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Thread: Oily tuning slides

  1. #1

    Oily tuning slides

    I recently took my horn in for a chemical cleaning. The tech commented that the slides were covered in oil, but did not seem to have much grease on them. I have noticed over the past year or so that the grease seems to break down much quicker than in the past. I'm thinking that over time the slides may have worn down so that they don't fit quite as tight, thereby allowing oil to get in. Any thoughts on what may be going on or how to deal with this issue.

    Thanks,

    Mike

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Central North Carolina
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    1,989
    I would guess (but who knows?) that the tech would have remarked if he felt your slides were worn to that degree, and even then I'd be skeptical that the oil was coming from your valves (unless you pour it onto them at every opportunity).

    Some slide greases (or substances that people use for slide grease) do break down over time and degenerate into what appears to be a thin kind of oil. So my first question would be "What have you been using for slide grease?" And my second question would be "How often do you clean off your slide and reapply the grease?"
    Gary Merrill
    Wessex EEb Bass tuba (Denis Wick 3XL)
    Mack Brass Compensating Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J9 euph)
    Amati Oval Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J6 euph)
    1924 Buescher 3-valve Eb tuba, modified Kelly 25
    Schiller American Heritage 7B clone bass trombone (DE LB K/K9/112 Lexan, Brass Ark MV50R)
    1947 Olds "Standard" trombone (Olds #3)

  3. My second valve slide came out three times in one 2-hour rehearsal on my brand new Wessex. The trombone player next to me looked at it and commented that it seemed the slide had oil on it. Obviously, I hadn't put oil on my slide. I hadn't put anything on the slide. So whatever it shipped with from the factory apparently broke down into something slippery enough to cause the slide to fall out while playing. I put a little Monster slide grease on it and it's been perfect ever since.
    Wessex Dolce

    "Suppose we have only dreamed, or made up, all those things -- trees and grass and sun and moon and stars and Aslan himself. Suppose we have. Then all I can say is that, in that case, the made-up things seem a good deal more important than the real ones." - Puddleglum in "The Silver Chair"

  4. #4
    Second valve slides seem to be like that. I use Hetman TSG #8 on the second slide, Hetman slide lubricant #5 on the first, third and comp slide and Denis Wick valve oil on the tuning slide as it’s a trigger slide.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Central North Carolina
    Posts
    1,989
    2nd valve slides on euphoniums often need to have the inner legs expanded a bit as a permanent solution, though sometimes using heavy grease can do the trick. There's just very little bearing surface on those slides, and so little friction to keep them in place. Any reasonable brass tech should be able to fix the problem in just a few minutes for very little cost. It just requires running the right size expander ball into the the inner slide legs.
    Gary Merrill
    Wessex EEb Bass tuba (Denis Wick 3XL)
    Mack Brass Compensating Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J9 euph)
    Amati Oval Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J6 euph)
    1924 Buescher 3-valve Eb tuba, modified Kelly 25
    Schiller American Heritage 7B clone bass trombone (DE LB K/K9/112 Lexan, Brass Ark MV50R)
    1947 Olds "Standard" trombone (Olds #3)

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