Daily Flute Maintenance – Part 2
If you wish to keep your flute in tip-top condition, and protect the silver plating, and pads, you need to develop a post-playing routine.
When you have finished playing the flute, disassemble it, placing each piece carefully into the case.
Take your cleaning rod and your cleaning cloth, and insert one corner of the cloth into the hole in the rod, and pull through approximately 2-3 inches. Begin twisting the rod so that the cloth winds around, covering the entire length of the rod. Gently push the cloth-covered rod through each segment of the flute, checking to see if all moisture has been removed.
If you have difficulty removing the moisture from the headjoint, experiment with wrapping a small amount of the cloth around the bare end of the stick before inserting it. You may need to wrap the cloth more tightly in order to swab the flute completely, and conversely, you may find that the cloth is simply too bulky to fit into the flute. If this is the case, try wrapping it thinly, or perhaps using a smaller cloth. Do not force the cloth into the flute – this can be costly to repair if it becomes lodged. This procedure should be performed after each use of the flute, before the instrument has had a chance to dry out.
Once the inside of the flute is dry, take your polishing cloth, and gently remove all marks from the surface of the instrument. Place all pieces back into the case, and close the lid, ensuring the instrument is positioned correctly. Cleaning cloths should be stored somewhere other than inside the flute case, as this can squash the keys and cause unnecessary stress. Consider tying them around the handle of your case, or folding them neatly and keeping them in a case pocket.