very random question

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flutytooty91
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very random question

Post by flutytooty91 » Thu Apr 05, 2007 10:52 am

Hello, I just got to wondering what the best thing to use to polish an all siver flute is. When I bought my flute the store gave me a plain old silver polishing cloth; however, it doesn't seem to really do its job. Any suggestions?
Toot the Flute!

fluteguy18
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Post by fluteguy18 » Thu Apr 05, 2007 11:34 am

Well, there are many sorts of cleaning cloths, but you have to be careful about the kind of cloths.

The best to get for your flute is either a soft clean cotton cloth, or a microfiber polishing cloth. Either way, these are untreated, and wont bring any harm to your flute.

Some cloths are infused with various polishing agents. These polishes contain abrasives and these clean the surface of the metal by stripping away a microscopic layer of metal [that is why the cloth will turn black].

The cloths I use are A: a plain cotton cleaning cloth that I got from Yamaha and B: a polishing cloth that I got with my flute from Flute Specialists Inc. This cloth is infused with an anti tarnish chemical.... but the cloth also turns black... so I am rather skeptical about it, so I only use it about once a month or so. If it truly is an anti tarnish chemical, then I should be okay [particularly because I keep an anti tarnish strip in my case], but if it is also a polishing agent... then it will eventually wear through the clearcoat finish on my flute.

So, just avoid cloths that have a polish infused in it.

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flutepicc06
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Post by flutepicc06 » Thu Apr 05, 2007 5:22 pm

A good answer from Fluteguy. Also, never use commercial polishes (liquids, powders, pastes or otherwise), as these are even more abrasive than most cloths. I choose to prevent tarnish as best I can by wiping my flute down after I play it (skin oils attract tarnish causing agents), and then I don't worry about it, and let my tech take care of it when the time for an overhaul comes around. While tarnish may not be beautiful to you, it won't affect how the flute sounds, so there's no cause to become a polishing fiend. Some players have flutes that have turned entirely black from tarnish.

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pied_piper
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Post by pied_piper » Thu Apr 05, 2007 7:14 pm

... and get some 3M Anti-Tarnish Strips. They're available at many music stores for around $5-6 per pack. Put a fresh one in the case at least every 6 months and it will help keep the tarnish away! Far easier than trying to polish...
"Never give a flute player a screwdriver."
--anonymous--

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flutepicc06
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Post by flutepicc06 » Thu Apr 05, 2007 7:17 pm

pied_piper wrote:... and get some 3M Anti-Tarnish Strips. They're available at many music stores for around $5-6 per pack. Put a fresh one in the case at least every 6 months and it will help keep the tarnish away! Far easier than trying to polish...
I've tried them, and they did nothing for me. To the OP, feel free to try a pack, but don't expect miracles.

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pied_piper
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Post by pied_piper » Thu Apr 05, 2007 7:28 pm

I've had pretty good results using the strips. Granted they don't totally stop tarnish, but for me it slows it down quite a bit. My flute is 8 years old and it's just now beginning to show a bit of tarnish around the toneholes and posts. I've never had it in the shop for a COA; I do all of my own maintenance but I won't do a complete tear-down for cleaning until it's really necessary. Like most folks, after playing, I wipe off the fingerprints, skin oils, etc. with a microfiber cloth and that helps too.
"Never give a flute player a screwdriver."
--anonymous--

sags_3
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Post by sags_3 » Fri Apr 06, 2007 3:51 am

The Powell Microfibre cloth is really soft and removes fingerprints really easily without scratching. Its pretty expensive compared to the other microfibre cloths but worth it.

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flutepicc06
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Post by flutepicc06 » Fri Apr 06, 2007 11:02 am

sags_3 wrote:The Powell Microfibre cloth is really soft and removes fingerprints really easily without scratching. Its pretty expensive compared to the other microfibre cloths but worth it.
Any microfiber cloth will do the same. Many stores that sell or repair eyeglasses sell them quite cheaply as a way to clean the lenses without risking scratches. I would start there, as there's no reason to spend extra money for the same thing if you don't have to.

yhackXL
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Another random question

Post by yhackXL » Fri May 18, 2007 9:46 pm

Hey, flutepicc, are you some proffesional or something? Or just someone working on fluteland? Sorry, just a "random" question.
yhack

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flutepicc06
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Post by flutepicc06 » Fri May 18, 2007 10:25 pm

Nope, I don't work for fluteland.....I just like to help out wherever I can. :) What brought that question up?

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cflutist
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Post by cflutist » Fri May 18, 2007 10:30 pm

flutepicc06 wrote:
pied_piper wrote:... and get some 3M Anti-Tarnish Strips. They're available at many music stores for around $5-6 per pack. Put a fresh one in the case at least every 6 months and it will help keep the tarnish away! Far easier than trying to polish...
I've tried them, and they did nothing for me. To the OP, feel free to try a pack, but don't expect miracles.
Have to ageee with fp06 here. I have a part time jewelry business so I bought a pack of 100 for $30 from my supplier. Ended up selling most of them at cost to my flute playing friends that wanted them.

My picc has sterling silver keys and it tarnished with the strips in the case even though I rarely play that instrument. Same problem with my Haynes, tarnished within 1 month after a COA. However, my Gemmy camping flute and my Emerson alto flute (both with solid silver body and plated keys), it look like they are brand new. Have never been able to figure it out since all 4 instruments are kept in the same house with the same atmospheric conditions.

fluttiegurl
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Post by fluttiegurl » Sat May 19, 2007 7:03 am

I have been told that it has something to do with the quality of the silver. The purer the silver, the quicker it tarnishes. Also, if the other two are silver plated, they will not tarnish as bad.

I have tried the 3M strips, and they do help some where I am. However, once a flute has begun to tarnish, it seems like there is no end.

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