Care of my rotary valves.

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by georgerarnold, Dec 13, 2009.

  1. georgerarnold

    georgerarnold New Friend

    Sep 21, 2009
    Can someone please tell me the best ways to look after my Eb rotary valve trumpet. Which parts I should grease up and oil and the best ways to do it? Are there any different ways to clean it to get into the valves? Any other things I should know? Thank you for any help you can give.
  2. B15M

    B15M Forte User

    Dec 30, 2003
    Monroe Ct.
    I just want to watch the answers
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    Rotary valves are not rocket science, although it is good to see them disassembled by someone in the know first.

    Normal maintenance means a light maschine oil for the keys and linkage and a rotary valve oil for the bearings. The top bearing can be oiled from the outside where it comes out of the top cover. The bottom bearing is oiled by unscrewing the bottom cap and applying oil directly to the bearing. Piston valve oil is too thin to really do an optimal job of protecting the bearing.

    To disassemble the valves you need a plastic or rawhide hammer. Remove the bottom cap and unscrew and remove the linkage from the top. You then hit the top "axle" with the hammer forcing the bottom inner cap and valve onto a clean padded surface. There are markings on that inner cap to realign it when reassembling it. Make sure that you do otherwise very serious damage can occur. Do not mix up any of the parts otherwise the same can happen.

    The rotary valve only has contact at the upper and lower bearing. There is usually no other contact between it and the casing. The tolerances are very tight so they do not need the regular disassembly normal piston valves do. Always brush your teeth before playing and you will only need to take it apart once a year.
  4. dhbailey

    dhbailey Piano User

    Jul 28, 2009
    New Hampshire
    Rotary valves are lubricated in 3 spots:
    1) remove the back cover and put a drop of oil where you see the rotor move in the middle of the back bearing;
    2) on the opposite side of the casing, just where the rotor stem exits the casing;
    3) a drop put down each valve slide tube and allowed to run down onto the side of the rotor while you move the lever up and down;

    Slides should be lubricated as you always have done -- I use vaseline (or local store-brand petroleum jelly) and have never had a stuck slide in 47 years of playing, nor have any of the instruments I have repaired professionally ever had stuck slides. The only instruments which I've ever run into which had slides which could not be removed were lubricated with commercial slide grease (long before the current synthetic products) and that stuff, if left untouched, can turn to cement!

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