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Hi Gals,

My husband and I bought a small boat recently and are learning how to sail. I am a musician by trade and have played in a variety of bands as a keyboardist, guitarist, and vocalist. My education is in music therapy and I work mostly with seniors and adults with disabilities. When we head out on longer trips I will probably bring a guitar on the boat. Any guitar players out there that have lugged around an acoustic guitar on an extended trip? How did the conditions affect the guitar? Out here in Colorado the dryness is a factor and one of my guitars needs some work. Any musicians out there?

One other question: how much sailing do you do in the winter? We live in a mountain town in Colorado but are hoping to be able to head to a southern resevoir during the colder months and still get out. I'm a total rookie at this - are wetsuits a good idea? I know how to dress to climb a mountain, but am clueless about this water stuff.

I am also starting a major plan tomorrow in order to lose some weight and get into better shape for boating. I feel sluggish on the boat and am not moving around with much quickness or agileness when doing boating stuff. I would also like to not look atrocious in a wet suit this winter. I'm going to weigh in once a week every monday starting tomorrow 7/7 and with 25 weeks left in the year I hope to be lean and mean. You can read about my progress ad nauseum at flylikeabeagle.blogspot.com Any women out there that are looking for a weight loss pal and want to take up the challenge with me would be great. I'm sure you all are very fit though from your sailing experience

Sorry for such a long post! Laura
 

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I haven't field-tested my guitars yet by leaving them on board, but I would suggest that the odds are good that it's going to be too humid for them. Consequently, I would do two things: Make an Ovation or some other "plastic-backed" guitar your "boat guitar", and be fastidious about cycling out dessicant packages through the guitar case, and to keep the guitar IN the case when not in use.

I will probably just bring a "beater" guitar with us when we voyage, because my Larivees are too nice to get abused...
 

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We're typically only weekend sailors and play acoustic guitars. My daughter brings her Laguna up, I sometimes bring my old Ovation. I would NOT bring my Taylor. We don't leave any of them up there during the week as the boat gets awfully warm when it is all locked up (just like we don't leave any wine either :) ).

If we were going on a longer trip, we would bring my Ovation and leave the Laguna at home for the reasons mentioned above. And ditto on keeping it in the case when not in use. It may be easy to do something stupid at home, it is much easier to do something stupid on the boat as it is a smaller area and inherently less stable.

Enjoy... a beautiful sunset and singing with guitars is a wonderful thing.
 

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Wow, timing is everything even here on sail net. I've been wanting to take my guitar on board BUT was concerned about humidity and its "ill" effects on my 2nd favorite toy. Spent lots of time trying to figure out a plan to deal with humidity and picked up a neat trick in a cruising magazine.
I bought a couple of 12 volt computer fans at the local radio shack and using some 5200 adhesive glued them into the clam shell vents on the back of my 30 foot Islander. I leave the boat plugged into shore power anyway when I'm away so the 12 volt drain is not a problem AND the humidity and it's associated problems with the woodwork have completely ended. This last weekend my wife even commented about how dry the boat interior is. I've also made a habit of turning the fans on for a little while when we're on board and on the water. 15 minutes or so just to freshen the air in the boat and it has had a miraculous affect. I'm not sure how much air solar vents pull through the boat but in comparison to the boats I know of that have them my computer/vent fans are kicking butt. SO, now I'm ready to bring my guitar on board. I won't be leaving it while I'm away BUT now I'm very confidant that I'll have no humidity associated problems with my guitar while onboard. JAM NIGHT here we come!
 

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I am a guy so sorry for posting in your forum, but, I saw the title of this thread and thought I might have some knowledge. I find that the salt does more damage than humidity. I am assuming that by extended trip you mean ocean and not lake sailing. The salt will wreak havoc on any metal hardware (tuning machine heads)

I have a cheaper but decent sounding Epiphone that I call my beach guitar. I bring it and sometimes leave it on the boat. I take it camping and, yes, to the beach.

I leave the expensive babies at home.
 

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Telstar 28
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A friend of mine has a carbon fiber guitar. Humidity isn't an issue for it.
 

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Carbon Fiber guitars are made by rainsong. They are not cheap. Personally I would just use an old harmony or yamaha that is in the under 100 price range. I wouldn't think you would want to leave even that level of guitar on the boat for extended periods.

Rick
 

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Hi, My boat owns her own guitar that I bought for 30 euros and is allways there (I can't carry it in and out every time I go sailing). It's only been 6 months so I can't say yet how much it deteriorates. I have a Seagull at home but I haven't taken it to the boat and I don't think I will.
 

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I was carrying a baby Taylor back and forth...now its left on the boat. I have coated strings [ELIXER] that cost a little more but are supposed to stand up to moisture. [never considered the keys...gulp,maybe some fine oil for them?] We'll see how it goes though.
 

