How did you come up with the design?
How do I know which size is right for me?
Can I return it if I don't like it?
Is the Cobra for beginners or advanced players?
Can I use a Cobra for my piccolo or alto flute as well?
My flute has a trill key - can I still use a Cobra?
How is the Cobra different from other flute supports?
How long before I receive my Cobra?
Do you have a support for the right hand?
Can I adjust my Cobra RTC (or RTC-AW) to fit better?
Everyone who plays flute knows that it is basically a metal cylinder. There are no supports, just the keys and you have to keep playing different ones so that's not very stable! After many years of playing the flute and struggling with the discomfort of making sure it was held securely, which can be distracting when you just want to focus on playing the music, Yuichi Tanabe came up with the idea of wearing a ring in his left forefinger that would act as a support for the flute. After a couple of years of trial and error, he perfected the design and the materials to make the Cobra. Back to top
Good question, why would a flute accessory be named after a dangerous snake! Well, the shape of the ring, with its "tail" holding the flute and the "head" at the angle needed to hold the ring securely on the finger, looks like a snake with its head rearing up - like a cobra. Don't worry, it doesn't bite! Back to top
This is very important. There are five sizes of Cobra: X-Small, Small, Medium, Large, and X-Large. X-Small will fit US ring sizes 5-7, Small fits US ring sizes 7-9, Medium fits US ring sizes 9-11), Large fits US ring sizes 11-13), and X-Large fits US ring sizes greater than 13. The Cobra is worn on your left forefinger (index finger). Most people do not know their ring size for that finger, so you must measure it. A jewelry store will be able to do this for you, or you can measure your finger yourself with a strip of paper made according to these instructions. Be careful to measure your finger close to the line where your finger meets the palm of your hand, not closer to the knuckle where a ring is usually worn. The X-Small Cobra fits fingers measuring less than 2.14 inches (54.5 mm); the Small Cobra fits fingers measuring 2.14-2.34 inches (55-59.5 mm); the Medium Cobra fits fingers measuring 2.35-2.54 inches (60-64.5 mm); the Large Cobra fits fingers measuring 2.55-2.74 inches (65-69.5 mm); and the X-Large Cobra fits fingers measuring 2.75 inches (70mm) and larger. Back to top
Absolutely! If you purchase a Cobra through our Artfire store, you will see that we have a return and exchange policy that allows items to be exchanged for a different size or model, or receive a full refund, as long as you contact us within 21 days of receipt of your Cobra. Back to top
Everyone can benefit from a Cobra! Many of our customers are professional flute players who play for extended periods and enjoy the support given by the Cobra while performing in public. Anyone who has pain in their hand from holding the flute at an awkward angle to prevent it from slipping will find the Cobra invaluable! Back to top
Yes, unlike other flute supports on the market which are attached to the flute, the Cobra is worn on your finger. As a result, the Cobra is designed to fit your finger, and is adjustable to hold your instrument securely. Cobra A, the basic style, is well suited for piccolos or lighter flutes. Cobra styles B and C are designed for standard flutes. Cobra B-AW is designed to support alto and wood flutes. Back to top
Yes, the Cobra should work with your flute. The G-A trill key poses no problems. The larger C# trill key does require careful adjustment of the Cobra to avoid hitting the key. Cobra C is designed to provide maximum support for flutes with a trill key. Back to top
Other flute supports, such as Bo Pep and Thumbport, attach directly onto the flute. This leads to several problems which the Cobra solves: the tone of the flute can be affected; the flute can be scratched when you take the support on and off (for cleaning); the support may slip on the flute; you no longer have direct contact with the flute and so your playing experience is different; these supports restrict the angle of your thumb, which may not be comfortable; and so on. Back to top
Cobras are sold through our online store on Etsy. Back to top
Cobras are still hand made in our workshop, so you might have to wait a bit before we can ship it to you. Generally, though, your Cobra will be ready for shipping within a week or two, maximum three weeks, of receiving payment on your order. Back to top
Yes! Our most recent model, Cobra RTC is a Right Thumb Support. We also have the Cobra RTC-AW Right Thumb Support for Alto and Wood flutes. Back to top
Yes. If you find that your Cobra RTC (or RTC-AW) Right Thumb Support is slightly tight or loose on your flute, you can heat it gently with a hair dryer to soften it. Then you can mold it carefully for a better fit. When it cools it will retain the modified shape. Back to top
Music Stores and other resellers of music accessories may be eligible for bulk order discounts. Please Contact Us by email for further information. Back to top