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Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by BrassGorilla, Jun 21, 2010.
Not a silly question at all and you shouldn't be embarassed
Here's what I do:
(*) = purchase before you start the cleaning
1) plug the kitchen sink and remove all the slides, valves, and bottom caps and place the parts in the sink.
2)Fill with hot water. Once filled THEN add a few drops of dishwashing detergent.
3)(*)Go to a music store that specializes in trumpetes and purchase what they recommend to clean the insides of the trumpet (I use a snake thats used on clarinets)
4)(*)Go to WalMart and purchase Lansinoh for breastfeeding mothers. This is the best stuff I've found for greasing the slides and a tube should last you a lifetime (seriously)
5)Snakes out the tubing, trumpet body and valves and rinse in clean running water
6)I use Brillo pad to clean the slides but do it lightly!! Use common sense!! If you go crazy on cleaning the slides, they'll fall out when you put it back together.
7)Make sure any excess cleaner from the Brillo is removed with the snake and running water.
8)Each part you clean and rinse(after making sure all brillo cleaner is removed), place on a towel to dry. You might want to lightly shake the valves(one at a time) a couple of times to remove any excess water
9) Put the trumpet back together(pay attention to how the valves are taken out,there should be numbers1,2,3 written on the valves. Oil liberally and put them back the same way they came out). 10)Take the smallest amount of Lansinoh you can get on your finger and rub the slides. For the main tuning slide just the Lansinoh. For the 1st & 3rd slides use Lansinoh with a little valve oil.
11) for the outside of the trumpet once its put back together, rub the trumpet with a clean soft cloth to polish up the outside.
I clean mine once a month and wow a clean horn sure makes a difference. Its almost like its more alive in your hands.
That stuff is BREAST CREAM!
By "felt" do you the padded part on top where you valve gets pressed in?
If so, I've washed those...many times by having the valves dunked entirely in the water. I have a Yamaha trumpet. My valves have a problem with sticking sometimes (if I play very WELL, though, they seem to stick way less), but I blamed that more on switching from Blue Juice to Al Cass oil without washing the valves. Now I'm not sure really what caused the problem. Maybe some Yamahas' felts are more waterproof?
I must say though.... I really washed/wiped those valves good last time and the Blue Juice stains on them are less than before, and it seems like they don't stick quite as much anymore. This despite having dunked the felts under water again.
I clean my lead pipe and mouthpiece EVERY time I play. That may be for ten minutes or 4 hours. The entire horn is bathed every two months unless it has not been played at all. Then I bathe it before use.
Do you just take it in the shower with you? That would be cool. Especially if you played it a little in there
Here's the regimen that has worked for me for 50 years. Once a month take take the horn, completely assembled to your tub. Create a seal between your mouthpiece and the faucet with your hand and let the water run. Press down each valve and let the water run. After the water runs clear do it all again. Gently blow through the horn to remove the water. Law horn on a nice fluffy towel and remove the valves. Take off the valve buttons, unscrew the stems, take off the springs (my instructor never said anything about removing the guides so I didn't--I do now). Remove the felts and pat them dry, wipe the valve bodies then reassemble using a tiny bit of white petroleum jelly on the threads. Remove the slides and wipe them down with the wash cloth, lubricate them with the same white petroleum jelly and reassemble. Attach the bottom valve caps (more of that petroleum jelly) then generously oil the valves, reinsert. No need to lube the top valve caps since you remove them daily when you oil your valves. Clean out your mouthpiece with a mouthpiece brush--make sure everything is dry, give it a quick buff with a chamois cloth, wrap the horn in your chamois and you were all set until the next month.
I know there are people who will take exception with nearly every thing I've said, but that's the way Jim Markle taught me to do it and I've been doing it that was ever since. I've got a mid 60s Recording Olds that is all original--right down to the felts and the spit valve corks and a late 60's Bach Strad that's the same way--must be doing something right.