• LUBBOCK | 10901 S. UNIVERSITY AVE. | (806) 795-5579
    LUBBOCK EXPRESS | 2668 34TH ST. | (806) 795-5680
    AMARILLO | 7663 CANYON DRIVE | (806) 352-2739

  • LUBBOCK | 10901 S. UNIVERSITY AVE. | (806) 795-5579
    LUBBOCK EXPRESS | 2668 34TH ST. | (806) 795-5680
    AMARILLO | 7663 CANYON DRIVE | (806) 352-2739

  • LUBBOCK | 10901 S. UNIVERSITY AVE. | (806) 795-5579
    LUBBOCK EXPRESS | 2668 34TH ST. | (806) 795-5680
    AMARILLO | 7663 CANYON DRIVE | (806) 352-2739


MAINTAINING WOODWINDS



Maintaining Woodwinds


Woodwinds Maintenance

Reeds

Good quality reeds are necessary for all single and double reed instruments. Reeds should be symmetrical in their cut, beige in color with little to no discoloration, and free of chips and cracks. Always protect reeds when not in use with a reed holder available from Jent’s.

Reeds should be soaked from tip to butt before they are played for two to three minutes. To soak them use an empty spice bottle or similar glass container. Never use film canisters or medicine bottles as the product leaches into the plastic. Our staff has years of experience and can thoroughly help you with woodwinds maintenance.



 Flutes and Saxophones
The biggest repair costs for flutes and saxophones are key alignment. These can be avoided through proper set up and break down without putting pressure on the keys. The small mechanisms are not meant to bear pressure of aggressive hands and such force may twist the keys or simply knock them out of alignment. Use these simple guidelines:
  1. Swab the instrument thoroughly each time after playing - this keeps the pads in good condition and prolongs their life

  2. Use a lacquer cloth to eliminate fingerprints after use

  3. Do not use hand cream before touching the instrument

  4. Apply cork grease liberally on the saxophone gooseneck as this prevents the cork from ripping and needing a crucial repair

  5. Purchase only good quality cork grease as it does a better job of holding in moisture for longer periods of time

  6. Use a small paintbrush to dust around the keys and hard to reach laces

  7. Never force a key open. Gently lift the key from the tone hold and use either tissue paper or dollar bill to clean the underside of a key


 Clarinet and Oboe
The small mechanisms inside a clarinet and oboe features can make these instruments temperamental at times and sensitive to aggressive hands. Setting up and breaking down the instrument is a sensitive operation. Follow these basic guidelines or consult us for more advice:

  1. Minimize your hand pressure on the keys, avoid touching them

  2. Allow for a playing/breaking in period of time so that wood can contract and expand with the environmen — warm, moist air will cause the wood to expand; cold, dry air will cause it to contract

  3. Cracks cause air to leak out and can never fully be recovered to their original state

  4. New wooden instruments can be played often, but only for 15 minutes at a time in the first week; increase playing time over the next few weeks

  5. Dry the bore (inside) thoroughly with a weighted pull-through cloth to soak up excess moisture from the bore pads

  6. Once a month have a skilled technician or instructor put about three drops of bore oil on a pull-though cloth and pull it through the instrument to replace the natural oils that have been lost by the wood through evaporation—avoid the pads in this process

  7. A small paintbrush is recommended to remove fingerprints that tarnish keys over time


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