If you have lived in any northern climate with seasonal changes in weather, temperature and humidity, this article is for you. As a double-bassist for the past 30 years and a luthier for the past 21 years, I have traveled with my instruments in many different climates, with varying humidity levels and temperatures and have seen the effects of this on both older and newer instruments. During the past two winters (2013-14, 2014-15) the North American continent has experienced extremes in heat and cold, accompanied with extremes in humidity levels. These changes in humidity are only exacerbated indoors through the various methods of heating a house, apartment, or university practice room. As a luthier, I have seen the results of these extreme fluctuations. If you are the owner of a violin, viola, cello or double-bass, it is very important that your knowledge about the effects of humidity on wood be more than internet forum hearsay, or other such misinformation. The health of your instrument depends on you! Continue reading
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