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 Post subject: Stick wash
PostPosted: 27.03.2008, 13:31 
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Joined: 17.03.2006, 21:22
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Location: Zurich, Switzerland
Sometimes when we get new instruments, they're rather dusty and dirty from all kinds of stuff that has settled not only on the outside but also on the bore as well. Furthermore, the bores often contain pieces of termite cake that still stick to the walls and various other stuff. These various bits and pieces often come out by themselves after some time, sometimes up to year after getting here, but for oiling and other maintenance works, it would be better to start with a relatively clean bore.

Now, I've heard of people flushing out bores with water, and I think if it's a one-off thing that doesn't take long, it wouldn't do any harm to the instruments. Of course, I wouldn't do that with artistic ochre instruments.

Has anyone ever rinsed out the bore of their instruments and with what effect?

Or what else, if anything, are people using to clean out bores? Bottle brushes?


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PostPosted: 27.03.2008, 15:43 
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Joined: 18.03.2006, 03:07
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Location: Pennsylvania, USA
I leave them be ;)

The last batch of sticks I got from Guan smuggled a bit of Arnhemland's finest red dirt and some termite cake along for the ride! And at least on one occasion, a centipede hitchhiked along as well. :shock:


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PostPosted: 27.03.2008, 15:48 
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Joined: 18.03.2006, 13:53
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Location: Bantry, Ireland
A compressor with a pistol attachment might work well
Big snag: you need access to a compressor ;-)


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PostPosted: 27.03.2008, 15:50 
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Joined: 11.04.2006, 09:37
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Location: England - but would rather be out sailing in the Med
Hi Chris,

I have flushed out the bore on two of my instruments with water at different times with similar results.

The first was during the yolongu workshop several years back with Matt Bartlet, where we were advised by our Aboriginal teachers to ‘go into the loos and flush fresh water through our instruments’. Many of the instruments were sounding dry and underplayed. The following day my own flushed instrument split near the mouthpiece. Easily repaired with PVA and sawdust, but this was the only time this particular heavy and solid yidaki has ever split, despite many years of irregular playing.

The second time was at Tapeley last year with my newly acquired Bob B mago. Lovely stick but its wide clean bore dried out very quickly making it hard for me (at the time) to get a decent drone going. Answer, a good flush through with water……Er, played really well for a time then split in at least half a dozen places, some quite wide. All now fixed and resolved with gorilla glue, with the pure ocher paints retouched. No trace of my earlier misdemeanor remains.

I do not put water through my instruments any more and do not recommend the practice.

Paul

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PostPosted: 27.03.2008, 17:44 
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Joined: 22.03.2006, 18:17
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Location: NYC, NY
I've not attempted water...... but have reversed the hose on my vacuum cleaner and been able to blow them ( with a bit more pressure ) pretty clean a few times........ :wink:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: 28.03.2008, 09:15 
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Joined: 18.03.2006, 13:53
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Location: Bantry, Ireland
Christian, it's just occurred to me that garages, petrol stations and car washes sometimes have compressors with air pistols available for customer use. While they might not be too happy if you turn up with 84 sticks and monopolise the facility for hours on end, you could at least test how it works.

You could also test this while you're at it:

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Picture credit goes to Vince http://didgeworld.com/vince


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: 31.03.2008, 12:27 
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Joined: 17.03.2006, 21:22
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Location: Zurich, Switzerland
Thanks all!

I think I'll go for the vacuum and/or bottlebrush-on-a-wire approach then.

Would be easier to drill them all out and varnish them to get a nice, clear bore though :wink:


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PostPosted: 31.03.2008, 13:06 
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Location: Bantry, Ireland
:idea: What about taping them all end-to-end and then sandblasting them out ? :idea:


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PostPosted: 31.03.2008, 15:18 
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Joined: 24.08.2006, 00:30
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Location: dacusville, south carolina
http://www.sioux.com/pdfs/industry_pdfs/WHY%20STEAM.pdf


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PostPosted: 31.03.2008, 15:39 
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Location: Zurich, Switzerland
Erm, John (Bylund), afaik steam is used to bend wood.

