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the52blues
03-08-2011, 05:32 PM
Anyone else have a problem with the neck of your uke shrinking slightly in the winter months allowing the fret wires to stick out a bit then in the summer they go back to normal? I'm having this problem with a couple of ukes and a luthier said to have the frets dressed (shortened) during the winter just once and the problem should not happen again. The theory being that the shortened fret wire will not stick out in the winter any more and in the summer they will recess slightly but not affect performance.

Ingrate
03-08-2011, 06:05 PM
I think you need to increase the humidity you're 'ukulele is experiencing, and fast.

olgoat52
03-08-2011, 06:07 PM
Pretty common in guitars. I think your luthier is right on. But it does sound like you need more humidity.

chiefnoda
03-08-2011, 06:37 PM
Hi

Yes, it is a rather common problem. Sometimes it's unavoidable (in New England, it's really difficult) but you should've humidified carefully (me included). Once this happens, the fretwire is not secured in the slot and it may come loose, that is lifting slightly and may cause buzz and action problems later.

Your luthier's right about the fix - just file down the fret ends.

Cheers
Chief

hmgberg
03-09-2011, 12:01 AM
Yes, this is a humidity issue. Keep your instruments in a case with a humidifier. If you are using a sound hole humidifier, and have room in the case, use an additional humidifier, particularly if these are larger ukuleles. I also live where the winters are cold and the RH in rooms can easily drop to 20%. I try to keep my ukuleles at around 50%. Whatever you do, don't hang the ukuleles on the wall.

Skitzic
03-09-2011, 01:45 AM
I'm having this issue with my Kanile'a right now. I keep 2 humidifiers in the case and the fret wire is still sticking out. I'm going to see if it clears up in the summer. If it does I will invest in a larger humidifier and convert a closet to a winter home for my expensive instruments.

Nuprin
03-09-2011, 03:24 AM
If it does I will invest in a larger humidifier and convert a closet to a winter home for my expensive instruments.

This is what I did. I went out and bought this humidifier (http://www.amazon.com/Air-O-Swiss-AOS-Ultrasonic-Humidifier-7135/dp/B000J4LCS6/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1299680403&sr=8-4) and I run in 24/7 in my bedroom closet where I keep my ukes. It allows you to set the humidity level you want (I have mine set at 45%) and it will maintain it. The tank has a little less than a 2 gallon capacity. With Vermont winters as dry as they are, I find myself filling it up every 3 days or so. I like it quite a bit and it takes the hassle out of filling up 15 in case humidifiers each week.

Skitzic
03-09-2011, 03:40 AM
This is what I did. I went out and bought this humidifier (http://www.amazon.com/Air-O-Swiss-AOS-Ultrasonic-Humidifier-7135/dp/B000J4LCS6/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1299680403&sr=8-4) and I run in 24/7 in my bedroom closet where I keep my ukes. It allows you to set the humidity level you want (I have mine set at 45%) and it will maintain it. The tank has a little less than a 2 gallon capacity. With Vermont winters as dry as they are, I find myself filling it up every 3 days or so. I like it quite a bit and it takes the hassle out of filling up 15 in case humidifiers each week.

Do you have them hanging on the wall then? I'd be interested to see a pic of your set up.

the52blues
03-09-2011, 03:50 AM
Thanks for all the responses. The humidifier issue should be addressed. I'm lazy and made an attempt at humidifying all my guitars but failed miserably in maintaining the water levels. Fortunately I have never had this issue with any of my guitars and it's only happening to two of the ukes so once I get the fret wires dressed I will try to maintain at least those two in future.

Nuprin
03-09-2011, 04:03 AM
Do you have them hanging on the wall then? I'd be interested to see a pic of your set up.

I have some hanging up...others I keep in the case. I have a case with a built in hygrometer so I use that to judge the humidity level of my other ukes in their cases. It reads close to 45% so it's not too different than the non-cased humidity level.

I left my soprano flea out in my bedroom (which is not properly humidified) for 2 days and the fret ends were poking out. Put it back in the closet (which is properly humidified) and a day later no more fret ends.

Oh, another thing about the humidifier...I've been filling it with distilled water (a gallon costs about $1.50 at the grocery store). This means I don't have to worry about using a filter (or, more importantly, changing the filter every month or so).

Uke Republic
03-09-2011, 04:06 AM
I had a customer who had some peeking frets and and a thirsty rosewood fingerboard so I applied some LoPrinzi fingerboard treatment let it sit and whamo ! The fingerboard plumped up and frets were no more peeking.
Humidity is of course priority but you might give this stuff a shot too. Plus it kinda smells a little like being at the beach:)
http://ukerepublic.bigcartel.com/product/loprinzi-fingerboard-conditioner

Skitzic
03-09-2011, 04:09 AM
I have some hanging up...others I keep in the case. I have a case with a built in hygrometer so I use that to judge the humidity level of my other ukes in their cases. It reads close to 45% so it's not too different than the non-cased humidity level.

I left my soprano flea out in my bedroom (which is not properly humidified) for 2 days and the fret ends were poking out. Put it back in the closet (which is properly humidified) and a day later no more fret ends.

Oh, another thing about the humidifier...I've been filling it with distilled water (a gallon costs about $1.50 at the grocery store). This means I don't have to worry about using a filter (or, more importantly, changing the filter every month or so).

That was actually going to be my next question. :D I will have to start poking around at some stores. Since winter is coming to an end all that stuff should go on sale soon.

I never had a problem with my guitars, but these little guys are giving me all kinds of head aches. They're lucky I like them...