Routine Maintenance

Ultrasonic/Chemical Cleaning - Optical Valve Alignment

Ultrasonic/Chemical Cleaning

We recommend that once a year, your instrument be ultrasonic/chemical cleaned using a chemical bath especially formulated to remove corrosion, mineral scale, and other foreign matter from the inside of brass instruments.



This procedure is important because contaminants building up inside an instrument, year after year, will result in a chemical leaching of zinc from the copper/zinc alloy. This de-zincification (better known as red rot) will ultimately result in tubing splits and pinholes, especially in the lead pipe.

Our cleaning process begins with disassembly of the instrument removing the valves, and slides and the removal of built-up oil and grease. An ultrasonic chemical bath then removes the corrosion, mineral scale and other foreign matter from the inside of the horn. No metal is removed in this process. During this chemical cleaning, we take steps to avoid damaging lacquered finishes.

After the cleaning, the valves and casings are hand polished, reassembled and correctly aligned. Crisp fast valve action is restored replacing springs, felts, pads, bumper rubbers as necessary. Slide tubing is hand polished and greased, Water key levers and springs are oiled and new corks are installed where necessary. After the instrument has been correctly reassembled, minor accessible dents are removed and it is thoroughly checked and play tested by Ivan Hunter.

Turn around time is normally 2 to 3 days in the shop plus the time required to return the instrument to you by UPS Ground Service.

Yes, we clean tubas!

Optical Valve Alignment

An Optical Valve Alignment is an optional add-on for Trumpet and other piston valve instruments. This process ensures that all valve ports (including hidden internal ones) are aligned axially to best fit.

Note: Due to the sensitivity of the optical components Optical Valve Alignments are only carried out after we have ultrasonic/chemical cleaned the instrument.

What we see and adjust


Ultrasonic/Chemical Clean3 Valve Trumpet, Cornet Flugelhorn$85
4 Valve Trumpet, Cornet Flugelhorn$95
Single French Horn$95
Double French Horn$150
3 Valve Baritone Horn$95
4 Valve Baritone Horn$120
Straight Tenor/Alto Trombone$85
Bb/F Trombone$120
Double Valve Bass Trombone$150
Optical Valve AlignmentPer Valve - at Time of Cleaning$12