This guide is all about guitar case storage ideas and tips on how to store your cases. It will show you the different ways to store cases that have both hard and soft cases. This can help you preserve your precious collection. Storing cases properly is something that every guitarist should really consider, especially when their collection grows beyond a single guitar.
Cases, especially the hard case, can occupy a lot of space on your floor. In order to avoid that, you need to think of the best way to store your cases without taking up huge floor space in your studio or home. The good news is that there are a lot of storage solutions that you can choose from that will suit your needs. Any owner whether having only have a few or many guitars, needs a proper storage space to protect their precious collection from any physical damage. If you have ever attended a major concert, you may have noticed that musicians come with a rack. There are few guitarist who travel with an outstanding instrument collections which would require them to have an effective case storage rack in order to keep the collection in excellent condition while they are traveling. Therefore, you should consider good storage whether for traveling or storing your guitars inside your home and the use of cases will play an important role to help you find the right storage solution for your needs.
Guitar cases add some level of protection from the extreme environment that can result in some physical damage to your string instrument. They will also help you to carry around your instrument with ease. You just need to put them inside the case and then you can easily carry it around. Aside from that, it may help keep your instrument from getting permanent damage. So if you do not have a case or you are considering buying one to protect your instrument, below are the different types of cases that you can choose from.
Different Types Of Cases
A hard case is the best case to provide the best protection for your collection. It is heavy in terms of weight but it provides optimal protection for your string instrument because it is made with good quality materials such as carbon fibers, fiberglass, metal, wood, plastic, and so on. The inside is lined with a nice and soft cushy pad which will shield your six-string from harsh shocks and prevent it from getting scratches. Aside from that, hard cases also protect your instrument from hazardous elements such as dust, high temperature, high humidity levels or any form of harsh climate changes.
Most of the hard cases are big and bulky which makes them hard to travel with. So if you are traveling a lot because of your numerous gigs, buy a hard case with built-in wheels just like a travel suitcase. The built-in wheels design helps to move the case from one place to another with ease. Below are 4 different materials used for hard cases:
- Chipboard Cases – These are made from chipboard. Chipboard is created from reconstituted wood – typically shavings, chips, or sawdust that has been combined and compressed together with natural or synthetic resin and then shaped into boards. Making these cases light weight and affordable compared with cases made from solid wood. However, hardware and latches attached in this type of case are known to easily get ruined. It is also a case ideal to store your acoustic instrument.
- Molded Cases – These are made from molded plastic materials like, polyethylene, ABS – acrylonitrile butadiene styrene and others, instead of plywood which makes this case robust, rigid, and has enough strength to resist impact. This is the same reason that these type of cases are gaining popularity. Some molded guitar cases come with a watertight and airtight design that will provide an insulation barrier to keep out water and dust from coming in. They also come with additional features such as built-in wheels and TSA locks which make them an ideal travel buddy.
- Road Cases – If you are looking for the best travel buddy, a road guitar case is the great option for you. It has the ability to keep your instruments safe and secure while being transported. It has a resemblance to wooden cases because it is made with thick (a quarter inch) plywood. And the edges of the case are fastened with massive studs and is protected by aluminum coating. The aluminum bezel also contributes to the improve shell’s rigidity and durability and the corners are solidly reinforced by thick steel end-caps. Plus, it comes with good quality hinges and pins which makes this case both very heavy and very expensive. It’s ideal only for an artist which has their own professional transport team.
- Hardshell Cases – This is considered to be the classic case but still retains its popularity in spite of the fact that many manufacturers are switching to non-wood materials. It is made with a one-quarter to three-quarter inch plywood exterior surface and is coated with tolex and tweed. This case is the best option for you if you are just carrying your six-string around the city or town. However, this type of hard case is not ideal for flights or long bus or car rides.
Soft Guitar Cases
Soft cases, also known as gig bags, are another good storage option to keep your musical instruments safe. The cover materials on these ases are made from polyester, leather, nylon, or a combination of the two. They come with a conventional handle as well as a shoulder strap and some come with backpack-style straps to make it easier to wear on the back.
They are also lightweight and convenient to transport. However, they cannot protect your instrument as effectively as hard cases which makes them not the best for long a journey or flight. They are also not ideal to use if you live in an area where there is constant temperature swings because soft cases cannot stop factors that can destroy your collection such as extreme heat and humidity.
Hybrid Guitar Cases
The Hybrid case is a combination of a soft and hardshell case. The exterior of this bag is soft, yet the structure is solid. The interior is made with rigid foam, padded and with plush lining. It combines the benefits that you get from hard and soft cases, making it ideal for both storage and transport.
