Monel Valves

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Trumpet Dreamer, Aug 29, 2010.

  1. Trumpet Dreamer

    Trumpet Dreamer Mezzo Forte User

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    Aug 14, 2010
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    I purchased a used Yamaha YTR-2335 and the seller claimed it had Monel Valves.
    Is there any way to identify this valve? I can find no evidence anywhere on the horn that would state the valve type.
     
  2. SteveRADavey

    SteveRADavey Pianissimo User

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    May 25, 2010
    Austin, TX
    "monel" isn't a reference to the type of valve per se; it doesn't have to do with the structure or design of the valves. It is the name of a patented metal alloy that is used for valves because it is resistant to corrosion.

    Some, but not all, Yamaha 2335 trumpets have monel valves. I think they put an 'm' at the end of the model number if it does, although I don't know whether it is stamped differently on the trumpet (second valve) or whether it is just an inventory tracking notation.

    - Steve-o
     
  3. lakerjazz

    lakerjazz Mezzo Piano User

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    Oct 10, 2006
    I doubt that the Yamaha would have anything other than monel valves. The only modern companies that I can think of that don't have monel valves are Getzen (nickel-plated), Jupiter (often use Stainless Steel), Eclipse (Stainless Steel), and Taylor (Stainless Steel). There are probably more, but the point is that most companies now use monel valves, and Yamaha definitely does use monel.
     
  4. trumpetsplus

    trumpetsplus Fortissimo User

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    Yamaha supplies the 2335 with either (very thinly plated) nickel plated or monel valves.

    To check whether you have nickel-plat or monel, look at the ports and the spring box. If these are all the same color as the valve, the valve has been nickel-plated. If they are brass colored, then the piston itself is a different material - in the case of this trumpet, monel.
     
  5. Trumpet Dreamer

    Trumpet Dreamer Mezzo Forte User

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    Aug 14, 2010
    Jazz Town, USA
    I just checked the piston/valve color...it is all a silver type of finish, shiny in some places, and a bit dull in other places. Does this mean these valves are of the nickel plate variety. Is this bad, good or indifferent?
     
  6. lakerjazz

    lakerjazz Mezzo Piano User

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    Well I guess I was being ignorant then :-(, but I should add (directed to the OP) that nickel-plated valves are not necessarily worse or better than monel, so don't worry about it either way.
     
  7. Dutchie

    Dutchie New Friend

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    Apr 11, 2010
    P.E.I., Canada
    If the lacquer on your yamaha is more of a 'darker' gold than a 'yellow-like' gold you have monel valves for sure. Monel is a stronger alloy which allows smaller tolerances between the piston and the valve casing, allowing for a better seal. Make sure to use a good synthetic oil like Hetman's as this helps keep the pistons in better condition than the regular $2 water and WD40.

    For those wondering about Jupiter, they have been using monel valves in their trumpets for a couple of years now at least.
     
  8. lakerjazz

    lakerjazz Mezzo Piano User

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    Oct 10, 2006
    Just missed this post- there are different schools of thought. Getzen, which is known for making some of the best valves, believes that nickel-plated valves are the only way to go. On the other hand, most modern companies that don't use stainless steel valves use monel valves. Monette has Getzen make monel valves for its trumpets. It just depends on the quality of the job like most other things. The valves on my Olds are nickel-plated, and they've lasted 60 years now with the original plating and minimal wear.
     
  9. lakerjazz

    lakerjazz Mezzo Piano User

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    Oct 10, 2006
    Dutchie,
    it's too bad that Jupiter does not use stainless steel anymore. I'm going to have to disagree with you on the idea of monel pistons being better. Like I said in my other post, it all depends.
     
  10. trumpetsplus

    trumpetsplus Fortissimo User

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    Guys, we are talking about an entry level trumpet!

    The Nickel plate used on this model in no way compares to the plating used by Getzen. It pits at the slightest provocation (unlike the Getzens which are covered by a lifetime warranty). And they have been fitted with too tight a tolerance ("because they could!") meaning that every time the valves dry out they freeze in the casings. Because of this, this model requires chemical or ultrasonic cleaning more often than any other trumpet I know.

    Engineers will tell you that monel is great for valves because it is a harder alloy than the brass used for the casings, and you have soft (casing) rubbing against hard piston). That is not correct. The elbows of the valve are brazed into the piston, requiring the monel to be heated to red-hot. Heating monel to red-hot anneals or softens the metal. Monel is not the best material for valves. This is why so many companies are reverting to either heavy, good quality nickel-plating, or stainless steel.
     

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