How To Oil Trumpet Valves

One of the oldest musical instruments around that dates back to as far back as 1500 BC is the trumpet. It is the instrument that registers the highest pitch in the family of brass instruments. Proper maintenance of this musical instrument keeps it performing perfectly for years and years, getting even better through the passage of time. One of the important factors of properly caring for your trumpet is oiling its valves. These valves were added into the trumpet so that the instrument’s players would be able to play practically every note of the chromatic scale, those that were never played before. This makes the trumpet the very versatile musical instrument that it is today. There are basically three valves that when combined together gives more pitches than what was once impossible to conceive. Oiling the valves once every week will keep the instrument working very well. Here are the steps to do that.

  • Buying your oil. You will need to purchase piston valve oil for oiling your instrument. This is readily available in any music store. There are basically 2 kinds of oil for your trumpet valves that you can choose from. One is natural oil and the other is synthetic oil. Both are alright to use, depending on what you prefer. However, make sure you only use one or another to oil your valves. Mixing them together may do some damage to your trumpet.
  • Preparing your valves for oiling. Loosen each of you valve caps that are on top of your valves, removing them from their valve casings. Make sure that when you remove all these valves completely, you must place them on a very clean surface. This will prevent dirt or any other form of debris to get into them. Take note of the numbers located on the side of each valve. In case they do not have numbers, it would be best to simply take them halfway out when doing your oiling. You will find that each one has a tab or a guide somewhere by the top. There will also be tabs jutting out from each side. Each tab will be wider on one end than on the other. Remember what direction each tab faces for properly aligning them later on as you return them back inside.
  • Oiling your valves. Start oiling your valves by placing around 2 or 3 drops on the lower area of the first valve that have all the holes. Once done, return the valve into the casing, moving in up and down motion to evenly distribute your oil around the entire valve. Perform this oiling procedure on all of your three valves. After this, carefully return them to their casings, making sure that their valve guides are aligned with all the grooves located on the interior areas of the casings. Screw their valve caps back.

Regular oiling and correct cleaning methods are the best ways to keep your musical instrument in top shape. If you are a musician at heart, you will know that it is vital to give the tools of your trade the utmost importance when it comes to handling with care. No matter how talented you are, if you are careless with your instrument, you will never be happy with the way it performs to you. Treat it with love and it lives up to all of your expectations.


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