Plastic miniball linkages

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8parktoollover
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Plastic miniball linkages

Post by 8parktoollover » Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:02 am

How much does it normally cost to buy and do a plastuc miniball linkage conversion and aree tgwy as good as metal linkages?
brassmedic
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Re: Plastic miniball linkages

Post by brassmedic » Wed Jul 10, 2019 3:08 am

The linkages are less than 5 dollars. Depending on the make, a tech might have to tap 2/56 threads into the stop arm to accommodate the ball links, and reverse the stop arm if it was string linkage to begin with. So you would have to pay for that labor as well. Probably under $100 all told. I think they're just as good as metal links. Maybe even quieter.
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tbonesullivan
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Re: Plastic miniball linkages

Post by tbonesullivan » Wed Jul 10, 2019 8:18 am

The plastic linkages are also very easy to adjust and replace. With some metal linkages, adjusting the position of the arm is nearly impossible.
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hyperbolica
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Re: Plastic miniball linkages

Post by hyperbolica » Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:00 am

Image
I'm in the middle of doing one of these conversions myself on an old tuba, removing the old S links and putting in these Du-bro plastic links.

Some people talk smack about the plastic links, but I think they work fine, and for what we do with them, they are plenty durable. The tuba conversion is costing me about $30 in materials, and a couple hours of work (for 4 valves). I have Du-bro links on a bass bone as well, and they work fine (plus have some adjustability and disassemblability that the metal ones don't have.

Be careful about what you buy. Some of the flashy looking Chinese aluminum ones have had some problems with brass inserts pulling out. The Du-Bro are US made.

https://www.dubro.com/search?q=links
8parktoollover
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Re: Plastic miniball linkages

Post by 8parktoollover » Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:01 pm

How difficult is it to do myself. I don't really have any experience so I probobly wouldn't risk it. Anyway I'm trying to find an afordable soloution to my clanky bach linkage.
hyperbolica
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Re: Plastic miniball linkages

Post by hyperbolica » Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:15 pm

May require some skill with tools. Drilling, cutting, possibly threading. Basic shop type stuff.
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greenbean
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Re: Plastic miniball linkages

Post by greenbean » Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:59 pm

8parktoollover wrote:
Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:01 pm
...
Anyway I'm trying to find an afordable soloution to my clanky bach linkage.
The clanky Bach linkage can work beautifully. Take it apart, clean it, pack it with grease, and reassemble it. Adjust it precisely. Use a good linkage oil on all the other points of contact. Done.
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elmsandr
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Re: Plastic miniball linkages

Post by elmsandr » Wed Jul 10, 2019 7:01 pm

greenbean wrote:
Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:59 pm
8parktoollover wrote:
Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:01 pm
...
Anyway I'm trying to find an afordable soloution to my clanky bach linkage.
The clanky Bach linkage can work beautifully. Take it apart, clean it, pack it with grease, and reassemble it. Adjust it precisely. Use a good linkage oil on all the other points of contact. Done.
A note on the adjust it part for folks that haven’t done it before. You probably won’t get it on your first try. Or fifth. But by the time you figure out the feel of it, it will work just fine if all the parts are in decent enough shape. Heck, I have one from 1952 here that requires almost no maintenance and works just fine. All you need is patience and enough mechanical aptitude to feel it out.

Cheers,
Andy
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Re: Plastic miniball linkages

Post by brassmedic » Wed Jul 10, 2019 11:15 pm

hyperbolica wrote:
Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:00 am
Image
I'm in the middle of doing one of these conversions myself on an old tuba, removing the old S links and putting in these Du-bro plastic links.

Some people talk smack about the plastic links, but I think they work fine, and for what we do with them, they are plenty durable. The tuba conversion is costing me about $30 in materials, and a couple hours of work (for 4 valves). I have Du-bro links on a bass bone as well, and they work fine (plus have some adjustability and disassemblability that the metal ones don't have.

Be careful about what you buy. Some of the flashy looking Chinese aluminum ones have had some problems with brass inserts pulling out. The Du-Bro are US made.

https://www.dubro.com/search?q=links
Those are great for tuba. For trombone, I use the smaller 2-56 thread type with the nylon sockets.
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whitbey
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Re: Plastic miniball linkages

Post by whitbey » Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:37 pm

My Bach bass has the old linkage. I never take it apart. Got it adjusted right years ago.

I pack the lube around it and hit it with a lighter. Let the grease melt into the works and it is good for 6 months. Probably longer but that is how often it gets done.

I lube the metal mini ball the same way. Along with the pivot spring rod. Grease then heat.
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