A Gentle Breeze
In an effort to minimize the effects of moisture inside the Sylphyo, I have added a small USB-powered fan to my setup. It produces a very gentle breeze (a "zephyr" - barely detectable). The idea is to move some dry air through the instrument. This is after I swab with an oboe cloth (actually three of them).
Are there any thoughts about this setup? Possible downsides??
I am using this 25mm fan: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07NC4Z24T/
If more air is needed, there are many 40mm fans available.
Here is my setup:
This is the fan itself:
This is a closeup of the fan in front of the Sylphyo:
... and this is the overall setup. The Fan has a pass-through for power, so I can run the fan and charge the Sylphyo battery at the same time on the charger and cable provided by Aodyo. The charger cable in this image extends off to the right to plug in to the Sylphyo:
@clint It seems rather elaborate. I just use one of these Rico clarinet pad guards to first swab out then it leave inside the bore of the instrument. You get two, one for each half of a clarinet. I use one as a spare. I don't see a need for a fan, but then, I live in Arizona and dry air isn't all that hard to find here.
@rick-novy Yes ... a bit elaborate. After several decades working with wood, cane, and bamboo flutes and the occasionally severe reactions they have to breath moisture, I have a heightened sensitivity to moisture issues.
My Sylphyo has had some "quirky issues" on the first startup of the day. A typical symptom is not responding to some finger pads for the first 30 seconds. Another is erratic response to breath pressure for a short while. The symptoms go away after 30 seconds, so I was "not a big deal", but still concerning.
I am self-diagnosing here, but it did seem to me that the problems happened the day after playing a long time (like 3 hours). They did not seem to happen the day after playing for 1 hour. The finger pads on the front side did seem to have issues (only for the first 30 seconds) if I stored the Syphyo overnight in an upside down position (i.e. front finger pads down). If I stored it front-side-up, even after playing a long time, the finger pads were not affected.
Maybe it is because of my heightened sensitivity, but I started to think that humidity was a contributing culprit. Does a bit of moisture creep out of the bore? Might it "settle" settle on the lower portions of inside of the instrument?
I hesitate to place anything that blocks moisture evaporation into the bore overnight. I have been drying with a silk cloth (oboe cleaner) and leaving it open so it continues to dry.
I have only used the fan for 3 days now, but I have had none of the "quirky issues" since. Time will tell ...
@clint The more I think about this last response of yours, the more I'm coming to the conclusion that the octave sticking issues discussed elsewhere are moisture-driven. Software updates don't seem to fix the problem, and I've noticed it happening well into a playing session or the next day.
I've been using the pad saver because it wicks moisture, but maybe I need to experiment with leaving the sylphyo out and letting the dry Arizona air do its work.
I may do a DOE on this.
@rick-novy In the Native American flute world, everyone leaves their flutes open overnight. It is not possible to clean these instruments with (for example) an oboe cloth, since they are two-chambered instruments with a solid plug between the chambers. Even flutes with small breath holes seem to dry fairly well if left open overnight.
Since I started using the fan, I have had no issues. However, my former issues were minor, very short lived, and I have not played much the past few days (... been deep into setting up Ambisonic IR files for convolution reverbs).
Maybe try this test: see if there is a difference in your symptoms depending on whether you store the Sylphyo with octave keys up or octave keys down.
One observation: If I close the bell port opening completely and breathe (ever so gently) into the Sylphyo, air easily escapes. I have no idea where it is going. But it must be carrying breath moisture and it must go somewhere ...
Oh ... and a disclaimer: I'm guessing and running totally in the dark here. I don't even know if moisture is a potential culprit.
If Aodyo or others have insights or experience in this area, would love to hear their input!
Support_AODYO last edited by
@clint We recommend not leaving any cloth or cleaning rods or anything in your Sylphyo. And for storage we generally recommend leaving it on the bell so that moisture can escape downards. It shouldn't impact it much to leave the Sylphyo on its side either. The inside of the Sylphyo is carefully put together so that moisture doesn't escape into the internal components, so you should not be having an issue with this unless you are putting too much pressure or storing cleaning supplies inside your Sylphyo when not in use.
The fan solutions seems a bit excessive but could work well if you are storing your Sylphyo sideways (instead of standing up on the bell) and want to dry everything out.
@support_aodyo I would be interested to know whether Aodyo has ever performed HAST stress testing on the Sylphyo. In my opinion (as an engineer), moisture is the most likely candidate. If I play for over, say, an hour with a completely dry sylphyo I will start having octave issues eventually during the playing session.
Clint last edited by Clint
@support_aodyo Was not aware of the recommendation to store vertically on its bell. A bit concerned about tipping it over. Also, what it rests on would need to have openings to allow airflow. And ... after I swab out the instrument, there is no condensed moisture that can run out the bottom.
Maybe vertical storage encourages airflow and drying?? ... Something to consider.
So I guess my cradle design ... https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:4801206 ... is not such a good idea. I may need a new design ...