Saxophones How to clean a bari?


Senile Member
Sunny Aberdeenshire
My John Packer Bari arrived today - yippee!! (now very thankful that I don't have close neighbours!) But having played it until my lips were buzzing, I came to clean it (usually use a pull-thru swab and pad saver on alto) only to on earth do I do this without ending up inextricably entangled in it, or even worse, causing some damage to either the instrument or myself??

All helpful advice appreciated!!

Hi Amanda,

Because of the loop design neck, the moisture/condensation tends to collect here.
Simply open the spit-valve before putting Bari down for the last time! You may want to clean your crook and mouthpiece as usual though...

Happy blowing!

Clean a sax? Why?

I have a man to do that for me every few years.
I use a brass slide and tube brush (Jupiter, feder covered with black plastic and brushes in both ends). One end I left kept as it was and the other end I made a bigger brush/swab myself. It's c 110 cm long so I use the small end from the neckjoint and the other from the bell. Works ok. I have a The Martin Baritone (Selective Galvanic Corrosion, you know) so I believe in to keep the tube dry and clean helps to prevent or keep down this “disease” .

What I do is clean the mouthpiece and crook after each playing, drain any moisture out of the spit key (it's actually mostly condensation, not spit) and just put it away. Every now and again I clean round the curly bit with a cloth on a bit of long cotton ribbon. On one end of the ribbon is a flat 14mm nut, wrapped in a bit of clingfilm. I drop this in the crook end and twirl the sax gently round until the nut pulls the ribbon round to where the high D Key is. I open the key, the nut falls through and I can then use the ribbon to pull the cloth round the curly bit. There's another ribbon on the other end to allow me to pull it back again. Cloth goes back and forth a few times cleaning out any crud.
Look for a Hodge Swab. These are silk-covered 'sausages' that you insert in to the upper bow. I wouldn't think they'd do much to an already-gunked up horn, but they'll certainly go a long way to keeping a new bari clean.


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