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Cleaning Inside

Remove water, especially from the bow, before you put your saxophone in the case. This will prolong the life of the pads and the life and appearance of the lining in the case. The saxophone lies on its back in the case and water runs down the body past the Eb hole. For this reason the Eb pad is one of the first to go bad. Some makes of saxophones have a raised rim or watershed around this hole to prevent water from soaking the Eb pad but this device, while it does protect the Eb pad, routes the water around the hole and allows it to run down into the bow and collect. If the position of the case is changed, the water is liable to run out of the bow into the body and wet other pads. The only sure way to protect the pads is to remove all water from the body and bow.

Occasionally swab out the inside of body, bow and bell, and wash the mouthpipe. Don't attempt to wash the body, bow, or bell with soap and water, as obviously you will get the pads wet and ruin them. To loosen the dirt in the mouthpipe, use warm water and castile soap. Be careful to avoid getting the octave hole pad wet, and be sure the octave hole is cleaned out. Pipe cleaners or feathers are often used for this.

Keep your mouthpiece and reed clean and sanitary. A small amount of dirt in the chamber of the mouthpiece or in the grooves and corners affects its blowing qualities. The best cleaner for the mouthpiece and reed is lukewarm water and castile soap. Don't use hot water except for the metal mouthpiece as it is liable to warp and discolor the mouthpiece if it is made of rubber or of plastic, and it is liable to crack a "crystal" mouthpiece made of glass.

Acids and chemicals are not recommended for cleaning and for sanitary purposes. If the mouthpiece and reed are washed regularly, ordinary soap and water will keep them fresh and clean. However, to clean a mouthpiece which through neglect has become very dirty and "crusty," mix one part of muriatic acid with four parts of water and soak

the mouthpiece in this solution for ten minutes; then rinse in clean water and swab out with a cloth. DON'T put a metal mouthpiece in this solution.