I'm fanatical about cleaning harps....I bet more than anyone in the world! A
total Howard Hughes. I play like 300 days a year (yes I'm bragging) and if I
can I will try to clean all my harps That I played recently) everyday!
There's like two ways to do it the right way Makes 'em JUST LIKE New) and
the wrong way makes em a little better. Both are described below. I've had
harps for years just cause I kept them clean all the time and they look new
too! Yes I tune them as well but not as often as I use to have to because of
the S.R. OCD Cleaning Ritual. If you keep your harps clean you'll avoid rust
on the outside, rust on the inside, rust and this green battery acid stuff
on the reeds that gathers on the back of them weighing them down and making
the reeds actually play a little flat. So many things! Clogging,bending the
whole performance is totally messed up on the harp! Here's what to do! It's
totally time consuming but you can re work the harp while doing this too.!
Most of you will never do this and complain about your bank account later I
don't blame you! Doing this sucks but it will SAVE you money and prolong the
life of your Harps by months.

1.) The right way: 

A. Get a bottle or two of 91% isoporol (Mis spelled) rubbing
alcohol.*(Barbecue Bob turned me on to this stuff like 15 years ago it WONT
rust your harps and WILL clean them a lot better than WATER) Get some little
screw drivers. Get some cloth/fabric that wont leave little pieces of lint
all over. Get some free time tell your boy friend/girlfriend to leave you
alone and find a flat surface to sit down at for you cleaning/meditation

B. Poor the rubbing alcohol into a glass or plastic cup fill it almost to
the top. Take the cover plates off. The first thing you'll see is all this
rust and brown crap mostly on the inside of the Draw/bottom cover plate
towards the front/blowing/drawing part of the harp. Scrape it off with the
biggest small flat head screw driver, do this anywhere you see junk or this
clear crusty/flakey junk, this stuff takes away from how bright and nice
your harp sounds plus it breaks away on it's own during active or inactive
use and clogs reeds!. Drop it into the cup of clear sweet booze and do the
blow cover plate as well. The same way.

C. Take all the reeds (Blow and Draw plates) off! Find the small screw
driver (flat head or some metallic brush thing (I've never used that) and
scrape (LIGHTLY!) every single read till the green stuff and other gook is
off. Top and bottom you'll notice this stuff is usually heavier on one side
of the reed and it's different for blow/draw reeds. Drop both reed plates
into the cup of alcohol. 

D. Take the cover plates out since they have been in there for a while, and
scrape them again LIGHTLY and drop them back in there one last time. Take
the reeds out next and do it again...scrape each reed lightly! (as long as
your doing this you might as well do it right) drop the reed plates back in
the cup of 91%.You will notice more and more dirt/gook/rust gathering at the
bottom of the cup of alcohol every time you do this. Shake the cup around
too with out spilling. If your smoking and have a cup of water (ash tray)
next to this cup don’t mix the two up or you could cause a small explosion.
It was pretty funny!

E. Finally take the cover plates out and wipe them off firmly with the
fabric/towel it should make a nice squeaking sound. Then do the reeds wipe
each individual reed off both sides with the fabric firmly but carefully and
the cover plate itself which I hope you scraped and cleaned too.

F. Now is the time if your into this stuff. To re-set
action/emboss/re-emboss or put curves into reeds! If your not into this be
careful when you wipe the Individual reeds off so you don't accidentally
change your past set conveyer belt, machine manufactured crappy action from
the big harp company. you can do this while the reeds are off or on the comb
or both which I do.

G. if you have a plastic comb drop it in the alcohol too then scrape/flick
all the stuff out of the rungs in the comb. If you have a wood one (LIGHTLY)
sand with a fine grit sand paper the inside of the comb (if not sealed) If
the comb has been sealed as in a new Hohner MB or a
Filisko/Sleigh/Gordon/Meehan/Pearl/Moyer don't do any of this to the
comb!!!!! Call the maker.

H. Now put the harp back together if your playing a Golden melody or a
Special 20 Just put three screws back in the three holes on the back of the
harp that run diagonally down the cover plates, this will hold the reeds in
air tight just fine and next time your messing around with the harp you'll
have to do less work. I don't know about this three screw thing with other
models Cause I've never done it. The Cover plates will hold the rest of the
reeds down air tight once there screwed in again Check the action one more
time and reed curves and tuning and everything before you screw the cover
plates back on by just holding them in place while you blow. Taste the
alcohol and realize your poisoning yourself blame me later. Go to a A.A.
meeting, Screw the Cover plates back on.

I. Your done! The harp sounds and plays like BRAND NEW. You can't believe
it. Write me, Jason Ricci and e-mail me and Harp Talk and Harp L with how
amazed you are with "The Sexy Rocker's compulsive O.C.D. cleaning ritual"
and visit my site HYPERLINK
"outbind://6/www.jasonricci.com"www.jasonricci.com Download free live shows,
burn copies for your friends, buy all my CD's and come to my shows.

2.) The wrong way

A.) Drop the entire Harp (plastic comb only) into the cup of alcohol. Bat it
out on your Knee, Scrape some stuff out of the inside carefully with one of
the little screw rivers and wipe off the outside cover plates till you here
the squeaking noise. Set them on a towel so the holes point down and the
alcohol can drip out wait for them to dry then play. I do this when I don't
have time for the other way.

No virus found in this outgoing message.
Checked by AVG Anti-Virus.
Version: 7.0.323 / Virus Database: 267.8.12/46 - Release Date: 7/11/2005

This archive was generated by a fusion of Pipermail 0.09 (Mailman edition) and MHonArc 2.6.8.