Hohner 20

Hohner Special 20 dismantling?

I have an old, abused Hohner 20 that the kids have been playing with, and want to clean it up. I know it won't play like new, or maybe at all, but I'd rather learn to set up/tune/modify on an old harp that a new one. The reedplates on this harp are held in with nails, but I've heard that they can still be disassembled. What is the proper way to do this?

Good points above from Martin

Special 20's have been made with plastic combs for a really long time. I don't think they've ever been made of wood. Are you sure you don't have a Marine Band?

Special 20's are easy to disassemble with two screw-drivers. One flat to remove the cover plates, and a Philips to take the reed plates off the comb.

Martin's right. Check for debris. Then use something to "plink" each reed. (gently pluck) and see that it moves freely. If you want to tune, you'll need a tuner, a file, and some time. If you don't play harp yet, your time/money would be much better invested in a new harp.

Cleaning harps can be done with rubbing alcohol, but let it dry thoroughly so you don't ingest any.

Soaking in water (of a wood combed harp) may work for a short while, but the wood will contract and become worse when it dries. The brass will corrode faster, negating any positive effects. You'd be better off sealing the comb with beeswax.

Again, if you don't play harp, what's the difference? You don't really know what's right sounding or wrong.

So spend the $20-30, get a new Sp 20, Big River, pocket pal, or Marine Band.

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Then go to youtube and get free lessons.

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