Replating Pistons

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by anthony, Sep 13, 2018.

  1. anthony

    anthony Mezzo Piano User

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    Hi need to have my pistons replating on my Conn. Vintage 5B trumpet what is the average price to have that done ?
     
  2. OldSchoolEuph

    OldSchoolEuph Mezzo Forte User

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    Well it has been about $400 at Anderson Silver Plating, but they have a box up on their home page saying they are out of that line of work.
     
  3. trumpetsplus

    trumpetsplus Fortissimo User

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    Do you need the pistons replated, or do you need the pistons re-fitted (which comprises honing the casings round and true, then plating the pistons up to the new size).
     
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  4. anthony

    anthony Mezzo Piano User

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    Probably both I am taking the horn in for a pro.cleaning acid clean, and the pistons have some rust spots .
     
  5. trumpetsplus

    trumpetsplus Fortissimo User

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    So nobody has advised you to have the valve job done?

    Rust spots are not rust spots - there is no steel.

    If the horn plays fine it don't need a valve job. If it don't play fine, then get someone skilled in diagnostics to advise on the best course of action.

    In my book, the only valid test is the play test. I have leak detecting magnehelics and internal and external micrometers reading to tenths of a thou, but these are only used to back up my play test results to customers. I have had trumpets with enormous valve clearances which play just fine, and I have had trumpets with minimal wear that don't.
     
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  6. anthony

    anthony Mezzo Piano User

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    So your saying the pistons are not made of steel ? Please educate me further thank you and the horn plays absolutely fine , it has one slide the 3rd valve slide has a little round dark spot the may be red rot not sure though.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2018
  7. Dennis78

    Dennis78 Fortissimo User

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    Brass plated with nickel, copper, monel
     
  8. Bflatman

    Bflatman Forte User

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    Pistons gather crud as we play them. I own several instruments that are between 40 years and 90 years old and much played and none of them need or as far as I can tell ever had a valve replate. They have required cleaning many times however for exactly the issue you are experiencing.

    Re-plating is of course definitely necessary in some instruments that are subject to heavy use in a professional setting. I would always seek advice from a tech about the need for this. It should be said that some amateur players don't oil enough and rapid valve wear can occur, do make sure you oil enough.

    Much more common by a factor of maybe 1000 is crud accumulation on the pistons. This crud can be removed physically or chemically. I favour chemically and use tomato ketchup wiped on to the valve surface and left on for several minutes to do its work. Crud buildup can increase the need for oiling as the valves begin to stick when crud strikes.

    Only use ketchup on the valves, it can damage the brass on other parts of the instrument. Other chemicals could be used but ketchup is thick and stays put on the valve so you don't have to immerse the valve in the chemical.

    It is important to be able to remove all traces of the chemical used to decrud the valves as it must not come into contact with the rest of the instrument. Immersing the valve in some free flowing liquid chemical can allow the chemical to enter the hollow core of the valve where it is very difficult to remove entirely and can then enter the instrument on reassembly.

    This is why I favour a gloopy substance for the task that stays put and only goes where you apply it. It is then easily and completely removed.

    Techs use chemicals that don't harm the instrument so theirs is a better although more expensive solution.

    I minimise the crud buildup by cleaning my teeth before playing and not eating during playing, after use I wipe down the valves and the chambers and re-oil, this seems to keep things sweet clean and free running.
     
  9. breakup

    breakup Forte User

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    There were a couple mfg's that claimed to use a type of stainless steel and one that claimed crysteel, but I have not been able to identify what kind of steel was used. Most Mfg's use a copper alloy that will tarnish, but it isn't rust.

    Check the inside of the tube where the dark spot is, red rot usually starts from the inside. If there is no damage inside it may be just surface tarnish.
     
  10. anthony

    anthony Mezzo Piano User

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    Thank you gentleman all if you .You have saved me a bit if cash for something I don't need to do.I will most probably have my tech. do a chemical cleaning of the trumpet and that should do the trick.
     

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