buying a flute without having metal allergic reactions – 1

words wtage

22nd November 2018

i used to play the flute when i was younger.

i played on a sankyo silver flute, though i do not remember which model exactly i had.

sankyo flutes manufacturing company is a japanese flute maker established in 1968, half a century ago at the time of writing.


i first played the flute when i was eight years old at home as my father was an amateur flautist, and had a private teacher since the age of nine.

when i had my first lesson with my teacher, she was wowed by my flute.

it was definitely not for a beginner, rather it was an intermediate/semi-professional flute to which my father gifted.


i really enjoyed playing the flute for a few years.

but as i focused on my academic study at school, i had little time to play the flute.

my school was not the right place to take music seriously.


i could have kept playing the flute in my spare time, but i had so many other things that occupied my life at that time.

i stopped playing the flute for nearly a decade.

however i always enjoy listening to music, especially classical, and i have recently decided to start playing the flute once again.

i just thought as i finished my study at university, i wanted something else to focus on, other than my work.


so i decided to get one, but there is a problem.

i am allergic to some metals, or so i thought as i had allergic reactions on my chin when i was younger.

i needed to get a metal allergic test.


i could choose either a blood test or a metal patch skin test, and opted for the latter.

here are a couple of pictures if you are curious.

those may be unpleasant for you. you have been warned.


[warning: graphic content] pictures of the metal allergic patch test

the bottom picture is the result. 

i have found out what metals i am allergic to.

on the one hand, i am glad that i could know what metals to choose and what to avoid.

on the other hand, this means that i can only choose a pure silver, gold, or non-metal flute.

if i only have allergic reactions on my chin, i could choose a head joint or a lip plate and possibly a riser made of one of those materials mentioned above.

but i am not sure if i will have allergic reactions on my hands.

it would be best if i avoid any contact with metals i am allergic to.


gold flutes (5k, 10k, 14k, 18k, 24k) are beyond my budget, so options for me are either a pure silver or a wooden flute.

i see a wooden flute is a ‘step-up’ flute.

granadilla is often used for wooden flutes, and those flutes have lovely mellow timbre that i love. 

it can crack so special care is needed. 

moisturising with oil, playing just a little bit at the beginning especially if it is brand new and gradually longer, maintain well in a controlled temperature and humidity environment and so forth. 

considering so much care, i would need a silver flute first.


next step is choosing a flute!

who wrote this?

wtage, an english-japanese bilingual linguist based in london, uk.

i am curious about human communication in which language plays a crucial role.

i am an avid writer with a creative mind.