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14 Nov 2015

Many people find themselves thrown in to the world of musical instruments they understand nothing about when their young children first begin music at school. Knowing the basics of good instrument construction, materials, picking a good store where you can rent or buy these instruments is extremely important. What exactly process should a dad or mom follow to make the best options for their child? - DJ Battlecat type beat 2015

Clearly the first step is to choose a guitar. Let your child their very own choice. Kids don't make the greatest big decisions about their life, and this is a major one that can be very empowering. I'm also able to say from personal experience that kids have a natural intuition in what is good for them. Ultimately, my strongest advice would be to put a child right into a room to try only 3-5 different choices, and permit them to make their choice in line with the sound they like best.

These details are intended to broaden your horizons, never to create a preference, in order to put you in a position to nit-pick within the store! Most instruments can be extremely well made these days, and choosing a respected retailer will assist you to trust recommendations. Ask your school and/or private music teacher where to shop.

Woodwind instruments are created all over the world, but primarily in the united states, Germany, France, and China. Whenever we talk about Woodwind instruments, we are referring to members of the Flute, Clarinet, Saxophone, Oboe, and Bassoon families.


All Woodwinds involve a relatively complex, interconnected mechanism that you will find regulated so that the keys all move and seal the holes with the instrument when they are designed to. Your trusted local retailer will probably be sure to get you a device that is 'set up', although many new instruments come ready to go out of the box. When you are dealing with a brand new instrument, you ought to bring it back to the store for a check-up after about Three months, or sooner if there are any issues. Because every one of the materials are new and tight, they will often come out of regulation since the instrument is broken in. This is normal. You should count on this kind of regulation every 12-18 months, or sooner when the instrument is played a lot.

Woodwinds also have pads. Pads include the part of the instrument that seal over the holes in the body with the instrument (toneholes). A perfect seal is needed to produce the correct note. Tuning and quality of sound are affected by a correctly 'seated' pad. These also occasionally need replacing, as part of your regular maintenance, although almost never all at once. When all pads have to be replaced (once every 8-10 years), this is achieved as part of a comprehensive 'overhaul' in the instrument which includes taking all this apart, cleaning it, refitting and tightening loose parts, and replacing springs and corks as necessary. This is a rare procedure, and usually reserved for professionals. The constant maintenance repair is the most common one for mothers and fathers.

Because of the many rods and key-cups (these contain the pads), there are a lot of very sensitive, easy to bend parts of these instruments. Focusing on how to assemble them properly is essential to avoiding unwanted repairs. Be sure to ask your local retailer for that proper way to assemble your instrument. This is the cause of the most common repairs, then bumping into things.


Interestingly, don't assume all woodwinds are made from wood. Flutes and saxophones are manufactured primarily of metals; Nickel-silver and silver for Flutes, and often Brass for Saxophones. We'll stick to these materials because of these instruments for simplicity's sake, as there are increasingly more choices available.

For the remainder of the Woodwind instruments, wood is definitely employed for the main construction of the instruments. - DJ Battlecat type beat 2015

Flutes & Saxophones

Student Flutes are made of Nickel-Silver, then plated in silver. Nickel-Silver is really a combination of brass with Nickel, with a similar look to Silver when polished, hence its name. One among its primary advantages could it be is stronger than brass or silver by themselves. As you progress to better instruments more Silver is used, starting with the headjoint (which is most important factor in a top quality of sound). Read more about headjoints later.

Saxophones are generally produced from brass. Try to find a device that has 'ribbing' on the body; extra plates of brass that supply structural support over a place where multiple posts put on the body. This provides strength to the occasional and unavoidable bumps that the young students are bound to have. Some student Saxes have keywork made from Nickel-Silver, which is a good technique of strength in a vulnerable area.

