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Traveling Musican- Need tips for traveling with acoustic guitars!!!!!!


ClassicNick66

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So, our school trip is a retreat week up in Lost Valley, Collorado... about the same elevation as Taylor Park or maybe Estes Park... and me and my musical friends were asked to bring guitars and stuff to play some music arround the campfire at night... i live in Kanas and its an all day drive there and i am generally worried about the effects of the elevation, humidity and temperature change during the "journey"...

 

so, i'd like some tips from people who have had experience with this... we all own reasonably valuable instruments Taylors, vintage pre-Fender Guilds and such... so we want the best care for our "babies"...

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Well I don't believe you'll have to worry about elevation too much, but you will want to be careful with "sudden" temperature/humidity changes. If you have ever heard a professional orchestra, that God awful racket of a noise they make before the performance is not the tuning of their instruments. They are conditioning them. They are getting them used to the room temperature, as well as the temperature and humidity that is supplied by their breath. This conditioning is so the instrument does not go into shock. When it comes to guitars, the same sort of warm up procedure applies. When taking the guitar from a very warm and cozy case, the sudden temp. change can shock the guitar. Mostly it can result in minor crazing marks in the finish. In extreme temp changes severe damage could result. This is rare though. Best advise is to gradually bring the guitar into the environment that will be preformed in. Crack the case open just a bit and let it set for an hour or so. This will allow the guitar to get used to it's environment.

 

Also try not to get too close to the campfire. Prolonged exposure to an open flame can dry out a guitar very quickly. Think back to the last time you were wearing jeans and stood by a fire to warm yourself. Chances are you could see steam coming off of your jeans, and your butt was probably somewhat toasty. Now imagine that was a guitar.

 

Have fun, and play safe.

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thanks guys... i have heard mixed opinions on lots of matters dealing with how the wood built instruments are meant to be taken care of in climate and elevation changing situations....

 

by the way, how do you attach the line at the bottom of the post so you can list your gear and such... thanks

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thanks guys... i have heard mixed opinions on lots of matters dealing with how the wood built instruments are meant to be taken care of in climate and elevation changing situations....

 

by the way' date=' how do you attach the line at the bottom of the post so you can list your gear and such... thanks [/quote']

 

 

dont, Im so tired of looking at peoples gear...I DONT CARE!

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sorry dude...

 

i find it interesting what people own' date=' you can tell alot about a musician by the instruments and gear he or she preferres.... but there is a point when people are just bragging about how many 4 or 5 grand Gibson guitars they own...[/quote']

 

Sure, whatever. This is a gibson forum, why is it interesting if a person on a gibson forum has a les paul???

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First of all I do not take the Gibson or the Hamer to uncertain places -- period. It took me a year to get the Gibson. I wanted one for 20 years --actually for 40. The Hamer too cost an arm and a leg and so they simply do not go anywhere "odd." Secondly insurance sounds great until you file a claim. Basically they will give you about 1/2 of the value of a guitar minus the deductible. Thirdly most of the airlines will play basketball with a guitar case (but Southwest is much better). (I have this experience). You get a hard case (the case is going to be beat up) and you pack cotton T-shirts all around the neck so it is not slopping around and loosen the stings a little .. not slack. And then you very nicely and very politely ask the ticket counter to please take care of your guitar since it is very special to you. They ought to tape the latches shut. If you can LOCK the main latch. If you can put take all around the guitar case. MAKE SURE YOU ARE THERE when it comes into the carousel or it WILL be stolen. That is the world we live in. The read theLiveSoundGuy above -- in terms of acclimating it to the different environment. If you only have a Gibson or other expensive guitar THEN buy a $300 guitar from Craigslist (equals two nights in a hotel room in Colorado) or some other source and take that and play it. Your insurance deductible is $450. Unless it is your debut at Carnegie Hall or the Opry do not take the Gibson.

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A good common sense rule is never put your guitar anywhere you would not want to go if it's 10 below or 120 don't put it in the trunk of your car or leave it sitting around. I live in AZ so temps can be a major issue but this rule seems to work well. I do keep a intermediate or beater guitar if I'm going somewhere and want to take a guitar but not worry so much. A beater to me isn't a real cheap guitar though if it doesn't sound good there's no reason to haul t around. I have a Epi Masterbuilt and now a Godin 5th Avenue arch-top that I haul around with me for that purpose especially if it's somewhere I don't know or a bar or something that has no where to secure them.

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For traveling I suggest a smaller acoustic... Something like a Little Martin LXM. These are made of a special Martin-developed "High-Pressure Laminate" and are supposedly great at acclimating to different temperatures. I'm saving up for one right now, they're cheap and LOUD.

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When I have to fly somewhere, if I have the time, I ship my precious instruments via UPS or FedEx to the nearest facility to the airport with instructions "hold for pickup". I pack them well and clearly mark fragile on the outside. It is my experience that FedEx and UPS take better care of them than the airlines do. BTW, I never use DHL as they are so lame they cannot even get stuff delivered to the right house.

 

Insights and incites by Notes

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