Alexa gives her melodica some pitch surgery

Wow, it really worked! Listen (and see on the chromatic tuner) how improved the melodica is! I might go back in and fix my low F, but probably not for now.

I’ve used this melodica live and in recordings for several years now. I think it will go on for a good while longer now that it’s in tune!

I found the Hohner harmonica tuning video invaluable:

However, I hadn’t seen any video explaining how to do this specifically for melodica, so here’s mine!


1. Download chromatic tuner software from Katsura Shareware or elsewhere (

2. Check tuning of all notes and write down deviation in cents

3. Open up melodica and save screws

4. Dry it out with a rag

5. Find notes you want to change by plinking or checking which key coordinates with which reed

6. Support the reed with a pen knife

7. File the reed at the tip to RAISE the note, and scrape with knife or edge of file at the base to LOWER the note. Only do 4-5 strokes either way.

8. Plink the reed a few times to settle the tuning

9. Reassemble melodica (power drill helps because you will do this several times)

10. Check tuning. Repeat procedure until you are happy with all/most notes! Perfection may not be attained. I was happy with any note within 10 cents of the note value.