PDA

View Full Version : My monkeypod cracked



kohanmike
01-14-2014, 07:25 PM
Last night here in LA, the weather got very dry, down to 5% humidity. I have a shelf setup to hold my ukes, with trays for water and hygrometer to help control the humidity around the ukes. Through the day today the hygometer was around 20-25%. I got a little worried so I draped a towel over the front of the shelf to help, the hygrometer went up to about 35%.

http://www.kohanmike.com/images/Uke shelf 2.jpg

A little later I took out my Lanikai solid top monkey pod to play a little and shortly into it, saw a large crack in the top below the bridge, DAMN!

http://www.kohanmike.com/images/Monkeypod crack.jpg

I thought I was so clever to make the shelf system, and drape the towel, but obviously I was too late. I don't think it's going to be that detrimental, to me it sounds the same as before, and I checked my other ukes, they seem fine.

So I'm going to put glass doors on the shelf with rubber padding to try and make it more humidor like.

Ukulele Eddie
01-14-2014, 07:39 PM
Oh, man that blows. I'm also in LA (Santa Monica) and in my place it's been 35% the last two days so I've been putting mine in their cases with humidifiers.

Bao
01-15-2014, 02:49 AM
That sucks, man =\ I hope it won't get any worse.

P.S. It's solid wood.

RichM
01-15-2014, 03:00 AM
That sucks, man =\ I hope it won't get any worse.

P.S. It's solid wood.

Ah, that makes sense. I was about to post that its very unusual to see a crack like that in a laminate uke...but it's a classic in a solid uke. Should be a pretty straightforward repair, if you choose to get it repaired.

Olarte
01-15-2014, 03:03 AM
Sorry to hear that. With that many ukes, you might want to look at an electric humidifier. I have been using one for the last 3 years with no issues. keeps my room at 45-50% humidity.

You should have the uke looked at and repaired so the crack does not get worse...

Good Luck!

vanflynn
01-15-2014, 03:06 AM
Bummer. I'd put it into a case with some humidifiers to get the wood back where it should be and then take it to a local guitar shop and have them put some hot hide glue on the crack. That should pretty much take care of it.

Good luck

dkcrown
01-15-2014, 03:13 AM
All of my ukes live in their cases from November 1st until at least the beginning of May. Or whenever my room hygrometer tells me it is safe for them to come out of hibernation. Each case has a Herco clay humidifier in it along with an Oasis in body for the uke.

It looks nice to display your ukes, but as you found out there can be consequences. :(

RichM
01-15-2014, 03:17 AM
Sorry to hear that. With that many ukes, you might want to look at an electric humidifier. I have been using one for the last 3 years with no issues. keeps my room at 45-50% humidity.

You should have the uke looked at and repaired so the crack does not get worse...

Good Luck!

I have always been an advocate of keeping the room humidified. Depending on the size of your room, a good room humidifier can be had for about $50-100, cost very little to run, and is a simple machine that should run for years. A well humidified room is not only good for your instruments, it's good for plants, hardwood floors, and your respiratory system. If your room is dry, you may be surprised at how much better you feel when it is properly humidified.

A whole-house humidifier can help, if you use forced-air heat. This is a small unit that sits on your heat exchanger and adds moisture to your air before it enters your ductwork. I have found that on really dry days, however, the whole-house humidifier really can't put enough moisture in the air, so I still use a room humidifier. If your house has any fiberboard ductwork (sometimes seen in newer homes, rare in older homes), I've been told it can absorb moisture from a whole-house humidifier and can encourage mold growth. I don't know if this is true or not, but my heating guy swears it is. :)

UkerDanno
01-15-2014, 03:24 AM
get something like this...
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vornado-Evap2-Whole-Room-Evaporative-Humidifier-/121252786548?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1c3b3ab174

and set it by your cabinet. I have a dual tank vornado that I've had for over 10 years and run it all winter...it's still ticking along.

