Maintenance & Repair

Harmonica Maintenance

You can easily call or text me at 1(204)796-0906. I'm also happy to have a video call with you and discuss the repairs required. I will gladly point you in the direction of resources for learning harmonica maintenance and customization, and perhaps highlight some work that you may be able to do on your own. I insist that you get the right solution for your harmonica issue, and sometimes that means that I don't make a cent. That's OK by me!

IMPORTANT! Please be sure to CONTACT ME FIRST before you send any harmonicas to me. We will have a detailed discussion to determine what you want done, whether I can do it for you, and to allow me to determine if any special parts or items are required in order to complete the job to your satisfaction.

Seydel Harmonicas

I am a certified Seydel Service Partner, authorized by the SEYDEL (C.A.S.S.) harmonica factory to assemble, customize, and repair SEYDEL harmonicas in any way, including warranty service.

Click here to LEARN MORE about the Seydel Warranty.

Of course, I work on all brands of harmonica, so read on for more details regarding the services I can offer you!

Diatonic Maintenance & Repair

Standard maintenance of a 10-hole diatonic harmonica will usually cost about $20. This includes disinfection, general cleaning, freeing any stuck reeds, reed profiling, gapping, and touch-up tuning. Broken reeds can often be replaced for about CAD $10 each.

Replacement combs by Andrew Zajac are available for many models. If you have a custom comb that you would like installed, send it along with your harmonica, and I can install it for you.

Reed replacement is not available on diatonic harmonicas assembled using welded reeds, but full replacement reed plates may be available for select brands. Due to the unavailability of individual replacement reeds, we will not replace reeds on Suzuki, Lee Oskar, or Kongsheng harmonicas, even when they are riveted. An exception may apply if you are able to provide a "donor" reed plate from a matching harmonica from which a replacement reed can be harvested.

Chromatic Maintenance & Repair

Chromatic harmonica work depends on the model and the extent of the service required, starting at around $50. This includes disinfection, general cleaning, freeing stuck reeds, touch-up tuning, valve repair, and slide mechanism adjustments. Broken reeds can often be replaced for about CAD $10 each on Seydel and select Hohner models. Replacement reed plates may be available for other chromatics.

Every chromatic harmonica is different. Estimates are provided upon request for all harmonica repairs, and are especially important in the case of these instruments, and there may be a number of options available to you. Som older harmonicas require certain upgrades (nails upgraded to screws, for example) by the very nature of their age and the other repairs required. This will always be discussed with the client before work commences.

Replacement combs are often available, including stock combs, and specialty items such as Brendan Power's "Power Combs" for wooden combed Hohner Chromatics.

Other Kinds of Harmonicas

If you have a Tremolo, Octave, Bass, Chord, or other harmonica that needs service or repair, please reach out to me to ensure that the parts are available to facilitate your repair. As with chromatic instruments, there are many factors that may effect the repairability of your particular harmonica.

Shipping

When shipping within Canada, it is recommended that harmonicas be sent in a sturdy box, wrapped in bubble wrap or packing material. The harmonica's original box will provided added protection, but is no substitute for a sturdy package to enclose the entire parcel. We want to ensure that your harmonica arrives in one piece.

I recommend that you use one of Canada Post's trackable services, such as Xpresspost, so that you can track the shipment. Canada Post provides an option for additional Liability Coverage, which is often $100 on most trackable packages, and you can add additional coverage for only a few dollars. Anytime that you mail something of value, it is always in your best interest to ensure that your packages is covered for a value which will cover the loss of your harmonicas, should the worst happen.

I always return items to Canadian customers via a tracked and insured Canada Post product, at the best rate I am able to secure. Please discuss with me if you would like shipping via another provider, or expedited shipping options. 

Reed Replacements

You may have a harmonica (or a whole bunch) that you can't play anymore because a reed has gone "terminally flat." Sometimes the reed breaks off entirely, gets stuck in the reed slot, or just stops making noise. That is something that I can fix for you! Broken reeds can often be replaced for about CAD $10 each.

