So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

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rpavich
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So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by rpavich » Thu Jan 11, 2018 5:40 am

So my guitar comes tomorrow, I have a case humidifier coming, and I got a hygrometer and now I know that during the winter my living room (where the guitar will spend it's time) is 37% humidity with a high of 41% and a low of 35% for the last 24 hours.

Here is my question; how crucial is that last 3%? Am I over reacting to say that I should get a room humidifier or would it be prudent to get one and put that room closer to the center of the 40-55% range? I'm not sure how big a deal this is.

Gustavosamor
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by Gustavosamor » Thu Jan 11, 2018 2:25 pm

Hello RPAVICH,

I will say you should actually try to keep humidity above 50%. If you use a hygrometer inside your case that should have a proper humidity care system and if you check it every time you open the case before practicing, it will fluctuate between 60-70%.

rpavich
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by rpavich » Thu Jan 11, 2018 2:32 pm

Gustavosamor wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 2:25 pm
Hello RPAVICH,

I will say you should actually try to keep humidity above 50%. If you use a hygrometer inside your case that should have a proper humidity care system and if you check it every time you open the case before practicing, it will fluctuate between 60-70%.
Ahh..that's exactly what I was wondering. Thanks very much. I did buy a case humidifier and a case hygrometer. Hopefully during the spring and summer and fall the humidity inside will be better. This should be as bad as it gets; winter and lots of central heating.

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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by Gustavosamor » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:30 pm

RPavich,

The best way to go (or at least what I do) is to take the guitar back to the case(and closed it!) while you are taking breaks so the guitar keeps getting some humidity between your sessions of practice.

rpavich
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by rpavich » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:32 pm

Gustavosamor wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:30 pm
RPavich,

The best way to go (or at least what I do) is to take the guitar back to the case(and closed it!) while you are taking breaks so the guitar keeps getting some humidity between your sessions of practice.
That's one thing I was wondering also, would swinging from 38% to 50+% over and over be a bad thing. I guess not as long as it's in spec.

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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by Gustavosamor » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:36 pm

It will never hurt...what will hurt is not to do it. Sometimes when I'm in Central America where the humidity is naturally between 60-70% depending on where you go, you will notice some changes in the way the top vibrates, and the tone changes a little bit, since the wood is heavier as it gets more water in the wood.

rpavich
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by rpavich » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:38 pm

Gustavosamor wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:36 pm
It will never hurt...what will hurt is not to do it. Sometimes when I'm in Central America where the humidity is naturally between 60-70% depending on where you go, you will notice some changes in the way the top vibrates, and the tone changes a little bit, since the wood is heavier as it gets more water in the wood.
Ok...so low is bad...high isn't bad until it's really high.

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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by Gustavosamor » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:40 pm

Yes, it will be a really rare case if you guitar cracks with a high humidity, whereas the opposite is more likely to happen if you let it dries out.

rpavich
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by rpavich » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:44 pm

Gustavosamor wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:40 pm
Yes, it will be a really rare case if you guitar cracks with a high humidity, whereas the opposite is more likely to happen if you let it dries out.
Thanks, this is good to know. I'm going to look for a room humidifier also just to see if I can raise the humidity so that it's higher when the guitar is out of it's case.

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Mike Atkinson
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by Mike Atkinson » Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:29 pm

I can't get my room to 40% humidity in winter.
When it is 5 degrees fahrenheit outside, I struggle to keep humidity above 30%. I've got a whole house humidifier going, and a room humidifier. As the temperature warms up, it is easier to get humidity higher.
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rpavich
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by rpavich » Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:35 pm

Mike Atkinson wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:29 pm
I can't get my room to 40% humidity in winter.
When it is 5 degrees fahrenheit outside, I struggle to keep humidity above 30%. I've got a whole house humidifier going, and a room humidifier. As the temperature warms up, it is easier to get humidity higher.
Wow!

Right now we've had a warm spell for a couple of days but we are slated to get back into the 20's as a high. I guess it will be a struggle to get above 40 for me too.

rpavich
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by rpavich » Thu Jan 11, 2018 5:35 pm

This is interesting. Here is a DIY humidifier for the case made from a medicine bottle and "water beads."

apparently these beads hold water for over a month; into several months; they let the water out slowly in a controlled amount.

I'm going to use this until my real one comes.

http://thesweetbyandby.com/post/8730615 ... humidifier

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Michael.N.
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by Michael.N. » Thu Jan 11, 2018 5:53 pm

If a guitar has been constructed at 50% RH it's best to keep as close to that figure as possible . . . . . but we live in the real world. Dropping down to 40% RH is unlikely to cause issues. Lower than 35% RH and it really is time to start worrying especially if the 35% is over a long period of time. Below 30% and you really are pushing your luck. It's impossible to give any exact figures or timescales because we are dealing with wood, a material that varies from piece to piece. Just because someones rosewood back cracks at 35% RH doesn't necessarily mean that every rosewood back will. That would be far too simple.
Note. You really need to make sure that your hygrometer is reading within a few percent RH of what is should be. It doesn't need to be accurate to within 1% but much more than 3% and it's getting to the point where it becomes a bit of a guessing game. They should also be checked at least once per year.
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rpavich
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by rpavich » Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:01 pm

Well the guitar came and it came safely!

It's tuned up and I put the DIY humidifier and hygrometer in the case with it.

One observation; when I stopped playing 7 years ago I wasn't that great, now I absolutely reek. Holy Smokes...it's like I never held a guitar before!

Practice, practice practice.

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joachim33
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Re: So how close to 40-55% humidity should I be?

Post by joachim33 » Fri Jan 12, 2018 12:37 am

rpavich wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:01 pm
Well the guitar came and it came safely!

It's tuned up and I put the DIY humidifier and hygrometer in the case with it.

One observation; when I stopped playing 7 years ago I wasn't that great, now I absolutely reek. Holy Smokes...it's like I never held a guitar before!

Practice, practice practice.
I had 30 years of a break. I am amased how quickly thinks came back.

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