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Thread: Winter uke delivery - Should I be concerned?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    1,488

    Default Winter uke delivery - Should I be concerned?

    A long awaited solid wood uke has finally become available and unfortunately I don't have the luxury of waiting or buying later, I have to buy it now or risk never getting it. I realize that I have no control of the situation in transit but should I be overly concerned about a winter delivery? (to MN) I'm having it delivered to my wife's work place to avoid any chance of it being delivered and left outside. I know that once I receive it, I should leave the box as-is without opening it until it can acclimate itself to the temperature/humidity of our home. Am I being paranoid?
    Last edited by mikelz777; 01-03-2014 at 04:42 AM.
    Ohana CK-42R - all-solid concert, sinker redwood top, rosewood body, maple binding, Ltd. Edition
    Kala KA-FMCG- solid/lam concert, spruce top, spalted flame maple body, mahogany binding
    Ohana CK-120G - all-solid concert, 5A acacia top sides and back, mahogany binding, Limited Edition
    Ohana SK-30M - all-solid mahogany long neck soprano (concert scale)
    Romero ST - solid/lam concert, spruce top, mahogany body

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Flanders, New Jersey
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    Default

    It all depends on what finish is on the Uke. Something like nitro-cellulose lacquer can react pretty dramatically to sudden changes in temperature and humidity, whereas a UV cured polyester finish is pretty much impervious to such things.

    Just to be safe, I would suggest the following:

    If the Uke is in a hard shell case, wait about six hours after delivery before taking the case out of the shipping box and then wait another twelve hours before opening the case. If it's not in a hard shell case, wait about sixteen hours before opening the shipping box.


    Scooter

  3. #3
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    Maryland
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScooterD35 View Post
    It all depends on what finish is on the Uke. Something like nitro-cellulose lacquer can react pretty dramatically to sudden changes in temperature and humidity, whereas a UV cured polyester finish is pretty much impervious to such things.

    Just to be safe, I would suggest the following:

    If the Uke is in a hard shell case, wait about six hours after delivery before taking the case out of the shipping box and then wait another twelve hours before opening the case. If it's not in a hard shell case, wait about sixteen hours before opening the shipping box.


    Scooter
    +1 ^^^

    This can be some of the most painful time in a winter delivery but force yourself. You won't be sorry you waited.

    Additionally, if you can afford it, go for expedited delivery so the instrument is exposed for less time. Overnight if you can.
    cheers ... dennis

    Antoniotsai Rose Tenor (Acacia Koa)
    Blackbird Clara (Concert - eKoa)
    Kanile'a Concert (Custom - Curly Tiger Mahogany)
    Kinnard Concert (Custom - Redwood/Cocobolo)
    Kinnard Tenor (Custom - Cedar/Walnut)
    Mako Tenor (Custom - Koa)
    Martin 1T IZ (Tenor - Mahogany)

  4. #4
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    Default

    Good info as I have baritone on it's way. Wasn't aware of the acclimation issues. Thanks for the post.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    Default

    Good stuff.
    I have a uke that should be arriving today in the freezing weather here in MD (14 degrees but nothing like MN though!) a guitar in 3 days and another uke in 5 days!
    Hopefully none of them crack, check, etc!!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Aurora, IL US
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    Default

    Yes, leave it in the box for several hours before opening. These were the instructions I received from Elderly when I ordered a guitar and I think it holds true for any solid wood stringed instrument.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    The reason I'm so concerned is that we've been having such brutally cold weather where some of our highs have been negative or single digits. The predicted high for this coming Monday is 16 below zero!! The predicted high temps for next week range from -16 to 31 a swing of 47 degrees! I don't have a ship date yet but I'm guessing it would be around the middle of next week at the earliest. I guess all I can do is follow the advice above, cross my fingers and hope that it will survive unscathed.
    Ohana CK-42R - all-solid concert, sinker redwood top, rosewood body, maple binding, Ltd. Edition
    Kala KA-FMCG- solid/lam concert, spruce top, spalted flame maple body, mahogany binding
    Ohana CK-120G - all-solid concert, 5A acacia top sides and back, mahogany binding, Limited Edition
    Ohana SK-30M - all-solid mahogany long neck soprano (concert scale)
    Romero ST - solid/lam concert, spruce top, mahogany body

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    1,488

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ScooterD35 View Post
    It all depends on what finish is on the Uke. Something like nitro-cellulose lacquer can react pretty dramatically to sudden changes in temperature and humidity, whereas a UV cured polyester finish is pretty much impervious to such things.
    Do you happen to know what kind of gloss finish Ohana uses on their ukes?
    Ohana CK-42R - all-solid concert, sinker redwood top, rosewood body, maple binding, Ltd. Edition
    Kala KA-FMCG- solid/lam concert, spruce top, spalted flame maple body, mahogany binding
    Ohana CK-120G - all-solid concert, 5A acacia top sides and back, mahogany binding, Limited Edition
    Ohana SK-30M - all-solid mahogany long neck soprano (concert scale)
    Romero ST - solid/lam concert, spruce top, mahogany body

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Flanders, New Jersey
    Posts
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    Default

    I don't know for sure, but chances are pretty good that it's some kind of poly.

    The guidelines I posted above should work out well, no matter what the finish is. It's also a great exercise in patience!


    Scooter

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Massachusetts
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    Another bit of advice, if this option is available to you, is to have it shipped to a fedex or ups shipping center and have it held for pickup. That way, it won't be left outside, and depending on the type of shipping location, you might be lucky enough to have it at room temperature by the time you pick it up.

    Also, just to emphasize, it is not necessarily the cold temps that hurt an instrument. It is really about quick swings in temperature. Think of how you can crack a windshield by pouring hot water on it when it's frozen. It's all about rapid expansion and contraction of materials. In the case of the ukulele, you have the wood itself, and then the finish on top of that (nitrocellulose, etc). These two things will expand and contract at different rates which can cause problems. If allowed to happen slowly, however, the risk is greatly reduced.

    Good luck and congrats, if you decide to but this new uke!

    -Steve

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