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Thread: Help with cases---Newbee question...

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    Default Help with cases---Newbee question...

    I have purchased a Gator lightweight mandolin case for my Troublesome Creek Mandolin HoneyBee. Gator says it should fit snugly. I noticed a 1/4 inch gap when I zip the case closed right at the bridge. It zips up with just a smidgen of effort. Is this OK?

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    Registered User Glassweb's Avatar
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    Default Re: Help with cases---Newbee question...

    Quote Originally Posted by Twistofer56 View Post
    I have purchased a Gator lightweight mandolin case for my Troublesome Creek Mandolin HoneyBee. Gator says it should fit snugly. I noticed a 1/4 inch gap when I zip the case closed right at the bridge. It zips up with just a smidgen of effort. Is this OK?
    Normal for a Gator. Just add a t-shirt or some foam for a snugger fit. Zipper must be initiated with some accuracy. Still a great, inexpensive and protective case and weighs next to nothing.

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    Default Re: Help with cases---Newbee question...

    Thanks for the feedback. It's a very snug fit. However, he gap is in the zipper before I zip it up...

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    Adrian Minarovic
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    Default Re: Help with cases---Newbee question...

    Quote Originally Posted by Twistofer56 View Post
    Thanks for the feedback. It's a very snug fit. However, he gap is in the zipper before I zip it up...
    Does the lid press on the bridge or is just the plush lining still fresh and the lid doesn't close by it's own weight? Try it without the mandolin and you'll see. The padding above the tailpiece may still need to settle a bit. If the fit is not optimal after few weeks of use you can apply some pressure with your fist or some smooth object (against rigid support) on the parts of case where you need more space and the EPS foam will conform but don't break it.
    Adrian

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    Lurkist dhergert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Help with cases---Newbee question...

    Are you using a ToneGard? Does your mandolin have a pickguard or an armrest? Or, is your mandolin deeper than most mandolins? If so, it will be tight, perhaps too tight against the bridge for storage without being adjusted...

    As Adrian has described, Gator cases and other cases that use molded styrofoam for padding can be compressed to provide increased internal depth so a deeper or accessorized instrument fits just right. Unlike open-cell or closed cell foam, styrofoam has nearly immediate and nearly permanent memory of compression, so sizing a case like that is very possible.

    I use the Gator ABS cases, which use the same kind of styrofoam molded inner filler that their lightweight zipper cases use.

    I also use a ToneGard and I've installed a pickguard and an armrest, all which increase the depth of my mandolins.

    Before closing and latching (or zipping) the mandolin up in the case, I compress the styrofoam in both the top and the bottom halves of the body area of the case enough that when the top of the case closes by gravity over the mandolin, it closes without any gaps. I compress the styrofoam one section (top or bottom) at a time with that section laying flat on the floor. I do the compression by pressing the round areas of a rubber sledge hammer firmly against the areas that I want to compress, while frequently testing the gravity-based closure of the case. I also make sure to compress around where the neck and heel of the neck fits, so the neck will remain with no tension at its normal angle inside the case.

    When the top section of the case closes by gravity without gaps, the sizing is complete and the top can be latched (or zipped).

    While Gator cases are not very expensive, from personal experience I can attest to their ability to protect an instrument. But sizing early on is beneficial to prevent pressure damage. Fortunately Gator's use of styrofoam provides a good way to custom size the case.
    -- Don

    "Music: A minor auditory irritation occasionally characterized as pleasant."
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    2002 Gibson F-9
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    [About how I tune my mandolins]
    [Our recent arrival]

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    Default Re: Help with cases---Newbee question...

    Quote Originally Posted by dhergert View Post
    Are you using a ToneGard? Does your mandolin have a pickguard or an armrest? Or, is your mandolin deeper than most mandolins? If so, it will be tight, perhaps too tight against the bridge for storage without being adjusted...

    As Adrian has described, Gator cases and other cases that use molded styrofoam for padding can be compressed to provide increased internal depth so a deeper or accessorized instrument fits just right. Unlike open-cell or closed cell foam, styrofoam has nearly immediate and nearly permanent memory of compression, so sizing a case like that is very possible.

    I use the Gator ABS cases, which use the same kind of styrofoam molded inner filler that their lightweight zipper cases use.

    I also use a ToneGard and I've installed a pickguard and an armrest, all which increase the depth of my mandolins.

    Before closing and latching (or zipping) the mandolin up in the case, I compress the styrofoam in both the top and the bottom halves of the body area of the case enough that when the top of the case closes by gravity over the mandolin, it closes without any gaps. I compress the styrofoam one section (top or bottom) at a time with that section laying flat on the floor. I do the compression by pressing the round areas of a rubber sledge hammer firmly against the areas that I want to compress, while frequently testing the gravity-based closure of the case. I also make sure to compress around where the neck and heel of the neck fits, so the neck will remain with no tension at its normal angle inside the case.

    When the top section of the case closes by gravity without gaps, the sizing is complete and the top can be latched (or zipped).

    While Gator cases are not very expensive, from personal experience I can attest to their ability to protect an instrument. But sizing early on is beneficial to prevent pressure damage. Fortunately Gator's use of styrofoam provides a good way to custom size the case.
    Thanks for the information...I found out that the area above my bridge and strings is like "bubble wrap" and actually "pops" to form fit the bridge and strings. I do have a tone guard which devinitely adds height, but I install and remove it before placing it in the case. The pickguard is being custom made to the HM-1 Specs by Troublesome Creek. Oddly enough, it is "stuck" on the top (soundboard ?) rather than free floating. I've yet to find an armrest.

    Good question about the depth of the mandolin...I have no clue about what a "standard" depth should be. My Mandolin is both flat top and flat bottom...but has a great tone (when my teacher plays it -- Oh my impatience -- only 3 weeks of lessons and I still thud.)

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