1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

PSA: control your humidity!!!!

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by spade2you, Mar 11, 2019.

  1. I sold a bass to my brother a few years back. He complains that it's totally unplayable. I ask if he has been humidifying. He responded that he has a whole house humidifier. Ok, what's the actual humidity where everything is being stored? No clue.

    I took one look at the bass and noticed fret sprout. Very dry and the fingerboard shrank. Aggressive hydration might fix it, but it might need a new fingerboard.

    He also has a crappy tech who never mentioned he might have a humidity issue. Instead, he has been redoing the setup for his gear many times. I pointed out that both parties needed to put 2 and 2 together. "Oh, yeah?! I'm in a band and you're NOT!" Yay for siblings.

    I learn't my lesson when I put some small cracks in a Rob Allen bass a long time ago. I'm now on top of humidity control. One benefit is that I rarely need to touch my setups.
    Troy Eggen and Jscriv like this.
  2. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    I have two "whole house" humidifiers, one up and one down stairs, still not enough, really. Can barely keep it above 20% on the days it goes below 0 out. Not good for old wooden acoustic instruments especially.
  3. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000VP7FWA/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    I use this. It has since been discontinued, but they make similar models. I like the ones that don't use a heating element. I can also fill it and get it to last a few days.
  4. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Yeah, that's very similar to the ones I have, actually. Mine have 4 gallon capacity, which lasts about a day and a half. I agree on the heating element, also avoid ultrasonic "cold mist" humidifiers because of the "white dust" (hard well water here).
    spade2you likes this.
  5. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    Most of my basses have torrefied (roasted) necks. While I keep the house comfortable for humans humidity wise, I don't make special efforts for the instruments, and so far, no issues with any of them.
    pedroims and Doner Designs like this.
  6. I suppose all the folks bragging that they never need to do a truss rod adjustment are keeping the humidity & temperature the same in their instrument storage space year-round.
    Doner Designs likes this.
  7. I humidified for a while, but even at 5000 feet in Colorado, my basses seem happy. Humidity is low here, but evidently all of them have reconciled with it.
  8. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Well, sure would help. I should really set up a sealed humidor room for my best stuff.
  9. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    It may be the whipsawing back and forth between summer and winter that's more the issue than consistent dryness. We get both extremes here.
    OogieWaWa and Pilgrim like this.
  10. That's a very reasonable assumption. I don't think the problem is humid or dry, but changing between those conditions.
    petrus61 and porterbass like this.
  11. That response is underlying in responses here on TB as well. I guess being in a band does something for egos :roflmao:
    ak56, spade2you, zoonose and 2 others like this.
  12. nbsipics

    nbsipics It's the Bass that makes them Dance Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 8, 2016
    Play nice boys.

    And hey - IMHO humidity impacting a solid-body bass ( aka 95% of TB gear owners' axes ) means that either the humidity flux is way-extreme, or something was wrong with the bass in the first place.

    Bracing for impact...
  13. slamsinger

    slamsinger Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2009
    Coventry RI
    Years ago had a roommate run a dehumidifier in the house .... came home to my Spector that the neck was now a ski ramp !! I was sick to my stomach .. Had it sent out to my repair shop and the truss rod broke ! BUT Stuart Spector took the bass and put a new truss rod in it - set it up like new and shipped it back to me for NOTHING! .... now THAT is customer service the bass never played or sounded so good so hats off to you Stuart and I’ve aleays played them since
  14. glocke1


    Apr 30, 2002

    I have a whole house humidifier as well. on really dry days it won't keep things above 25%. I bought a standalone humidifier, threw all my basses in one room with it and that one barely keeps things at 30% .
  15. Graeck


    Jan 24, 2009
    I have the opposite problem. I live in the woods and it’s damp all winter. I hadn’t played my Strat in several months, it was sitting on a stand in the corner of my room. I went to pick it up a couple days ago and the fretboard was covered in a white mold. Ugh. I should have kept it in the case. Now I know. (None of my cased instruments showed any signs of mold)
  16. To some degree that's true, BUT if the owner had taken care to keep it properly humidified the problem never would have surfaced.

    A couple of years ago I made a conscious decision not to buy a humidifier & just see how it went.
    I had two basses at that time, one new & the other from 2008. They both lost some mass over Winter, but neither had a problem. In fact I had to back off the truss rod nut on the new one & it's been rock solid this Winter.

    I do worry about the body & have kept an eye on it, because it's just pieces of wood laminated together:
    nbsipics likes this.
  17. Humans and basses are both comfortable at the same RH.
  18. Zen Ho

    Zen Ho

    Feb 13, 2019
    Interesting. I actually run a dehumidifier, originally more for my other collectibles. Where I am the humidity is above 80% year round. I’ve never had a problem even before I ran a dehumidifier; most of my guitars are solidbodies.
  19. Zen Ho

    Zen Ho

    Feb 13, 2019
    OP mentioned fret sprout on his brother’s bass. The body type has no bearing on that.
    spade2you, zoonose and nbsipics like this.
  20. A couple years ago I had the bridge on my Larrivee acoustic pop off. Larrivee claimed it was over-hydrated but fixed it under warranty. Less than a year later the new bridge cracked down the center. This time they claimed under-hydration and refused to repair it. There was no difference in my hydro therapy in the room.
    I blame it on having to ship the guitar to the humid northwest where they took three months to re-glue the bridge, and then shipped it back to MI where the humidity gets down to 10% RH in the winter. All that Instead of having a luthier at Elderly do the work and reimbursing them for it.
    I thought I was over it but I guess I’m not......

Share This Page