Guitarists can certainly appreciate the affects that moisture can have on a guitar. The neck and body of most guitars are made of wood. This is a dynamic medium that expands and contracts with changes in moisture affecting both the tone of the instrument and the tuning of the strings. Therefore, getting your favorite guitar wet is never an acceptable option. The best way to protect your guitar on the water is to store it in a dry bag. This post will provide you with everything you need to know to make your own custom guitar dry bag. Get psyched to sew crazy!
- 1 yard of Vinyl-Coated Polyester fabric. (e.g. http://www.seattlefabrics.com/vinyl.html)
- 1/2 yard of 1inch webbing
- 1 plastic buckle
- Heavy duty thread
- Poster board
- Clothes Iron
- Fabric Marker
- Sewing Machine (or infinite patience!)
1) Create a pattern of your guitar on a piece of construction paper. Start by tracing it’s outline on the construction paper. Then expand the shape of the guitar by 3-4 inches in every direction and mark this expanded shape with a dark line. Remember to make the opening of the bag extra-long (about 8-10inches beyond the guitar body) to allow for the dry bag to be folded closed.
2) Trace your pattern onto the waterproof fabric two times. Cut these out to create the two sides of your dry bag.
3) You will notice that one side of the fabric is rough and the other side is smooth. Place the two pieces of the bag on top of each other such that the smooth sides touch.
4) Use a clothes iron to seal the edges of the bag (except for the top) one inch in from the sides. Be sure to make a complete seal.
5) Use the sewing machine to stitch the sealed edges for reinforcement. Stitch close to the edge of the fabric as to not compromise the seal.
6) Attach the plastic buckles to the dry bag with short pieces of webbing (~4inches). This can be done by hand but it’s faster on the machine.
7) Leak test the completed bag by filling it to the top with water. Re-seal any leaks that appear.
8) Pack your guitar and enjoy. For best results, remember to fold the top over at least 3 times before buckling the bag closed.
These steps will get you to the point where you have a water-tight dry bag so that you can take your guitar along with you on your future musical paddling adventures!