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"Best" valve oil?


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rhatheway
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 5:44 am    Post subject: "Best" valve oil? Reply with quote

I've been using Al Cass valve oil for a long time. I keep that in my case and it seems to work just fine for me. I've also occasionally used Blue Juice and a few others (kind of depending on where I was and what was available at the time). I've never had any problems with Al Cass, but I've seen quite a few comments here on TH that there are "better" valve oils out there. I've even read comments suggesting using other types of oil, such as clock oil, diluted mineral oil, etc.

Since I'm not a professional trumpeter, I'm curious if there are really significant differences between valve oil formulations that make a noticeable difference in playability? Also, what's really the "best" valve oil for trumpeters (both amateur and professional) to use?


Last edited by rhatheway on Thu May 09, 2024 8:13 am; edited 1 time in total
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acritzer
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 6:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No idea what's "best"....but I use and like Ultra Pure.
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mograph
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 6:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As far as I know, there's a difference between old horns and new horns (or old ones that have had valve work done). The former have looser clearances than the latter, so they need an oil of a different formulation (probably viscosity).

Maybe that difference is a concern, maybe not. At any rate, Hetman makes oils that account for that. They were recommended to me by (retired) brass tech guru Ron Partch in Toronto. Sorry, I haven't asked Ewan Divitt (the current guru) what he recommends.

http://www.hetman.com/products.html
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Croquethed
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 7:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been using Monster for valves and 1 and 3 slides almost since they started. The new Eco-Pro stuff is superb. I oil 1x a week more out of habit than necessity. It's also sustainable.
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chase1973
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 7:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No such thing as "the BEST" it's what works for YOU as an individual and an oil that mixes with your body chemicals best. Experiment to find "your" best. Happy hunting.
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Dayton
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 7:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Since I'm not being a professional trumpeter, I'm curious if there are really significant differences between valve oil formulations that make a noticeable difference in playability? Also, what's really the "best" valve oil for trumpeters (both amateur and professional) to use?


From a purely mechanical perspective, the weight of the oil is arguably the most important thing, assuming you are starting with a high quality oil. You should use a lighter-weight oil on new/tight valves. Ultra Pure Ultra Light oil (green cap/label) is an example.

For older horns with worn valves, a heavier-weight oil such as Ultra Pure Classic (black cap/label) might be called for.

And for most, the in-between choice is a standard weight oil such as the regular Ultra Pure (blue cap/label).

I find that synthetic valve oils like Ultra Pure tend to last longer than regular valve oils, which I regard as a bonus.

From a health perspective, there may be differences between regular petroleum based, synthetic petroleum based (like Ultra Pure) and plant based (like Monster Oil's EcoPro lineup). I can't offer an informed opinion on that beside noting the warnings on the labels. I am using Monster EcoPro Lite on a few of my horns and am really impressed with the performance (which seems equal to Ultra Pure).
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Brent
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 9:00 am    Post subject: oil Reply with quote

I've had the best results with Yamaha valve oil.
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Rhondo
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 9:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a slight reaction to petroleum based oils (drying of nasal passages), which doesn’t occur using EcoPro.
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chef8489
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think there is a best. I get really good results from all the ultra pure products. That being said you should get similar results from any quality synthetic from Yahama, Monster, Hetmans etc.
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stuartissimo
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 9:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Best depends on what you’re looking for. Valve speed? Evaporation rate? Wear protection? There used to be an old article floating around TH about the aspects of valve oil and how to test some of that at home.

The basic idea is that the oil adheres well to the valve (and casing) surface. If it doesn’t, the valve will stick or jam. Metal on metal will also cause surface wear. Thicker oil tends to stick better, and on worn valves this is sometimes a solution to keep them playing. However, thicker oils can slow down the valves too. If you ever put trombone slide oil on a valve, you may have experienced this effect: the valves move slower when released. For horns with very worn valves, this can sometimes be a solution to get them going again though.

A secondary function of valve oil is to create a seal to prevent the air from leaking out. Especially on older, well-played horns, the gap between valve and casing is larger and thus a thicker oil helps to seal that gap, imrpoving playability. On the other hand, if the tolerances are small (i.e. on new modern horns) the thinner oil gets between the gaps more easily, where too thick oil may not. IIRC a way to test this is to shake the bottle and see compare quickly the bubbles disappear.

How long an oil lasts before it evaporates mainly determines how often you need to re-apply it. Most oils are synthetic these days (which means the oil molecules are of similar composition) and thus evaporate fairly evenly. Non-synthetic oils on the other hand, had a mix of molecules where some would evaporate more quickly, so more frequent oilings where required to keep the valves moving well.

This is all from memory, so if I got anything wrong, please feel free correct me.
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LittleRusty
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2024 9:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I struggled with Al Cass for a long time. The valves would dry out in the case and seize. A tap on the button would break them free and I oiled the valves every time the horns came out of the case so it was minor issue.

I switched to Hetmans and while I still oil every time I take it out of the case the oil lasts longer than a single session easily.
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CaptPat
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PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2024 3:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use Monster oils/greases and have no complaints. I've wanted to try Hetman's but I seldom see the three products (valve oil, slide oil, and slide grease) I use in stock at the same time. I do keep all of the products I use in the same ecosystem just to avoid any chance of incompatibility.
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Lawler Bb
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PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2024 5:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is no "best". Oil your valves regularly, clean your horn regularly, don't drink the valve oil, etc. and you'll likely be fine.

Most folks prefer the newer synthetics.......I like the old school "dino" oil myself. Warburton PDQ, Zaja, and 5-Starr are my favorites, in that order.
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zaferis
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PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2024 10:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Best is a personal choice, while some horns and conditions respond better to some brands. I'd say that some of the newer brands have made improvements, especially in the synthetic versions.

My top picks: 5 Starr, Ultra-Pure, Hetman, Yamaha Pro, Monster Oil

Ones I've had issues with: Al Cass, evaporates quickly (problematic especially outdoors), Blue Juice has an odor that bothers me, and has left a residue in some instruments, also evaporates rather quickly.

Whichever you use, apply frequently, daily.. I tell my students that if they oil their valves and notice a difference in speed, then they've waited too long.
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etc-etc
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PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2024 8:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

UltraPure, La Tromba - valves.

Hetman key oil, Alisyn - slides.
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stevecass
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PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2024 9:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The original Al Cass is now extinct so competitors have nothing to worry about anymore.
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tyler.slamkowski
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PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2024 10:33 am    Post subject: Re: "Best" valve oil? Reply with quote

rhatheway wrote:
I've been using Al Cass valve oil for a long time. I keep that in my case and it seems to work just fine for me. I've also occasionally used Blue Juice and a few others (kind of depending on where I was and what was available at the time). I've never had any problems with Al Cass, but I've seen quite a few comments here on TH that there are "better" valve oils out there. I've even read comments suggesting using other types of oil, such as clock oil, diluted mineral oil, etc.

Since I'm not a professional trumpeter, I'm curious if there are really significant differences between valve oil formulations that make a noticeable difference in playability? Also, what's really the "best" valve oil for trumpeters (both amateur and professional) to use?


I had issues with valves a few years ago and decided to try every major brand, light and regular thickness, for one month each to determine the best oil for my Shires trumpets. I tried La Tromba, Al Cass, Blue Juice, Monster, Berp BioOil, Yamaha, Hetman, and a bunch of others. I really liked La Tromba, but ultimately, Yamaha Synthetic Regular worked the best for me and keeps my valves clean. I play professionally. Hope this helps.
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smarcz
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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2024 2:50 pm    Post subject: Herman's vs Libretto Reply with quote

Tried Hetman's valve oil. Cleaned valves and the valve shafts. Valves till slow and sluggish. I then tried Libretto's synthetic oil from a cleaning kit and it's like greased lightning.

Any one else have this disappointing result from Hetman's?
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mograph
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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2024 3:22 pm    Post subject: Re: Herman's vs Libretto Reply with quote

smarcz wrote:
Tried Hetman's valve oil. Cleaned valves and the valve shafts. Valves till slow and sluggish. I then tried Libretto's synthetic oil from a cleaning kit and it's like greased lightning.

Any one else have this disappointing result from Hetman's?


Did you use the appropriate viscosity of oil for your instrument?

http://www.hetman.com/products.html
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smarcz
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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2024 3:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Herman's vs Libretto Reply with quote

[quote="mograph"][quote="smarcz"]Tried Hetman's valve oil. Cleaned valves and the valve shafts. Valves till slow and sluggish. I then tried Libretto's synthetic oil from a cleaning kit and it's like greased lightning.

Any one else have this disappointing result from Hetman's?[/quote]

Did you use the appropriate viscosity of oil for your instrument?

http://www.hetman.com/products.html [/quote]

It is a 1999 - Bach 37
Used Hetmans Classic
too thick?
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