The run up to Christmas is a busy time for musicians. Sadly, it is also a busy time for those with light fingers 😭
Sadly, at this time of year, we receive reports several times a week asking us to keep an eye open for stolen instruments. So we thought we’d use this week’s #WednesdayWisdom to share a few tips to help you protect your instrument.
Cafes and restaurants are prime targets for thieves. You place your instrument on the floor and then focus on your food, drink, and company. This, coupled with a noisy environment, makes it all too easy for an opportunistic thief to simply pick it up and walk out with it. Our advice is to buy a clip-on cut-proof strap (they’re often sold as theft-proof straps for travellers). Clip it to itself around the handle of your case then, whilst seated, loop the strap around the leg, or clip it around the arm, of your chair. The effort required to detach it should deter all but the most determined of thieves.
There are lots key locators cheaply available these days that sends a location to your smart phone. Many are small enough to be discretely placed in the case or, if you are careful, inside the lining.
If you must leave your instrument in a vehicle for any time make sure you put it in the boot and keep it covered. If it is small enough to put it in the boot well (assuming you have one) then do so. If your instrument is too large to keep in the boot cover it with blankets that match the colour of your car interior and try to park somewhere where lighting will not emphasise that you’ve something covered up inside.
Also worth bearing in mind is that when parking with instruments in the boot, or in a van, try to park such that the boot is right up against a wall thereby preventing easy access to it.
Finally, make sure your instrument is fully insured. Double check your household contents policy, especially if your instrument is worth more than £1000, as you may find there are exclusion clauses. If there is any doubt feel free to contact us as we can recommend insurance policies that specifically cover musicians and their instruments.
With reports of doorstep thefts rising, we’re using today’s #WednesdayWisdom post to remind you why we send all our packages by Royal Mail signed for service.
The internet is a wonderful thing and has made it easier to shop even when you can’t get to the store. However, with Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Christmas on the horizon delivery drivers have even less time than usual and the temptation for them to just dump packages in the general vicinity of your door makes it all too easy for thieves to snatch those deliveries right from our doorsteps.
By using Royal Mail signed for, we guarantee that your parcel is handed to a person by the postie and, if for some reason it’s not you, we have a signature of who signed for it. Also, in the unlikely event that some scumbag signs for and steals your package in your absence, we will send you another free of charge and sort out the insurance claim for you.
We fully recognise that means we end up charging a bit more for postage than others. Therefore if you prefer that we send your parcel by regular first or second class post, and save yourself a bit on postage, we are happy to comply with your wishes. Please note, though, that this will be at your own risk and, should the parcel be lost in transit, we will not replace the item free of charge. If this is okay with you, just give us a call and we’ll organise it.
You can’t have missed the fact that the temperature has dropped with some areas beginning to get overnight frosts. So we thought it was time to use a #WednesdayWisdom post to remind you not to leave your instruments in your vehicle overnight.
We are fortunate in that the woods in all our instruments are well seasoned for a minimum of ten years with most having a good number of decades under there belts. Sadly, this isn’t true of all instruments. Furthermore, some lacquers can shrink and harden as the temperature drops and, when the wood doesn’t shrink at the same rate, the result can be heart-breaking.
However, being a company by musicians for musicians, we know there are times when you simply cannot avoid leaving your instrument in a cold vehicle. In these situations we recommend the following: – ensure it is kept in a hard case; gig bags do not afford the same protection. – wrap the case in a couple of blankets or a sleeping bag. This will provide additional insulation and help to stop the instrument from freezing. – when taking it out from the vehicle, leave it in its case wrapped in blankets to allow it to equilibrate with the room temperature before taking it out to play. This is especially important with cheaper instruments but is still worth doing for quality ones.