Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Noisy valves

  1. Noisy valves

    I’m wondering what advice folks might have to quiet down some noisy valves. The instrument is a wonderful 1923 Besson Enharmonic euphonium that I’m quite smitten with, and the valves operate fine for my level of playing - they’re just noisy. I’m using Monster ‘Smoother' valve oil (their thickest). I’ve read about and seen the following and am wondering what folks have had success with -

    -Replacing the metal guides with nylon ones
    -Replacing springs with coated one (Mead Springs?)
    -Wrapping the bottom of the spring with thread
    -Putting a gasket/washer in the bottom valve cap to add some cushioning

    If you have a fix you’d recommend that requires parts, a supplier in the States would be helpful and appreciated.

    Thanks so much for any ideas and suggestions,
    Peter Stolley
    Last edited by pstolley; 06-04-2023 at 02:10 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Valley City, North Dakota, USA
    Posts
    1,069
    I’d probably replace the metal valve guides and throw in some Mead springs (I’m a fan of them even if the other springs aren’t noisy ).
    Groups
    Valley City Community Band
    Valley City State University Concert Band

    Larry Herzog Jr.

    All things EUPHONIUM! Guilded server

  3. Any of the old Besson/Boosey & Hawkes horns with metal valve guides are GREATLY quieted down with plastic/nylon/Delrin valve guides. Also, as long as valve alignment can be maintained, use of the modern synthetic felts also helps (rather than cork+wool felt). The rubber dampers and/or plastic coated springs are of lesser help in quieting down the valves IMHO.
    Adams E3 0.60 Sterling bell - Prototype top sprung valves
    Concord Band
    Winchendon Winds
    Townsend Military Band

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    West Palm Beach, FL
    Posts
    3,790
    Larry and Doug offered excellent suggestions. There was one thing you listed that I wouldn’t do, wrapping thread around the bottom of the springs. The thread will eventually break and may foul a valve’s operation. I had a noisy spring that bothered me so tried adding adding heat-shrink tubing. It helped but little pieces of plastic could break loose… similar to what happens with Yamaha plastic coated valves.
    Rick Floyd
    Miraphone 5050 - Warburton Brandon Jones sig mpc
    YEP-641S (recently sold)
    Doug Elliott - 102 rim; I-cup; I-9 shank


    "Always play with a good tone, never louder than lovely, never softer than supported." - author unknown.
    Symphonic Band of the Palm Beaches
    El Cumbanchero (Raphael Hernandez, arr. Naohiro Iwai)
    Greensleeves (arr. Alfred Reed)


  5. #5
    Without seeing the valves in their current condition, it's hard to say what is supposed to be going on, but usually these old horns have a lot of old hardened cork which makes a ton of noise. If you can find some points to check the valve alignment, the quickest way to get rid of the noise is to just add felt where needed for alignment, and replace corks with felt when possible. If you have those super old timey flat valve buttons where they hit a cork tube in the valve cap, it is often possible to remove the cork and put a normal valve button felt under the old style button while retaining alignment.

    Of course, all of this relies on your chance to source appropriate felts and be able to confirm valve alignment. I've never had a good look at an Enharmonic valve block, so this might all be easier said than done.
    Last edited by notaverygoodname; 06-04-2023 at 09:28 PM. Reason: typo
    Hobbyist. Collector. Oval rotary guy. Unpaid shill for Josef Klier mouthpieces.

  6. Thanks to all for your input. It’s very much appreciated! Any thoughts on sourcing Mead springs and synthetic felts?

    Doug - judging from your listed bands we’re nearby one another. I’m in Walpole NH. I asked Bob Osmun about replacing the valve guides and he poo-poo’d it as pretty ineffective. (Maybe he was just not in the mood that day.) I could go back to him (and also find out about synthetic felts) or I’m wondering if you know of someone else I might try in our area who enjoys working on older instruments?

    Based on notaverygoodname’s response (thanks!) valve alignment is not something I want to mess with. The cork tubes in the valve cap were replaced (unevenly) as part of a recent cleaning. Based on your response, it sounds like the cork height is both an important component of the alignment as well as cushioning the valve cap, correct? Which makes sense now that I think more about it - though Bob Osmun replaced one cork that was short and not cushioning the cap adequately (after the cleaning) without seeming to take alignment into consideration. He took only the valve cap into the back, replaced the cork tube, and then just put it back on the instrument.

    Hmmm - maybe this group could provide some coaching on what to ask for if/when I take the instrument back to Osmun? A valve alignment, and, with a goal of quieting down the valves, replacement of the guides and possibly using synthetic felts?

    Sorry to drag you all down my rabbit hole. Your thoughts are very much appreciated. Thanks again!

    -Peter
    Last edited by pstolley; 06-05-2023 at 05:22 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Valley City, North Dakota, USA
    Posts
    1,069
    Quote Originally Posted by pstolley View Post
    Any thoughts on sourcing Mead springs

    https://www.euphoniumstore.net/produ...and-eb-f-tubas
    Groups
    Valley City Community Band
    Valley City State University Concert Band

    Larry Herzog Jr.

    All things EUPHONIUM! Guilded server

  8. Thanks!

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •