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Thread: Just joined forum---1st post

  1. #1

    Default Just joined forum---1st post

    Hello folks,
    Couple years ago doc suggested playing a musical instrument may help some with my arthritic fingers. So bought a Gretsch New Yorker, and started my mandolin journey. Last March, bought my Eastman 515. Really like it. I stored it in it's case for the first few months. Lately I been hanging it on the wall. Just wondering if one way is better than the other. It's nice to just take it off the wall, sit down and start practicing.

    Don

  2. #2

    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    I think keeping it close to hand makes picking it up on impulse easier and therefore makes practice happen more regularly. Some people like to keep their instrument in the case because that allows them to monitor and control the humidity it lives in.

    Other than that, keeping it freshly strung (Fast Fret or an equivalent string cleaner helps a lot) is the best way of making it more likely that you'll pick it up. Having a good Eastman should make that even easier.
    Last edited by Ron McMillan; May-25-2016 at 10:19pm.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    The case obviously offers more protection, but, if your home is consistently climate controlled and you have no pets or children who might accidentally destroy your baby, then leave it out!!
    Chuck

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    acoustically inert F-2 Dave's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Welcome, Don. I've done it both ways. I'm more likely to pick it up if it's out, but it stays a lot cleaner if I case it when I'm not playing.
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Well ... the best relative humidity for your mandolin s between 40% abs 60%. Letting your instrument dry out is bad for it. If , and I say, if, you believe it is safe to hang it on the wall. Then make sure it doesn't dry out while hanging there. Put a Dampit or other instrument hydrator in it. Personally I keep my instruments in their cases. R/
    I love hanging out with mandolin nerds . . . . . Thanks peeps ...

  6. #6

    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Quote Originally Posted by CES View Post
    The case obviously offers more protection, but, if your home is consistently climate controlled and you have no pets or children who might accidentally destroy your baby, then leave it out!!
    Mandolins and guitars need to be kept in humidity controlled situations of about 42% to 50%. (Opinions may vary here), but that is the general range in order to avoid the wood warping or cracking over time. You can do that by keeping them in their cases with individual case humidifiers or having a room humidifier which controls the entire ambient humidity of a closed space with several instruments of different types. I prefer an instrument room where I can control the entire space. If you do that, you can also have instruments out of their cases on stands where you are more likely to see one, pick it up, play it and check it for problems on a regular basis. Instruments kept in cases can be ignored for a while and if the ambient humidity of the room is controlled, fewer problems are likely to happen even with neglect.

    I have a special room for my instruments where the kids and pets are restricted from play unless I am there to supervise. You don't need to be anal about it, just explain good musical instruments require care and respect, are not like whiffle toys and need to be treated and cared for differently because of their unigue qualities. Teach the players proper instrument care by setting them aside for special treatment this way.

    Finally, I live in the Mojave Desert so the protection of fine wooden, stringed instruments requires more attention than if you live in a more temperate climate like the Midwest or even the Northeast. Don't forget, however, winters in both those areas can produce low humidity nearly as dry as a Mojave Desert summer. After a wonderful Spring and Summer, the air can become so dry over winter months, serious cracks can happen over a single winter. This is especially true where homes are heated with wood stoves.

    Keep us updated on what works for you!

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    Registered User Rob Beck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    I say "keep it out" we are having some building work done at the moment, so out of necessity my instruments, which are always on wall hangers in the sitting room, have been in their cases. In the last week, I have really noticed how much less I have been playing because they are not readily accessible. With that said, I don't believe that we have the kind of humidity issues in the UK that would adversely affect musical instruments, at least over the last thirty years or so, my total lack of attention to it has had precisely zero effect on any of mine

    Also it is nice to hear that your doctor thinks that playing will help your fingers - good luck
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    It is nice to just take it off wall and play. With summer coming on, I will probably practice more during the day while it's so hot. I have no music background at all, but it's fun to play, plus can tell doc I'm doing something she suggested.

    Don

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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Milton View Post
    Hello folks,
    Couple years ago doc suggested playing a musical instrument may help some with my arthritic fingers. So bought a Gretsch New Yorker, and started my mandolin journey. Last March, bought my Eastman 515. Really like it. I stored it in it's case for the first few months. Lately I been hanging it on the wall. Just wondering if one way is better than the other. It's nice to just take it off the wall, sit down and start practicing.
    Don
    Good to see a doctor "prescribing" a mandolin as treatment for a disease, now if I could find one that would prescribe " one more mandolin" for my diabetes.

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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Welcome to our collective insanity. You can get sooooo much good advice here. Personally I like to keep my mandolin in the case when I'm not pickin'. I think it's safer in the long run.

  11. #11
    Registered User Mandobart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Welcome Don! I'm one who hangs my instruments on the wall in my music room. Of course this discussion immediately jumps to humidity which is a whole other subject misunderstood by most people. If you haven't noticed yet there is a search feature in the upper right. Don't be afraid to ask questions, but I have personally found a wealth of info by searching thru our forum.

