Flute Repair Help

Taking care of your instrument

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Flute Repair Help

Post by geekygeek »

Hi, I'm a high school student with a small amount of instrument repair experience.

Last week, one of my friend's marching flute started acting during rehearsal. It's an Armstrong flute with an inline G. When playing the long Bb with the 1&1 fingering, the A key would also come down.

I immediately thought it was just rust/dirt/grime in the rod itself because of humid and hot midwest weather. I didn't address the issue directly but instead did a full COA. I took it apart, dipped the flute body in a tarnish remover, replaced HJ cork, cleaned all the rods, and replaced two pads. I put the entire instrument back together and oiled/adjusted the mechanism. Flute played perfectly when I handed it back to her.

About 2 weeks later during rehearsal, the same issue is occurring. The F key is pressing down the Bb pad and A key. I only have about 15 minutes to try and fix it before rehearsal on Tuesday morning. Any ideas of the what the issue could be?

If it doesn't need more oil, I'm guessing the rod is bent. If it were bent, how could I straighten it? Just use my hands? More key oil?

What other problems could cause this?

Would appreciate any help.

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Re: Flute Repair Help

Post by pied_piper »

It could be a bent key hinge (rod) or bent/dented hinge tube but there are other possibilities too:
  • dirt or old, dried oil in the key hinge tube
    the spring on the A key could be weak, bent, or not hooked in the cradle properly
Did you clean all the key hinges AND the hinge tubes before oiling and reassembling?
Did you check that the A key spring has the proper tension and that it was securely hooked in the cradle?
"Never give a flute player a screwdriver."

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