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Moving to a high humidity area

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by flyingwalrus, Jun 8, 2012.

  1. Hello Folks,

    Towards the end of July I'll be moving from the south of the United Kingdom to Vienna, Virginia in the US. I gather the humidity over there is much more than I'm used to. My bass gear will be shipped over in July and apparently has to spend up to a couple of months at the docks waiting for US Customs to clear it all.

    I'm assuming that the basses in particular won't be stored in a climate controlled area, so can I ask if there's anything I should be doing to mitigate any harmful effects like neck warping and so on? Should I loosen the strings, and/or the truss rod, which is incidentally something I've never done myself before, having been blessed with excellent local guitar techs?

    Also, for any of you in the North Virginia/South Maryland/DC area, are there any good bass techs you can recommend, and any decent music stores with a good range of amps in particular? My current rig won't work on US voltages, so on paper anyway I'm looking at the Genz Benz Shuttle 6.2 and the Aguilar Tone Hammer 350/SL112 combination.

    Many thanks for your help, it's very much appreciated.

    Best regards,

  2. I'm no expert, but from what I've read, you should NOT loosen the strings. It's got something to do with the truss rod being set up for a particular tension, so when that tension is removed (loose strings) the neck will actually bow, as there is no counter resistance from the strings. I know with Ernie Ball Musicman basses, they're set up to play at the factory, packed and shipped all over the world—and they usually play amazingly right out of the box (I've owned 4 of their basses). So there you go.

    I would however, invest in a quality flight case—and I'm not talking about a hardshell case that comes with your instrument. Get something like this:


    If you value your instrument, pack it properly (this goes for your amp as well). I work for an airline, so I've seen how instruments can be treated if they fall into the wrong hands.
  3. MarthaSamira

    MarthaSamira Inactive

    Apr 29, 2012
    Don't loosen the strings.

    Add a few silica gel packs to each bag or case and wrap them up in plastic and tape...
  4. tkozal


    Feb 16, 2006
    New York City
    You Are Doomed

    Signed, guy who splits his time between NYC and the east end of LI, right near the water

    All is lost.

    I have had basses set up perfectly in NYC that are totally out of whack after going 90 miles east to the water. Such is life
  5. Oren Hudson

    Oren Hudson

    Dec 25, 2007
    Gastonia, NC
    Changes are going to happen one way or the other. I've lived in North Carolina most of my life and own lots of gear including guitars. Most of the non-guitars and a fair number of even guitars are in the band room. It's only heated or cooled for practice or shows, so all gear gets subjected to extreme changes in temps and humidity. I just leave everything as is and make adjustments as needed. Surprising how infrequent that is. Your gear's biggest enemy is heavy moisture being allowed to remain in or on gear. Pack towels in and around as much as you can, but like others said, don't loosen or take the strings off, etc. :cool:
  6. Inverse Kinetix

    Inverse Kinetix

    Jul 12, 2012
    Dude, take your bass on the plane as carry on luggage, every flight I have taken in forever allows you to take instruments/bikes/snowboards/surfboards on as extra luggage for a flat fee of around $100.

    I live in Japan and it's monstrously humid here, simply taking my bass from the air conditioned store where I bought it, to my nasty sweatbox apartment changed how it played overnight.

    But anyway, TAKE IT WITH YOU!
  7. garmenteros

    garmenteros Bass Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2008
    Dominican Republic
    Humidity is your main concern. Put silicagel packs and bring the bass with you personally on the flight. That and get a dehumidifier for your music room or where you keep your gear.

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