Thursday, May 15, 2014

Buying at a Show?

Powell display at the 2013 NFA Convention
Since we're getting ready for the 2014 NFA, we thought it would be a good time to talk about purchasing flutes at a show.  At Powell, if you choose to buy a flute that is on display at our booth, you may be surprised to find out that it has to go back to the shop first -- and then on to you.  So, what exactly happens when it comes back?  We spoke with Repair Technician, Rachel Baker, to find out...

Rachel told us that she essentially does a COA (clean, oil, adjust) on the flute.  She said, specifically, that she does the following steps, in order:

1) Takes everything apart
2) Polishes the body
3) Checks soldered tone holes for any leaks
4) Checks the pads and adjustments
5) Hand polishes the keys
6) Puts the flute back together and does a "play in"
7) Fits the headjoint
8) Puts the flute in a new case

Because the flute has been travelling to and from the event, Rachel says she just wants to make sure that everything is okay.  She said that purchasing a flute that has been on display is actually a good thing, because the flute is really stable and really "settled in" from being played at the show.  She also said that because every flute is handmade, they each have a slightly different character and personality.  So a brand new one -- even if it is the same model -- may vary slightly from the one you tried at the show.  That being said, Rachel advises that "if you fall in love with one particular flute at the show, you should get it."  If you are trying flutes at a show just to get an idea and are open to a new model of the one you tried, you can always order a new one to purchase.  You can also request a trial online on our website at

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