Now that my performance schedule has beefed up, it’s no surprise I spend a lot of time on the road with the instruments and gear in tow. Normally, I love gig bags for hauling my uke or guitar around — they’re light-weight, durable, and they don’t cost a huge chunk of change to buy. But. When you’re packing your precious music-makers into the backseat — along with the amp, merch table, stands, music stands, mic stands, cables, soundboard, etcetera…

I started to get nervous.

When I needed a tougher case for my tenor uke, it was easy to find and order. No sweat. Unfortunately, finding a hard case for a 3/4-size guitar — let alone a dreadnought-shaped one — is very hard. Apparently, there seems to be this idea that “real” guitar players don’t play smaller instruments. Small guitars are for children. Small guitars are crap, so why bother with a decent transport system? (I could *so* go on a rant right here and now about how this “bigger is better” guitar marketing alienates capable, short, female musicians, but I won’t.)

I realized if I was going to protect my investment, I’d have to take matters into my own hands:

Yes, that is an archer’s bow and arrow transport case. Retails at about $25 at WalMart. I couldn’t have asked for a better fit. The only issue is it’s overkill on the width (widest part of my guitar is roughly four inches… the case is about eight…). I had some foam rubber stashed in the basement, and it took me only 45 minutes or so to carefully trace the body and headstock onto it, and make the cuts. I then sliced the cutouts in half to pad the bottoms of the holes, and raise the instrument so the neck would rest right on top:

I used the foam that came with the case to pad the lid, making the fit perfect. I had some scrap velour/velvet-type fabric from an old bed quilt that ripped, so I used it to cover the foam rubber since I didn’t know if the foam would react with Sparrow’s finish.

There’s even enough space in each end for me to store my guitar toolkit, capo, picks, and other assorted musician goodies.

This musician DIY project all told:

Bow case from WalMart…. $25
Using up scrap foam and fabric…. necessary
An evening’s worth of time…. doable

Not having to worry about whether the mic stand is going to punch a hole in your instrument…. priceless. 🙂


4 thoughts on “A case for Sparrow

  1. Brilliant Heather! Necessity is the mother of invention. If you had not explained this is a tiny guitar, I’d be thinking all is normal size. Looks great. How nice that you’re out and about playing music.

    1. Most people can’t tell Sparrow is 3/4 size unless I’m sitting next to someone with a full size guitar. I’m so short in the torso that full size guitars, especially the dreadnoughts and jumbos the music stores all stock, are usually very uncomfortable for me (hurt my shoulder on my strumming arm if I sit to play, which I usually do). I bought this 3/4 size Luna (it’s billed as a “travel” guitar, similar specs to the Little Martin or Baby Taylor) and it’s like a perfect fit. The crazy thing is that she sounds HUGE, lol.

    1. Me either! Then the company who made my first uke (Luna Guitars) featured their “travel” guitars in their newsletter and I just *had* to have one. It called to me. 😛 😉 Plus, I had just sold my huge Abilene so it was perfect timing.

      I was so pleased when it arrived in the mail. She’s so incredibly comfortable for me to play — I can actually play guitar for several hours now instead of the 20 minutes I was limited to. I lowered the action a tad, put some light gauge strings on, and she’s perfect. 🙂

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