Cleaning Process



  • I've been working with the Sylphyo for a month now, and have developed a cleaning process. I wanted to share it with the community and get any input / feedback on how best to maintain the Sylphyo.

    There is an official video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yeQnAdzUxvU. See also threads on this forum at https://community.aodyo.com/topic/41/cleaning-inside and https://community.aodyo.com/topic/245/cleaning-tips.

    Things that failed for me:

    • Wrapping a paper cloth around a straw. Both are soft enough, but the cleaning is incomplete and lots of moisture remains.

    • Cutting a micro-fiber cloth into a long strip for use with the straw method. The edge of the cloth sheds fuzz and particles - bad idea inside the instrument!

    My current procedure that seems the best:

    1. Power. I turn the Sylphyo off and disconnect the charging chord.

    2. Mouthpiece. After playing, I remove the mouthpiece and forcibly blow air "backwards" (upstream - from the round end to the small square "top" end) to expel as much moisture as possible. I do it upstream because it accelerates more air through the top end. I don't yet have a good way to pass a cloth through the mouthpiece. Wondering if I could just run the plastic mouthpiece (and O-ring) under water.

    3. Tape. I remove the tape over the "Bell port" - the small exit hole at the bottom of the Sylphyo.

    4. Tapping. I invert the Sylphyo with the blue ring down and gently tap, tap, tap the instrument onto an absorbent microfiber cloth doubled up on my thigh for maybe 20 seconds. If I have played a while (more than 15 minutes), a significant amount of moisture taps out.

    5. Cleaning. I run two silk cleaning cloths at the same time completely through the Sylphyo, inserting in the blue ring end and pulling them out through the bell port. They are the two blue cloths in this photo:

    SylphyoCleaning_ThreeCloths_1200c10.jpg

    ... These blue cloths are made by Hodge ...

    SylphyoCleaning_HodgeLogo_800c20.jpg

    ... and are available on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001M5CZR8

    The blue silk cloths are 4" wide at their widest point. Each has a weight on a string at one end and an unweighted "retrieval" string at the other end - in case the cloth gets stuck and has to be pulled out backwards. I have found that two cloths used together do a better job of cleaning than a single cloth. I have also found that pulling the cloths slowly (maybe 10 seconds) does a much better job than pulling them quickly.

    To use the two blue cloths together, I insert the weighted strings into the "neck" of the Sylphyo (at the blue collar) with a slight offset:

    SylphyoCleaning_OffsetWeights_800c10.jpg

    ... which allows both weights and strings to pass through the bell port at the distal (bottom) end of the instrument.

    I have also tried the clarinet cloth by Hodge (the burgundy cloth in the photo above) but it is (A) too wide for the bell port of the Sylphyo and (B) has no retrieval string.

    1. Inspection. I have had good luck checking the interior by sighting down the barrel of the instrument from the blue collar to the bell port. If I point the bell port at a light bulb, it lights up the interior walls of the airway and I can look for any remaining moisture. Here's the best photo I could muster:

    SylphyoCleaning_BoreView_800c10.jpg

    1. Air Dry. I leave the Sylphyo open, without the mouthpiece, to air-dry when I am not playing it.

    That's it! Any feedback, ideas, or advice is appreciated.



  • Note on #3 above ... it should really read:

    1. Tape. I remove the tape I use to partially cover the "Bell port" - the small exit hole at the bottom of the Sylphyo. This tape increases back pressure and reduces the amount of air needed for playing.

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