Re: [Harp-L] Small mp leak

On Mar 9, 2012, at 7:54 PM, Music Cal wrote:

> Thanks Joe. Sounds like you are addressing leaks between slider apparatus
> and comb rather than slider apparatus and mouthpiece (my present interest).
> Is that correct?

That's true. I should have added that to cure leaks in the myriad of mouthpiece parts, I use a wipe of Vaseline on the seams. For stubborn leaks, I use Elmer's glue. After it get's tacky I wipe off the excess. For really OBTUSE leaks, I use caulking compound. 
> Your general construction of the gasket is in-line with what I am thinking
> except for the material.
> I clean my harps regularly by dripping water on the slider and by placing
> the harp mouthpiece-down in a shallow pan of water.

I also dip. I only take a mouthpiece off after many months. And I play a couple times a week. 

> IMO maintaining a clean
> slider is important for hygiene and slider function. So a paper gasket
> seems out-of-the-question as a long-term solution. When it gets wet it will
> fall apart and while intact the porous material will be a nice milieu for
> bacteria.

Correct on the bacteria. I am not too concerned. I would eat something I dropped on the floor if I thought a quick shake would remove the ooglies. lolol
But the paper does hold up. In my case, for years. I have harps 16 years old and my old wooden Hering combs were never truly flat.

Oh, and so I don't forget ...again, while on that subject, you needn't worry too much about leakage from hole to hole via the slide on any chromatic other THAN a Hering. Herings are SOOOOO sensitive that the reeds will sound while you are holding them 1 1/2" (38mm) or more FROM your mouth. With a normal breath. None of the other brands will do that. Ergo, ANY overshot or slur or smear onto a hole you don't want to sound WILL sound. They are NOT forgiving. Other brands are. So,m learning on a Hering will force you to be a cleaner player..accuracy wise. But enough about that.   
> Therefore I am presently considering using 1mm thick (hopefully thinner if
> I can find it) silicone rubber sheet and cutting it in the manner you
> outlined.

That's what I would But back in my time these modern conveniences weren't available. I would soak combs in a 50/50 mixture of Vick's Vapo Rub and mineral oil, Use #2 safety pins for springs, cut reeds from various electrical components..(automobile points...electrical contact relays, etc.) A lot of what I do (but not all) has been covered in several books. Blackie Schackner's 2 books 'What you wanted to know about harmonica, but didn't know whom to ask'  & 'Harmonica repairs'. And Doug Tate's books on repair and maint. 

I don't claim to be the originator of anything. I don't think any one knows the originators. Harmonica players have always been ingenious when it came to maint. & repairs. I always said: "Unless you learn to do your own work, it could cost you a small fortune to PLAY harp". 
> Has anybody here worked with thin silicone sheets? Any suggestions?

I have used 1mm closed cell foam, mylar, cellophane, card stock, and my current favorite is something called Hypalon (used for repairs on inflatable boats). . But several techs should have some excellent answers. 

> Music Cal

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