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Care and Maintenance




INTRODUCTION

Now that your new harp has been delivered, within the following pages are some informative tips that you will need for routine maintenance and care.

It is important to know the name used for the parts of the harp. It is hard to know what to do about a problem if you don't know how to describe it. A Lot of confusion in the future can be avoided by becoming familiar with the basic parts of the harp. However, things are never clear-cut. What might be referred to as the pedal box in the New England area is called the base in the Midwest. And what most people call the neck by some is called the harmonic curve.

Click the images below for a larger view of the parts of a harp..

Major PartsMinor PartsHidden Parts

 

Keep Your Harp Looking Like New

Although it may seem like common knowledge, always have clean hands when at your harp. The oils and dirt in your hands affect both the finish of the harp and the strings.

Try to keep your harp as dust free as possible. You should dust your harp every day or every other day with a soft dry cloth. A Swiffer also works very well. You want to keep dust from collecting in the grooves of any carving. How you do this depends on the finish of your harp. If the harp is bronzed or gold gilded there are other precautions that you need to take. The mechanism (action) can be kept clean and dust by using a soft bristle brush, such as an old toothbrush or a small paintbrush. A Q-tip works very well as does a clean cloth wrapped around the eraser end of a pencil.

If your harp gets an accumulation of dirt or grease from restaurant jobs, you can clean it with a little flax soap and water. Use a DAMP, not soaked cloth and only clean the wood. Make sure not to soak the harp or leave any wet spots. Always wipe off the harp immediately with a dry soft cloth and gently buff to keep the finish shining. An old cotton diaper or t-shirt works quite well. If you have a satin finish, you do not need to buff the finish to a high gloss. (ONLY cleaning method for Matte' or stain finish harps)

If you have a glossy finish harp, you should clean your harp with lemon oil to restore the original beauty of the finish. Using a soft cloth, clean white cloth (cotton diaper), apply lemon oil, not wax, to the cloth and rub the oil into the wood parts of the harp. Then with a dry, clean white cloth, wipe off the harp so that the oils are not left on the finish of the harp. This will clean off any dust or grime and any oils from your hands. The object is to leave the finish clean and shining. ( NEVER use lemon oil or any furniture polish on Matte' or satin finish harps)

Do not use lemon wax, Pledge, or any other types of cleaners as these can leave your harp with a dull cloudy finish. These could possibly harm the finish as well.

 

The Mechanism or Action

The action does not need to be oiled as it has special grease that lubricates it for quite a long time. If an action eventually needs to be re-riveted to eliminate clicks, the factory will re-grease the action at that time.

The pedal mechanism can be oiled every six months or so, but when the harp is regulated, the technician will oil the pedal mechanism as part of the basic regulation. If you do oil the pedal joints, remember not to over-lubricate. A little goes a long way. A good oil to use is 3-in-One oil, and even 10W-40 motor oil will work quite well. Remember, if you don't feel comfortable oiling your harp, it will be oiled when it is regulated.

Sometimes oil does appear on and around the discs. Clean this off with a soft brush or Q-Tip.

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