With the proper care, your Psaltery will be with for the rest of your life. There are a few simple care and maintenance tips. Protect your instruments from direct sunlight, high humidity, too dry places and extreme temperatures. Extreme heat can damage varnish and can ruin joints by softening the glues that hold instruments together.
Extreme cold makes wood brittle and impacts the tuning. If you moved the instrument from a cold to warm environment, don’t open it immediately. Keep it in its cover at room temperature for at least two hours for acclimatization. Give it more time If it is still cold when you open it. Store your instrument in a cool dry place, but too dry place also not so good. Keep it in special cover or wrapped when it’s not in use. If you need to replace the strings don’t replace them all at once. Replace them gradually, so you save the strain on the strings. Before each playing wash, your hands and after remove oils and duty from the body of instrument and strings with a soft dry cloth. If you do it your Psaltery always will look like a new one, but if you neglect it your Instrument can lose its presentable with time. If your Psaltery is really dirty you need use specialized cleaner. If you don’t have a specialized cleaner you can try another method for cleaning.
1)The safest of all methods is to use your own breath. Breathe through your mouth on the body of Psaltery. Then wipe it with cloth in small circular motions.
2)Using mineral oil and ethyl alcohol. Wet a soft cloth with alcohol and make it damp. Then put several drops of mineral oil to the cloth. The alcohol can soften the outer layer of varnish, that’s why you need moving in circles over the small area, but don’t rub the same area too long, the oil can leave scurf and sound of your instrument won’t be good.
But you need to be careful using high alcohol concentrates, lemon juice for the body of the instrument because alcohol makes the wood dry and can ruin some kinds of expensive varnish. After your instrument is cleaned you can polish and varnish It by specialized polish. Don’t use household wood polish on your instrument. It can leave scurf that negatively affects the sound of your Baltic Psaltery.