It’s the very first step before you even begin to play, assembling your instrument. It’s surprising how many performers are incorrectly doing this first step! Every instrument has weak points and troublesome keys that poke out beyond the joint. It is imperative for the health of the instrument that every player is aware of how to correctly put it together. Here are some helpful hints for every performer to know:
- Flute: always hold the body by the socket, never grab around the keys, don’t hold the lip plate when assembling
- Clarinet, oboe: be VERY aware of the bridge keys as you are assembling! They bend very easily!
- Bassoon: be aware of the whisper key lever, do not pull the bocal down at the tip, grasp the base of the bocal and firmly press into socket
- Saxophone: when putting the neck on make sure the neck screw is not tightened and also hold the neck octave key down
- Brass instruments: make sure the mouthpiece shank is round and clean, insert it into the mouthpipe and turn a quarter turn. Never press or pop the mouthpiece into place.
If there are ever any concerns about dents or tight fitting joints, do NOT continue to force the instrument together and always pay a visit to your local repair shop! We are here to help!