How to Sanitise the Mouthpiece of a Cornet

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How to Sanitise the Mouthpiece of a Cornet

The cornet is similar to a trumpet in that it is also a brass instrument, which produces sound through tubular air vibrations.  The shape and design of a cornet may make it a bit difficult to clean for an inexperienced person, but even if the entire instrument cannot be cleaned, the mouthpiece should still undergo the occasional sanitisation. Remove the cornet mouthpiece and follow the cleaning steps below.


Gather Cleaning Items

There is not much needed to sanitise your cornet mouthpiece except some boiling water, a mouthpiece brush, and a towel. However, if a mouthpiece brush is not available, the same or similar effect can be achieved with a narrow stick or pencil wrapped in napkin or hand towel.


Prepare the Solution

The solution only consists of hot water, but a mild detergent such as dishwashing liquid can be added if there is a buildup of dirt or grime. Put the water in a bowl and ensure that it is enough to cover the entire cornet mouthpiece. Place the mouthpiece in the water for no longer than two minutes; excessive soaking may damage the finish of the instrument. The same solution can be used for a trumpet mouthpiece as well.


Cleaning the Instrument

When the cornet mouthpiece is removed from the water, place it on a clean dry towel to remove excess water. Use the cornet mouthpiece brush to gently brush inside and outside the mouthpiece until all traces of dirt are gone. Rinse the mouthpiece in lukewarm water without any detergent and then allow the mouthpiece to drain on a clean, dry towel.  If you do not have a mouthpiece brush and are using the alternative, you may need to change the napkin once or twice before inside the shaft is clean. You can use a soft bristle toothbrush to clean the outside of the mouthpiece if necessary. Optionally, you can choose to use a soft dry cloth to buffer the mouthpiece to a natural shine. This can be done for the outer part of the entire cornet as well. If you have a dedicated mouthpiece disinfectant, you can choose to use it now, but it is not required.


Reassemble and Maintenance

Blow into the mouthpiece before reassembling to ensure that there is nothing accidentally lodged or left in it. Once reassembled, you want to keep the mouthpiece sanitary to reduce the need for excessive cleansing.  Do not eat just before playing the cornet and do not chew gum before or while playing. If you must eat before, ensure that your mouth is rinsed thoroughly before you start playing. Food particles can become lodged into the cornet and over time can result in the need for more frequent sanitisation and may also affect the cornet's sound.

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