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1053001 Posts in 70103 Topics- by 18221 Members - Latest Member: TboneJake
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21  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Mouthpieces / Re: Who in their right mind plays a Bach 1 1/2G ?? on: Jan 07, 2017, 09:02AM
Well, an old friend who I had not seen in many years, came to pick up a trombone I am selling the other day. He played it a bit and had some comments about the low register. I blew it as we talked it through. He commented that it sounded very different when I played it.. and looked at my mouthpiece. He is playing a fine modern mouthpiece, slightly bigger than a 1 1/2G.... he gave up on the 1 1/2 years ago. I said he could try the MV, but it was not for sale and he might regret it.
He casually put it to his face.... I could hear it... he could feel it... and I could see that he didn't expect it to be anything like it was.
I did warn him.... it my well be one more player searching the ads.
A strange kind of magic.

Chris Stearn.
22  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Brass vs. Nickel Slides: Spectral Comparison on: Jan 07, 2017, 01:41AM
The OP is no longer here. I think it is better to lock his threads down as he cannot reply.

Chris Stearn.
23  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Brass vs. Nickel Slides: Spectral Comparison on: Jan 05, 2017, 03:27AM
O.K., well sorry if I falsely accused you. I was just fearing that the argument was going to flare up again. Yes, I'm very interested in what kind of R&D is done by instrument makers.

I'd say as much as they need to and no more than they have to.

Seriously, from my experience, what most makers do is consult as many good players as they can, then scratch their heads about all the contradictory input and try to see if some common themes emerge.
Players can be very hard to deal with... endless demands... changing ideas.... inbuilt bias .....  but they are the end users, so they need to be happy. It can cost as much to build a bad instrument as a good one and makers want to get it right... they go bust otherwise.

Chris Stearn
24  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Brass vs. Nickel Slides: Spectral Comparison on: Jan 04, 2017, 12:48PM
Thanks for opening this discussion again !

If my tone sounded contentious it wasn't meant to be, just thought people might be interested in what we did back then and what a Pandora's box it all is.

I should state that I have had no association with Rath instruments for over ten years now so am not trying to fly any flags here  either.

As I side note, I always found it interesting that to the best of my knowledge C.G. Conn never made any model of trombone with nickel outers...... unless anyone knows different??

In the old days the bronze Conn slide alloy used on some models in the old days was  85Cu 13Zn 2Sn

We had a piece tested in the laboratory of the rolling mill that supplied us raw materials. The M.D. was a trombonist and was as curious as us, what a find!

Any wayiIt is listed in the American alloy specs but I can't remember the exact number.
I've just tried to look it up and it comes up as Pen Metal as it was used for making nibs.... go figure how they came up with using that one for trombone slides ?????



Just a reminder, Bellend. Alestair Braden did some work with Rath as part of his doctoral research into brass instrument acoustics. It happened after my time there, but that is what I referred to earlier in the topic.

Chris Stearn
25  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Silver Plated Trombones: Why not well accepted? on: Jan 03, 2017, 02:28PM
I haven't recoded myself in a long time, so right now I really don't know how I sound at a distance.

Just wondering - in what way did they sound different?  You're talking about being familiar with someone's distance sound first, and then experiencing their close up sound.

I will reply via PM. Professional ethics inhibit my public response. Hope that is okay.
26  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Silver Plated Trombones: Why not well accepted? on: Jan 03, 2017, 09:58AM
Beneath all the hyperbole and snark, Steve has a point that is worth considering--what if what you are hearing is significantly different from what the audience is hearing? I disagree with his measuring standard of "efficiency," but I do think his point about sound behind the bell and sound in front of the bell (made more effectively in the brass slide vs. nickel slide thread) has relevance.

In that respect he can be correct... how many people THINK they sound to an audience is not how they ACTUALLY sound to an audience.
I have sat next to great players that I have heard many times and been SHOCKED by how they sound when you sit along side them. They know how to get results.
That is how you learn how it is REALLY done !!

Chris Stearn
27  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Coppergate 'intermediate' Bass Trombone Initial impressions on: Jan 03, 2017, 03:27AM
7B clone.
I bought a damaged stock example because I liked the case when I saw one.... I have been using the case with my no 1 horn for over a year including touring in the orchestra truck and it is holding up fine.... No way would I use it to fly with.... my carbon fiber does that job, but my open wrapped Holton fits perfectly and it is very light.
The trombone was easily fixed up damage wise and actually works very well for what it is. I cut the second valve lever down and it is fine. No build issues on mine. Slide is very good. Would I use it for work ? No.... it is not an orchestral sound, but I might swap over parts from an old King bell I have and see how it blows.
I think I was lucky. Buy for a bit more from Wessex and you take the luck element out and get a workable cheap horn.

Chris Stearn
28  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Silver Plated Trombones: Why not well accepted? on: Jan 03, 2017, 03:09AM
This was my point earlier.  We as trombonists literally have finest tuned sensing organs to this type of thing.  Literally.  Machines can certainly show one or two types of resonance, db loss, what have you, but we have been perfecting our minds ear to hear and fine tuning exactly all of these variables for years upon years to achieve our outcome.  How many different variables are we accounting for when we adjust to a big band, adjust to a hall, adjust our tone to get a brighter or darker sound?  Possibly hundreds.  I don't know.  I don't care.  All I know is by the time we train our machines to account for every since aspect of every possible variable that we as human beings master throughout the course of one musical phrase, will we really be better off?  This is my beef with this stuff.  We're humans, we make music.  We're good at it.  Or we're not, and then we practice.  Nowhere does this psuedo-science mumbo-jumbo every come into into play when we're on that path. 

