Woodwind Instrument Repair by Appointment in Castle Cary
National Association of musical Instrument Repairers
07970 881 921 01963 351 134 gary@music-1.co.uk

Care & Maintenance

Here are a few general hints and tips on maintaining your woodwind instrument in a good playable condition.

  • Your instrument is a precision mechanism therefore always put it together with care, “NEVER IN A HURRY” as this may lead to some key work being damaged.
  • Always pull the instrument through every time it is finished with for the day and use a half-inch paintbrush on the key work and under the springs to prevent the build up of dust, which in turn can eventually slow down the instrument’s action. Rub over the key work with a silver dust cloth to remove any tarnishing finger marks.
  • Once a week pull the instrument through with a damp disinfectant pull-through. This will help stop the build up of bacteria in the instrument (especially mouthpieces) and help prevent the owner contracting too many colds etc.
  • Twice a month pull through wooden instruments with a cloth dampened with bore oil or almond oil and wipe down the wood on the outside with the same cloth to seal the grain of the wood and prevent the instrument from cracking.
  • Key oil should be applied, in very small amounts, to the appropriate moving parts of your instrument at least once every 6 to 8 weeks, more frequently in very hot or wet weather.
  • Always put your instrument back into its case on completion of playing to prevent it being damaged.
  • Grease tenon corks sparingly with cork grease every week.
  • Flute tenons should be wiped with a clean cloth, no grease of any sort should be used as it will pick up dust from the atmosphere and make a very fine grinding paste which will wear the tenon and can cause it to jam.
  • Never expose the instrument to extremes of heat or cold (Don’t leave on the back shelf of a car).
  • Many things can cause sticky pads. If you get a sticky pad close the pad onto a cleaning paper and gently pull it through if this is ineffective use a powder paper (from Yamaha). Never dust the pad with talc as though it provides a short-term solution the powder mixes with the saliva and turns into a very effective grinding paste causing damage to your instrument every time you play it.

Any further problems, or if you are unsure on what to do please do not hesitate to contact me.

National Association of musical Instrument Repairers
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