Sterling silver or silver plated nickel mechanism?

Advanced Technique, Performance Questions, Auditions, Recording, etc.

Moderators: Classitar, pied_piper, Phineas

Post Reply
Justine
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 3:49 pm
Location: Connecticut

Sterling silver or silver plated nickel mechanism?

Post by Justine » Thu Mar 17, 2011 5:28 pm

I'm looking into purchasing a new flute - either a Miyazawa Classic or 402 series - and the only difference that I see in the prices of them is that the Classic is a good $3,000 more because of the fact that it has a sterling silver mechanism instead of the silver plated nickel mechanism that the 402 has. I currently have the 402 on a trial, and the mechanism seems considerably better than my Haynes Amadeus (I would hope so, haha). But is there anything besides the price that would be different between a sterling silver mechanism and a silver plated nickel mechanism? Or would I just have to compare both simultaneously and see how they both feel?
“One good thing about music, when it hits - you feel no pain.”
-Bob Marley

User avatar
Phineas
Posts: 953
Joined: Sat Jan 22, 2005 1:08 am

Re: Sterling silver or silver plated nickel mechanism?

Post by Phineas » Thu Mar 17, 2011 6:53 pm

Bottom line,

If it plays good to you, and you can afford it, then get it!

Do not over think or second guess. You may wind up with something you don't want

Phineas

P.S. Frankly, I like the feel, the weight, and sound of the silver plated body/mechanism better. Your mileage may vary.

Justine
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 3:49 pm
Location: Connecticut

Re: Sterling silver or silver plated nickel mechanism?

Post by Justine » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:09 pm

Thanks! I figure the sterling silver is a little heavier, no? But there is a noticeable difference in the sound too?
“One good thing about music, when it hits - you feel no pain.”
-Bob Marley

User avatar
cflutist
Posts: 447
Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 12:44 pm

Re: Sterling silver or silver plated nickel mechanism?

Post by cflutist » Thu Mar 17, 2011 8:50 pm

Keys don't make a difference in the sound.

Plating can come off through the years.

Sterling keys are more easily repaired if necessary if damanged.

fluteguy18
Posts: 2311
Joined: Sun Jul 16, 2006 3:11 pm

Re: Sterling silver or silver plated nickel mechanism?

Post by fluteguy18 » Thu Mar 17, 2011 9:39 pm

You've basically gotten all the information you needed already. Plating will eventually come off whereas solid silver won't. Plating however is cosmetic and should it come off it won't change the way the flute plays. Only in rare circumstances does your body chemistry react badly with the base metal beneath the plating. In those cases the metal starts disintegrating and becomes really pitted. That however is a rare problem and usually indicates a manufacturing problem with the base metal. (I know because I had this happen. I got a Miyazawa 202 and the plating came off of a key less than 8 months after I got my flute and within 4 months it was extremely pitted. Miyazawa examined it and determined that there was a problem with the metal of that key and they replaced the key. No problems since and I've had it fixed three years ago).

It's a personal preference really. The key material really makes little to no impact on the sound and even then the results would be entirely inconclusive. If you like it and can afford it... get it! For most people by the time plating becomes a problem they're ready to get a different flute anyway.

Post Reply