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Wood-bodied resonator guitars outdoors

GUEST,Busker On A Budget 22 May 18 - 10:13 PM
GUEST,Jack Campin 23 May 18 - 04:28 AM
GUEST,Busker On A Budget 23 May 18 - 12:30 PM
ST 23 May 18 - 01:26 PM
GUEST,Ray 29 May 18 - 01:21 PM
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Subject: Wood-bodied resonator guitars outdoors
From: GUEST,Busker On A Budget
Date: 22 May 18 - 10:13 PM

Assuming solid construction and a good setup, are there any drawbacks to a wood-bodied resonator as a main outdoor-performance guitar?

Where I play, amplification is most likely a no-no, due to my proximity to local businesses that have office space and other nearby areas where people spend extended time, i.e. Starbucks.

I don't know if there are specific ordinances on the books, but over the last 25+ years, I've developed a very friendly rapport with Lauren Fossment, and I don't want to find out about the rule from the business end of a summons.

I know aluminum doesn't rust, and the resonator plate shouldn't get too hot under the sun, but I'm wondering if a resonator would be more or less likely to be affected by the heat and humidity than my inexpensive dreads have sometimes been.

Thanks!


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Subject: RE: Wood-bodied resonator guitars outdoors
From: GUEST,Jack Campin
Date: 23 May 18 - 04:28 AM

Weight and fragility?

Differential thermal expansion? They may be well made but you can't argue with the laws of physics.


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Subject: RE: Wood-bodied resonator guitars outdoors
From: GUEST,Busker On A Budget
Date: 23 May 18 - 12:30 PM

The weight isn't terrible, as I'll wear a strap and be seated most of the time.

Wood swelling or contracting with the weather? That would happen to any guitar. That's why I hear that a laminated-wood construction would be better in the elements anyway.


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Subject: RE: Wood-bodied resonator guitars outdoors
From: ST
Date: 23 May 18 - 01:26 PM

Yes, physics is against us. Chemistry sucks, too. Do modern steel strings get rusty even before they wear out? Used to happen to the cheap affordable ones back in the day.

I don't think there's something special about resonator guitars. Nothing can last as long when exposed to elements as it would in perfect indoor conditions. It's just yet another risk you take every time you go to the pitch.

Typical tricks might work, too. Strings are surprisingly good at getting hot when direct sunlight hits them at the right angle. They lose their tuning, you retune them, and all these changes of tension are hurting your instrument. That's easy to solve, at least in part, by picking a spot where you turn away from the sun to face your audience. In this particular case, you also won't be annoying people by reflecting the light in their faces by that shiny aluminium plate.

Rain, on the other hand, is a real disaster. Seasoned wood covered with lacquer shouldn't react to a few drops too much but quick and uneven thermal contractions under heavier rains may cause problems, at least in the long run. I tried using thin plastic films as a temporary shelter but after a few days in my pocket they were all creases and holes and hard to unfold. If you find a plausible solution please let me know.


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Subject: RE: Wood-bodied resonator guitars outdoors
From: GUEST,Ray
Date: 29 May 18 - 01:21 PM

Always thought wooden resonator guitars were built of plywood. It makes sense; the body simply holds the resonator cone and that needs to be a rigid as possible.


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