Flugelhorn repair

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by microstar22, Dec 18, 2009.

  1. TrumpEd

    TrumpEd Pianissimo User

    Oct 9, 2008
    If you went to your local "Music and Arts" shop I "assume":oops: that you are near Houston. (Although there could be many shops with the same name anywhere) There is an 'associated shop/same owner' called "Band Central Station" somewhere near Santa Fe or Alvin (TX). Jimmy is the brass repair guy there and he will be able to tell you if it can be made workable or if you you need to get a cord and lampshade! - Use the eco-friendly florescent bulbs though if that's the way you go.ROFL
  2. Brekelefuw

    Brekelefuw Fortissimo User

    Mar 21, 2006
    Music and Arts is one of the largest music store chains in the USA I believe. I have met the head of repairs from that company. Nice guy.
  3. calihorn

    calihorn Pianissimo User

    Feb 28, 2009
    keep in mind that alot of the best repairmen like Robb Stewart will not work on cheap chinese horns. As already mentioned, parts are usually not available for these horns either if you start having problems with it down the road. Therefore, I consider cheap imports at this time to be mainly throwaway type horns, because once things go bad, it's hard to salvage these horns. I personally feel it's better in general to invest in something that is higher quality and that will last.

    Btw, yamaha makes good flugelhorns. I have a 631 model with Red Brass bell that plays great. Even though that model isn't made anymore, you can still find used ones at a pretty good price.
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
  4. Harald

    Harald New Friend

    Sep 11, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    I have a cheap Chinese Flugelhorn with sticky valves too. Seems to be the same problem with the metals of the valve and the valve casing forming some sort of oxidation on the valves. I used "Magic Valve" from WWBW:
    magic Results | The Woodwind and Brasswind | WWBW.com valve

    The valve action was smooth as silk after using this product "for just 3 days" and then the oxidation came back.

    It is a pitty because the sound of the Chinese Flugelhorn is very nice. If the valves would work better it would indeed be a nice Flugelhorn.

    I cleaned the valves before Christmas and they worked for the Christmas Carols at our Family Christmas Eve Celebration.

    If someone finds a more permanent solution for this valve problem, please let me know.
  5. ComeBackKid

    ComeBackKid Fortissimo User

    May 11, 2009
    Yorba Linda, CA
    We'll let the whole world know! :-P

    Actually, there is something else to try. There are two products that I know of that are available in sporting goods stores or gun shops - "Break Free" and "Rem Oil". These products have teflon in them which is supposed to bond with the metal. It might be worth trying something like thoroughly cleaning the valve pistons and casings with a strong detergent (and possibly isopropyl alcohol) to remove any remnants of existing oil. Then spraying the pistons and casings with this teflon-bases stuff (possibly several coatings) and then reassembling and trying it. I don't have any sticking valves right now to try it on but there are other posts here that deal with teflon so you might try a search to see if there are other suggestions or success stories with it.
  6. etc-etc

    etc-etc New Friend

    Apr 29, 2009
    Considering the hourly cost of repairs, you might end up paying more for the repair than for the horn.

    Have you tried gentle rotation of well-oiled piston in its casing, followed by wiping and re-oiling? Start with the most sticky one.
  7. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    It would make sense to check how toxic this stuff is until it "bonds". Let's not forget, we inhale deeply and aerosols left over in the horn can enter the lungs.
  8. dhbailey

    dhbailey Piano User

    Jul 28, 2009
    New Hampshire
    The only permanent repair for the problem of this sort of oxidation is to buy a new horn. Adding teflon to the piston and to the casing is going to significantly alter the dimensions, and there is already only about .0005" clearance in most valve casings, so they might not oxidize but there's also a good chance they won't work. Until you've lapped them in again, at which point you will have worn off all the teflon.

    There's a reason these horns are so inexpensive -- now that you know how much you love playing the flugelhorn, start looking around for a better one.

    Not all Chinese instruments have this problem -- you can find well-built instruments which are made in the same factories but the importer asked for certain materials and construction which raises the price but also raises the quality. So while it's possible to find Chinese instruments which don't have this problem, they won't be $200 instruments.
  9. lmf

    lmf Forte User

    May 16, 2007
    Indiana USA

    A Yamaha is a good choice....matter of fact any top name brand used flugel would be far better than the Selman. People thinking "low prices instead of quality" buy Selman and/other cheap imports. Once they find problems (and they usually do), most reputable repair services won't touch them because of the low quality of the horns and/or unavailable parts. People pride themselves in buying a horn that looks new and shines at a cheap price only to find it is better used as a lamp.

    In your situation, you have the Selman and will have to do the best you can with it, but it is a cheap import doomed to failure. I would be looking to replace it with reputable brand as soon as you can afford it. Some people buy cheap imports of questionable quality and learn by their mistakes....or should.

    Best wishes,

    Last edited: Dec 26, 2009
  10. Hoosier303

    Hoosier303 Pianissimo User

    Nov 2, 2008
    I tried a Selman earlier this year and now feel fortunate to have sold it for $50 less than I paid for it. As far as inexpensive Flugels go I really like my new Bach FH600, has a good sound for a horn that I don't play that often.

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