The Bone Yard


Slide Oil vs. Slide Cream.Whatís the difference?


††† Slide oil sure seems easier to use, especially for a young beginner.Just put a few drops on the inner slide, making sure to include the stocking (the slightly wider part at the bottom 4 inches or so of the inner slide), and work the slide a few times to spread it around.The advantage is that itís easier to use by a youngster who just wants to play and not fuss with the cream.The drawback is that it doesnít really work as well as the cream when itís used properly, and thereís the smell of slide oil right near where youíre breathing.


†††† Slide cream takes a bit more care when applying, but the results are far better.Youíll need a small spray bottle filled with water which a music store will happily sell you for about $4.00, or you can buy a $0.99 bottle in the cosmetic aisle at the pharmacy.Clean the slide with a soft rag and use your finger to apply a small amount to the lower three fourths of the inner slides.You want a thin, even layer, as too much will make the slide sluggish and missing a spot will mean youíre rubbing metal against metal.Feel free to wipe the excess off with your finger.Spray a mist of water onto the slide and you should see it bead up on the cream.Work the slide a bit and you should be ready to go. If the slide becomes sluggish, spray again.If it does this every five minutes, then wipe off some of the cream and respray.SuperSlick is probably the most popular of the slide creams.Iím using Trombotine right now and I know players that really like Slide-O-Mix.


††††† You may hear stories from old-timers about using cold cream, but the kind that worked hasnít been made for 30 years or more.Today's cold cream will separate with water.Iíve been told furniture polish from a spray can works well with a misting of water but Iím reluctant to try it on my own instrument.If anyoneís familiar with this please let me know.


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