Olarte
01-15-2014, 04:50 AM
A nice benefit to my room humidifier is it has a nice large display which I always noticed when I walk into the room. So I never run dry and on a rare occasion due to weather conditions I may need to adjust it a bit.

other than that I change the filter about 3 times a year and fill it every few weeks or so depending on the weather.

kvehe
01-15-2014, 05:16 AM
get something like this...
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vornado-Evap2-Whole-Room-Evaporative-Humidifier-/121252786548?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1c3b3ab174

and set it by your cabinet. I have a dual tank vornado that I've had for over 10 years and run it all winter...it's still ticking along.

This is the one I have. It's great. I got it at Target - the only problem being that I bought it the Sunday after Thanksgiving, when all of the Target customer (I refuse to call us "guests") information was stolen.

Skinny Money McGee
01-15-2014, 05:27 AM
We have a "whole house" humidifier that works excellent. However, I don't think Kohanmike could use one in LA. They only humidify when the furnace is running, and your furnace isn't running that often in LA. Those Santa Ana winds can get unbelievably dry.

Room humidifiers seem to be the ticket. You will have to keep your windows closed though. or, Try finding someone who could build you some glass doors to seal off the section of the shelving unit your ukes are in.

hoosierhiver
01-15-2014, 05:44 AM
I have always been an advocate of keeping the room humidified. Depending on the size of your room, a good room humidifier can be had for about $50-100, cost very little to run, and is a simple machine that should run for years. A well humidified room is not only good for your instruments, it's good for plants, hardwood floors, and your respiratory system. If your room is dry, you may be surprised at how much better you feel when it is properly humidified.

A whole-house humidifier can help, if you use forced-air heat. This is a small unit that sits on your heat exchanger and adds moisture to your air before it enters your ductwork. I have found that on really dry days, however, the whole-house humidifier really can't put enough moisture in the air, so I still use a room humidifier. If your house has any fiberboard ductwork (sometimes seen in newer homes, rare in older homes), I've been told it can absorb moisture from a whole-house humidifier and can encourage mold growth. I don't know if this is true or not, but my heating guy swears it is. :)

Sage advice. House plants and aquariums also help.
http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?78057-Buy-your-ukulele-a-goldfish

kohanmike
01-15-2014, 11:27 AM
My mistake, solid top monkey pod. Room humidifier is not feasible, the room is 30 feet long, 14 feet wide and clear story 18 foot ceilings. I'm going over to a glass place today to see about tempered glass doors. I'm also going to put closed cell foam insulation along all the seams. Just draping a towel over the front raised the humidity to 38%.

Olarte
01-15-2014, 11:42 AM
I wonder if you can still get an electric humidifier that is small enough to fit in the cabinet...


My mistake, solid top monkey pod. Room humidifier is not feasible, the room is 30 feet long, 14 feet wide and clear story 18 foot ceilings. I'm going over to a glass place today to see about tempered glass doors. I'm also going to put closed cell foam insulation along all the seems. Just draping a towel over the front raised the humidity to 38%.

Kayak Jim
01-15-2014, 03:28 PM
Doors should make a big difference (expect custom glass doors will be pricey). I keep my ukes in a closed cabinet about the same size as yours with a couple of sponges and the humidity inside is steady 50-55% while the house is in the 20's.

I wouldn't rely on the dial type hygrometer (if that's yours on the back wall of the cabinet). Yes the reading might change but doesn't mean its accurate. And two hygrometers allow cross checking one vs. other.

JamieWG
01-15-2014, 04:04 PM
I am so sorry that this happened to you! I've seen that shot of your cabinet several times around the forum, and I always thought it was such a practical and safe way to store them. It's heartbreaking when this happens; I know all too well how you feel. :( I would suggest, due to the location of the crack, that you loosen the strings a bit to take some of the tension off the top until it can get to your local uke hospital. Glass doors seem like a good solution. Plexiglass could work too, and would be lighter and less fragile.

Jamie

OldePhart
01-16-2014, 04:36 AM
As Kayak Jim mentions, custom glass doors could be pretty pricey. You can get Lexan sheets in various thicknesses and sizes at Lowes, where you can also get hinges and latches. You could make your own pretty easily.

The doors don't have to seal extremely tight as long as you have a humidifier inside with the ukes.

John

kohanmike
01-16-2014, 01:20 PM
I just came from a glass place and two pieces of tempered glass, 6 glass hinges, pressure push magnetic latches and edge sealers will cost about $180. I then went to the hardware store and priced two plain pieces of glass, piano hinges, simple magnetic latches and epoxy glue, all about $50. Have to check out Lexan at Lowes next.

