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travel help (with guitar)

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BK 17 Jul 06 - 12:30 AM
GUEST,maryrrf 17 Jul 06 - 08:59 AM
DebC 17 Jul 06 - 08:59 AM
GUEST 17 Jul 06 - 09:28 AM
GUEST,Jack Campin 17 Jul 06 - 09:46 AM
Leadfingers 17 Jul 06 - 12:01 PM
Charmion 17 Jul 06 - 02:40 PM
DebC 17 Jul 06 - 02:47 PM
Don Firth 17 Jul 06 - 03:33 PM
Peace 17 Jul 06 - 03:39 PM
Charmion 17 Jul 06 - 04:35 PM
Big Mick 17 Jul 06 - 05:53 PM
Big Mick 17 Jul 06 - 06:10 PM
Naemanson 17 Jul 06 - 06:26 PM
Alaska Mike 17 Jul 06 - 06:44 PM
JedMarum 17 Jul 06 - 06:46 PM
Cool Beans 17 Jul 06 - 07:21 PM
Big Mick 17 Jul 06 - 07:46 PM
DebC 17 Jul 06 - 08:30 PM
Big Mick 17 Jul 06 - 08:51 PM
DebC 17 Jul 06 - 09:39 PM
Peace 17 Jul 06 - 09:51 PM
Bert 17 Jul 06 - 09:59 PM
BK 17 Jul 06 - 11:33 PM
Seamus Kennedy 18 Jul 06 - 12:06 AM
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Subject: travel help
From: BK
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 12:30 AM

We may be travelling by air again - swore I would not do that since 911 but.. things happen; Last time I travelled I was given a massive hard time about my DM, in it's hard shell case - mainly (but not only) by airline employees.

Have any 'catters travelled on the silver wings with a full size guitar or equivalent in the last few months. If so, how did it go? what hassles?, where did you fly in & out of?, etc.

We plan to go to Baltimore & may not have the time for the drive from Missouri... so... BWI here we come (maybe) from St Louis

Cheers, BK


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: GUEST,maryrrf
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 08:59 AM

Well, they've never allowed me to carry mine on, but I've been told that the thing to do is don't ask. Just show up at the gate with the guitar as hand luggage. There is a (slim)chance they'll just take it and stow it for you onboard, or at the very worst they'll "gate check" it, but either way at least you may avoid the conveyor belts and turnstyles. Oh, and loosen the strings.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: DebC
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 08:59 AM

I travel a lot by air. I usally fly out of Boston Logan or TF Green in Providence, RI. I have purchased a Calton Case for my Martin HD-28 and I check my guitar. The case is amazingly sturdy and I have never had any problems. Since we can no longer lock our luggage here in the US, theft is certainly a concern, however I have instrument insurance through the American Federation of Musicians.

As for taking the guitar on the plane, that is never consistent and is always at the whim of the folks working the gates and on the planes. Sometimes you can, sometimes you can't with no rhyme or reason. One thing that some folks have done is to try to take the guitar on the plane, and if they tell you can't, gate check it, then wait for it where you deplane in your arrival city. It *should* be brought to you a bit after you exit the plane and won't go to baggage claim.

I did this myself before I got the Calton, but that was also before 9/11.

Good luck,
Debra Cowan


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: GUEST
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 09:28 AM

this worked for me

...and it's a lot cheaper than a Calton case.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: GUEST,Jack Campin
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 09:46 AM

What's "gate checking"? I haven't flown out of a US airport for 30 years.

In Europe they'll just send you back to the checkin counter if you've got something you can't carry on.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Leadfingers
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 12:01 PM

But remember -IF they let you take it in the cabin , DONT leave a multi tool in the case ! I lost mine that way earlier this year !
The terrorist mandolin player with a Blade !!


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Charmion
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 02:40 PM

I've never tried to take a guitar into the cabin because it never occurred to me to try: those signs in the airport are so very blunt and clear: "If it doesn't fit into this box, you can't take it aboard."

The mandolin (which doesn't exactly fit into the box either) hasn't been turned back yet, possibly because it looks as if it just might if I gave it a good sharp shove. I'm sure it helps that I always ask politely.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: DebC
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 02:47 PM

Hi Jack!

Hope to see you again on one of my future Edinburgh advaentures.

"Gate checking" is where you go to the gate and then hand the item to an attendant. The item still goes into the plane's hold, but you can ask them to deliver it to at the gate where you arrive.

