#1
Hello,

I live in a backwoods cabin in Western Washington, I just picked up a used BBT, it came in a solid guitar case, and I stuck a humidifier pouch in the body, and one at the head in the case.

The cabin has no centralized heating and is poorly insulated, but I do fire up a POS heater most nights, and the air drys out. I'd say it goes from about 55-60 during the day to 75-80 at night with the heater on.

I was wondering if this will destroy the BBT, and what other options I might have. There is a covered porch, I could garbage bag the cased BBT and leave it out on the porch, but it is damp, I practically live in a rainforest, moss hanging off trees etc...

My old nylon beater does not mind the trauma, and has been through a hell of a lot worse... I also have a LXK2, (all laminate except for bracing).

I'd appreciate any thoughts or suggestions.

Thanks

Dan
Last edited by nylonbeater at May 23, 2014,
#2
Is this a heater that vents to the outside, or something ventless, like a kerosene space heater?

In any event, a decent HS case, will mitigate rapid changes in temperature and humidity.

That was Ovations big selling point, (other makers too), for their molded, insulated, HS cases with sealing lips.

Us city boys from the east, have the idea that Washington state, and the Pacific northwest in general, is fairly soggy, year round. Is this not the case?
#3
There was a wood stove in it, but I took it out to redo the floor and ceiling, it's got a ventless heater now. Probably going to put a smaller stove in soon though.

Thanks that makes me feel better. The case is a little worn, the lip is bent in a few places.

No, the northwest hardly gets any rain from July through mid September, though the air west of the cascades is still sorta humid cause it comes right off the Pacific. Within a coupla miles of the coast can stay pretty foggy and damp through the summer.
Last edited by nylonbeater at May 24, 2014,
#4
Quote by nylonbeater
There was a wood stove in it, but I took it out to redo the floor and ceiling, it's got a ventless heater now. Probably going to put a smaller stove in soon though.
The byproduct of combustion is carbon dioxide and water! So, a ventless heater actually ADDS water to the air.

That's not to say the relative humidity can't drop when the heat is on. (hot air will simply hold more water than cold), But the drop is mitigated by the heater adding water to the air, and storing the guitar in a case will smooth out the transitions.

Quote by nylonbeater
Thanks that makes me feel better. The case is a little worn, the lip is bent in a few places.
If you have reservations about the humidity in general, why not buy a decent hygrometer, (calibrate it with "the salt test", (Google that)), and see what your average humidity is.

Quote by nylonbeater
No, the northwest hardly gets any rain from July through mid September, though the air west of the cascades is still sorta humid cause it comes right off the Pacific. Within a coupla miles of the coast can stay pretty foggy and damp through the summer.
Yep, and the salt spray kills the chrome on a car in those conditions as well, even rots out the body itself. I live 50 miles inland from the Atlantic, but being near a river basin, the summers here can get pretty darned sultry.

Another question. To the best of my knowledge, areas with vegetation in general, and places with overarching vegetation, (trees), get a lot more humid at night. So, your "backwoods cabin" description, could imply that might be the case at your location. Is this not so?

Keep in mind too much humidity can do nearly as much damage as too little. In the presence of extreme humidity, the soundboard can swell, buckling upward, raising the guitar's action in the process. So, if your guitar is situated in 60% RH air, you might not want to use a case humidifier until it becomes necessary.

Humidity is always a concern, in either direction.
Last edited by Captaincranky at May 24, 2014,
#5
a humidifier is only needed when humidity is significantly lower than 40%. It is very rare for a person in he north west to need a humidifier. chances are that you are overdoing it and actually damaging your guitar.

As a rule of thumb if the temp is above freezing you will never need to humidify your guitar if you are in Washington on the west side of the mountains. If it drops below freezing (32) just keep your guitar in the case and you will be fine until the temp gets into the single digits. When you get to the single digits the air can't hold moister and that is when you drop to dangerously low humidity. I lived in Portland Oregon for 19 years and only saw these conditions 3 or 4 times. Now this rule of thumb is specific to people that live west of the Cascade Mountains in Oregon and Washington and doesn't apply to other parts of the world.
Not taking any online orders.
Last edited by CorduroyEW at May 24, 2014,
#6
Thanks fellas,

Lots of good info. CaptainCranky, the heater I'm running now is electric. Previous occupants buried a thin low voltage line. The cabin is about a quarter mile hike from the end of a dirt road. I did run a propane ventless heater this past winter, and I noticed a lot of window condensation. The electric one really dries out the air.

Yes, the area is heavily forested where I live, and I've seen it rain around dawn under clear skies. The trees do seem to lock in humidity, and temperature.

The humidifier system I am using claims to balance the humidity, adding moisture when needed but also drying things out when too damp. The product name is "D'Addario/planet waves, two way humidification system." They recommend three pouches per guitar/case.
I just took these out of the guitar, since it sounds like they are not needed. Do you have experience with this product?

I will pick up a hygrometer, and keep an eye on humidity levels, but it sounds like the air is relatively guitar friendly where I live, I do wonder about how much that heater dries out the air though.
Last edited by nylonbeater at May 25, 2014,
#7
i use those humidipaks when i pack up my guitars and head off to work( just a few short days away...sigh... hopefully soon, my job won't be needed). they do a great job of keeping the humidity in check. i used to just keep them out but i can't get "the blonde" to keep an eye on the humidifiers/de-humidifiers in my guitar room when i'm gone.
need more gear and a lot more talent(courtesytuxs)
#8
Quote by nylonbeater
...[ ]...The humidifier system I am using claims to balance the humidity, adding moisture when needed but also drying things out when too damp. The product name is "D'Addario/planet waves, two way humidification system." They recommend three pouches per guitar/case.
I just took these out of the guitar, since it sounds like they are not needed. Do you have experience with this product?
Planet Waves product is generally top notch. I have several of their "NS" capos, and save for the fact you can't clip them on the headstock, they perform better than any Kyser ever made. I also have an, (unfortunately discontinued) strobe tuner of theirs, which is almost mandatory for locking in my 12 strings. I don't have any experience with your product though.

Quote by nylonbeater
I will pick up a hygrometer, and keep an eye on humidity levels, but it sounds like the air is relatively guitar friendly where I live, I do wonder about how much that heater dries out the air though.
I really think you're overthinking this, or perhaps, "obsessing", is a term that could attach as well.

You should buy a hygrometer, you should find out where you are. But, I don't know how you've gotten it into your head that low humidity is going to damage your guitar, by virtue of a slight drop in RH overnight.

I use kerosene to heat through most of our fairly cold winters. If I start getting static shock, I'll throw a pan of water on top of the heater. And this, only in sub 30 degree temps.

So, wood doesn't change water content from morning to night. When they condition wood for guitar construction, it sits for MONTHS in a controlled environment.

The RH of air can change in a matter of minutes, not so with wood. You'll never keep up with it, nor is there any need to. Take a deep breath and come to grips with the fact you're you're suffering from, "new toy over protective maternal syndrome".

As long as your average is over 40% RH, you're good. Even a hygrometer doesn't respond fast enough to to reassure or upset you, in your current state of mind.
Last edited by Captaincranky at May 26, 2014,