How to Keep Your Musical Instruments Safe and Efficient for Years
Keep Your Musical Instruments Safe
For any enthusiast, keeping your musical instruments in working order is essential. Fail to do so and you’ll find it significantly harder to get the best out of them, both in terms of sound and overall feel.
Plus these instruments, be they a keyboard, French horn, or accordion, are usually expensive to buy. To the point at which they become an investment, opposed to just a standard purchase; many top of the line instruments can reach well into the thousands. In which case to keep up to them is nothing more than common sense.
So, to help you make sure your musical instruments stay in tip-top condition here’s a bunch of ways in which you can keep them fighting fit.
Handle with Care
Musical instruments are delicate, so how you treat them can play a big part in how long they last. Drop them or toss them carelessly in the back of a tour bus and there’s a good chance that you can cause some serious damage.
Investing in a case or gig bag is usually a good way to get around this, as is keeping in the back of your mind just how much the instrument set you back. Do so and your instrument will likely remain in good condition down the line.
Protect from Extreme Temperature or Moisture
Be it made of metal, wood, or even plastic, be sure to avoid exposing your musical instruments to excess heat or moisture. Those made of Brass especially, are very particular about the way they’re stored – less so than your average piano or set of drums. So for those of you with a French horn, Trumpet, Tuba or Pocket Trumpet, a good quality storage case is a must-have.
It’s also worth noting that the actual sound of the instrument can also be affected by how well it’s stored too. Not something you want to have to contend with, as replacement parts (especially on rare instruments) can be expensive.
Have a cleaning routine
Consider just how many musical instruments are played with the mouth, and keeping your instrument clean suddenly seems vitally important. Exactly why for any regular musician, a cleaning routine is essential. However, depending on the instrument, this can differ quite substantially.
While some instruments like a guitar and piano can benefit from a simple wipe down and dose of wood treatment, others require significantly more attention. Own a brass horn for instance, and you’ll know all too well the benefits of a scheduled cleaning routine.
Let all the spray from your mouth fester inside the horn and the end result is going to be pretty vile. In short, your instrument will basically become a giant germ-launching cannon, showering your audience in a coat of bacteria and germs. Something that you’ll also be breathing in while you play.
Couple this with the fact that bacteria build-up doesn’t help the sound of your instrument either, and you’ll soon see why a scheduled cleaning routine is so invaluable. Great thing is that keeping this bacteria at bay is actually pretty simple.
By far the easiest way would be to simply wipe over your instrument after each use. Any instrument you play with your mouth should also be bathed at least once per month. Do so, and the rate at which you’ll have to get your instrument professionally cleaned should be less frequent. Good news because specialist instrument cleaning doesn’t come cheap.
With musical instruments, sound and tone are key, so as you can imagine there are various ways in which you can improve their sound. One of the most obvious is lubrication, which particularly with Brass instruments, goes a long way towards enhancing the overall playing experience. Something that allows you to achieve a more precise sound that’s hopefully note-perfect.
Although with other instruments, sound maintenance isn’t so simple. Acoustic pianos, for instance, require specialist tuning around every 6 months if played regularly. They also need voicing too. Another complex process where a piano technician would come in handy.
In summary, then, musical instruments are very much given and taken. Look after them and they’ll return the favor.