Debra Cowan


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Don Firth
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 03:33 PM

Inconsistent.

I've flown several times with my guitar (hard-shell case). The first time, I naïvely sent it through with the other baggage and it survived without incident, but when I arrived at my destination, the guitar was frosty cold. I didn't think that was so good, so the next time I flew, I asked if the guitar could be taken on board. They agreed, and the stew set the guitar (in its case, of course) in a small coat closet. No problem.

These were either medium sized or jumbo jets, like 707s, 727s, 747s, and DC-10s. Once (in Denver's Stapleton airport) they gave me a bit of grief at the baggage counter, and I said, "I make my living with this instrument. If it doesn't go into the cabin with me, then I don't go!" After a hasty conference, they agreed, and all was fine. On another occasion (flying from Grand Rapid's, Michigan to Chicago), they told me that if I didn't want the guitar to go with the regular baggage, I'd have to buy a half-price ticket for it. The plane was a small twin-engine job and the guy said it didn't have a closet or other storage space big enough for it. I hissed and snarled and showered sparks all over him, but wound up having to buy a thirty-buck ticket for the guitar. It sat in the seat beside me, with its seat belt fastened. Since it was such a short flight (about half and hour), they didn't pass out snacks, so I didn't even get to eat my guitar's little package of macadamia nuts! But then, I understand that Yo Yo Ma usually has to buy a half-price seat for his cello, so I guess I'm in good company.

How things are now, I don't really know. I haven't flown since 9/11, not that I'm afraid to fly, I just haven't had the occasion. These days, though, I would take my GO-GW travel guitar (it's a little puny in the bass, perhaps, but other than that, it sounds and plays like a regular guitar). In its gig bag, it looks like I'm packing a rifle. That should be a lotta fun in an airport!!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Peace
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 03:39 PM

1) Loosen the strings or you risk snapping the neck
2) Put padding in the case so the guitar does not 'rattle around' at all
3) Take some tape with you (clear packing tape) to ensure the clasps do not come undone and your guitar then fall out onto a hard floor
4) Open it immediately upon arrival, and if there is any damage, report it before you leave the airport
5) Insure it for the replacement value of the guitar AND case
6) Clearly mark it with the tags they have at the airport
7) Have the airline put lotsa "FRAGILE" stickers on it
8) Put your name underneath the case where it would not be normally seen by anyone in the event there is a dispute as to whose guitar it really is
9) Keep a record of the serial number with you


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Charmion
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 04:35 PM

When travelling by air with a guitar, I pad the case with underpants, socks and a tee-shirt or two so the guitar fits very snugly. When the lid is latched shut, I wrap duct tape around the neck and body to keep it closed if all else fails, and to protect the latches. The roll of duct tape gets packed in my suitcase, and I repeat the performance to come home.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Big Mick
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 05:53 PM

I am well familiar with Providence and Logan. It was the United folks in Providence who destroyed my beloved Seagull.

I now own a Calton and it is the best money I have ever spent. It keeps my Larrivee nice and safe. I have checked it through a number of times and everything is nice and safe. It has also survived a car accident that destroyed the car, damn near killed me, wrecked my bouzouki. The Larrivee was fine and the Calton is just dinged but fine.

Oddly enough, the last time I flew to a gig, the ticket counter folks asked that I not check it. They wanted me to carryon and let me board early. Even in the Calton, it fit in the overhead. Folks just packed bags on top of it.

I checked out the travel cases linked above. I might consider trying those as well.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Big Mick
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 06:10 PM

The best tip for checking it, if you don't have a travel case is to pad the neck and headstock. That is the weak link. But if your "hard" shell case flexes up and down, it is in danger. With the Calton, you supposedly don't have to detune, because it has a seal in the lid. I still detune it. I love my Calton, but they are admittedly pricey. But I think Deb Cowan would agree with me when I say that it is worth the price to not have to worry about a beloved instrument.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Naemanson
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 06:26 PM

I don't have a travel case for any of my guitars but then I don't play gigs. When I travel I carry on my mini Martin (the one that looks like a guitar, not the one that looks like a paddle) in a gig bag. I use it as my carry on luggage and never have had any problems. I do make sure that other passengers don't damage it by blindly flinging their items into the overhead bins.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Alaska Mike
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 06:44 PM

Get a Calton if you plan to travel with your guitar. I've taken my Martin J-40 all over Alaska in all types of planes and weather, to Arizona, to Maryland, even to jolly old England with no problems. I check the case with my regular luggage and the case protects the guitar. Its that simple. Get a Calton.

