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Thread: should I humidify old strad-o-lin mandolin?

  1. #1
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    Default should I humidify old strad-o-lin mandolin?

    It likely has never been humidified but does not seem to have suffered for it, unless the slight protrusion of the back past edge of side in a few spots and a thin crack on the top are the result of dryness. I don't see a date in it but it looks like a 1938 I saw in a photo.Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	179576Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	179577 If # on headstock is S.S. the owner was a Norman White of New York state, b 1908 d 1990Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	179578 it doesn't look like it is separating anywhere.

  2. #2
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: should I humidify old strad-o-lin mandolin?

    Yes one should always humidify in the winter time, I usually have in case Oasis humidifiers I water up every so often and in the music room I have a cool air Humidifier running all the time as I see your in PA also so for sure humidify and it may close the hairlines? Also you and yours will feel better with any heat you use for your house!
    That's a nice mandolin, I've played a bunch from the 30's and they all were loud and full of tone-I just don't get why hardly anyone besides the Gibson F-5's didn't have a longer 5 scale neck and elevated boards!

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    Default Re: should I humidify old strad-o-lin mandolin?

    Thanks William that's good to know. Wasn't sure if humidity might cause new problems after going for so long without.

  4. #4
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: should I humidify old strad-o-lin mandolin?

    No brother it will help for sure, if you want leave it in the bathroom while in the shower etc...But I'd just get a little in case humidifier so its more contained, Oasis makes some small tube like ones that work great.

  5. #5
    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: should I humidify old strad-o-lin mandolin?

    Agree. Humidfying won't hurt. Besides a room humidifier, will often put a Dampit in through the F hole on my Strad-O-Lin. It's the instrument I usually keep hanging on a hook next to where I sit. Easier to grab when the mood strikes.

    Oh, and look inside the F hole at the back. There could very well be a date stamp near the center, up towards the neck. The date on mine is Oct 13, 1941.
    1935 Gibson A50, 2018 Collings MT, 1929 Gibson A Jr., 1941 Strad-O-Lin, 2018 Eastman MDO-305, 1950's Californian, 2015 Ashbury Style E OM
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  6. #6

    Default Re: should I humidify old strad-o-lin mandolin?

    All wood instruments should be humidified during the winter months. Probably dehumidified in the summer.

    I have a hygrometer in the room where my instruments are. We just had some rain in last couple of days and indoor the RH is 59%. But I keep them all in tight fitting cases. So I can get by for awhile.

    In the winter months I put a homemade humidifier in each case. It is a soap dish with several holes drilled in them and a snug fitting sponge. It will last about a week before it needs to be dampened again.

    So far no problems.
    2007 Indiana Scout
    2018 Indiana Madison Quilt Elite
    2018 Takamine GJ72CE 12 String
    2018 Takamine GD93
    1963 Gibson SG
    2016 Kala Uke
    Dean A Style Mandolin (year unknown)
    Plus a few lower end I have had for years

  7. #7
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    Default Re: should I humidify old strad-o-lin mandolin?

    Humidity can also harm an instrument, so don't keep too much moisture in the case. Stability is important. My humidity here is 65-75%, and some gigs it goes into the 90's. Nothing I can do about it, but I don't keep the house closed up all summer and dehumidify as I know I will be playing often outside, and can't change the high humidity. I humidify the house in winter, but never the case. Been doing it that way for several decades and not had a problem. I heat with wood and am able to keep it 45-50% in winter. Not getting it too dry is more important in my opinion, unless it was built in a very dry environment.
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