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Author Topic: Best Slide Lubricant  (Read 8416 times)
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Taytay051

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« on: Mar 14, 2014, 06:24PM »

A quick Background on me:
I started Playing Brass a few years back now, I've played an Eb bass, baritone horn, trumpet etc, but have really settled into the trombone. However i rented instruments through my school, so naturally they're terrible. Nothing provided settled my quench for nice playing, Yamaha, bachs, holtons, kings even boosey and hawks, nothing sounded good to me. I finally ended up buying a cheap pea shooter (a small bore pan american, no hate please :-)) and love it tremendously.

However going back to all my trials and even my Pan Am they all have had terrible slides. admittedly some were quite damaged. but focusing back to my pan am, its actually not damaged. its not brilliant but the cost of getting the slide alligned any futher would be much more the price of the instrument, so to ensure I am getting the best out of it, and any other trombone what are your thoughts on lubricants?

Creams V Oils V Snot, what are the pros and cons of each?
What suits what type of horn?
experiences with certain types?

please, any information regarding lubricants is welcomed, reading online has left me quite confused. 

Its is worth noting:
-I have tried slide o mix and it works for a few days on my horn before need for re- application
-I currently use yamaha slide cream but it requires so much water!
-Realignment isn't easy here (new zealand) as only two companies here do it, so it is costly and involves losing your horn for at least 3 weeks.
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BGuttman
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« Reply #1 on: Mar 14, 2014, 06:43PM »

There must be over 100 threads on slide lubricants and searching might find some gems.

First, bad alignment will make any  slide lube not last very long.

If you change lubes you really need to clean the old stuff off before you try the new stuff.  Especially going from Slide O Mix to a cream or vice versa.

Take a look at the video where Christan Griego shows how to clean and lube a slide.  The actual video is embedded down a few posts while the first post is a link.  You should do this to make sure you have gotten your Pan American as close to perfect as you can make it.

What to use?  Seems every slide has its preferences; and it can vary within horns.  As a general rule, older slides like creams and newer slides like the silicones.  But this is a generality and there are old slides working well with a silicone and newer slides working well with a cream.

Remember, less is more.  The best application of creams or that small bottle of silicone should be as little as you can get away with.  A slide that needs a lot of water is generally one with too much lubricant on it.  The one exception to this is good old slide oil.  You can slather slide oil on the slide until it forms a puddle after you empty your water key and it will work as well as just a little.  Of course the big problem with slide oil is that after you apply it you have a good slide for about 3 seconds.
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Bruce Guttman
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« Reply #2 on: Mar 14, 2014, 09:31PM »

Ultra Pure.

It converted me from Slide O Mix (20 years).
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« Reply #3 on: Mar 15, 2014, 08:14AM »

Very old horns that haven't been played for awhile benefit from a good cleaning and a moderately heavy (3mm squirt on each stocking) application of Trombotine. It leaches out the icky stuff. If your slide is in good alignment, several applications of Trombotine/careful swabbing/repeat will do wonders for it.
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« Reply #4 on: Mar 15, 2014, 09:29AM »

Ultra Pure.

It converted me from Slide O Mix (20 years).

What he said.

But it sounds like you need an alignment
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Taytay051

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« Reply #5 on: Mar 15, 2014, 02:30PM »

I have to admit after watching the video where Christan Griego shows how to clean and lube a slide, I mimicked what he had done and had HUGE improvements, my only concern is that these improvements might not last, however it was very nice to do a two hour playout last night and not spray my slide at all.

I used Yamaha slide cream, because it was all i had and i was just wondering if using trombtine would offer me any improvement? would it last longer or slide faster perhaps? obviously it is what was used in the video so i was just curious if it was the "best" cream

Thanks for the replies guys I am still interested in your thoughts
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BGuttman
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« Reply #6 on: Mar 15, 2014, 02:39PM »

Are you talking about the Yamaha slide cream they used to pack in new trombones years ago (white stuff in a cup) or the new stuff often referred to as Yama-snot (green stuff in a tube)?

