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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
when I got a bareBrass Horn and would like to "seal" it after polishing
I mean seal it with a form of Spray to prevent that the body gets green/red/yellow.....tarnish
Does a sort of spray exist , not a lacquer to prevent tarnish

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43,596 Posts
nothing that you can do to a " unlaquered" horn (aside for lacquer :) ) that would be permanent.
Wax the body and the metal parts that you want to preserve and repeat every now and again ( once every 3-4 months should suffice if you play often)

2,023 Posts
Any one of a number of those "lasts a full year between waxings", resistant to car washes, UV, acid rain, and thermonuclear fallout, products.

They all work pretty well to minimise tarnish- very well in the not frequently handled areas. I do not use them on my sax's but have used them quite a bit on unlacquered trumpets.

DO NOT USE something like "Future" floor wax. Yes, it's very, very, durable. But it will discolor and wind up with a sort of "rainbow" effect with time; and stripping it off is a collosal pain.

2,023 Posts
Just out of curiosity, why would someone want a bare brass horn if they are not going to let it age? Why not get a horn that has a coat of clear lacquer?
-I wouldn't get a bare brass horn
-If you do and you're worried about tarnish you've chosen a tough row to hoe.
-I do not use any waxes on sax exteriors, though I have a couple of old horns where for exclusively cosmetic reasons I enjoy having the interior top five inches or so of the bell shiny and so polish the spots on the inside where the lacquer has worn away over the decades and then wax over it. I generally apply wax on the inside of the bell on all plated horns (silver or gold wash) as well.
-Where the lacquer's gone on the exterior it tarnishes ( "tarnish" is to "patina" as "sweats" is to "glows"). I see this as no big deal on a sax- "the lived in look...".
-I also do not have any purposely delacquered trumpets but am more inclined to keep those shiny and so use wax. Trumpet lacquer seems to wear faster than sax laquer and the horns are far more subject to falling apart from corrosion (clearly virtually all of the structural damage corrosion is from the inside). Having them shiny on the outside makes it easier to spot incipient disaster working out from the inside. More personal preference than anything else; though I have a couple of beat looking trumpets by and large I like them shiny.

Distinguished Technician & SOTW Columnist. RIP, Yo
17,082 Posts
Beeswax is a very sticky product. IMO it would feel awful and hold dust. Carnauba (on its own) is hard, smooth and shiny - what they use on sugar-coated chocolate candy such as Pebbles or Smarties, to stop the sugar coating absorbing moisture from the air. Most formulations, often used by wood-turners, contain other waxes such as beeswax.

Museums use "Renaissance Wax", and variations on this type of "micro-crystaline" formulation, sometimes called "Museum Wax" but I am not sure if it is suitable for items that are going to be handled - what it feels like, and how it may collect dust. Google those terms.

Lacquer is chosen becasue it does the job very well! I recommend it.

Play more; worry less about appearance!

Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2015-
38,824 Posts
Let it go green and moldy and stinking,cant beat it.
"Selmer MKVII Tenor,System 54UL Solid silver neck Tenor,Sakshama King G mp"

No longer a Borgani boy? We'll miss you - 'til you come back.
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