Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier? - Jemsite
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 04:14 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Madrid, Spain
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Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

does anyone use these, or make ones themselves?

I was wondering specifically about the moulded cases like I have for my RG. there's hardly any air in the case, and most of the guitar apart from the headstock is completely covered by the padding and cloth of the case.

so would putting a humidifier in there make any difference at all?

and since there is hardly any air in there, is it even necessary to use one?

I haven't had any problems with my RG, so I probably don't need to worry about it, but my other guitars, which have traditional non-moulded cases, do have a little fret-sprout.

anyway, I was just wondering.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 02:23 PM
 
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Re: Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

Yes I use something for all my instruments while in the case, as well as a large external unit for the shop and studio.

And there may not be many large voids or cavities in your case, but trust me, there is plenty of air in there. The lining of the case will hold and wick moisture as will the foam itself to a degree. Plus there is a lot of dead space in a case. Bottom line, if it's made of wood, you should do your best to keep it at 45% humidity.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 05:19 PM
 
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Re: Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

I don't think it will do a whole lot for an electric - definitely a must for acoustics but you have to cover the sound hole and humidify the interior. Better to control the humidity in your home with a humidifier on your furnace or a portable humidifier in your room.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 08:04 PM
 
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Re: Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

Humidifying the case will definitely have a huge effect. I have a Jem neck that I've had a number of issues with (musikron has in fact worked on this neck) and keeping it properly humidified makes a huge difference.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-24-2012, 02:39 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

I do have a room humidifier, but tbh it doesn't do enough. humidity levels here are around 20%. the humidifier gets it up to about 30%, still too low. plus, I have guitars in several rooms in the house, so I'd have to get lots of humidifiers, which I don't want to do.

I'm gonna try the damp-sponge-in-a-small-tupperware-with-holes-put-in-the-case idea.

I haven't had any issues with my RG yet, but I wouldn't want fret-sprout damaging the bindings. I figure a small damp sponge won't cause any problems and will stop the humidity getting too low.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-24-2012, 08:30 AM
 
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Re: Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

I have the same issue with my humidifiers. Without going to a large and noisy evaporative humidifier (which is probably what musikron has), I can only intermittently get my whole condo up to 45% RH with a decent sized ultrasonic unit. I get plenty of humidity much of the year, but in the winter I'm only getting 25% RH on average.

But getting the humidity up in the case is no problem with a case humidifier. Most of my guitars seem totally tolerant of humidity changes but I have two that are not. I'm not sure if the wood just got really dried out over years of storage in a really dry place or what? I've only owned them for two or so years, These two guitars require special handling and keeping them humidified is a must. I have a Jem neck that will constantly go into back bow if it dries out.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-24-2012, 01:51 PM
 
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Re: Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Takin' a Ride View Post
Humidifying the case will definitely have a huge effect. I have a Jem neck that I've had a number of issues with (musikron has in fact worked on this neck) and keeping it properly humidified makes a huge difference.

Speaking of which, I assume this means the hump is gone and has not returned? Everything playing well?
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-24-2012, 01:57 PM
 
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Re: Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

Yes I have large (tough surprisingly quiet) humidifiers. They are "passive", meaning there is NO HEAT, this is very important. If you can see steam or vapor coming out of the humidifier, then you are using the wrong kind, thats for vicks vapor rub, not environmental conditioning. These work by evaporation, they have a "wick" feeding from tanks, that a fan blows over to transfer the moisture into the air.

Its a bit of work and I have about the equivalent of a decent guitar tied up into the system, but I own a lot of instruments and also really need a stable shop to do the best work.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-24-2012, 04:23 PM
 
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Re: Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

Quote:
Originally Posted by musikron View Post
Speaking of which, I assume this means the hump is gone and has not returned? Everything playing well?
Unfortunately not, but it might just be due to my own carelessness. When I got the neck back, it had a lot of bow to it. I assumed this was due to you clamping it, but it might have had something to do with it sitting in high humidity for so long trying to bring it back. It was also around June, so humidity during shipping would have been very high.

When I went to set the guitar up, I had to crank the truss rod pretty hard to get the neck to straighten out, but I was able to get it to set up nicely with minimal relief and without the hump returning. So the guitar was great and I played it a lot during the summer, when RH in my place would have been very high. Then I put it away but left the truss rod adjusted as it was.

It got really dry (25% RH) and I finally went out and got a humidifier, but I hadn't opened the case in a few months. I took it out a few weeks ago and to my horror, the neck was back bowed again. So I loosened the nut all the way, kept the string tension on and have been humidifying the case (~60% RH). I think I saved it but I have to check it again in a week or two. Last time I checked it, it looked like the hump had gone away, but I haven't tried fully setting it up again. I decided that it could use some more humidification.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-06-2012, 05:48 PM
 
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Re: Anyone who uses a Guitar Case Humidifier?

Sorry I missed this.

Yes, I would attribute this to humidity. Its those large swings that do the damage and throw everything out of whack. You've gone from swollen and wet to shrunken and dry, but the area where the scarf joint is stays pretty much the same. This movement is retained in the woods memory, and results in the hump.

Try this experiment to help you grasp what is going on.

Take a section of newspaper, wet it thoroughly and then loosely fold it around an object or roll it up, then allow it to dry. After it has completely dried, unfold the paper and see if you can get it to lay perfectly flat. Any luck? Didn't think so.

This can be thought of as the state your neck is in that causes the hump. The paper has hardened and is trained into whatever shape it was dried in. To get the paper to lay flat again we have to re wet it and let it dry flat.

This same principle is applied to your guitar, only on a much more complex and subtle scale. And getting a guitar neck (or top or whatever) to lay flat again is much harder than the newspaper, which is why its important to just maintain the correct level in the first place.

That being said, after I repaired your neck I seriously doubt that it will ever get as bad as it was no matter how you much you may neglect it, but you need to stay on top of it to optimize the instrument to its full potential.

Its good you caught it early and that you are stabilizing it. Keep it in the case most the time and at 45% and you should be fine.
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