Repairing a “Bb” Flute

The kid sat on the flute, and now it “be flat!”

This was a brand new student-model flute purchased this year. One careless moment and the flute was, well, unplayable. I had to perform the following procedures.

  • Remove the keys and springs from the foot. This was not trivial because the rod was severely bent. Fortunately the hinge tubes of the keys were intact.
  • Straighten out the rod on the lathe.
  • Remove the sharp dents, round and straighten the tube, and repair Eb tone hole to make it round and level.
  • Verify that the socket was round (miraculously, it was).
  • Clean, flux, and solder the parts.
  • Clean up the residue from the soldering and lightly polish the tube.
  • Reinstall the springs and keys, with a new Eb pad.

Often I am asked about the kinds of flutes I service. I have the tools and the skills to fix just about anything. But, understandably, some potential clients are wary of giving just anyone their priceless Haynes flute. I assert that if I can fix a flute that was squashed by a careless fourth-grader and make it like new, I can service the most delicate high-end flute to your complete satisfaction.

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