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Lead tubing -Continued

Hi Fred,

As I try to explain in my article, lead oxide isn't dangerous. 
And the only time the lead presents a danger is when it is 
removed from the player mechanism. And then, it is only a 
danger if small children are playing with the removed tubing. 
That's because the lead oxide is sweet, and they might start 
chewing on the removed pieces of tubing, and thereby ingest 
the lead, which is highly toxic and causes brain damage. 

Now, when the tubing gets corroded to the point where you can 
see the white 'pimples' on the outside of the tubing, it's 
corroded almost all the way through. At that point, it usually 
starts leaking enough to cause ciphers (notes that play all 
the time). At that point, it has to be changed. 

The lead oxide that falls off the inside of the tubing is in 
the form of a very fine powder. First, it gets sucked into the 
pouch well. From there, it can get sucked through the bleed 
cup and into the valve chamber, where it can get embedded in 
the leather valve facing. And since it's an oxide with free 
electrons, it can cause the metal valve plates to become 

As you can tell, it's a cycle of events that ends up causing 
a lot of unnecessary damage, which can be eliminated simply 
by removing the lead tubing and replacing it with rubber. 
And while the new rubber tubing won't last as long as new 
lead tubing, the rubber tubing is much easier to replace 
'the next time', whereas lead tubing is very difficult to 
replace, and it's very costly because almost no one uses it 

Hope this helps clear things up.


John A Tuttle

P.S. Portions of this email might be used for an addendum to 
the webpage about lead tubing.

On 7/7/2010 6:59 PM, Fred  wrote:
> Below is the result of your feedback form.  It was submitted by Fred 
 on Wednesday, July 7, 2010 at 18:59:38 
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
> realname: Fred

> comments: Hi John... i recently found a Waltham upright player that has been
> restored..valves, pnemantics, bellows, airmotor keys, etc.. it plays like a
> champ with only the foot pedals... my question is one regarding your article
> on lead tubing from the tracker bar... when this was restored he left the
> lead tubing in...is there really THAT much of a "hazard" leaving it in or
> should it be changed out.... also what about any lead powder that may be
> inside the pneumatic sytem?  is this really a concern or am i being a little
> too over concerned about this ©  just would like your input... thanks...
> Fred

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