MusiCare Tips

Rubber Bands, Chewing Gum, & Emergency Repair

"What?", you say. What do rubber bands and chewing gum have to do with emergency instrument repair? The main thing that they have to do with it is that they work, they are temporary, they are fast, and they are safe. If a pad falls out take a very small piece of chewed chewing gum and put it on the back of the pad, put the pad back in the cup and press the pad into the tone hole. Because the gum is sticky and not rigid the pad stays in place and the seat of the pad will adjust itself.

Rubber bands are the natural replacement for broken springs. Scotch tape will do a good job of sealing a leaky spit valve. Because all of these repairs are temporary they get you going in a pinch, and the student will need to seek more permanent repairs on his own.

Lastly, they are safe. You won't have to worry about scorching a plastic clarinet body with a lighter or match, and you won't have to worry about stabbing the end of your finger with a broken spring. We will be covering more emergency repair procedures in the future.

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