Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Dennis78, Sep 30, 2015.

  1. Dennis78

    Dennis78 Fortissimo User

    Feb 1, 2015
    So my new horns valves are wore out, they wiggle considerably half way down. I know they need rebuilt but in the mean time they play well enough to like the horn. Is there anything I can do for now to get somewhat better action out of them? Would a wider diamiter cork possibly keep them more centered? We need a DIY section. I'd like to one day send this one off for a nice restoration job. Any ideas that wouldn't destroy the horn would be appreciated
  2. stumac

    stumac Fortissimo User

    Oct 19, 2008
    Flinders Vic Australia
    Not much one can DIY with worn valves except use a heavier oil, other than making sure the ports are well aligned in both up and down positions.

    I don't know what a valve rebuild costs these days, I have not had one done, although I want to try an electroless nickle plating technique for building up valves if I can get some of my other projects finished first.

    Regards, Stuart.
  3. richtom

    richtom Forte User

    Dec 7, 2003
    Valve rebuilds are running around $450 to over $500.00
    Here is a list from Dr. Valve's site.
    Dr. Valve - Trumpet Repair Services
    This takes special skills and knowledge and the valves must be sent out for replating.
    It is not a DIY job and is the reason why many of us do not buy cheap "fix-up" horns. They are generally
    a waste of money. If you are talking a real professional horn which was at a good price to begin with and needs a valve job,
    it is worth the money for the valve job.
    This is a horn I have for sale. It is still very playable, but is a bit low in compression. It looks like new and with a valve job, you would
    have a legendary $1300 trumpet good for many years.
    Horn Stash : Used Benge 3X Bb Trumpet - 179XX
    Rich T.
  4. Sethoflagos

    Sethoflagos Utimate User

    Aug 7, 2013
    Lagos, Nigeria
    Wow! That's an ambitious one, Stu. :shock:
  5. Dennis78

    Dennis78 Fortissimo User

    Feb 1, 2015
    I got a pretty straight 1941 Holton 48 for $103 shipped and I do plan on having this on rehabbed at some point I think it's worth putting $700-$800 into it but right now I don't have the funds. Yea I'm done with student horns, and I thought this one was worthwhile
  6. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    The problem is not plating. The problem is truing up the worn valve casing. I consider the valve cluster geometry to be one of the few not yet mature developments for the trumpet. Selmer was on to something brilliant with the Radial 2° cluster, but the rest of the horn was not "standard" enough from response or sound.

    Consider the steps:
    1) disassemble and clean
    2) true up the valve casing
    3) evtl. true up the old valve or get a new one
    4) in the case of an old valve, replate
    5) precision hone the valve into the trued up casing

    Granted, one could simply replate the valve and try to hone it in. The chance of smooth action is very low! A poor job here makes future repairs even more difficult.

    The best medicine is to oil the valves properly in the first case, then we STOP WEAR almost completely. When oiling, the valve and casing must be bone dry. Oil floats on water, the valve is unprotected if moist!

    If we have a horn with "very" worn valves, there is little that we can do to squeeze more performance. Large tolerances mean that the shear strength / viscosity of the oil is practically insignificant. It can't bridge the gap.
  7. trumpetsplus

    trumpetsplus Fortissimo User

    Jun 11, 2006
    South Salem, NY
    Yes, the phrase worn valves should be worn casings. These tend to wear in an "egg-timer" or "bottle of coke" shape and need to be precision honed to bring them back to true. Then the pistons need to be externally honed to true them up. After everything is straight and true, the pistons need to be copper plated then honed down to slightly undersize. Then they are nickel plated and honed down to size.

    Using richtom's pricing guide of $450, that represents $150 per valve/casing. The job involves several honing operations by a skilled operator of a multi-thousand dollar machine and plating overseen by a very competent chemist. There is not much opportunity to cut costs here.
  8. Dennis78

    Dennis78 Fortissimo User

    Feb 1, 2015
    So I put a good dose of 3in1 on them and there still sticky but not to bad, no good enough to take to rehersal but to play around with at home it's fine. These are some light horns an loud as can be, I really need to save up for a rehab!
  9. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

    Mar 6, 2007
    Ithaca NY
    Clean them off and get some Hetmans #3, for classic horns with piston/cylinder wear. The 3 in 1 is bad for you.
  10. Dennis78

    Dennis78 Fortissimo User

    Feb 1, 2015
    I think they are beyond Hetmans, their really beyond 3in1. When depressed half way there's a lot of side to side a lot!

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