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  • Writer's pictureTony Peri - Owner of Reedworks Pty Ltd

Why You Should Never Put Oil On Your Chromatic Harmonica Mouthpiece

Updated: Jul 16, 2022

This week I got another chromatic harmonica full of oil that did not work properly. This one was an East Top T16-64 and it was brand new. The vendor put oil all over the mouthpiece.

Let's be clear - oil and water dont mix; valves dont work with oil under them ; and reeds clog up if they are full of oil. Its a bad idea. Its also a lot of unnecessary work to clean, revalve and service the harmonica.

All you need to do is clean your mouthpiece and dry it. For 100 years chromatic harmonicas have been made and they do not put oil in them in the factory. Oil, saliva, dust, whatever just makes a mess.

If you've read you can do it, dont believe it. I keep getting repairs and the harmonicas are soaked with oil which leaks into the instrument and then it does not work. Just clean it or get me to clean it, just like how it was meant to be when it was made in the factory.

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