Jan 24, 2009

Dry Enough for Ya?

The Ric is in The Shop for a few days getting a set-up job; the action got out of whack again this Fall and I have not gotten around to getting it some attention until now. Twin Town worked on this instrument once, but it still is not right, so it's off to Hoffman to get this taken care of once and for all.

I think some of the issues with the Ric are the result of humidity problems (and by that, I mean lack of humidity). Minnesota (and Alaska, for that matter) are terrible places to try and keep an instrument happy. The dry, dry winter air pulls moisture from the wood and shrinks it. This can actually create cracks in the binding or top of the instrument. Charlie Hoffman has a good article on humidity on his blog, but the upshot is aim for 45% relative humidity all year long. This is much easier said than done - I've had a humidifier chugging away in the guitar room for a month now and it's only about 35% relative humidity on average.

The best bet is an in-the-case humidifier, but that requires pretty constant attention and I seem to fail at this sort of thing.

On another note, the population of certifiably insane people in South Minneapolis has skyrocketed this weekend thanks to the U.S. Pond Hockey Championships. This is unbelievably big - about 1/3 of Lake Nokomis is taken up by this event this weekend and they must have hundreds of teams competing. Teams (and spectators) come in from all over the country for this and entire ball fields are taken up by overflow parking around Lake Nokomis.  It's worth going to if you are interested and worth staying the hell away from if you are not.

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