Keeping your child’s instrument secure will ultimately be their job. However, because an instrument can be an expensive investment, you’ll want to help them keep the instrument out of harm’s way. In addition, your child will have an easier time building strong practice habits if their instrument is easy to access. Here are some tips to make sure you store your child’s instrument safely and properly.
Use Hanging Racks
Many instruments can easily hang on a display rack on the wall or a bookcase. However, take care to drape the instrument to reduce dust gathering in crevices. Plastic or cloth bags will work well for this temporary wrapping. These racks can simply be brackets that cradle the top of the neck where the instrument naturally flares. Never hang any stringed instrument by the tuning pegs. Before practice, the instrument should be carefully removed from the drape or cloth bag, checked for dust or resin buildup, and tuned.
Control the Climate
Many instruments can be easily ruined if not kept in a proper environment. Instruments, especially wooden ones, can be damaged by extremes in temperature and humidity. To prevent problems such as cracking in the instruments, make sure you store them in a place where the climate is controlled. Never store your child’s instrument (especially wooden instruments) in a place that gets extremely cold without insulating it first with a blanket or something similar. Otherwise, it could crack. Try to find an instrument case that has a means of measuring humidity levels. Then, if the levels get dangerously low, you can purchase special humidifiers made for the instrument to bring the humidity levels back to where they need to be.
Store it in a Secured Storage Cabinet
If your child is playing a stringed instrument, work to keep the humidity in your home consistent. Whenever possible, keep the instrument behind a glass cabinet door to protect it from damage, keep it visible and maintain consistent humidity. Make sure the cabinet is firmly attached to the wall to avoid your child tugging too hard and pulling it over. A furniture anchor will secure the cabinet to the wall to avoid tipping over and damaging the instruments or a loved one.
Use the Proper Case
Make sure that your child has a place to store their instrument case. After each practice session, have them show you how they take the instrument apart if required, and how they close and latch the case. One badly bent valve will make a trumpet unusable. Repairs are costly and time-consuming. If your child falls out of the practice habit while the instrument is in the shop, they may struggle to return to it. Make sure wind players have the proper lubricants, valve oil, reeds, and spit rags to keep things tidy.
Instrument care is part of being a musician. A flute left lying around will likely suffer key damage. Violin bows are vulnerable to breakage. Assist your child in the early stages and monitor them as they build strong instrument-handling habits.
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