I can replace the reed on most harmonicas with riveted reeds. While I'm at it, I can also perform any minor cosmetic or tuning “touch-ups” that may help your harmonica play like new again. If your harmonica has welded rather than riveted reeds, I may still be able to help. Fill out the contact form below, and I’ll let you know if single reed replacement is reasonable option for you! 

What else can I help you with?

There are a variety of ways that I can help you with harmonica technical work. If you’re interested in any of he following, then please feel free to contact me and we can discuss the scope of the work needed, and how I can best help you.

  • Basic Tuning

    • Re-Tuning an out-of-tune harmonica

    • Country Tuning

    • Paddy-Richter Tuning

  • More Complex Tuning

    • Natural Minor Tuning (includes an intonation adjustment)

    • Alternate intonation structures (Limit 7, 11, 19?)

    • Full-harmonica 1/2 step adjustment to create accidental keys

  • Much More Complex Tuning

    • Brendan Power’s “PowerDraw” and “PowerBender” tunings

    • Will Wilde’s “Wilde Tuning”

    • “Ostrich” tuning… (But seriously… why would you do this to a harmonica?)

  • Reed and Reedplate Work

    • Reed Alignment

    • Reed Repair / Shaping

    • Reed Replacement

    • Reed plate and comb flattening

    • Embossing and gapping

    • Over-blow setups

    • Half-valving

  • Comb Work

    • Replacement Combs

    • Comb Flattening

  • Something else? Just ask!

Would you throw away a guitar if you broke a string, or the volume knob was a bit crackly? Of Course NOT! Don’t throw away a perfectly good harmonica!

If your harmonica is otherwise in working condition, but is just sounding a bit stiff and unresponsive, than I can help! If reeds are fractured, broken, or “terminally flat” then I can replace them.

Beyond Repair

Warranty

New and custom Seydel harmonicas, as well as factory authorized repair work, is covered by Seydel's warranty.

Any new harmonica which I sell will be covered for one free reed replacement within the first 30 days after you have received your harmonica. Reed replacement services will be $5 per reed for the next 11 months, after which regular service rates will apply. This warranty does not cover instruments to which you have done your own maintenance, other than regular cleaning. This warranty will not apply to any instrument drop-shipped directly from a supplier to a customer, which have not passed through my shop for a pre-sale inspection.

Unrepairable

Occasionally I'll come across an instrument which cannot be repaired. Some are too old, do not have replacement parts available, or are in a conditions where repairs would not be advisable. If that is the case, I'll coordinate with you for return of your instrument. I will gladly research other harmonica technicians who may specialize in your instrument, and may be able to provide service. This highlights the importance of contacting me BEFORE sending me your instruments so shipping charges can be avoided entirely.

Self-Repair

I frequently conduct virtual calls with my clients to discuss their instruments, and trouble-shoot the issues they are experiencing. On several occasions we have been able to work together to identify the issue, and the customer was able to repair or correct the issue on their own. I do not charge for this service. I'm happy to help!

Estimates

I am happy to provide estimates of work after a detailed inspection of the instrument. Unfortunately, I am unable to give an accurate assessment prior to physically handling the instrument and investigating all possible courses of action. If an estimate is requested, and subsequently declined, a $25 handling feel will be charged in addition to return shipping rates. If the estimate is accepted, there will be no handling charges.

Additional Services

From time to time, I will come across possible improvements to the services that we discussed. This may come in the form of surplus inventory, new processes, vintage hardware, or just about anything else. I always ask the customer first to see if it is right for them, their harmonica, their playing style, and most importantly, their budget. There will be no surprise upgrades with surprise charges attached.

 

My location, and other ways to find me!

My shop is located in Russell, Manitoba, Canada. Work can be hand delivered to me, or mailed to my location.

Alternatively, you can fill out the CONTACT form on this website, or email me at woozle@woozleeffect.com. I’ll get back to you ASAP!

All the best!

-Rob Laferriere
The Woozle Effect
Russell, Manitoba, Canada