Clarinets and Oboes

Clarinet and Oboe our body is typically made of Fibreglass for student instruments. A great strategy for bumps, but additionally against the maintenance habits and climate changes that students face. Intermediate and professional instruments are made from Grenadilla wood (which is changing as Grenadilla edges towards the endangered list). Because they're made of wood they should be protected against cracking. If a student doesn't swab their instrument out after playing, the moisture may cause the wood to grow and crack. Likewise, bringing your instrument to school on a cold day and playing it without letting it come to room temperature can cause it to crack, or perhaps rupture. This is caused a pressure differential from your warm air column on the medial side the instrument, compared to the cold temperature outside of the instrument. If you choose to get a wood instrument, make certain your student is prepared and able to look after it properly.

Keys on Clarinets and Oboes are generally made from Nickel-Silver, but can be made with Silver plating, and other materials.


Student Bassoons are made of ABS plastic, but there are several new makers out there that offer Hard Rubber, plus Maple (used in professional instruments). A downside for Hard Rubber Bassoons is because they are quite heavy. If you can get a good wood Bassoon to get a reasonable price, then choose this. Wood offers the best acoustics for Bassoon, and can make the difference between a noticeable sound, and one which is rich and interesting.

Keywork on Bassoons is equally made from Nickel-Silver, often silver plated.


With all the word 'mouthpiece' for woodwinds can be confusing. Here are the instruments using the correct names for your corresponding part of the instrument that produces the sound:((Flute: Headjoint
Clarinet: Mouthpiece (using a single reed)
Saxophone: Mouthpiece (which has a single reed)
Oboe: Double reed (two reeds tied together with a hole in between)
Bassoon: Double reed (two reeds tied together with a hole in between)

No matter the instrument, this is the the main whole that makes the greatest impact on the quality of the sound, in conjunction with the player's personal physical attributes. Students generally use what they get from their teacher, but listed below are some tips about how to get the most from your equipment. Receiving a good mouthpiece can precede, and even postpone the purchase of a fresh Clarinet or Sax, so great is the difference with hard rubber.
(For Flute, ensure that your headjoint cork is properly aligned, rather than dried out. Your local retailer will disclose how to do this. Should there be problems, have them fixed immediately, or choose a different flute. For additional intermediate flutes, go with a headjoint that is not only made entirely of Silver, but is hand-cut. This would possibly not always be easier to play to start with, but the sound quality improvement is definitely worth making the leap. Silver sounds a lot better than Nickel-Silver, producing a better tone quality, with an increase of room for changing the product quality according to the player's needs. You can buy headjoints separately, but it can be quite expensive, and I advise using this until you reach an experienced flute.

Oboe and Bassoon use two opposing, slightly curved reeds tied together that vibrate against the other person when air passes with shod and non-shod. Advanced oboists/bassoonists make reeds on their own, a time-consuming, skill-heavy task. It will require many years to learn to make reeds for yourself, that work well. Fortunately, you'll find ready-made reeds that generally meet the requirements of the student player. One key factor you should test would be to assure that the reed 'crows' perfectly with the pitch 'C'. Crowing a reed is blowing through it when it's not attached to the instrument. Test the crow having a tuner.

Clarinets and Saxophones make use of a single reed (small part of very well shaped and profiled cane) linked with a mouthpiece (by way of a ring called a 'ligature') that vibrates when air is passed backward and forward. The combination of these parts is key to a good sound. Most students be given a plastic mouthpiece to begin with. Good plastic mouthpieces are manufactured by Yamaha for both Clarinet and Saxophone, together with the designation of '4C'. I would suggest a '5C' if it is available. It'll be a little harder to try out at first, but a good way to get a bigger make sense off the bat. If you'd like to get a better quality of sound with additional room for good loud and soft playing while keeping and introducing a refreshing tone, then consider a Hard Rubber Mouthpiece. Hard rubber provides improvement over plastic acoustically, and must be hand finished, unlike the plastic variety, that's spit out of a mold and polished/tumbled for shine. These are noticeably more expensive, but you should expect to spend in the $100-150 range for a decent Hard Rubber mouthpiece. Good names include: Selmer, Vandoren, Otto Link, Meyer, Yamaha, and Leblanc. The local retailer should stock a minimum of two of these brands so that you can try - and you should try them! Because these are typically hand finished, they are often subtly different.

