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MMD > Archives > May 2010 > 2010.05.23 > 01Prev  Next

Lubricating Musical Box Star Wheel Mechanism
By Mark Singleton

In response to Jim Quashnock's posting, it goes against the grain,
to my way of thinking, not to lubricate the star wheels, at the
point where they sit on the arbour.  Rightly or wrongly, I have
always used a little Windles Clock Oil here, for the simple reason
that an equal amount of downward pressure is applied where the star
wheel seats on its support as is needed to lift the tooth.  One only
needs to look at the rutting of teeth and a well set of star wheel
tips to realise the same is happening where the eye can't see.

Jim's idea of a dry silicone spray seems quite feasible, though
I still prefer the 'membrane' that carefully oiled surface offers.

One of the main problems in using oil is applying to much, in which
case the dampers can become readily contaminated and seriously affect
the sound quality; in addition, capillary action can also bleed the
bearing surface dry.  Perhaps graphite would suffice as a lubricant,
but I have not, as yet tried it.

Mark Singleton
Lancashire, England

(Message sent Sun 23 May 2010, 16:48:01 GMT, from time zone GMT-0400.)

Key Words in Subject:  Box, Lubricating, Mechanism, Musical, Star, Wheel

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