In terms of care and preservation, wind instruments fall into two basic categories: those made of metal and those made of wood. Metal instruments are prone to corrosion and can be damaged by denting and bending. Wooden instruments are sensitive to humidity and can crack and distort. Caring for such objects can be very complicated.

General Care

With use, metal instruments can become tarnished quite quickly because acids and oils in the skin are transferred to the metal. Also, the breath passing through the instrument condenses inside, encouraging corrosion in places that are not easy to access. Interior cleaning is difficult to do effectively without special equipment because you often have to take apart the instrument.

Polishing exterior surfaces is a more straightforward task. Check first that the instrument has not been lacquered. These coatings are quite durable and must be removed before any polishing can be done. In general, if the lacquer is in good condition, it should not need to be removed.

Before polishing, consider that it might make a badly dented instrument look worse. Small dents and defects tend to blend into a matte surface, but when the surface is highly polished they reflect very differently. Assess this possibility before proceeding. A mildly tarnished instrument can be cleaned with a jeweller's cloth. This is a piece of flannelette coated with jeweller's rouge (hematite), a fine pink-coloured abrasive. More severe corrosion requires a more abrasive liquid metal polish.

Cleaning the wooden parts of wind instruments can be done initially by dusting. A soft paint brush can be used, brushing towards the nozzle

of a vacuum cleaner. If dusting fails to remove ingrained stains and dirt, damp dusting can be done if the finish of the instrument is in good condition. Intact and smooth paint or varnish can be gently rubbed with a soft cloth moistened in water to which has been added a few drops of detergent. Musical instrument dealers sell a range of products that can be used to keep working instruments in clean condition.

Light lubricating oil can be applied to all moving parts, but be very careful not to spill any onto wood components. Use oil very sparingly and apply it using the point of a toothpick.

Wind instruments caring product

  • microfiber
  • variety oil
  • different brushes
  • lubricants
  • lipsticks and etc.