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Telstar 28
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Might also want to consider spraying the string tensioning screws with a bit of Boeshield T9.

I was carrying a baby Taylor back and forth...now its left on the boat. I have coated strings [ELIXER] that cost a little more but are supposed to stand up to moisture. [never considered the keys...gulp,maybe some fine oil for them?] We'll see how it goes though.
 

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Yamaha Silent Guitar here!!! Nylon string classical of course. They also make a steel string version. If you don't know what it is, google it. A picture is worth a thousand of my words. Small and easy to transport when broken down. Normal outside dimensions when put together. Works without anything, or with headphones or amp. I am impressed with the sound and and consider it more than satisfactory. It won't hold a candle to my Alvarez Concert Series, but I would never take the Alvarez out on the boat. I don't even take it out of the house for that matter.

I have had the Yamaha for 4-5 years now and use it more than my other 3 combined. Just handy to bang around with no worries. It just keeps going and going...

And I would love to have a Rainsong, but that will put a hurt on a wallet. With that much money, there would be soooo many guitars to choose from.

Oh, I just saw, please forgive for posting on your forum. The guitar headline lured me in.

And I saw you are from Colorado. If you are going to spend much time with a guitar on the water someplace like my very humid state of Florida. Make sure the guitar is humidified and acclimated back to your dryer climate. It will avoid splitting the back or front. If you feel for yours like I do mine, a crack would make me cry.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for all of the great information in your replies. Nice to know there are a bunch of guitar players out there. I have an older Yamaha guitar that I bought at a garage sale for about $100 bucks. It sounds great and that will probably be my traveling guitar. I will leave my Takamine (pathetic that I'm not sure of the spelling after looking at it every day) at home or in storage. I have about 6 guitars in all - they are hard to part with and I seem to buy every guitar I see at a garage sail.
 

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You spelled it correctly...I always think of "Tak-a-mine" like I'm some kind of Italian offering the use of my guitar :) (and yes, I know phonetically it is Tock - a - mean - e)
 

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Well it's good that I stumbled across this thread. Talk about timing. I have just been pricing and considering buying a guitar. I'm a complete beginner ...only have spent a few months with a borrowed guitar, but thought that it would be a great addition to the cruising lifestyle. Now I'm not so sure :confused:

We currently liveaboard on the Red Sea and the climate is very dry. Deep desert... maybe 15% humidity throughout the year. But we are hoping to sail up to the Med in the future and then we would be heading for high humidity...say 80% for about half the year.

From what I'm reading, I might be better off to wait till we reach the Med before I go out and buy a guitar....

Robyn
 

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Got a cheap guitar (under $200.) had it on board for 12 years. No deterioration - well, to the guitar, anyway. I keep it in a case and away from the sweating hull - usually on the bed in the v-berth. No desicants or anything. We live on the Chesapeake and have traveled several times to Florida and the Bahamas. I think that as long as your boat is reasonably dry; I'd say go for it. It all sounds like good advice to me - and I'd hate to be without my music. (Also have a Midi keyboard on board. Also, no problem.)
 

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I keep an old D35 in it's case, inside a Climate Case (not sure if they still make those) on my boat in Colorado all the time it is in the water. It changes temperature very slowly, and I keep a humidifier in it. I know it's probably too good of a machine to do that with, but life is short, play good instruments. The Collings and the Parker stay at home...
 

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I agree with all those commenting positively on taking a guitar on board - not a problem, providing you are careful.

My best guitar story happened when I was kayaking with a group of friends around a group of isolated islands on the west coast of Scotland. We were camping and I took my (old and not valuable) guitar. It was strapped on the back of the "provisions" kayak, which was being towed. Without going into the gory details, this kayak sank on the trip out to the island and my guitar took a prolonged dip in the briny. It still played OK (!) but during the course of the following two weeks of camp life, it gradually de-laminated. Finally, during a rousing chorus of "Wild Mountain Thyme" it gracefully folded in two and was later buried with due ceremony.......

Stuart
 

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Timing is funny. I recently bought a "travel guitar" thinking it would be good to leave on boat but decided the sound is more like a mandolin so it's not going to get much use. I will probably just buy a cheap guitar and use that.

And hey guitar center has a special, buy 10 sets of coated strings for $100 and get a free acoustic guitar! I am sure it's a super high quality instrument but hey the price is right and if nothing else you have 10 sets of coated strings for another guitar.
 

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If I remember right Cruising World Mag has an artical on boat guitars this month.

Good Luck,

Mike & Glinda
 

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Ohhh I sit everynight on my deck, watching the sun go down, and I play my guitar to the world..

I love to play the guitar while I sail...yes I do

strummmmmmm

strummmmmmm

strummmmmmm

I am all love and music when I sail.....and the bees....and the trees...me and my cruising Valiant ...
 
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