Questions tagged [maintenance]

For questions about keeping an instrument or related gear in playable condition.

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52 views

Sliding whistle making weird noise

I recently bought a sliding whistle. Can't lie, it wasn't the most expensive, but it definitely was a not suspicious price. I tried using it, but the sound was very off. The best I can describe it is ...
0 votes
2 answers
73 views

What should I look for in the written estimate provided by the technician for musical instrument servicing?

If the technician for musical instrument servicing provides with an estimate or explanation of the work that will be done, a written estimate will help understand what work is being done and how much ...
8 votes
1 answer
175 views

Will a soak in mouthwash hurt mouthpieces?

I’m teaching wind instruments to grade 7 and 8’s after a decade of teaching primary music. Since covid, my school board mandates a specific cleaning solution must be used for sanitation. Brass and ...
5 votes
6 answers
19k views

Guitar: No sound from second string, but other strings sound normal

I played a Squier Stratocaster last night, and when I plugged into the amp, which was working, my guitar's second string didn't make any sound (well, a bit, actually), but the rest of the strings ...
5 votes
3 answers
3k views

Can Adjusting the Truss rod of the guitar crack the neck?

I wonder if anyone can help me here. I bought a used guitar from Ebay and it looked fine at first sight. The action needed adjusting and I tune to Eb so I decided to adjust the truss-rod. I turned it ...
2 votes
2 answers
106 views

Keeping a flute looking good

Keeping the inside of a flute is easy, but the outside? I've read the answers here about rubbing down with a cloth to clean the residue left from handling, but, having not played mine for several ...
5 votes
4 answers
3k views

What can I do to address valves getting stuck on a trumpet?

I have a problem with a low-end trumpet ($100 range, so you get what you paid for). The valves occasionally get stuck-ish, and won't depress fully after being pressed (they stop at around ~2/3 or 3/4 ...
22 votes
7 answers
99k views

Cleaning a tarnished flute

My flute is tarnished and needs to be cleaned... I was afraid if I polished it, I would break something on it. I read online that it's a bad idea to remove tarnish on a flute yourself as you can ruin ...
1 vote
2 answers
544 views

Finding corresponding hex bolts and keys for electric guitar bridge

The guitar is Washburn G5V, I suppose it's around 25 years old. It's a great sounding guitar I'd like to keep for a long time, and there's a problem with the vintage Floyd Rose bridge - it has these ...
4 votes
1 answer
99 views

Is it possible to "add" a rotary fifth valve to a 4-valved tuba?

I am currently playing Wessex TB 692 Grand, which is 4-valved BBb tuba. I have always cherished a 5-valved BBb, so I wonder if it is possible to add a rotary 5th valve to my Wessex horn.. Is this ...
8 votes
3 answers
4k views

Playing the saxophone in the rain

I've been given the opportunity to play in a one-day marching band sort-of deal in my local town. However, the scheduled date is set to rain, but the stubborn director says we're going to play on that ...
5 votes
4 answers
1k views

Order of valves in a trumpet

I'm re-furbishing an old French three valve trumpet. The valves have been mixed up. There are no numbers on them, unlike modern trumpet valves. Is there a simple way to ascertain which valve goes into ...
4 votes
0 answers
58 views

Silk classical guitar string gauge is too big for bridge holes

My classical guitar has a plastic bridge with pre-drilled or precast holes gauged for standard nylon classical strings. I got some silk strings which are a bit higher gauge and don’t all fit by just ...
4 votes
4 answers
1k views

How do you stop gunk from building up on guitar strings?

On a steel-string acoustic guitar, how do you prevent gunk from building up on the strings? Every time I play, the strings, particularly the B and E strings, will literally (okay maybe not literally) ...
10 votes
4 answers
57k views

My guitar sounds off tune

Lately, I noticed that my excellent acoustic guitar is always sounding off tune even when I have tuned it with keyboard and even electronic tuner. Another thing I noticed is that when I play the ...
1 vote
3 answers
931 views

Oil in Drum wooden shells to prevent wood to dry out

I've been reading about using tung oil inside drum shells to help keep the wood from drying out and moisture to get into the wood. The obvious concern is how does the oil affect the tonality and pitch ...
0 votes
3 answers
466 views

Safe to remove ball from end of ball end string?