Mike


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: JedMarum
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 06:46 PM

I've never been able to carry a guitar/case - nor have I ever seen anyone else carry o a full size guiatr in a case. fly a lot in the US.

My guitar maker says DO NOT loosen strings. He says the guitar was made to take the tension and is bettter off at pitch. He does say to anchor the head; pack news-paper, foam or cloth to keep things tight and the neck/head from bouncing around.

You cannot tape over latches or sealthe case in anyway - now-a-days in the US (security reasons).

If you can't replace your guitar; don;t take it on the airplane. I'd be sure that I have it insured somehow for its replacment value. It really might get lost stolen or damaged. Odds are it won't - but if yuo need to be ceratin it won;t, leave it home.


OR solve the whoel thing; go get one of these.

I am toting one around now, passed from Deb C, with someone else in between. It works, it plays well - and it fits in the overhead.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Cool Beans
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 07:21 PM

Last month I flew from Detroit to Greensoboro, North Carolina, and back with my Martin D-28 checked in its original (1962) case, strings slackened, neck and sides packed in bubble wrap. I locked the latch with my little tiny key. Nobody told me I couldn't. Guitar and case came through unscathed.
However, a friend of mine who flew from Greensboro to (get ready) Providence had her relatively new Martin guitar case badly dinged and gouged. The guitar was fine.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Big Mick
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 07:46 PM

I am curious, Beef Bro Jed, why you have the travel guitar and she now travels with a Calton? And I also have the AFM insurance. Great value.

Mick


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: DebC
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 08:30 PM

Actually, Jed...

I just talked to harvey leach today and ordered my very own :-)

It'll probably take a year to build, but that is fine!

A very nice 50th b-dsay present from the other half.

And Mick, what Jed is doing and (what I did) was road test the V-A for Harvey. I only have one working guitar, a Martin HD-28 and that is where the Calton is used.

When I get the V-A, I'll be taking that on airplanes.

BTW-I take Calton everywhere, along with a gig bag.

Debra


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Big Mick
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 08:51 PM

Same here, Debra. I carry the gig bag for when I arrive.

That is an impressive site. Question: How do the strings hold up to the loosening and folding? Seems as though there is the danger of kinks, but a little caution would render that moot, I suppose.

Obviously you are pretty impressed. Jed, what are your impressions so far?

Mick


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: DebC
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 09:39 PM

Hmmm...thought I'd sent this...guess not.

I took a V-A with me on two different tours. On one tour I had the "B" model and wanted to see what happened if I folded the thing up after evry gig. Not a good idea. After a couple of weeks of this, that seemed to put stress on the hinges.

On the second tour, I took a "D" model and only folded it to get on a plane and to demo it for interested parties. That was a much better situation. That is really what the V-A is made for; to take on the plane. I really wouldn't fold it and unfold it all the time.

As far as playability and tone, well, both are excellent. Both Jed and I road tested prototypes and even these sound beautiful.

Harvey makes beautiful guitars and is a master with inlay.

Oh yeah, and he's a really nice guy :-).

Deb


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Peace
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 09:51 PM

Thanks for the info on NOT loosening the strings. News to me. I appreciate that, Jed.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Bert
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 09:59 PM

That's what comes of buying an expensive guitar. ;-)

Pad the guitar in it's case then pack the case in a cardboard box with more padding.

If you aren't confident enough to kick it downstairs, or throw it out of a third floor window, then you haven't packed it well enough.

Or get there early and pop into Wal Mart and buy a First Act for $100.


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: BK
Date: 17 Jul 06 - 11:33 PM

Great! thanx for all the replies; Now I'm a genuine OLD FART & til 911 travelled a lot by air, always w/a guitar & almost always it was a dreadnaugt Martin in HSC (occasionally w/a jumbo or tripple-o or the similar Gibson "B" size & once w/a Baby Tailor) since I was a young sailor of 17. More than 40 years..

Always got it on the plane & NEVER had a serious problem til post-911. Note - there are very few overheads that aren't big enuf for the guitar & case. Actually I'm not aware of any. Til 911 the only hasssle I was ever given was about the Baby T, (go figure!), on Southwest Airlines, but it stll flew w/me, not the baggage hold..

I'll also cherck some of the links, etc..

Cheers,BK


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Subject: RE: travel help (with guitar)
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 18 Jul 06 - 12:06 AM

I'm a Calton guy. Never had a problem checking it..

Seamus


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