By-the-way, instead of trying to fix the crack, and the screws holding in the electronics were coming loose, my cousin's son wanted to start playing uke, so I gave it to him. He's happy even with the problems, his father is happy not to spend any money, I'm happy I passed it on, and also because I bought a zabra wood Lanikai with the same configuration on eBay last night to replace it.

http://www.fairfax67.com/images/u7Lanikai Z.jpg

consitter
01-16-2014, 08:27 PM
I just came from a glass place and two pieces of tempered glass, 6 glass hinges, pressure push magnetic latches and edge sealers will cost about $180. I then went to the hardware store and priced two plain pieces of glass, piano hinges, simple magnetic latches and epoxy glue, all about $50. Have to check out Lexan at Lowes next.

By-the-way, instead of trying to fix the crack, and the screws holding in the electronics were coming loose, my cousin's son wanted to start playing uke, so I gave it to him. He's happy even with the problems, his father is happy not to spend any money, I'm happy I passed it on, and also because I bought a zabra wood Lanikai the same configuration on eBay last night to replace it.

http://www.kohanmike.com/images/u7Lanikai Z.jpg

That's a nice end to the story. Win/win for everybody!

clayton56
01-17-2014, 11:48 PM
my hygrometers both said 45%, I ran a hot bath and left the bathroom door open, within 10 minutes it was up over 50%. I have been doing this as a way of heating the apartment at night; the water cools down gradually and raises the temperature about 3 degrees. Easy temperature and humidity control.

kohanmike
01-19-2014, 06:50 AM
I'm going to have to get another hygrometer for comparison. Looking forward to the arrival of the Lanikai zebra wood Thursday.

Kayak Jim
01-19-2014, 08:17 AM
I'm going to have to get another hygrometer for comparison. Looking forward to the arrival of the Lanikai zebra wood Thursday.

Just curious what you ended up doing to the cabinet- doors or ?

Just for info, what I use for measuring humidity is one of these (in addition to it telling me everything about the weather conditions outside). I have one sensor outdoors and another sensor in my uke cabinet. By bringing the outdoor sensor in for a half hour or so and having both sensors near the base unit I can get a three way check that they are reading correctly. The sensors have a local readout of temp and %RH so they could be used stand alone for $20. http://www.leevalley.com/en/garden/page.aspx?p=70127&cat=2,42191

63133

della-belle
01-19-2014, 08:30 AM
I'm sorry that happened to your uke, but I'm glad it had a happy ending :) that zebra wood is beautiful!

I think we get lucky in the UK, our summer was pretty sticky and at the moment our humidity is in the high sixties.

kohanmike
01-19-2014, 09:10 AM
Jim, tomorrow my brother and I are going to put the doors on the bookshelf, he's off of work for MLK Day (my same initials actually). We're going to look for Lexan, but may end up with glass.

A funny thought occurred to me about damage from humidity, I was a prop man here in Hollywood for over 25 years, starting as part of the set dressing crew working for the set decorator. One decorator had a house full of beautiful plants, almost like a green house. One guy asked him what he does to keep his plants so beautiful, his answer was, "I water and feed them regularly, trim as needed, and when one starts to die, I throw it out and buy a new one. I almost feel like I've done the same thing, got rid of the damaged one and replaced it with an almost identical one (although I like the zebra wood a little better).

I'm going to add a strap button, and replace the poorly conceived Fishman Sonicore preamp in the sound hole with a Fishman Isys+ preamp/tuner in the side, like I did on the monkey pod. Also, lower the action a bit, replace the saddle with one that has different planes for the strings, and maybe even change the strings if they're as muted as the ones that came with the monkey pod.

http://www.fairfax67.com/images/u5LanikaiMP.jpg
http://www.fairfax67.com/images/u7Lanikai Z.jpg

peaceweaver3
01-19-2014, 12:18 PM
Wow... I hate to hear of ukes cracking for any reason. But in a way it's a reminder of the circle of life as you say. Seems you've made the best of it. Hopefully if I had to, I would do half as well. I feel strange saying this, but thanks for sharing.