I (sort of) recently got a new violin and as the tailpiece does not match my earlier rental I now have a mismatched ball end E string from my extra set. Looking at the string it definitely seems like ...
3 votes
2 answers
1k views

Can I use a car polishing cloth to polish my flute?

I have a Yamaha flute headjoint and it is dirty. Therefore I want to clean it so its appearance will be better. Can I use a car polishing cloth for this?
4 votes
1 answer
1k views

Dip-polishing silver-nickel keys

I'm working on restoring an old clarinet. The keys are badly tarnished - I've been working on them using a cloth and metal polish, but: It's very time consuming; I'm finding it impossible to get ...
4 votes
2 answers
1k views

What are the best weather conditions and/or season to tune a piano?

Under what weather conditions should one tune a piano if one is only going to tune it once a year? I'm thinking about both humidity and temperature. Is it best to tune when the humidity is typical (...
1 vote
0 answers
22 views

Wooden recorder services in Sydney [closed]

I need someone to replace the cork on my wooden descant recorder and can't find anyone to do it in metropolitan Sydney. Does anybody have a recommendation? I am not desperate enough to post it off ...
5 votes
5 answers
736 views

Do drum skins crack?

I am a keen drum player and have had my first drum skin crack. It was on a medium snare drum. The drum has been played for about 20 mins a day for the past 4 years. I got the drum secondhand and am ...
3 votes
8 answers
14k views

Is it better to choose 440 Hz or 432 Hz to tune an acoustic piano?

My acoustic upright piano is 110 years old, made in 1910. Last time I had it tuned, the tuner used a 440 Hz tuning fork and tuned it by ear, but he broke my B♭7 string. If a piano is not used in ...
4 votes
1 answer
109 views

I have a Skywin oud, 11 strings. Do the pegs need to be in a certain order, like in length?

So I'm not sure if my oud came strung correctly,they look a bit worn but it came with 6 pairs of replacement strings and one 11th string. What if while restringing, I took all the pegs out without ...
6 votes
4 answers
11k views

How do I clean the windway on my recorder?

I have a plastic soprano recorder that is about ten years old. Over the years, it's accumulated some dirt or something in the windway. It has a straight windway. What is the best way to clean it out? ...
2 votes
2 answers
697 views

Grand piano positioning to compromise between acoustic and good piano care

After owning a digital then an upright piano, I am now considering the possibility of acquiring a baby grand piano (166 cm / 5'5" according to the manufacturer's website). But since a grand is, ...
4 votes
1 answer
519 views

Electric guitar ground wire

I recently bought an old electric guitar (an SG copy) on eBay, as a little restoration project. I have some basic experience with electronics from university, but that was 15 years ago and I've never ...
6 votes
3 answers
16k views

Why do I wear out the frets on my guitar faster than most other folks? Do I need a lighter touch?

I know all about the fact that the unwound strings on my acoustic guitars are steel and the frets are nickel. And I understand that fret wear - especially under the plain steel un-coated strings is ...
2 votes
1 answer
315 views

Grand Piano Cracked Soft Pedal, Possible Missing Parts for Soft and Sustain Pedals

I have a 1912 Symphonic baby grand piano and I noticed two problems. This question is a two-parter: I noticed at the top of the beam for the soft pedal, the wooden piece is cracked. We thought of zip-...
5 votes
2 answers
297 views

How often should I change tom heads (batters and resonants)?

I have had my current tom heads on since February. I only play on my kit for an average of once a week, and not long when I do. Should I replace them all, batter and resonant heads? I feel like I ...
3 votes
1 answer
132 views

Using friction pegs with standard classical guitar headstock

Would it be reasonable to use guitar friction pegs with a regular classical headstock? I've never seen that, all friction peg versions of flamenco guitars have a different headstock design.
7 votes
8 answers
60k views

What is causing this weird distortion coming from my amp?

Here is the sound I'm talking about. I get this sound, unless I strum ridiculously lightly, on different amp volume settings, with no gain, but is seems to become ...
16 votes
11 answers
91k views

Effects of keeping a guitar in the car

I have a sales job, and am on the road most days. I often find myself with free time between appointments and would like to take advantage of that free time by practicing guitar. I have a 3/4 size ...
8 votes
3 answers
6k views

How do I fix a broken bridge pin without going to the guitar shop?

