Easy guide to packing your guitar when moving
Guitars are delicate and fragile musical instruments that haven’t been designed withstand being tossed around inside a moving vehicle. If you own a guitar and you are moving to a new house, then you have got yourself a small problem to solve, namely, how to pack your guitar for the move. And even though packing a guitar will not be the most challenging task you will face when moving to your new home, you should still do it correctly to avoid any untimely damage to your prized instrument. How to pack a guitar for moving? Follow the preparation and packing steps below that outline the best way to prepare your guitar for a move, as one careless or uncalculated movement might ruin your expensive stringed instrument for good.
Things to know before packing your guitar
Sure, you cannot possibly compare the level of difficulty of moving a piano to moving an acoustic or electric guitar to your new home. Still, you should never underestimate the exercise of packing your guitar for your upcoming house move.
If you believe that the worst thing that can happen is to find your guitar with its strings broken when the relocation is over, then you are mistaken. While it is true that strings can be replaced quite easily and they do not cost too much, even one snapped string while the instrument is in transit could significantly damage the delicate finish on your guitar.
Another thing to worry about is a cracked bridge, followed closely by broken tuning keys and the worst nightmare that a guitar, a damaged headstock. I these situations, it will not be a pretty post-move experience so it is time to secure the correct packing materials.
Packing materials you need to pack your guitar
Ideally, you will keep your stringed instrument inside a protective case when you are not playing it, and that alone will make the packing and transportation process a lot safer and easier. Having said that, we would show you how to pack your guitar for shipping without a case as well, so that you are covered either way.
Having the correct packing materials is one of the most critical steps to making sure your guitar gets to your new home in one piece.
You are going to need a shipping box made of strong cardboard. The box should be big enough to contain the guitar case or the guitar alone with just enough extra room for the padding materials. Call your local moving company or music shop in advance to purchase the box.
It is best to get your hands on some heavy packing paper if you can’t soft packing paper will suffice. Just make sure it is unprinted as the ink can and will damage the sensitive finish on your instrument.
You do not need a lot of bubble wrap to pack your guitar for the move. A few large sheets should be enough.
You will still need to close up and secure the cardboard box after you have packed the stringed instrument so make sure you purchase quality packing tape.
Preparing your guitar for the move
Before we begin the concise guitar packing guide, let us take a look at two simple and important steps to preparing a guitar for moving to a new home.
Step 1: The first step is to loosen the strings slightly on your guitar. Taut strings will create pressure on the guitar neck during the relocation and might snap, damaging the surface of the instrument. You do not have to detune the instrument entirely or remove the strings altogether, detuning the guitar by about two octaves should be enough to ease the pressure.
Step 2: Remove the guitar strap, capo, bridge cover, tuner and any other accessories or tools that might be attached to your instrument. Use soft packing paper to pack all of these elements separately and put them inside a small cardboard box. Label the container “guitar accessories” and keep it near to the packed guitar.
Pack your guitar for the move
Here are the essential steps that explain how to pack your guitar for shipping during the house move:
Step 1. Wrap the headstock of your instrument carefully with packing paper and then follow it with a sheet or two of Bubble wrap. Pay specific attention not to damage the tuning keys. Remember that the headstock is one of the most delicate parts of the instrument, so you want to protect it as best you can.
Step 2. If you own a guitar case, then it will be much easier for you and much safer for the instrument. Place the guitar into the case after you have loosened its strings slightly. In case you do not have such a protective case, then there are just a few things you need to do for extra protection.
Step 3. If you are packing the guitar for shipping without a case, then slide a few sheets of soft packing paper between the strings and the fretboard to separate the two. The strings shouldn’t be touching the fretboard at any time during the actual transport of the musical instrument.
Step 4. If you don’t have a guitar case, you will have to provide an additional layer of padding for the instrument. Wrap the whole length of your guitar in unprinted packing paper and use clean hand towels or soft blankets to wrap it for extra protection. Next, place that bundle into the shipping box keeping the headstock facing upward.
Step 5. This step is an important one, add wads of crumpled paper between the guitar case or the wrapped-up guitar and the cardboard box to keep it from moving around. Nothing should be able to shift inside the shipping box. Use old pieces of clothing to fill in any remaining empty spaces. Before you decide you are ready, lift the cardboard box and give it a slight shake, you should not feel anything moving around inside it.
Step 6. Close and secure the lid of the guitar shipping box with packing tape, and mark the container as Fragile and This way up. If your prized musical instrument happens to be expensive, then speak with your professional mover about purchasing the necessary insurance.
For other moving tips or if you need to hire a professional moving company to help you move to your new home visit the Trico Long Distance Movers website or call one of our representatives to hire our services and schedule your relocation date.