The heavy-duty zipper allows you to open and close a hybrid case much like a soft case and other features that usually come with a gig bag such as a soft handle, exterior pocket, backpack-style straps, and shoulder straps. The padded, velvet lining and inner accessory pocket features are usually features of hard cases.
Hybrid cases are as light as a gig bag, yet they offer more protection than a soft case. However, these are not recommended for long-distance travel.
Factors That You Need To Consider
When it comes to case storage, there are a lot of things that you need to consider such as the number of your six-string collection, how much space are you willing to allocate, budget that you are willing to spend on storage, different types of instrument cases you own, how you want to access them, weather conditions and the value of your collection. Although, you consider all of your collection valuable, it is a smart thing to have a proper but better storage unit for your expensive collection.
Weather conditions are something that you need to factor in when considering storage solutions if you want your instrument and even your empty cases to maintain their good condition for a long period of time. Humidity and temperature are two key storage considerations that you need to look into. Humidity can be very damaging while temperature isn’t normally a big deal until temperature changes start to happen. A rapid temperature shift can be quite harmful. For example, if you happen to leave your electric guitars inside their respective cases overnight inside a cold area like at the back of your porch during winter season, then pull them out and open them up in a room with a nice warm temperature, you will notice a crack will slowly start to form in your guitar’s body within a few minutes.
Therefore, your storage solutions may vary depending on the type of guitars and the temperature of the area you live in. And if you want to make sure that your guitar collection will be passed down to future generations to enjoy, a proper storage for your cases should be in placed.
Guitar Case Storage Ideas
Below are some of the practical storage ideas that you can choose from to store your collection. Remember that even your empty cases should be stored properly to maintain their good condition and therefore you will able to use them for a long time.
Floor Wood/ Metal Stands Case
These are usually made of wood or metal and consist of two boards with three or more poles running horizontally between them. Floor stands are incredibly easy to use and super safe. They are also the most straightforward and cost-effective way to store your cases.
Customisable 5 Way Multi Guitar Rack
This is the ideal storage solution for you if you want easy access and to make your collection visible. However, this solution will need enough space or even an extra room depending on the number of cabinets that you would like to have. It is the type of storage solution where a case is not needed. The whole cabinet will act as a protective shell for your musical instrument just like a case. This means that any changes in humidity or temperature will be far more gradual than guitars on a rack or outside of a case. This cabinet storage will allow you to open up and expose your beautifully arranged guitar collection making this cabinet storage a nice piece of furniture and it can turn the room into a perfect place for you to stay around.
Guitar Case Storage Ideas Tip: You can find cabinets that are solely made for the beloved instrument storage at American Music Furniture if you are considering this type of storage style. This will definitely transform your collection into a piece of art.
Display Case Wall Mounted
If you have guitars that you want display, the great way to do it is by using a display case that is wall mounted. This is an ideal storage solution to create a gallery of your collection that will turn your man cave into a the music space that you have always dreamed of. The solid wall frame with UV protection acrylic lockable door will protect your collection from dust and will prevent harmful UV rays of direct sunlight from hitting your collection.
UV-Protected Electric Guitar Display Case w/Lights
Wall Mount Rack
Utilizing your wall by installing a rack on the wall is ideal to save your floor space especially if you are living in a small apartment .The disadvantage with this type of storage is that it makes them not as portable. Remember, it is also a bad idea to lean your cases on the wall because it may cause your case to slip down and crack. When using this storage solution the important thing to remember is that they should be out of reach from the hands of your small children.
String Swings – Wall Mount Rack – This rack will hold 5 acoustic, electric or bass guitars.
Holder Horizontal Low-Profile Narrow
Acoustic Electric Guitar Hanger
DIY Guitar Case Storage Ideas
- Create a shelf with multiple compartment or sections, a compartment that is long, wide and tall enough to store your case horizontally. This is an ideal storage solution if you do not have enough space in your house. However, as much as possible, try to avoid stacking your cases on top of each other because it puts strain on the bottom cases
- If you are a handy man aside from being a music lover and have access to a nice set of tools, make your own simple solution for your case storage needs. You can make a simple rack that will not cost you so much. All you’ll need are a few boards and some wooden dowels to connect them. A brief search on the internet and you will find a guitar case storage rack design that you can easily replicate.
I hope that my guide about case storage ideas helps you to find the storage solution that you need for your precious collection.