Sorry if I offend.  I'm sure this discussion has it's merits and I hope all parties involved find what they're looking to achieve. If this type of measurement eventually helps someone make music, then I'll put my foot in my mouth.  I just have problems wasting time on something like this when all it takes to determine whether a horn sounds good is to play it. 


Every gold plated horn I've played also is fantastic. Sam's is wonderful, so is Ed Neumeister's - he has a gold plated Silversonic 3b. 


Chris Stearn
29  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Brass vs. Nickel Slides: Spectral Comparison on: Jan 03, 2017, 03:06AM
Been there seen it, done it....
Four years helping Mick Rath testing different materials, treatments etc. Having the side builder change outer tubes on the same slide... doing blind tests... groups of listeners.... This test of yours is a non-starter as you have slides from two different makers.... variables unlimited there... inners may have more impact than outers....
Rath is sitting on a pile of information.... that's why he is an expert builder....

Chris Stearn
30  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Silver Plated Trombones: Why not well accepted? on: Jan 01, 2017, 05:12AM
Original question.....
Well, the world is a strange quirky place... but fashion and cost usually lurk behind much of the material world...so...
Lacquering of brass instruments came in around 20's/30's... new thing... looked nice... you could see the different metals.. and it was CHEAP !!! Lacquer became popular...especially on student instruments... when people up-graded they would stick with what they knew... or what was cheaper. Silver on a trumpet was and is, not such a big price hike as on a trombone. Or it is all simply random, which is just as likely. Does it matter ? Seems to for some....
31  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: My 1st Euphonium! B&H Imperial on: Jan 01, 2017, 01:22AM
I was lucky enough to find an old Gardinelli mouthpiece... looks like a Helleburg on the outside... screw rim... about 5G at the rim but very, very deep... deeper than a Bach 1G. Works fantastically.
32  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: My 1st Euphonium! B&H Imperial on: Dec 31, 2016, 11:49AM
These old ones are better in tune than many of the more modern instruments, but you do have to learn to lip notes in tune in a way you don't on the trombone.

Chris Stearn
33  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Sliver Plated Trombones: Why not well accepted? on: Dec 31, 2016, 11:46AM
I guess some people are not able to recognize facetiousness and playfulness, but I can guarantee you one thing: if this topic on the forum we're all about how to permanently deaden your instrument, it would not be very popular, right? It would be satire! I cannot recall encountering a brass player who was seeking an unresponsive instrument, a stuffy instrument, one that caused harder work. You also have to remember, earlier in the comments, that many were challenging even the notion that lacquer does anything detectable to the instrument, so at least someone (me) found one little piece of research that suggests the intuitively obvious. After all, acoustical engineers use paint for sound deadening on hard reflective materials.

People here don't seem to get your jovial side... your comments seem unvarnished if not unlacquered....

Chris Stearn
34  Classified Advertisements / Classified Advertisements / Re: Selmer 23 K mortified serial 3368 on: Dec 31, 2016, 10:32AM
Mortified ???? Is that an upset setup ??

Chris Stearn
35  Classified Advertisements / Classified Advertisements / Re: FS conn bass trombone model 73h 1969 on: Dec 29, 2016, 05:10AM
Steve... I've bought from German in the past and found him good to deal with.

Chris Stearn
36  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: My 1st Euphonium! B&H Imperial on: Dec 29, 2016, 05:08AM
Looks like quite an old one.... may have been originally high-pitch looking at the main tuning slide. Almost certain to be medium size shank. I have a mature example from the 1930's... they are great !!

Chris Stearn
37  Practice Break / Chit-Chat / Re: Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia) has passed away. on: Dec 27, 2016, 01:53PM
Wasn't she in some sort of movie that Denis Wick played on the soundtrack to?
I guess that if she appeared with Denis Wick, that might sort of make her notable?

True indeed.... I remember her turning up the the sound track recordings.... she must have liked Denis Wick... Harrison Ford was also in the playback room... hmmm..

Chris Stearn
38  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Mouthpieces / Re: All Round Schilke 59-60 Sized Bass Trombone Mouthpiece on: Dec 27, 2016, 07:21AM
Hey.... I've been in both groups... and I still have time to waste on the forum... whichever one I am in.


Chris Stearn.
39  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Mouthpieces / Re: Bach screw rim mouthpieces on: Dec 25, 2016, 04:03AM
I've seen screw rim mouthpieces from NY and MV eras... Bob Hughes has a 2G with 3 rims.

Chris Stearn.
40  Horns, Gear, and Equipment / Instruments / Re: Alto trombone recommendations on: Dec 24, 2016, 01:27PM
The player is mostly responsible for the sound... did think that that Lindberg guy makes a bad sound ?? I thought he sounded pretty wonderful on his Conn. Most of the best alto playing I have heard was on a Latzch model Khune... best alto out there in the 50's, 60's and 70's..  find one if you can... and be a world class player or it will eat you for breakfast.

Chris Stearn
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