Bought a very nice La Patrie Etude classical guitar at an estate sale last week.  It plays and sounds great.  When leaving the sale, a couple of drops of rain hit the top and soaked in as though there were no finish.  Back and sides also look unfinished.  I checked with Godin Guitars, and their reply was "The Etude has a thin water based polyurethane finish."

My problem is that the guitar is strongly scented with perfume.  I'm not crazy about perfume under the best of circumstance, but this is a particularly obnoxious version.

Any suggestions as to how best to get rid of the smell?

Many thanks, George

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i REALLY wouldnt worry about it and just put a charcol packet inside the guitar. paying special attention to the humidity while doing this. the bad thing about trying to deodorize a guitar with anything waterbased is it will raise the grain of the wood but it can be done with a / mixture of distilled water and distilled white vinegar. this has to be done sparingly and never enough on the rag for it to run. clean the entire inside of the guitar with this mixture. you may even wait a day between areas. what we are trying to do is clean the surface area of the guitar and never soak the inside. now that this is done and everthing is dry put the charcoal packet inside the guitar paying attention to the humidity . now lets tackle the case. believe it or not the perfume prolly is trapped in the case linings as well. spray the inside of the case with uncented febreze, rub it down with you hands while it is damp and let it dry.  this usually works on perfumes and the like but not too well for cigarettes. like i said before i'd just let time repair this because this could ruin a guitar if done incorrectly!! if it were a ramirez or the like, there is no way i'd do this. time would take the smell away, but with a patrie i'd have no problem doing this again. good luck if you decide to try it, if you dont  i totally agree!

Hey Wood Addict,

Thanks for your suggestions.  Fortunately, or unfortunately, the guitar came without a case, so, one less thing to worry about.  On the other hand, it seems as though the charcoal packet would be more effective with a case.

When they talk about fragrance free, it indicates that there are no fragrances added.  On the other hand, unscented means that they have added substances to counteract the scents that are already there.  I was kind of hoping for a counteracting product.  Seems like my best bet is to wait it out.  I do have other guitars to play.


Great! i was hoping you'd go that route. you can still put the unscented packets inside the guitar to neutralize/absorb whats still there. believe it or not ,this is not that uncommon among female players. AND..i have had one customer complain that his guitar smelled like lemons after he picked it up. he called the store and complained when all i had done was polish his guitar with dunlop 65 polish!  dunlop polish has a very faint scent, especially when it has been wiped off!!! some people can smell things better than others i guess?

good luck!!


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