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poppi_m
04-28-2017, 04:04 AM
This is more in reference to humidity for the uke .

1) which holds the humidity better or is the difference
Negligible when you have a humidifier in the case ?

I live in the Chicago area and will be kept in a finished basement environment .

2) this is likely a well hashed out item , but here it goes ...

What is the better humidifier for a uke and does that answer differ based on a soft or hard case?

Thanks again for helping the newbie .

Ukecaster
04-28-2017, 04:33 AM
A hard case, having a hard exterior, with buckle down latches/tighter seal, will naturally hold moisture better than a foam case, and way better than just a light gigbag. A humidifier will work best in a hard case. As far as basement storage, if the space it is 100% below ground, you'll usually naturally have more humidity down there, even if heated and/or AC cooled. My man cave is in the basement, where I store my gear. It usually naturally stays 45-60 humidity year round, even in winter when heat is on. My easy test is, when I come back to an instrument which was in-tune when stored, if I find it flat, it means a bit of moisture dissipated; if it is slightly sharp, it has soaked up a bit of moisture. In my basement, they almost always go a bit sharp, which is good. Before I had central AC installed, it would get very humid in summer down there (70-80) , and we needed to run a dehumidifier down there or the instruments would really soak it up. Never to the point of damage, but if it's not comfortable for you, it's not good for instruments either. When I humidify in the case, I go low tech/low cost: Plastic soap dish with holes drilled on top, and wet sponge inside. Works like a charm, check weekly, usually lasts 2 weeks for me.

99731

mikelz777
04-28-2017, 04:36 AM
I live in Minnesota where humidity (or should I say lack thereof) is a big factor during the winter months.



1) which holds the humidity better or is the difference
Negligible when you have a humidifier in the case ?

I tested a hard case with latches vs. a canvas covered foam zippered case and the difference in their ability to hold humidity was significant. The hard case with latches held humidity much better than the zippered case. It wasn't even close.


2) What is the better humidifier for a uke and does that answer differ based on a soft or hard case?

With any humidifier, the zippered soft or zippered hard case is not going to be as effective as a hard case with latches. I wasn't able to reach the humidity levels I wanted in the zippered case. Either you won't be able to achieve the level of humidity you desire or if you can achieve the level of humidity you want, you will have to maintain the humidifier more frequently. I use an Oasis humidifier which goes in the sound hole and is suspended by the strings. It puts the humidity where it is needed most. I put a Humistat #1 humidifier in the neck space of the case to keep the neck/head properly humidified.

stevepetergal
04-28-2017, 07:00 PM
I doubt there's any evidence a hard or soft case is better at containing or repelling moisture. The shell is not the only barrier. You must consider the entire package. A plastic garbage bag will keep moisture in/out better than a simple, thin-walled wooden box.

mikelz777
04-29-2017, 01:32 AM
I doubt there's any evidence a hard or soft case is better at containing or repelling moisture. The shell is not the only barrier. You must consider the entire package. A plastic garbage bag will keep moisture in/out better than a simple, thin-walled wooden box.

There is evidence that a hard case with latches holds humidity better than a zippered foam case. I tested it myself with a hydrometer and a hygrometer. The hard case is definitely better. It would kind of be common sense that a zipper is going to allow more air flow and thus be less retentive of moisture. Though I haven't tested it, I'd guess that a plastic garbage bag would hold moisture better than a hard case but I doubt there are many people who want to store their ukuleles in a garbage bag. They aren't very protective.

Mivo
04-29-2017, 02:17 AM
I'd first buy a hygrometer and measure the humidity levels in your place. Just glance at it a couple of times a day. Easier to find a good solution for a problem once you know if there is a problem at all and what exactly it is.

These days I leave my most played ukes (which are also the ones I paid the most for) out in the living room as I play them more that way. I'm more cautious in the winter, but as long as humidity is over 35%, I don't pull out the hard cases. Ukes like the same humidity that humans like too, so just adding a few plants or a small table fountain can improve the conditions for your and the uke's health, if needed.

poppi_m
04-29-2017, 02:23 AM
I see what you mean about in trying fix a problem
That I'm assuming exists .

