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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I just had an eureka moment this week that I wanted to share here, in case others may find it useful.

As you know humidity is the #1 cause of a sax deterioration over time. Storing a sax with even a droplet of water in a case for months is a recipe for disaster. I learned it the hard way long ago. Ever since, every time I finish playing, I always swab the sax clean, then put it back in its case but leave it open for a few hours (usually overnight) before snapping the lid shut. If I'm coming back from a gig, I open the case back as soon as I get home and leave it to dry out open.

In our office/practice room, we have a small sofa on which I usually lay the sax case while open. For years I've heard complaints from the family that they can never use the couch because there is always a sax case on it :evil:

Finally, last week I started browsing amazon searching for an alternate option. That's when it clicked to me: a diaper changing station! I've ordered the simplest I've found for about $80. Assembled it tonight, and voila! A perfect storage and drying station for tenors, or smaller saxes. The baby pad is perfect to sit the case on, the guardrails around it are perfect to prevent the case from falling off, and the shelves below are a perfect storage for a couple more saxes!

Furthermore our couch is now free to sit on :cheers:

View attachment 216496
 

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For a moment you had me confused --- for the life of it I could not figure out what a "diaper charging station" could be. In my wildest dreams I played "Bobby's World" - like when the doctor tells him he's got athlete's foot and he immediately pictures himself winning the 100 meter dash at the Olympic Games - and tried to figure out how you could charge a diaper to be more efficient for moisture absorption. Silica gel came to mind, magnesium chloride and a hermetically-sealed enclosure in which you completely devaporize the anything you put in of the tiniest amount of dihydrogen oxide ...

And then I saw your picture -- pure genius, indeed! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
For a moment you had me confused --- for the life of it I could not figure out what a "diaper charging station" could be. In my wildest dreams I played "Bobby's World" - like when the doctor tells him he's got athlete's foot and he immediately pictures himself winning the 100 meter dash at the Olympic Games - and tried to figure out how you could charge a diaper to be more efficient for moisture absorption. Silica gel came to mind, magnesium chloride and a hermetically-sealed enclosure in which you completely devaporize the anything you put in of the tiniest amount of dihydrogen oxide ...

And then I saw your picture -- pure genius, indeed! :)
funny! corrected now, thanks!
 

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My first thought was, you are a wet player if you need a diaper station for your sax, until I realized you are talking about a table with rails. Why not just put it on a stand and cover it with a textile dust cover? There should be someplace either in your practice room or elsewhere where the sax should be safe unless you have pet animals.

Alphorn
 

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Discussion Starter #6
My first thought was, you are a wet player if you need a diaper station for your sax, until I realized you are talking about a table with rails. Why not just put it on a stand and cover it with a textile dust cover? There should be someplace either in your practice room or elsewhere where the sax should be safe unless you have pet animals.

Alphorn
yes, I have a dog and kids. besides, this is about letting the case dry out too. while in transit back from a gig, humidity transfers to the case too.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Good work - and it ties nicely with the couch. I like the couch btw. Another source, would be a toolbox roll-around cart with a drawer:

https://www.harborfreight.com/30-in...d-service-cart-with-locking-drawer-61161.html

They have cheaper ones without the drawer. Most are red, but I've seen some that are black or brown.
Nice! 30" will probably not work for a common tenor case though. Baby changers mats are standardized at 32" length. With the usual gap around it in the furniture, it works just perfect for a tenor case.
 

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When I get home from a gig it's late. I put them (my saxes) on the dining room table - cases open. When I wake up the next day I have dry cases and dry instruments - I close the cases and store the saxes. So far - so good...
 

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Have you checked your humidity levels? I find that things don't really dry out above 75% humidity. Above 80% and you're sure to get mold. You can get a hygrometer for less than $10.

I live in the tropics and even new reeds get moldy in the box. That led me to buy a dehumidifier and I no longer have moisture problems.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I live in dry California, so ambient humidity is not an issue. That said, I do leave a desiccant bag in my saxes cases. I bake them for 3h as instructed to reset them once every 6 months or so.
 