Now, we don't want all our sticks to go limp, do we? :wink:


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PostPosted: 31.03.2008, 15:55 
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Joined: 24.08.2006, 00:30
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Location: dacusville, south carolina
seriouschris wrote:
Erm, John (Bylund), afaik steam is used to bend wood.

Now, we don't want all our sticks to go limp, do we? :wink:

maybe,maybe not :wink:

What is steam vapor?
Steam vapor describes a system that produces a high-temperature, low-moisture vapor. The vapor contains only 5% water and is much less dense than the air we breathe. Over the past few years, you have been exposed to products being promoted as steam cleaners that in fact use no steam at all—maybe warm water on a good day. Theses so called "steam machines" spray on large amounts of water using quantities described in "gallons per minute." You may ask, "Where's the steam?" A vapor steam cleaner, by contrast, is equipped to safely produce thousands of gallons of vapor using only about 1.5 quarts of water per hour. This significant difference relates directly to the versatility and capabilities of vapor steam cleaners. It is unlike anything you have used before. Cleaning with vapor is mess free with temperatures hot enough to kill bacteria and germs, or emulsify grease and oil. The vapor steam cleaner is also quiet and portable so it can be used anywhere at anytime.
http://www.vapor-systems.com/vapor_learning_center/basics-beyond.html
I am trying my best to aviod spelling 8)


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PostPosted: 07.04.2008, 23:40 
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Location: Zurich, Switzerland
Here's the latest episode of the bore thing and why it's sometimes advisable to have a good look at what's inside. Today, some new sticks arrived from a somewhat remoter area of Arnhemland. The sticks were already rather dusty when I selected them but today, we got one live spider, several small ants (I hope they weren't termites - would make a pretty lawsuit for my landlords) and saddest of all, a little gecko. The poor fellow fell out of one of the instruments when I put it on one of my stands. I thought it was dead but when I picked it up with a piece of paper, the poor creature still twitched a little. The shipment has left its origin almost a month ago (got seriously delayed) and the gecko has spent 4 weeks without food or water and was so terribly dehydrated and bruised that I had to cull it. Much to the horror of my kids who have helped me unpacking.

So, it really is surprising (and sometimes disturbing) what one can find in these bores.


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PostPosted: 08.04.2008, 01:22 
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Joined: 02.04.2008, 05:09
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Location: 8" Zone, Georgia
awww!
i would have sprayed him down, and gave him some small crickets...
but that's just me.

Hey, serious chris, you got any good "B" or "A" keyed didges for sale?

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 Post subject: Re: Stick wash
PostPosted: 24.09.2008, 15:58 
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Joined: 29.01.2008, 01:46
Posts: 3
Location: Oregon, USA
I'm actually really glad to hear that all those critters made it through alive. I've always assumed that anything marked as an agricultural product would get fumigated and/or irradiated. When Lewis Burns flew in last month with about 15 raw didges U.S. customs refused to let a single one into the country. They were confiscated and burned. Supposedly as an unfinished product they could contain spiders, termites, or possibly even a gecko. Slap a little ocre on there and they ought to pass right through.


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 Post subject: Re: Stick wash
PostPosted: 13.10.2008, 13:38 
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Joined: 18.03.2006, 05:35
Posts: 307
Location: Alpine , California
Careful on inserting anything- I had tons of termite junk in a bore that i was trying to persuade out- i succeeded in cracking a small wood web. It produced a rattle sound while playing. It was quite difficult getting a tool up the bore to break that web off. Its a great stick but I have learned to be careful poking around in there now. Didnt fing any geckos, spiders, or termites- I think Ben kept them for himself. Lewis really got the shaft this time- it seems the rules are made up by the inspectors as he has brought in many batches without incedent before. Too bad as there were folks waiting to make his didges. Youv'e got a great idea Chad- can't destroy them if they are 'finished'. Next add "these are cerimonial sticks" to the claim and he ought to get them through. Air sounds like the best choice and is what i will do next time.

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