I think I've used every cream out there at some time or another: Yamaha (not the new stuff), Bach, Conn Formula 3, Super Slick, Trombotine, and old fashioned Pond's Cold Cream (the old stuff that we used back in the day).  I found that the old Yamaha, Bach, and Conn Formula 3 were all comparable while Trombotine, Super Slick, and my old formula Pond's were better.  The silicone drops sold for Super Slick work with any of the other creams to make it a little smoother.

Your mileage will  vary.
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Bruce Guttman
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Taytay051

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« Reply #7 on: Mar 15, 2014, 02:49PM »

I mean this stuff sorry : http://www.amazon.com/Yamaha-YAC-1020P-Slide-Cream/dp/B0002F71WS

so would you then suggest Trombotine combined with a few silicone drops to be my best bet?
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BGuttman
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« Reply #8 on: Mar 15, 2014, 02:54PM »

Trombotine is one of the longest lasting that I have used.  Especially since you use very little.  I have tubes that have lasted me 10 years (making it especially inexpensive).  I have used it with the silicone drops sold for Super Slick, but I am told the small bottle of 2-part Slide-O-Mix works as well.
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Bruce Guttman
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Taytay051

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« Reply #9 on: Mar 15, 2014, 03:05PM »

Thanks, that sounds like my next step, order some trombotine off amazon and used the small bottle from my S.O.M that I disliked.

So just to clarify a few others mentioned ultra pure, but your opinion on oils is that they do not last?

I am curious as my affiliation with school means i often end up cleaning up school horns of varying conditions, so I gather that while trombotine and silicon could be a good option for my vintage horn that dislikes S.O.M, Our schools Getzen Eterna Bass Trombone or The ancient Kings or unheard of cheap brands Might not suit this combination. Or in reality is it not worth worrying about unless one is very serious about getting the best from the horn?
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BGuttman
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« Reply #10 on: Mar 15, 2014, 03:36PM »

I've tried Ultra Pure and the latest version works better than older ones.  I am not throwing out my old tubes of Trombotine to switch, though.  Same goes for the Yama-snot (Yamaha oil).

School horns are a real mixed bag.  Many of them suffer from abuse that causes slide alignment problems so that nothing works well.  Many of them have too much lubricant on the slide, or the student mixed types (which tends to make a gummy mess).  No choice will make a misaligned slide work well.  Just use whatever you think the kid will continue with and leave it at that.  Or try to get all the kids to use the same stuff.
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Bruce Guttman
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« Reply #11 on: Mar 15, 2014, 03:47PM »

For me Trombotine works better than any of the other stuff.  Cheaper too.
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Taytay051

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« Reply #12 on: Mar 15, 2014, 06:01PM »

Okay thanks, Just one last question since you've been so helpful  :D

How should i go about using the silicon, do i place a few drops on the stockings and spread it the length of the slides, the same as cream?
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BGuttman
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« Reply #13 on: Mar 15, 2014, 06:21PM »

Apply the cream like Christan Griego showed in the video.  Work it into the slide.

Place a few drops of the silicone oil on top of the cream.  Work it into the slide.

A good slide doesn't need the silicone.

A marginal slide might be helped a little by the silicone.

A bad slide won't be helped by anything.
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Bruce Guttman
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« Reply #14 on: Mar 17, 2014, 01:48AM »

Adding to the discussion:

I bought a brand new Bach 42G AF LT two months back. The slide is now almost "broken in" but I notice big differences between the lubes...

Yamaha "snot" (mine is not green, the snot looks like SOM) is good for a short time, but then "gums up" on the slide, leaving a residue. Trombotine works better as far as I can determine.

I have ordered some ultra pure lube, see what gives...

Had a huge improvement on my slide after not only doing a "Wrights" cleaning of the outer slide, but also after soaking the whole slide for an hour in lukewarm water and some detergent.


