(415) 504-7921    

1241 Taraval Street

San Francisco CA 94116

Instrument Maintenance &

Repairs

Are you renting a musical instrument from Inspire Music?  Proper instrument maintenance is a vital skill that is if often ignored in the classroom that can make learning to play music a frustrating experience.  A well maintained instrument will sound better, be easier to play, and will help ensure that you get your full deposit refunded to you when you return it.  Inspire Music provides video lessons on how to take care of your instrument as well as offering a full-service repair shop for instruments that need a little extra attention. 

Violin

Violins are extremely fragile instruments, being made only from a thin piece of wood on each side, and held together by glues. The bows are equally fragile, as the strands on your bow are made of actual horse tail hairs, mounted on a soft, flexible wood. Following are some tips to help you avoid any damage or problems while you rent with us.

  • Rosin your bow every time you play. Do so by sanding your rosin block, and running it along the bow hairs until they feel sticky. Without doing this, no sound will come out of the violin.

  • Take care to place the violin in the case correctly. Ensure that it fits easily, and do not force the case closed. This can break the body of the instrument.

  • DO NOT leave the shoulder rest on the violin. This causes the top of the case to press down on the violin, and can actually result in the body coming apart if left this way for a long period.

  • Allow the teacher to tune the instrument until shown the proper technique by the teacher. This will avoid broken strings.

  • ALWAYS loosen the frog of the bow (the little screw at the end) after every use. If not done, the bow will become warped, and the hairs will separate from their mounts.

  • Do not drop the violin. It is perhaps the most fragile of all instruments, and a dropped violin is never able to be repaired.

 
 

Trumpet

Brass instruments can be quite delicate, in spite of their seemingly sturdy construction. The valves are very precisely made pistons, and the metal, which is brass, is actually quite soft. Following are some basic care tips to avoid any damage or problems while you rent with us.

  • When putting the trumpet away, take care that it is properly placed in the case, so that it fits easily, and the case closes without difficulty.

  • DO NOT place music in the case with the instrument. This can cause the tubing of the instrument to be permanently bent and distorted. This is one of the most common causes of damage to student instruments.

  • Oil the valves frequently. Your teacher should demonstrate the proper technique for oiling the valve, but if you are unsure, feel free to ask the staff at Inspire. We will be more than happy to assist you.

  • NEVER stand the instrument up on its bell. While this may seem like a convenient built-in stand, the instrument is not balanced, and will fall over. This is the most common cause of damage to student trumpets.

  • Do not drop the trumpet.

 

Flute

Woodwind instruments are intricate machines that must be handled carefully. Below are some of the important steps to ensure that no damage or problems occur while you rent with us.

  • When putting the flute together, insert the parts into each other with a gentle twisting motion. Should this prove difficult, the joint may be cleaned inside and out with rubbing alcohol, which should resolve the stickiness.

  • Get a cheap piece of fabric (such as a handkerchief or old tablecloth) to place through the slot on the cleaning rod, and wipe the flute out after each use. This will prevent the pads from becoming sticky or developing rot.

  • When putting the flute away, ensure that the main row of keys is facing up in the case, to prevent bent or broken keys.

  • When laying the flute down, NEVER place the flute on a music stand, or on the floor. Remove the headjoint, and place it on your chair instead. This will prevent dropping the instrument on the floor, or it getting knocked over.

  • DO NOT place music in the case with the instrument, as it will bend the keywork. This is one of the most common causes of damage to student instruments

  • Do not drop the flute.

 

Clarinet

Woodwind instruments are intricate machines that must be handled carefully. Below are some of the important steps to ensure that no damage or problems occur while you rent with us.

  • When assembling the clarinet, ensure that all the tenon corks (the corks in the joints of the clarinet) are thoroughly coated in cork grease. This will prevent damage to the corks, which may later require replacement, and could result in money being lost from the deposit.

  • NEVER leave the instrument standing on its bell. Although the bell looks like a stand, it is not wide enough to hold up the clarinet. A clarinet falling over can result in bent or damaged keys, or even a broken clarinet.

  • When putting the instrument away, always ensure that the pieces are placed into the case correctly, with the tone holes facing up, and with the joints lying flat in their spaces. Then close the case.

  • Always run the swab through the instrument when you are done playing. This removes excess moisture from the instrument, and prevents mold and rot from setting in. Pads can be damaged, which can result in money being lost from the deposit.

  • Always remove the reed from the mouthpiece when you are done playing. Otherwise, your reed WILL develop mold.

  • Take care when handling the reed, as it is extremely fragile, and will break easily.

  • DO NOT place music in the case with the instrument, as it will bend the keywork. This is one of the most common causes of damage to student instruments

  • Do not drop the clarinet.

 

Instrument Repairs

Is your fiddle starting to sound a little funky?  Does you old clarinet need some fixing up before your next jam session?  Inspire Music is here to help!  We offer free estimates on most band instruments including trumpets, flutes, clarinets, violins and more; if we are unable to fix the issue ourselves we have a network of highly trained instrument repair people we can refer you to make sure you get the best service possible.  We also offer instrument restringing for guitars and violins for the low cost of $10 for labor and the cost of strings.