Think about sizes?

Clarinet and Saxophone mouthpieces have a diverse range of different sizing areas, and also for the sake of simplicity, the main is the 'tip opening'. Tip opening means the distance between the tip of the reed and the tip of the mouthpiece. Sadly, there is absolutely no standardized system for measuring tip openings, although they are commonly measured in millimetres, or employing a numbering system (usually beginning at number 5, trainees sizing), or even letters. The metric method usually includes two to three numbers; a job opening of 2.97mm might be listed as 297, or as 97, with respect to the maker. The numbering system may be listed as 5, 5*, 6, 6*, 7, etc. The 'star' numbers should be considered half-sizes. Letters work the same way as numbers generally; C, C*, D, D*, etc.

To provide your student an advantage, aim for a '6', or 'D' sizing. That is bigger than what they are employed to, but will pay off with a bigger sound right away. Some notes for the ends of your range, both low and high, will likely suffer, however is only temporary while you adjust to the new mouthpiece and develop greater strength.

Other pursuits

Oil and Adjust. This procedure needs to be conducted on your own student's instrument annually, and up frequently, if there is plenty of playing. The mechanics with the interconnected parts is delicate, and is released of alignment often.

Bore oiling. Yearly this will be required on Clarinets and Oboes to help you guard against cracking.

Avoid cheap instruments. With musical instruments you get what you purchase. There are a lot of instruments received from India and China now. Most are excellent, while many others must not even have been made. The local, respected dealer needs to have those that are reliable, and definately will stand behind them. Your big-box Costco, Wal-Mart, Greatest coupe, and e-Bay has no understanding these matters, and functions for his or her bottom line only. Avoid these places. They won't possibly offer you the continued assistance, service, or repair that a developing and interested student will need. If you choose this route, request American, European, or Japanese-made instruments. This can be a major separator of good from bad. Individuals who make in these places are generally very well trained and section of a history of excellent wind instrument making. Your neighborhood, trusted retailer will guide you in the choices available, and remember that just because it says USA, or Paris into it, does not mean it was manufactured in these places. Functions sometimes making these products part of the 'name' of the instrument.((Simply how much should I spend?

This is the big question. Be aware that popular instruments, like Flute and Clarinet, be cheaper because they are made in greater quantities. Some instruments, like Oboe and Bassoon, are challenging and time-consuming to generate, making them more expensive. Here is a list of acceptable and approximate pricing (during the time that this is being written) for new student instruments that works well for both American and Canadian currency.

When must i buy a better instrument, and Why?

60 years ago, there were no 'student' and 'intermediate' instruments. Manufacturers were just coming to the realization that there was a growing, post-war market that was changing to aid a more commercial type of instrument making. Today, instruments are engineered to get you to buy three times. First when getting started, then as an advancing student, last but not least as a professional. Clearly, it is a model that makes a lot of money for manufacturers.

For the ideal reasons, I often encourage parents in the first place the better instrument, or possibly a good used intermediate or professional instrument. Starting on better equipment is like starting on that slightly larger mouthpiece; receiving a bigger, better sound is encouraging. The greater construction and materials mixture of these better instruments may also leave more room to grow. So what are the right reasons? Here's a list that works not merely as guide in order to to choose the right instrument, but also for what you should watch for to help musical growth:

-Going into a school with a strong music program.
-Getting private lessons, or has called for some. (Check with private teacher for recommendations before selecting, this will help.)
-Practicing without parental encouragement
-Has a minimum of 4 years of playing in front of them.

These factors are perfect indicators of whether to buy, and whether or not to buy intermediate or professional. If your bulk of these are unclear, think about a rental for a year to see if they get any clearer, and supplement with regular (weekly) private lessons.

Music is surely an investment that requires attention from a variety of angles, and the instrument itself is merely a small step. Being equipped with the knowledge of how to obtain the instrument is just part of a process that a parent can - and may - be actively linked to. Many parents have no idea of anything about all of this, but now you do! Ask the questions you need to know, and you'll be just fine getting the new instrument.


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