How do I oil my flute?

I recently bought a bamboo flute from an online store in China. It was recommended to me by the seller that, since I live in a dry environment, I oil the flute. How do I do this? Where would I get the oil? What is the oil called? Would simply using vegetable oil do the job?

Thank you

6 Answers

  • CoachT
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Bamboo is a vegetable (we eat them) so vegetable oil will do nicely - your objective is to replace the natural oil of the wood in order to close the grain in the wood. Only problem is that it can go rancid and smell really bad if you leave too much not dry. Bamboo oil would be ideal but is very hard to find except online. (

    I use extra virgin olive oil on my recorders and Native American flutes. You can buy woodwind bore oil at your local music store if you want to. Don' use peanut oil - some people are allergic.

    The how - use a swab (I use recorder swab but a clarinet swab will work fine). You don't want to soak the instrument, just lightly coat the bore (inside). Then run a dry swab through to remove excess oil. Then let the flute stand upright overnight for the oil to soak in and dry some. Look into the bore - if it's fairly smooth then you're oiled, if the grain is very pronounced and rough then you need another application.

    Depending on the type of flute, you only want to oil the bore and not the fipple and windway. You'll hear a difference between oiled and dry -- re-oil whenever you hear that or every 6 months.

    Source(s): professional musician (woodwinds)
  • 5 years ago

    Have you tried cleaning it with a soft cloth and then rubbing the two stubborn end pieces that come together of the flute with your hands. Generally the oils that are in your hands should be enough to make foot joint to go on a little smoother.

  • 1 decade ago

    No, you can't just use veg. oil... Go to a local music store, where instruments are sold... You will find many different kinds of oils and the shafts that are used to lubricate them...

    Good luck, it will run you about 20-30 bucks for both the oil and the shaft.

  • Joe H
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    If I had a flute like yours, I would use Murphy's Wood Oil Soap.

    They really take all kinds of wood very seriously.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    vegetable oil will do .

    because bamboo under dry conditions will crack ..

    the point is that it doesn't get too dry ...

    i would suggest almond oil

    or coconut out though .. those are smoother and is odourless...

  • 1 decade ago

    very carefully. (Music store has instrument oil)

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