Are there any tools cheap from eBay that I can use? Or anything common from around the house? And a tutorial.
1 vote
2 answers
1k views

Boss NS-2 crackling cutting the output

I've got a Boss NS-2 that I've used for ~6 years without issue. I recently took my board apart to redo all the effects and noticed that the output of the board was inconsistently dropping and ...
1 vote
3 answers
191 views

Intonation problem with guitar

I have a Fender Model CD-60 NAT, which is having some intonation problems. I fully intend to take it to a professional, but would like to understand the problem and the most likely fix beforehand. ...
7 votes
5 answers
42k views

Is olive oil good for oiling a guitar fretboard?

I need to oil and clean my guitar fretboard and was wondering if a damp cloth and olive oil is good for this?
5 votes
3 answers
5k views

Piano key sometimes suffers silent depress

I bought a used Steinway. Sometimes its keys don't always make a sound when pressed down. Is this my fault or the piano's? Should I contact the seller, or is it a minor problem that the tuner can ...
3 votes
1 answer
352 views

French horn - clicky/noisy keys

More of a practical question here. I've had clicky keys (on the French horn) for a while now and I plan to get them fixed soon. But does anyone know a temporary fix to the problem? I can't seem to ...
2 votes
2 answers
468 views

Using Capo to Unstring and Restring the same Strings (Acoustic Guitar)

Disclaimer: This is not a question. More of a Share-Knowledge / Technique-Discussion. Leave a Comment should this turn out to not belong in MusSE. I had an idea today. Please validate if this is ...
0 votes
2 answers
133 views

Is there a way to prevent a wooden guitar from picking up ambient smells?

I played a show last night with my acoustic guitar in an environment that was thick with the smell of fried food, and as a result this morning my guitar smelled like fryer oil. This certainly isn't a ...
4 votes
3 answers
505 views

I dropped my violin! Is it OK? What should I do? [closed]

Okay, the unthinkable has happened. I dropped my violin (or viola or cello), or something fell on it, or someone knocked it over. What should I check? Can I correct any problems myself? Should I take ...
4 votes
2 answers
2k views

How to replace string on Donner standard series

My son just got his first guitar. I know NOTHING about guitars. One of the strings broke and we can’t figure out how to replace it. The videos I’ve found on YouTube make it look easy and spend about 5 ...
3 votes
3 answers
908 views

Which way do I put the violin blanket?

I was wondering which way do I put the violin blanket in a violin case because there are two sides, one that is soft and one that is hard(ish) made out of plastic (or whatever material it is). I want ...
12 votes
3 answers
2k views

How to clean the bathtub after cleaning brass instruments

Every few months I clean my French horn in an enamel bathtub filled with warm water and added dishwasher liquid. The oil and grease residues that attach to the detergent float to the water surface and ...
1 vote
1 answer
166 views

Preserving the pitch of Tabla by keeping it in a dry cabinet

I have purchased a dry cabinet to store my camera lenses. I also found out in its manual that you can use it to store instruments and scientific materials as well. I wanted to know if using a dry ...
3 votes
2 answers
226 views

Would it be frowned upon to change the color of a 170 year old square grand Knabe piano?

I recently acquired a square grand Knabe Piano from the 1850’s. It was restored about 30 years ago and now has some chips in the finish and I don’t really care for the color or fact that it has brush ...
13 votes
5 answers
67k views

What's causing this buzzing sound on the high e string?

My Takamine acoustic has a tendency to buzz when I play the high e string fretted around frets 2 and 3. I figure it's something to do with the neck and tension rod. Are there any other parts of a ...
2 votes
3 answers
619 views

How can I improve the sound of my trumpet?

I have two student trumpets at home. The first trumpet I bought over 20 years ago for $80 USD and it's been in my mother's attic since then mostly. The second trumpet is a student rental from a local ...
4 votes
3 answers
1k views

Is it Ok to leave a guitar with a broken string?

Just broke the high E on my guitar and won't be able to get new strings for about 2 weeks. will leaving it as it is damage the guitar at all? the guitar is an Ibanez rga42fm with a fixed bridge All ...

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