/Karl
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TromboneMonkey

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« Reply #15 on: Mar 17, 2014, 08:48AM »



Yamaha "snot" (mine is not green, the snot looks like SOM) is good for a short time, but then "gums up" on the slide, leaving a residue. Trombotine works better as far as I can determine.



Yamaha, SOM, and obviously the Superslick Silicone bottle have silicone in them. 

Silicone, according to John Sandhagen when I discussed lubes with him, reacts to some players' body chemistries and causes build-up.  I had that problem for years with SOM and Yamaha and didn't know what was wrong until I talked with him about it.  Now I use Trombotine with no problems. Probably no silicone in it.
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« Reply #16 on: Mar 17, 2014, 09:44AM »

Very old horns that haven't been played for awhile benefit from a good cleaning and a moderately heavy (3mm squirt on each stocking) application of Trombotine. It leaches out the icky stuff. If your slide is in good alignment, several applications of Trombotine/careful swabbing/repeat will do wonders for it.

I stumbled across the exact same treatment myself, and now I do it all the time.  I am normally a Yamaha snot guy but when breaking in an old trombone for the first time in 50 or whatever years, the trombotine blob treatment does the trick.  I use a big blob plus a lot of water, work, then wipe off inners and water/work some more etc.  Once broken in I have better results with the Yamaha stuff, the trombotine is only used for breaking in.  My feeling is there is some subtle metal surface chemistry going on here where the trombotine binds to the metal in some way.  Either that or black magic  Amazed

Scott
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« Reply #17 on: Mar 25, 2014, 05:00PM »

For old slides, Trombotine (+ Yamaha snot if you are fussy).........
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ETbone

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« Reply #18 on: Mar 26, 2014, 07:41AM »

For old slides, Trombonetine (+ Yamaha snot if you are fussy).........
What he said.  Clever  Trombonetine works on any slide, and is consistent. You may have to clean your outer slide, several times to get the best performance.  On really old slides, the outer slide, could (usually) have oxidization...so a thorough "Wright's silver polish" treatment would be needed and then trombonetine. 

The Trombonetine, will help seal the outer slide pores, and the smooth slide action would last longer.
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Graham Martin
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« Reply #19 on: Mar 26, 2014, 06:38PM »

I am usually a bit reluctant to join a thread about slide lubricant because there is always such a wide diversity of answers and it seems to me no precise way of measuring a particular type or brand. From reading other player's comments, I think it has more to do with their own personal requirements and expectations, based on their previous playing experience. I think the ultimate lubricant is one that creates zero friction - or other resistance to movement of the slide. But that would be too free for some!

For me, using my three bones - Bach LT16M, Bach 16M, King Silversonic 2B and Conn 6H (from 24 to 54 years young) - I find that Slide-O-Mix Rapid Comfort (all-in-one) does the best and most consistent job and is quicker and easier to apply. I am always surprised that it gets so few mentions in these threads. For me it gives the least resistance when used on all my bones. Good!

However, my recommendations are also based on my own daily maintenance of the bone I am playing - usually the LT16M, which is my favourite and played the most. I am not kidding when I say that I clean the outer and inner slides and reapply the slide lubricant every time I play, which is every day. I have never found any slide lubricant that lasts for more than a day without the friction increasing but that may be because of the age of the bones. It may also have something to do with our climate downunder. For the inside of inner and outer slides, I clean with detergent and water using a flexible slide brush. I then run lukewarm water through them until all traces of the detergent are gone. I clean the outside of the inner slide under the running tap using detergent and dry with a paper towel. I then use a rod with a small rag attached to dry the inner surfaces of both slides. I have never found that water spray makes the lubricant perform better.

Actually, it takes longer to explain the cleaning procedure than to do it because I have the whole thing down to less than 10 minutes. Not a bad investment in time, considering the benefits and how much it improves slide movement and tone. Tone improvement is probably due to less resistance without the sound having to pass through all that gunk clinging to the insides of tubes.

I will understand if others are indignant because this procedure makes them feel guilty about not maintaining their bone properly according to my standards. :D
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