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That's actually a brilliant solution. I've always been fastidious in caring for my wooden clarinet. I swab it out, taking care to wipe out the water that collects in the joints. Then I run an oily swab through it before leaving it in the case with the lid open overnight. I keep my instruments on a stand now because I have a room dedicated to my instruments. But in a case like yours where you have to share space with the family you have come up with a great solution. I assume it can be folded flat against the wall when not being used(-edit- oops, then I looked at the picture. I'd imagined one of those foldup kind like you see in airport restrooms. (washrooms for you UK types))
 

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Absolutely you've hit on something I think that greatly affects any horn, in particular saxophones. We had an issue in U.S. this summer, mid east coast... View attachment 217300 unusually high humidity. Our Air Conditioning cooling unit was not drying out the large room. We had problems as others have said with "bad things" growing where they should not grow, to include my saxophones. We bought a dehumidifier and are running that thing full tilt, 24/7. I come home from gigs and open up the case and let it "dry out" well. It has a markedly better affect on the horn when I pick it up to play or take out for the next gig. Low humidity (in general) is a good things for saxophones. Do not let that moisture "hang around" in the stack, to cause problems with the pads, stink up the horn, cause mold on the reeds, etc. My limited experience is I can only get the room down to about 48%. But at that level, most things seem to dry out well.
 

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I鈥檝e used one of these drying fans for a couple years now, it works great

http://hollywoodwinds.com/styled-2/styled-9/
Hey, now that looks like a really great idea! Thanks for posting this. I think this is something I'm going to have to get and use. It should extend the life of the pads and that will save a lot of $$ in the long run.

Like others on here I often leave the horn out on its stand or in an open case to dry. But I really don't like leaving it out for extended periods. That fan would only require a short period out before putting the horn away in its case.
 

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JL, I would not think humidity would be as much of an issue in San Francisco (compared to mid east coast U.S.). It felt like a jungle forest this year over here. Regarding the dehumidifier when we purchased it, we wondered if it would "do anything". We have emptied up to 2 GALLONs of water it collects, in one day. It's slowed down now that the weather has finally cooled down and the humidity is dropping. Previous to purchasing this dehumidifier I had an issue with mold really getting into my bari case. I emptied the case, sprayed with Lysol and let it sit out on hot dry days in the afternoon for a coupla hours (to try to kill any spores/etc.). I now run the dehumidifier AND a fairly large BTU window air conditioner in that one room.

Now in the winter, we run a humidifier (doing the opposite) to put moisture back into the main house. Fragile creatures that we are....
 

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JL, I would not think humidity would be as much of an issue in San Francisco (compared to mid east coast U.S.). ...
+1. You are definitely correct. Even right on the coast, a stone's throw from the ocean, where I live, there is no real problem with humidity. It's definitely higher than the bone dry conditions just a few miles to the east, but still not an issue. Thankfully; since I don't have much tolerance for humidity, probably because I grew up in the Bay Area...

I probably won't bother getting that fan gizmo since it seems to work fine to let the horn air out with its case open. But still the fan looks like a good idea.
 

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I've gotten to the point where I even take the fan with me and dry the horn at the end of the gig when I'm packing up the rest. I love it.
 

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I've gotten to the point where I even take the fan with me and dry the horn at the end of the gig when I'm packing up the rest. I love it.
Just so there is no misunderstanding, I do not use a fan, I use a dehumidifier (which collects the moisture from the air, the ambient environment). Using a fan would not help in my case, I do not think, as the humidity remains and I'd be blowing moist air across my horn/pads.
 

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Not to derail this thread...in the winter time, with large temperature differences (outside and inside of a building), I've stored my horn in my car, in not quite freezing temperatures and when you pull out the horn and start playing, it feels like you're playing a piece of ice. I've joked often about getting a women's hair dryer and running it into the bell for a length of time to quickly warm up the horn. No I do not want to melt any shellac off of the big bell keys, just trying to warm up the stack and horn.
 

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I don't think quickly warming is a good idea for any horn and especially wooden instruments. Better to let them adjust gradually.
 
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