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Elements of Brass Instrument Construction: Double-Piston Valves
The piston valve consists of a cylindrical outer casing (a) and the piston (b) inside, which fits tightly within the outer casing. The valve loop (c), as well as the main tubing (d), are soldered to the outer casing. The piston is perforated with ports (e) that lead the air stream either straight through the main tubing or into the valve loop. The valve loop is disengaged or engaged by the up-and-down movement of the piston within the casing that aligns the ports either with the main tubing or the valve loop.
The double-piston valve is first recorded in 1821 in connection with a trumpet by Christian Friedrich Sattler of Leipzig. In this valve type the simultaneous movement of two pistons introduces an additional valve loop. Double-piston valves come in a great variety of operating and return mechanisms:
The only city in which double-piston valves are still in use today is Vienna. Therefore, double-piston valves are often called "Vienna Valves." However, this over-simplifies the great variety of constructions found in the past, most of which were developed outside of Vienna.
Double-Piston Valve Diagrams