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Thread: Humidifier ?

  1. #1

    Default Humidifier ?

    I already live in a humid climate, south Florida. Recently we had a snap of cool dry air, nothing severe, it was in the 50s and we had all the windows open so Iím sure the temperature was probably in the 50s indoors. The air was quite a bit dryer. In this transition my mandolin suddenly got some pretty marked fret buzz which shocked me. I have had guitars down here for over a decade and never noted any change. I took it down to the shop and it got a minor truss rod adjustment and the buzz went away. Iím am never going to tinker with a truss rod on my own. Is this a normal mandolin occurrence with weather changes ? Seems crazy to use a humidifier in this climate but is that what folks do in temperature fluctuations?

  2. #2
    Hack jeff_75's Avatar
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    Default Re: Humidifier ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eclectic1 View Post
    Is this a normal mandolin occurrence with weather changes ? Seems crazy to use a humidifier in this climate but is that what folks do in temperature fluctuations?
    Could be. If the weather was the only variable that changed before the buzz started, humidity, or a rapid change thereof, is a likely culprit.

    Weather here in VA swings wildly. Case in point, Thursday it was in the 20s, today we’re close to 70. I have a whole-house humidifier built into the HVAC system that runs in the winter. That’s more for human comfort than instruments. In addition to that, I have a smaller humidifier AND dehumidifier in the music room to keep the levels more fine-tuned. I run the small humidifer often during colder snaps, and the dehumidifier often during the summer. You should buy a cheap hygrometer and keep an eye on it. They aren’t particularly accurate, but they’ll give you a ballpark, and more importantly, you can see big swings in humidity.
    "I'm a farmer with a mandolin and a high tenor voice."

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: Humidifier ?

    Could be a natural thing happening. First the colder air most likely influenced the change, but some truss rods change. My partners old Gibson guitar usually needs an adjustment a few times a year, We have a variable climate here, like Jeff. Humid in the summer, cold in the winter. Last week it was -40 today it is +40. I think also some headstocks vibrate more than others and I swear vibrate the nut loose, especially if the neck doesn't need much tension for the relief to be correct.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  5. #4

    Default Re: Humidifier ?

    What you describe is exactly what a truss rod is for.

    I like this article from Bruce Weber:

    https://www.montanalutherie.com/pain...ust-truss-rod/

    But even reading this, I still had no idea what to look for, do I need to give it more relief, or reduce it? Looking down the neck, I just saw a straight line. I remember someone saying "you see that slight hump there" when I brought a mando in for work a couple years back. "Nope" I said.

    Having recently had my octave in for a setup, I think I finally know what proper neck relief looks like.

    This is also really helpful, found this a couple months ago when I was busy mucking around, making my MTO unplayable (lol).

    Click image for larger version. 

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  6. #5

    Default Re: Humidifier ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Leonard View Post
    What you describe is exactly what a truss rod is for.

    I like this article from Bruce Weber:

    https://www.montanalutherie.com/pain...ust-truss-rod/

    But even reading this, I still had no idea what to look for, do I need to give it more relief, or reduce it? Looking down the neck, I just saw a straight line. I remember someone saying "you see that slight hump there" when I brought a mando in for work a couple years back. "Nope" I said.

    Having recently had my octave in for a setup, I think I finally know what proper neck relief looks like.

    This is also really helpful, found this a couple months ago when I was busy mucking around, making my MTO unplayable (lol).

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	setup.jpg 
Views:	25 
Size:	198.4 KB 
ID:	174604
    That’s funny ! People always try to show me the neck and I can’t really tell if the neck is straight or not.... further I would be petrified to even think about adjusting thr truss rod. I have seen guitar necks blown out before. Luckily the shop I got it from is very helpful fixing things like this. So .... now that he turned it to get rid of the buzz ...I wonder if it will need to be turned back when the weather turns.

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    Default Re: Humidifier ?

    Neck relief for a guitar is a completely different thing than for a mandolin. A mandolin rarely needs relief and can usually be played flat. The truss rod adjusts that relief. I sometimes, when doing fret levels on my mandolins, put a very slight amount on the G side only so I can have a lower action. having hand problems I prefer a very low action and this helps some.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

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