Acidic hands????

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Dawnys_flug, Jan 25, 2004.

  1. Dawnys_flug

    Dawnys_flug Member

    Does anyone suffer severe laquer/silverplate wear because of a high pH in your hands?
    I got a brand new Courtois prof. flugel about three years ago and wherever my hands touch the instrument, the silverplate has gone either that sort of grey/green bobbly-feeling or it has worn away to the brass! :shock:
    Now i know that every instrument's plating is going to wear and tarnish over time but i think something has to be going on here when my three year old instrument looks like it'll soon be a total re-plating job! :)
    Someone told me it could be my skin pH being very acidic and so i now use a valve guard and this has stopped any further wear to the valves, but i dont know what to do about the tubing where my right hand goes!

    Has anyone had any similar problems with plate wear on Courtois or on any instrument?
    Any explanations as to why this happens?
    Any solutions?

    Thanks :lol: :lol:
  2. Euph-Bari

    Euph-Bari Active Member

    on my courtois euph the laquer has started to come off were my palm is
    havn't had it that long either, and its only were my palm is :roll:
  3. missflugel

    missflugel Member

    I got a Courtois Flugel just over 5 years ago and where I hold it with my right hand the laquer has completely worn off leaving only the metal.
    I also have corosion around where the water keys are and marks where jewellery has worn away at the laquer.

    Jo x
  4. Kerwintootle

    Kerwintootle Member

    I had a courtois cornet for seven and a half years and there was no lacquer erosion just bumps, scratches and dents from my carelessness. I had my Bb courtois cornet replaced with a brand new one in November and it still looks immaculate.

    I don't know what to suggest whether it is your hands acidity or maybe from something else i.e. if you touch your hair and it has styling stuff on it and you then put your hands on your instrument maybe that can affect the lacquer wear.
  5. Despot

    Despot Member

    No expert here :? , but I believe women's skin is naturally more alkaline than men's. (High pH I think means it's alkaline not acidic. ) It can be more corrosive.

    I have seen situations where once an instrument is given to a female member of the band, the finish starts to strip around where it's held within a few weeks. Particularly lacquer instruments. Certainly I know Bach won't guarantee finish because of the corrosive effects of "oils" from skin....or at least that's what they say!

    There are soaps available I think that will help a bit, but it may just be a bad plating job! Silver is usually very resistent. You just have to look at lacquer for it to strip! :lol:

    If you are getting it replated, discuss it with the repairman, he might suggest a different finish in places? :? :D
  6. Griffis

    Griffis Member

    You're right, a pH level of 1 = Very Acidic and a pH level of 14 = very alkaline!!
    I have a Besson Soverign 928 (laquered) and it's about 8/9 yrs old, and its the best instrument that I've ever owned, but, where the left hand goes, the laquer has seriously weared down!!! However, I put this down to a lot of practice!!! :lol: :lol:

  7. Aidan

    Aidan Active Member

    our rep player alex had the same trouble a while back. Dunno how he sorted it out but you could always get one of those leather casings to go around your valve casings to hold the instrument with
  8. Bryan_sop

    Bryan_sop Active Member

    I've had a Courtois Cornet for over 5 years and a Courtois Trumpet for about 4 years and the the only blemishes are also from my carelessness
  9. iggmeister

    iggmeister Member

    I have this problem as well.

    My Maestro is starting to suffer and may need repair in the next 12 months. Worse than laquer/silver wear is actual brass wear.

    My own personal cornet is a 928 GS Sovereign. About 10 years old I reckon and the thread on the tops of the 1st valve where you undo it has completely worn away. I tend to rest my left thumb on that point. Also one day I had problems playing it and it sounded really airy. I found out that my left palm had worn away at the very start of the bell, i.e. where the bell starts at the bottom of the first valve casing! It was only about 5 years old at that time as well!

    Complained to Booseys and they paid to have it mended! Good on them.

    I'm just a genetic instrument destroyer!

  10. Aussie Tuba

    Aussie Tuba Member

    I Had an old Boosey and co EEb Bass recon and The plating wore away on the tubing behind the Vaves where my rihgt hand was placed , Now I have a 10 year old Sov and The plating is starting to bubble in the same place .
    If I put my fingers on a peice of steel , The next day my finger prints show as rust , must be something in my skin by way of acid or alkaline .
  11. Okiedokie of Oz

    Okiedokie of Oz Active Member

    I knew I had a slightly basic sweat, so when I bought Bessie, I tried to look after her. Hoever, I have a finger print in the bell on day, the nnext day it looked hideous!!! I spilt some gunk from my reservior down near the bottom U-Bend and the next day, on the joint, a piece of plate had word off. I was told that particular spot was notorious for being a weaker section of plating, but combining all the damage on Bessie, plus my cheap student Blessing trombone losing it's lacquer in 6months, I knew I had a problem.

    When I bought Dougall (my trompet) in March last year, I fell in love with the lacquered model. It was a risk, but I purchased it, along with the valve glove, polishing clothes and the who kabang package. 3 months later, the lacquer is coming off on the BELL(!!!!!), the final tubing leading up to the bell, and the bug u-bend under the mouthpice. Two months after that, the valves have all got corroded fingerprints in them, ands the mouthpiece has lostr a lot of silver plate. the locall shop owner says that companies are starting to take less care in the quality of thei lacquer refining, and as much as I want to believe him, I realise I too helped my instrument deteriorate.
  12. andyp

    andyp Active Member

    Never had this problem, however my brother had nearly every silvered instrument (cornet and tenor horn) he played lose the plating off the valves. We always reckoned his sweat must be more acidic than mine.
    Has anyone ever tested these theories, maybe some manufacturer has done it?
  13. asteria

    asteria Member

    My brother has been using a student model courtois from new. Looked fab when he got it, and now he's had it less than 2 years and all the laquer is peeling off along the bell. Not sure if this is a corrosion thing or just shoddy workmanship/materials.

    Anyone noticing the large number of courtois instruments cropping up in this thread?
  14. Dave Euph

    Dave Euph Member

    Gloves? Sounds silly I know but maybe it would help. Maybe you should get a laquer cloth as well and just wipe the areas which receive contact the most when you are playing.

    I have a silver instrument so I don't suffer any real 'laquer' problems but it might help if you just give the instrument a quick scrub down after playing.
  15. Dawnys_flug

    Dawnys_flug Member

    My flugel is silver plated and i used to use a silver cloth to wipe down where i held it after i played but i seemed to think it was perhaps aiding the corrosion! lol! i dunno.
    Gloves is a very good idea and i think would definately solve the problem BUT someone told me that wearing a glove on my right hand where i hold the instrument may effect the sound! Is there any truth in this?????? :?
  16. Keppler

    Keppler Moderator Staff Member

    probably depends if you're wearing a ski glove or an oven glove or something..

    be stylish and wear tight leather ones... hmm

    no, I cant see it affecting the sound unduly. Otherwise those banders with enormous meaty paws would have different sounds than those with weeny hands
  17. Dawnys_flug

    Dawnys_flug Member

    oooooooo :lol:
  18. Dave Euph

    Dave Euph Member

    Hmmm, good idea, I was wondering if using gloves might inhibit playing in anyway, but leather gloves are generally OK ...
  19. Euph-Bari

    Euph-Bari Active Member

    M.Jackson Type White gloves mabey? :lol: :
  20. neiltwist

    neiltwist Active Member

    don't some trumpetters take all the laquer off to improve sound? Maybe it's doing you a favour!

    seriously though, perhaps if you wash your hands before you play? and some people sweat more than others in some places, which possibly explains some of the variation.