There’s A Cork In My Flute. What Does It Do?


A common complaint when a flute or piccolo comes in for repair is that “it is just not playing like it used to” or that “it sounds airy”. The first thing we check is the position and the fit of the head joint cork assembly. If it’s not in the right place, or if it’s too loose, the intonation and tone quality of the instrument will be affected. Proper placement of the head joint cork assembly is crucial. Use the following steps to check the placement of your cork assembly.


On the end of your cleaning rod, you will notice a line. This is actually a measuring tool to check the placement of your cork assembly. Place that end of the cleaning rod into the open end of your head joint until it makes contact with the head cork plate. rod-open-endLook into the embouchure hole (blow hole) and locate the line on your cleaning rod. It should be in the center of the embouchure hole. rod-holeIf the mark is down toward the open end of the head joint, you should tighten the head crown to pull the cork assembly back up the tube. If the line is too close to the closed end of the head joint, loosen the crown slightly and push on it to move the cork assembly down. The goal is to get the mark in the center of the embouchure hole. In rare instances, advanced players may find the need to move the cork assembly in order to bring the different registers of their flute in tune with each other.

A common mistake young flutists make is moving the cork assembly for general, every day tuning. Instead, for general tuning simply pull the head joint out of the receiver if you’re sharp, or push it in if you’re flat. Don’t make a habit out of moving the head cork assembly.

The cork part of the assembly will need to be replaced from time to time. The cork dries out and shrinks causing air to leak around the cork itself causing problems. If you notice that your cork assembly moves too freely, it’s time to have the cork replaced.

Quick Tips on Trumpet Care

Daily care and maintenance of your instrument is very important to how well your instrument performs. Watch this quick video below for a few, quick tips on caring for your trumpet.

Do You Buy Used Instruments? – FAQs

Another frequently asked question we get is "Do you buy used instruments?"

We often buy back used instruments, but we don’t buy back everything. Before you bring your instrument in the store, here are a few things to know:

1. There is no guarantee that we can make an offer to buy your instrument. Our offers are contingent upon many factors, including:

  • Repair condition, as determined by our technicians
  • Age of the instrument
  • Make and model of the instrument (ie, has the model been discontinued?)
  • Current store inventory levels

2. If we are able to make an offer on your instrument, please note that it will be a wholesale price. Similar to trading a car in to a dealer as opposed to selling to a private party, we can not offer the full market value of the instrument. As a general rule, our offers may only be about 50% of the current market value.

3. We may also take into account necessary repair work, cleaning, or other refurbishments that must be done to put the instrument in sellable condition. These deductions will also be reflected on any offers.

4. To sell an instrument to us, you must be at least 18 years old, and we must be able to verify that you or someone in your family is the original owner of an instrument that originally came from Paige’s Music

5. If we make an offer on your instrument, a valid photo ID is required at the time of purchase.

6. No cash can be given for instrument buy-backs. All payments will be made via check, to be mailed to your address within 7-10 business days.

7. If we are able to make a purchase offer for your instrument, you will be given an offer sheet that is valid for 30 days. If you choose to take the instrument back home to sell elsewhere, you may return within 30 days to sell the instrument to us if you keep this offer sheet and present it at the time of sale. After 30 days, our technicians will reassess the instrument for possible purchase, and your offer may change.

As always, please call us first before you come in. If we’re not interested in the particular instrument you have, it could save you a trip.

If you have any questions, please call 1-800-382-1099 or email us at

New Yamaha YCL-CSVR Clarinet


Each January we send a group to the NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) show. This is a great opportunity for us to see new products and come up with new programs to help us better serve you.

This week, we wanted to focus on a new product that is really exciting for the clarinet world. Yamaha has developed a new professional clarinet, the CSVR. Yamaha has been a leader in the band and orchestra market for a long time, and they take, in many cases, years to develop, test, and release a new product. Below we have listed some of the key features and benefits and what they mean to the player.

  • It has redesigned keys that offer a comfortable and ergonomic hand placement making it easier for the player to play it longer without fatigue. The new keys also have thicker silver-plating which will make it sound darker and more resonant.
  • It also had a durable leather pad that will ensure a precise seal between pad and the tone hole. This makes it easier for a player to get a consistent sound out of the instrument with a lighter touch enabling more difficult passages to be played more quickly and with less effort.
  • The CSVR also comes with a new Custom barrel design. It causes the clarinet to have a well-balanced response and a rich, warm tone that will help elevate the progressing clarinetist’s playing.

Click on the instrument to the right for a close-up view of the instrument. >>

We have several of these on order, so if you’d like to try one, please let us know so we can contact you when they arrive.

For more information on the clarinet, give us a call at 1800-382-1099 or click the link below.

Scrubbing Bubbles


Below is an excerpt from an article we wrote when we first installed the ultrasonic cleaners in the shop.

Wow 1997! A whole brand new year and a whole brand new piece of equipment in the repair shop. A scrubbing bubbles machine! Technically known as an ultrasonic cleaner.

Over the past years, manufacturers have been forced to come up with methods of cleaning that are environmentally friendly. We have strived to become as chemical friendly in our own shop as well. Unfortunately, the safer the chemicals have become, the less effective they are at getting the grunge, grime, hot chocolate, Coke, Mountain Dew, and lime build up off/out of the instruments.

Fast forward to 2015…As it turns out we were the first ones to use ultrasonic equipment at our level. While industrial equipment had been around for years the equipment needed for our level just did not exist. After working closely with Omegasonics, a manufacturer of ultrasonic equipment in California, we have developed machines over the last 18 years that are now widely used around the world for specifically cleaning musical instruments.

In fact, in order to keep up with ourselves we have recently replaced both our floor model units with the latest developed models. In addition we also have two other table top units that we use for small parts. So we actually have four machines in use daily for cleaning of your, and our, instruments.


Why? Because they simply do a superior job and without the need of toxic chemicals. Which is good for you, us and the environment. The instrument is totally submerged in a liquid solution and the “scubbing bubbles” go to work on every square inch inside and out. No longer concerned about getting cleaning brushes stuck inside or wondering if you got “it” all.

So the next time you might have your instrument “cleaned” elsewhere you should ask "What process do you use?"

The video above shows the ultrasonic cleaner in action. Pay attention to the red grime coming off of both the bell and the valve casings.