.

Metal polish will do you wonders - on my 1935 acoustic, the brass tuner plates looked old, dull, and horrible, and felt rough. I applied metal polish, and my god, what a difference. It looked like brand new bronze.

Good luck (and good luck with the leftie-righty playing thing in your sig too)
Last edited by EJD at Mar 12, 2009,
#3
Yes BRASSO polish will work but it removes finish too that's how it works! Dan Erlewine recommends Naptha to clean grunge from metal bridge parts but it's flammable so sparks and fumes are to watched. It won't remove oxidized metal like Brasso so it won't be as shiny but it evaporates and doesn't leave anything behind. WD40 on the other hand is a penetrating oil and does leave residue!
Moving on.....
#4
This will probably sound dumb but:

Try an ultrasonic cleaner.

Many industries/retail stores use them. I had a friend who works in a dive shop repairing regulators clean a bunch of precision parts for me using his. They use fairly mild cleaners.

They are also used for cleaning jewelry as well, but not sure if a jeweler would want to do this sort of cleaning.

*edit: I am assuming the parts to be cleaned have been removed from the guitar.
Last edited by Quintex at Mar 12, 2009,
#5
Quote by Quintex
This will probably sound dumb but:

Try an ultrasonic cleaner.

Many industries/retail stores use them. I had a friend who works in a dive shop repairing regulators clean a bunch of precision parts for me using his. They use fairly mild cleaners.

They are also used for cleaning jewelry as well, but not sure if a jeweler would want to do this sort of cleaning.

*edit: I am assuming the parts to be cleaned have been removed from the guitar.



Not dumb at all but as you mention may be hard to find one to use!
Moving on.....