Regina Eddington Posts

Heat, High Humidity, and String Instruments

Regina in Encore Orchestral Strings has some great advice for all of the string players out there.  Keep reading!

We’re approaching the time of year where temperatures are averaging above 75 degrees Fahrenheit with high humidity levels in Indiana. We all know that cold winters present it’s own challenges, but the summer heat can create just as many issues. Wood is an organic material that will always react to the temperature, which is why we have to be careful about where the instrument is being stored.

We have seen fingerboards come unglued, necks pop out of place, and varnish essentially melt. With the high levels of humidity and scorching temperatures that we endure in Indiana, you want to be careful with how you store your instrument and where it is being stored. One of the most common scenarios that we hear about from our customers involves leaving an instrument in the car on a hot summer day.

No matter what the temperature outside is, it is safest to bring the instrument inside with you wherever you are. We recently had a cello come in that suffered quite a bit of cosmetic damage due to it being left in a hot car for an extended amount of time. Not only was the varnish ruined by the heat, but the cello itself was stuck to the inside of the case which caused even more damage to the back of the instrument. My best advice to give is to keep your instrument close to you… if you’re uncomfortable with the temperature where your instrument is being stored, more than likely the instrument is uncomfortable too!

Have a look to see what an excessive amount of heat can do to a cello:

Sizing Up – One Size Does Not Fit All

Not everyone is going to start off with a full-size instrument.  Violin-family instruments are somewhat unique in that people of all sizes and ages play them, and they are sized to fit the stature of the player.  You rarely see a 3 year old studying a brass or woodwind instrument because these are larger instruments that require a certain physicality to them to play properly.