We hope you enjoy your instrument. Please take the time to read the information below in order to keep it in its best condition.
Caring for your instrument
French horns are expensive instruments and great care should be taken when handling them. Always return the instrument to its case when not being used.
After Each Use
Use a 'lacquer finish polishing cloth' or a household duster to wipe off fingermarks. Do not use any type of cleaning solution and do not use any harsh or abrasive cleaning materials as this may damage the finish. Remove the mouthpiece and put it in the appropriate compartment to avoid it damaging the instrument during transit. Should you find the mouthpiece is stuck, do not attempt to force it apart! Take it to your teacher who will have a special tool to remove it easily.
The rotary valves should be regularly oiled with a drop of rotary valve oil (do not use other oils). You should ask your teacher to show you how to do this if you are not familiar. If the instrument is left unplayed for any duration it should be regularly oiled to keep the valves from sticking.
Slides should be greased with either Vaseline or slide cream so that they don't jam.
Always clean the mouthpiece thoroughly with warm water. An accumulation of deposits in either mouthpiece or mouthpipe can have a very adverse effect on the performance of the instrument. Once cleaned, gently place the mouthpiece back into the receiver and twist lightly to seat it properly. Do not force the mouthpiece by hitting it with the palm of your hand as this can cause the mouthpiece to become stuck or 'frozen'. An easy twisting motion is all that is needed to ensure a firm fit.
If you find that after leaving your instrument for a length of time that the valves have become stuck, do not force them to open or close as you will likely either snap the string or bend the mechanism. In this instance please contact Leicestershire Music for advice.
If you need advice about tuning, there are a wealth of tutorials available on Youtube which will show you what to do whilst also providing the relevant tuning notes for your instrument.