Mivo
04-29-2017, 02:39 AM
Yeah, I bought the cases and the humidifiers before I got a hygrometer, just to find out that I really didn't need to humidify (only in particularly cold winters after I opened the windows for a while), especially not to the extent I had thought. We sometimes put the cart before the horse. :)

Ziret
04-29-2017, 05:53 AM
What Mivo said. Also, around here, where there are a similar small number of extremely low humidity days, I took the advice of a forum member and got one of those plastic containers that fit under your bed. It holds two or three ukes, along with a damp sponge in a cracked open Ziploc bag. And a hygrometer. Easy, simple, effective, cheap. And opening that container is easier than unbuckling a hard case. And I didn't have to get a hard case for each instrument.

stevepetergal
04-29-2017, 05:53 PM
There is evidence that a hard case with latches holds humidity better than a zippered foam case. I tested it myself with a hydrometer and a hygrometer. The hard case is definitely better. It would kind of be common sense that a zipper is going to allow more air flow and thus be less retentive of moisture. Though I haven't tested it, I'd guess that a plastic garbage bag would hold moisture better than a hard case but I doubt there are many people who want to store their ukuleles in a garbage bag. They aren't very protective.

Sorry mikelz77. I'm sure some have done small scale tests like yours. But what I meant was, as the questions begs, though my hard shell case might hold moisture better than my soft shell case, that doesn't mean much. That's two cases. There must be hundreds of cases out there. Can't make a blanket statement from my little test. I'm not being intentionally argumentative. My point is that the question has no good answer. Some soft cases have very substantial amounts of foam, some don't. Some of those foam materials will have more moisture blocking effect than others. Same with hard shell cases. We have enough variables to make the shell type insignificant. So, I'd be willing to bet you and I could easily find one hard and one soft case that would give us very different results than the ones you got in your previous test. And I don't see the zipper-being-less-effective argument as common sense at all. I can't imagine much air flowing through a closed zipper. And I do have a cheap, hard shell case that I would call far from sealed when latched. But, again the closing mechanism is one very small factor.

You actually reiterated my plastic bag thought exactly.

Ukecaster
04-29-2017, 07:31 PM
What Mivo said. Also, around here, where there are a similar small number of extremely low humidity days, I took the advice of a forum member and got one of those plastic containers that fit under your bed. It holds two or three ukes, along with a damp sponge in a cracked open Ziploc bag. And a hygrometer. Easy, simple, effective, cheap. And opening that container is easier than unbuckling a hard case. And I didn't have to get a hard case for each instrument.

Plus another benefit...now you don't need to be scared about what's under the bed ;)l

Rllink
04-30-2017, 09:22 AM
Plus another benefit...now you don't need to be scared about what's under the bed ;)lI fire a few rounds under the bed at night before I climb in, just to make sure there's nothing scary under there. I would probably have to quit that if I put my ukulele under there.;) Plus I would have to clean under the bed and get all of those dead dust bunnies out of there if I wanted to store my ukulele there.

Down Up Dick
04-30-2017, 09:32 AM
I fire a few rounds under the bed at night before I climb in, just to make sure there's nothing scary under there. I would probably have to quit that if I put my ukulele under there.;) Plus I would have to clean under the bed and get all of those dead dust bunnies out of there if I wanted to store my ukulele there.

I drink a few rounds before I climb in. It, too, keeps me from being scared. If I spill some, the cute little pink dust bunnies'll clean it up. :old:

Ziret
04-30-2017, 01:15 PM
You're not afraid of the haunted ukulele?

Nickie
04-30-2017, 05:12 PM
Good thread, this.
It seems that it would be very beneficial for some folks with access to a lot of different hard and soft cases to test them all under similar conditions, then report the findings to us. They should indeed use the most common brands used by ukulele players, of course.
We live in moist, clammy Florida, however, I find this very interesting.

Mivo
05-01-2017, 03:28 AM
You're not afraid of the haunted ukulele?

I killed one in my bedroom by sitting on it. Ever since I hear ghost notes ...

Down Up Dick
05-01-2017, 04:57 AM
I killed one in my bedroom by sitting on it. Ever since I hear ghost notes ...

In my music room where my ukes are hanging on the wall, if I cough or say somethin' aloud to my wife, my ukes go HMMMM!

It's really nice. It's like they're singing to me. :old:

Ukecaster
05-01-2017, 06:08 AM
You're not afraid of the haunted ukulele?

The only thing haunting me is my UAS-fueled credit card bill! ;)