Best way to store a bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jcanderson, Jul 11, 2013.

  1. jcanderson


    Apr 13, 2013
    Los Altos, CA
    Just wondering what the best way to store a bass would be? Here are some options I'm considering:

    1. In case, lying flat
    2. In case, standing on end
    3. In case, standing on long side
    4. On a neck hook
    5. Or...?

    Any pluses or minuses to any of the above? Or does it not matter?

  2. JIO

    JIO Be seeing you. Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 30, 2010
    The Mission SF/CA
    musician/artist/owner - Gildaxe
    I'm sure someone will post what they think is best, but how it sits in the case is a relatively minor consideration (unless it's upside down laying flat, or vertical) compared to the important aspects of the surrounding temperature, humidity and de-tuning the strings a bit (still taut but not full tuned)

    I personally wouldn't do the neck hook for more than temporary parking. (not for long-term)
  3. my basses have been on string swings for years, no problems yet. sometimes they sit in the case in the closet in the same position you'd carry the case. again, no problems.
  4. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    All my basses are in hard cases lying flat. I go through them every 3 months and add water to my little homemade humidifiers. A medium pill bottle stuffed with a sponge and 5 holes on the top to allow the water to evaporate slowly. Works great. Never had any problems in 25 years of storing my basses this way
  5. hygrotechindia


    Jan 13, 2014
    Loosen the strings, maybe tune down 2 full steps. I just picked up a used Hamer Chaparral 12 that had some real adjustment issues because it was left fully tensioned for a year, unplayed. There's a lot more tension on a 12 than a 4 string, but I feel needless truss rod stress is placed on a neck that can be avoided if stored tuned down.
  6. Smooth_bass88

    Smooth_bass88 vaxx!

    Oct 31, 2006
    Western Hemisphere
    Why loosen the strings? If you loosen the strings, you should loosen the truss rod, so it seems pointless. I've left basses in their cases for years. I take them out and they're still in tune. I have this one bass, it just sits in my bedroom leaning up against a wooden stool.
  7. One thing I learned the hard way--remove the batteries from active basses during storage.
  8. Doctor J

    Doctor J

    Dec 23, 2005
    I built a rack, I store them upright, no additional load on the neck, at room temperature on an inside wall. Cases take up too much space and I like having everything easily to hand. Besides, when you can see them, you're more likely to pick them up and play them.
  9. boyet


    May 15, 2007
    I keep my basses stored in an upright position some are in Hard Cases the others are in their gig bags. I don't loosen the strings on any of my basses in fact I always leave them in tune for as long as 10 months when I'm away. DON'T EVER LEAVE THE BATTERIES installed. I also leave some silica gel packs for each bass it helps with the humidity.
  10. pedroims


    Dec 19, 2007
    I remember a video where John Entwistle shows his collection, all basses where laying flat on their cases, probably that is the best way if you are planning to storage them for long period of time, however, I keep mine in stands since I play them almost everyday.
  11. pfox14


    Dec 22, 2013
    Say what? You are lucky you don't have a bunch of ruined basses.
  12. Baird6869

    Baird6869 Supporting Member

    Good point! I bought a used Pedulla for dirt cheap as the original owner stored it with the battery and it leaked and destroyed a good part of the finish (and case).

    In any case, I always leave my basses out hanging on wall hooks. Done this for years and never had a problem.

    In fact, my basses never see a case unless I travel via air with a bass or when I sell it. I always go to rehersals and gigs with a gig bag.
  13. javadog


    Mar 13, 2010
    What about humidity? I can't afford a dedicated temperature and humidity controlled room, and throwing a wet sponge in a dark case seems like a good way to grow a bunch of fungus.
    I hate that, it is already a daily battle in the refrigerator.
  14. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician - Retired
    Aside from the bass leaning against the stool, there is nothing to ruin the basses. The truss rod balances the tension of of the strings on the neck. If you loosen the strings without a corresponding adjustment to the truss rod you upset this balance. Over time that can cause far more problems than leaving the bass at equilibrium.

    Best advice is to leave the bass in a balanced state. If you loosen the strings, loosen the truss rod an appropriate amount. And consider a balanced state to mean not leaning on something. Two months ago I bought a nice straight piece of oak 1x6. It was well seasoned. I stood it on end against the workshop wall, leaning at just enough of an angle to keep it from falling. It's bent now.
  15. I have a Cort P, it sat leaned in a corner in its gig bag when not in use for 12 years. neck's still in great shape, I didn't even touch the truss rod until 2 years ago.
  16. I think what's best is debatable. Ive always put basses that are in hard cases under the bed laying flat and basses that are in gig bags in a spare closet sitting on the floor in an upright position. Really the only thing i would say NOT to do is store them in a garage, storage shed, car and so on that doesn't have any temperature control. As for batteries if you know your not going to play the bass for years take it out. In some of my basses I've only changed the battery once a year if that, they won't be an issue if its less than a year. As for tuning down, i don't agree with that at all, i fact a neck without as much tention is more likely to twist and you can adjust truss rods all day long and it won't help neck fix it.
  17. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's

    This is a good question. As I think about this, the neck is under considerable tension, many times more than gravity affects it in any storing position. So - I feel that the position really has no effect. and since the tension is balanced between the strings and truss rod, it is best to just leave them alone.

    My old 60's Hagstrom was stored for many years just in a crappy vinyl gig bag, in various positions, and it is still perfect.
  18. P Town

    P Town

    Dec 7, 2011
    I don't think a solid bodied bass in a case needs humidification. I would be afraid of creating a good environment for mold by humidifying the interior of a closed case.