City Dweller Question: Storing guitars/amps in the least amount of space

Kappy

Member
Messages
14,033
I'm in the middle of a move from a house in the burbs to NYC. I've been able to pare down to about a dozen guitars and about a half dozen amps. I like keeping the guitars in their cases since they stay in great condition that way, but the cases take up way too much space and look like ****. I'd like easier access to them than opening a case every time (without leaving the guitars out all the time). Has anyone had success keeping a sizable collection in a very limited space? Appreciate any ideas. Pics would be great too, since there are aesthetic considerations, living with a female and all.

Thanks!
 

JDutch

Member
Messages
2,052
When I lived in Manhattan and, later, Long Island City, I'd stick as many as I could under the bed. If this is an option, lofting the bed helps. Otherwise, I'd stick the cases in corners between furniture and the wall. In Long Island City, I was blessed with enough extra closest space to be able to have a dedicated guitar closest. I know none of these are elegant solutions, but unless you're willing to invest in custom furniture that can attractively house all of the guitar cases, I'd not sure what else you can do. Having easy access to guitars is nice, but there's no better place for a guitar to be than its case when it's not being played, IMO.

Even if you're also leasing a storage locker, I wouldn't leave anything in it that you wouldn't mind losing forever.

I had six heads, a 2x12 and two 4x12s in my LIC apartment, but they weren't as big of a hassle to manage as the guitars, surprisingly.
 

paulbearer

Member
Messages
5,202
At one point, years ago, I had a "false wall" up using a curtain that matched the room's full length window curtains. The cases were behind that, vertically & labeled. It blended things pretty well, actually... You're talking maybe a 5-6 foot run for 12 guitars. I think I used a kit from a shower where it had one straight long run, a 90 degree curve and a short run, it was held from the ceiling by a threaded rod into a flange. You'd trim down the rod as necessary but would probably want the longest curtains and the shortest hanging clearance possible.

Actually I just found an example... with the right floor length curtain panels and getting as high to the ceiling as you can, it actually worked. You'd get a pocket curtain, which hides the rod too, not shower hooks, of course ;-)
Not sure of your budget but even IKEA would have plenty of panel choices to make your S.O. happy. Measure your ceiling height before you buy. If it's "mid wall" you need, you can get two kits and make a staple shape instead of an "L" or they may sell those too...


 
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drbob1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
26,528
The only alternative to keeping them in their cases is some kind of cabinet. If you had one built with thin wooden dividers, you could get 2-3 guitar per foot. Could even put a glass door on there to see them as they rest!
 

Russ73

Member
Messages
1,067
I just moved out of nyc and still live in an apt on great neck long island, and I bought a cheap amour, did I spell that right? put my guitars in there and keep amps against one side of the wall in apt in the corner....
 

chopsley

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,559
I stuff mine in closets, and have a few leaning up against a closet door, which my girlfriend hates. Not recommended.

A friend of mine had someone build what amounted to a heavy-duty shelf along part of one wall (he and his girlfriend, also a musician, lived in a railroad car apartment in the East Village with her two sons). I think they had a desk or bed or something underneath the shelf (I guess you have to put a lot of trust in the builder).
 

Joe Black

Member
Messages
86
I live in NYC now: luckily, I have a storage space up in Harlem, so the bigger stuff is there and then I drive over and pick up what I need. In the apartment, guitars are under one bed, pedal board under another bed, small 210 cab and budda head on wheels stuffed into a corner. I actually ordered a small s/s fender practice amp and keep that next to the bed. Works well enough.

That said, perhaps some of the most creative space solutions I've ever seen are by musicians who live in NYC...
 

Bossanova

Silver Supporting Member
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7,396
I keep stuff at the drummer's house/practice space. That way I can also stash gear and not have to explain gear purchases to s.o.

:)
 
Messages
11,144
I've been able to stash my stuff in corners and on top of closets. Personally, I'm not sure how people get away with big amps in this city. All of my stuff is combo amps. Guitars end up in corners and closets. Music space has now been taken over by baby space. The biggest thing about living in small spaces is how cables, pedals, and everything else takes over. The amps and guitars are the easy part.
 

RJLII

Member
Messages
10,218
A buddy picked up an inexpensive armoire and gutted the interior. He fitted it with a multi-guitar rack. Doors closed = furniture. Doors open = choose your weapon. It holds about 8 guitars (solidbodies) as I recall. All the cases are stashed in his basement.

That said, 12 guitars and 6 amps will require some space. NYC apartments aren't known for an abundance of space. I have 7 and 3 respectively and they occupy the better part of two closets. I'm relegated to a 10x10 spare bedroom as my "Play Room". My approach is to have two guitars on wall hangers and one amp on the floor. Everything else is cased or covered and stored in the closets. Once every couple weeks I rotate guitars and amps. It keeps things fresh.
 

mojo jones

Member
Messages
1,197
If you take the guitars out of the cases, it'll take twice as much room to keep them in the apt. Then, what will you do, store the cases in a storage locker? So if you need to take a guitar out of the house, you'll need to go fetch the case? You have to leave the guitars in the cases. I'd dedicate a closet to the guitars and amps and get a rolling clothes hanger like boutiques use, or an armoire if you have the room, for my clothes. You could even put a deadbolt on the closet, just to slow down the less-prepared burglar.
 

T92780

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
8,067
If new place will be at controlled temp and humidity year round...., get girlfriend to allow 2-3 guitars to be wall art and one small amp in corner. All other stuff stays in cases and stuff as many as possible under bes....which might be as many as six, others in closet, etc. Rotate out the 2-3 guitars monthly and all good.
 

Kappy

Member
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14,033
Hadn't thought of the temp/humidity. That puts another wrinkle in things, esp. with high end guitars.

The wife and I have settled into the W. Village. Anyone who knows this area knows how small the apts in the W. Village are. I love the neighborhood though, so I'm willing to make some sacrifices. I've already talked myself into selling a couple of guitars I thought I'd never sell. It's a good thing.

That said, I'm a 3 minute walk from Matt Umanov guitars. I've already got my eye on one of the Collings CJs he has in stock. ;) This should be a fun experience! :)

Thanks for the replies, ideas. I'll let you know what I decide on. (Keeping them all in the cases in a corner is still the best solution so far. But we haven't even fully unpacked yet, so ... who knows what'll happen in a month or two.)
 




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