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Case -- for a variety of reasons. Number one, of course is protection from accidental damage; lotsa things that can cause a slip, fall or bump. Second, you're keeping it in a small, easily controlled environment, where you can regulate its humidity, temperature etc. much more easily than for an entire room or house. Thirdly, there's ease of storage; you can move it around, put it up on a shelf, take it to another room and leave it there for awhile during clean-ups -- and if you want to take it to a jam or gig, it's already in the case. Also, case storage can keep accessories such as picks, tuners, spare strings, capos (yeah, capos) with the instrument, so they're there when you need them.

    And I really don't understand the "it's so much more accessible on a stand or hanging on the wall" argument. I have timed myself taking a mandolin out of its case, and 30 seconds is my most sluggish time. If a half-minute of non-strenuous "effort" is keeping a mandolinist from playing his/her instrument -- well, is that a dedicated mandolinist? I dunno...

    Meanwhile, welcome aboard!
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    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Quote Originally Posted by allenhopkins View Post
    Case -- for a variety of reasons.
    Yea I agree. I am a case person. Bumping, sunlight, guests plucking at it, dust, etc. IMO a "wall hanger" is exclusively decoration.

    But I understand that having it convenient and in view means you will be more tempted to take it down and play it. And mandolins are so over the top nice to look at. And I believe its cool also to take pride in it and want to "show" friends and family.

    One idea is to get a nice picture of the mandolin, taken face on, that you could frame and hang on the wall.

    But for me, I abide by the "three rules".

    1) if it is not being played it is in its case.
    2) if it is in its case the case is closed.
    3) if the case is closed the case is latched.

    Actually I am the only one I know who calls them the three rules, but we have all had experiences that highlight the importance of each rule.
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    Registered User T.D.Nydn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    I actually follow Jeff's " 3 case rules", I just keep the case right next to me ...

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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    I keep my nice personal instruments in their cases in a humidified environment. I have a couple of low-mid level instruments that always sit out. These are generally in the front room, leaning against the wall, laying on the couch, sitting on the table. All those things that you should never do! Having these out does lend to grabbing one for a bit after hearing an inspiring song on the radio, TV, etc.. Leaving them out does take its toll. They get bumped around, and I have to redo setups more often than if they were stored properly. I feel the trade off is more than worth it and if one falls over and snaps the headstock off, gets stepped on or whatever, no big deal. I will just fix it or get another. Instruments that I care about, are never left out much past the time I may be using it.
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    Registered User Randi Gormley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    I keep mine cased for various and sundry reasons, but I'm short and we have stuff pushed up against most walls, so the effort to grab something off the wall would amount to a 15-minute process -- I'd be standing on the furniture, balancing on the cushions, or standing tiptoe two feet from the wall, pushing aside whatever cases are around, trying to reach around a lamp to get to the wall above my head -- some days it's hard enough just to get to the cord to open the blinds! -- that in the case actually IS the more convenient method!
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    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Quote Originally Posted by Randi Gormley View Post
    in the case actually IS the more convenient method!
    Yes, there is that.
    Indulge responsibly!

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  20. #18

    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    I say, if you like it on the wall keep it out. The mandolin likes to breath. If it sits in the case it smells like the case and has stale air, and it will fall asleep on you. And a well positioned wall hanger is all the protection it will ever need. Just don't hang it next to the wood stove.

  21. #19
    Mediocre but OK with that Paul Busman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    I'd say hang it if you like. Exterior walls can be subject to more temperature change and might ought to be avoided. I wouldn't hang a mandolin over a radiator or baseboard heater though. Seeing the instrument out makes it more a part of your life, even when you're not playing it.
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  22. #20

    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Thanks for all the replies. Looks like I may be doing it both ways, depending on mood I'm in when finished playing. I think I'm going to be spending a lot of time on this forum. Don

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    Gummy Bears and Scotch BrianWilliam's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    Welcome don!

    I also vote "case". But, you can always leave the case out! Mine is never in the closet

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    Registered User T.D.Nydn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    I'm willing to bet, the more money you have invested in your mandolin, the more it sees it's case, and less wall. Anybody have a Master Model just hanging around all the time?

  25. #23
    Market Man Barry Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    The new yorker is laminate I believe so don't worry about it too much. I never considered humidity as an issue until I bought a good instrument. My acoustic guitar stays in the case usually with a humidifier, though this time of year here it is pretty humid anyway LOL.

    I like having instruments out. half mine are either in stands or on the wall right as I type... tomorrow I will have more out haha.
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    Registered User cbakewell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    It's a late reply, but hopefully still helpful.

    When I first started playing mandolin, I did a lot of work from home on my computer.

    At the time, the operating system was Windows 95. This would crash 3 or 4 times a day and rebooting and doing a disk scan took about 25minutes.

    During this dead time, I would take the mandolin off the wall adjacent to me, and twiddle away.

    It was only retrospectively that I realised I was getting over an hour a day practice without noticing.

    So now, when anyone asks, I tell them that I owe my mandolin skills (such as they are) to Bill Gates and Microsoft.


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    Registered User Roger Moss's Avatar
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    Default Re: Just joined forum---1st post

    I keep mine in it's case but it is always within easy reach. I just feel it is safer that way. However if your house is climate controlled and there are no kids or pets to bother it, then there should be no problem. Left on your wall within easy reach it should do fine.

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