stuck thermostatic valve

last year when I knew even less about these things than I know now, I had to get a CH man in to deal with a bunch of stuck (closed) thermostatic valves on a system that had not been run for some time. I was intrigued to discover that his hammering, seemingly quite gentle, worked a treat on all the valves. Having resolved to make sure that all valves were fully open during the summer I overlooked one of them and sure enough it's stuck.
The CH man charged his minimum call out fee so I'd like to take the hammer to this myself. Is there a knack? - I suspect there is, at the very least it probably requires a conviction that one is capable enough to do it. I lack this at the moment and am concerned that I damage the valve.
I've removed the unscrewable controller. I've tapped around the valve with the metal end of a pair of pliers (can't find the hammer) but I wonder, should one actually tap the pin sometimes or should all action be around the solid metal parts of the valve? Heavy or light action?
thanks for any encouragement.
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On Wed, 20 Oct 2010 13:44:06 +0200, bob wrote:

drama over..went back for a second tap and the pin obligingly slid out.
The range of travel seems no more than about 3mm - I hope that's normal?
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<bob> wrote in message

I never touch mine except occasionally if I want a room warmer/colder. Indeed I wouldn't open them fully in the summer - if you leave them in their 'normal' position they will continue to move the valve up and down due to the changing temperatures through the day and night, even without any water flow. In 25 years I've never had a stuck one (I hope this posting doesn't provoke a failure!! although I have had a couple of failed heads.
Peter
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- many thank for replies..
fred: ok, I'll be mindful of your more methodical approach next time this happens.
Peter: yes, I take your poing about just leaving the stats in their usual position. The danger is obviously in closing then up fully; I don't know why this was done other than to seal off a room that wasn't going to be much used.
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