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The Trombone ForumPractice BreakChit-Chat(Moderators: bhcordova, RedHotMama, BFW) Anyone bought a horn from Musicians Friend/WWBW/Music 123 etc
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Ellrod

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« on: May 07, 2017, 10:50PM »

All of these are, I believe, the same company and collectively are by far the biggest online music dealer around.

I've bought a bit of guitar gear from them but not too sure about buying a horn from them. Any opinions out there?
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schlitzbeer
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« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2017, 11:09PM »

They're all owned by Mitter's Bain Capital. NO, I wouldn't buy a horn from them. Hasn't been the WWBW I grew up with for some time.

Horn Guys, Hickey's, and Dillon's.
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greenbean
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« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2017, 11:19PM »

There are numerous brass specialty shops that deserve your business.  They are excellent.  WWBW is not among them.
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MikeBMiller
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« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2017, 07:03AM »

I got a euphonium from WWBW about 20 years ago and a 3B 3 years ago. No problems either time. If you get on their mailing list, you can get 15% discount coupons several times a year. I saved about $300 on the 3b with one of those. They will also give you a nice trial period on your horn. When I bought the euph, I started out with a Yamaha and didn't really like it. They swapped out for a Willson no questions asked. Those specialty brass shops are great if you happen to live close enough to one of them to visit and play test a bunch of horns. But for most of us, WWBW is a good option.
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elmsandr

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« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2017, 07:16AM »

I got a euphonium from WWBW about 20 years ago and a 3B 3 years ago. No problems either time. If you get on their mailing list, you can get 15% discount coupons several times a year. I saved about $300 on the 3b with one of those. They will also give you a nice trial period on your horn. When I bought the euph, I started out with a Yamaha and didn't really like it. They swapped out for a Willson no questions asked. Those specialty brass shops are great if you happen to live close enough to one of them to visit and play test a bunch of horns. But for most of us, WWBW is a good option.

WWBW 20 years ago no longer exists. They were essentially a 'specialty brass shop' (or really more than that) at the time.  Today, they are a website with nobody doing any detail work on horns.  Just box it and ship it.  The service received on the Euph is long gone.

Sad to see them go, but they created their own demise,
Andy
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Andrew Elms
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« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2017, 07:17AM »

I'm not sure if this applies to your thinking, but I bought a Tromba plastic trombone from them about 2 years ago as they had the lowest price I could find.  It came with a small crack in the bell and when I called them and told them about it I got no argument, they just sent me out another one.  They did not even ask for the damaged one back.

Everyone needs two of these, right? Good!
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BGuttman
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« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2017, 08:32AM »

I'm not sure if this applies to your thinking, but I bought a Tromba plastic trombone from them about 2 years ago as they had the lowest price I could find.  It came with a small crack in the bell and when I called them and told them about it I got no argument, they just sent me out another one.  They did not even ask for the damaged one back.

Everyone needs two of these, right? Good!

That's just so you can play both of them on a pogo stick :-P
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Bruce Guttman
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« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2017, 08:44AM »

I'm not sure if this applies to your thinking, but I bought a Tromba plastic trombone from them about 2 years ago as they had the lowest price I could find.  It came with a small crack in the bell and when I called them and told them about it I got no argument, they just sent me out another one.  They did not even ask for the damaged one back.

Everyone needs two of these, right? Good!
Finally, a trombone that can be repaired using Gorilla Glue
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MikeBMiller
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« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2017, 01:15PM »

WWBW 20 years ago no longer exists. They were essentially a 'specialty brass shop' (or really more than that) at the time.  Today, they are a website with nobody doing any detail work on horns.  Just box it and ship it.  The service received on the Euph is long gone.

Sad to see them go, but they created their own demise,
Andy

Well, the 3b from 3 years ago arrived with no problems and a 15% discount.
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BillO
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« Reply #9 on: May 09, 2017, 10:46AM »

Finally, a trombone that can be repaired using Gorilla Glue
That's exactly what I used too!
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Never look at the conductor. You just encourage them.

Have you noticed, some folk never stick around to help tidy up after practice?
BillO
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« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2017, 10:47AM »

That's just so you can play both of them on a pogo stick :-P
Wow, that's an image.  Me on pogo stick with two plastic trombones!
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Never look at the conductor. You just encourage them.

Have you noticed, some folk never stick around to help tidy up after practice?
schlitzbeer
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« Reply #11 on: May 09, 2017, 10:56AM »

I'm not sure if this applies to your thinking, but I bought a Tromba plastic trombone from them about 2 years ago as they had the lowest price I could find.  It came with a small crack in the bell and when I called them and told them about it I got no argument, they just sent me out another one.  They did not even ask for the damaged one back.

Everyone needs two of these, right? Good!

That would depend on who fulfilled the order. A lot of times, I've seen people get horns that appear to have been drop shipped, with no QA whatsoever. Plastics aside, if you're billed for a new horn, it had better be a new horn. Too many people have received used, demo horns, that are still represented as being new.
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Ellrod

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« Reply #12 on: May 09, 2017, 12:51PM »

So does MF operate like Amazon in the sense that they act as a middleman between the seller and purchaser, or do they actually have a warehouse full of inventory somewhere?
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BillO
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« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2017, 02:39PM »

I doubt they warehouse much.  Many wholesalers are willing to drop ship these days.

In my case, the damaged Tromba was new, not a return.  You could see the damage on the carton that was wrinkled near the bell and the certain items were in sealed plastic bags.  This is not to say I've never received a return, but not this time.  The damage was all brand new - and not significant.
« Last Edit: May 09, 2017, 06:59PM by BillO » Logged

Never look at the conductor. You just encourage them.

Have you noticed, some folk never stick around to help tidy up after practice?
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« Reply #14 on: May 09, 2017, 03:28PM »

If you type in Musicians Friend warehouse you'll see a photo of what I think is the old warehouse.  On the map it shows they moved northeast? of the old location 5-6 miles.  I haven't been to the new place yet but the old one had a couple thousand sq. ft. show room with the rest being 100,000? sq. ft. warehouse.  Loading docks, semi-trucks, employee parking around the south side.  The photo shows the northside customer entrance -old building.
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Full Pedal Trombonist

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« Reply #15 on: May 09, 2017, 05:22PM »

I bought a clearance euphonium that had damage. Everything was exactly as described and it served me well for a few years until I got a Yamaha Neo. The only problem I had with them is that the bow they shipped it in easily could have fit three mini fridges. It was a chore to break it down for recycling  :D but other than that everything went well.
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« Reply #16 on: May 09, 2017, 06:28PM »

I lived in South Bend in the early 80s and bought a YSL-354 from them.  From what I remember, they were in an old two story house.  I was in South Bend a month ago and wanted to go to the latest store, but was told there was no retail store any more, just order on line.  Pity.
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« Reply #17 on: May 10, 2017, 03:53AM »

I would like to ask everyone to consider using a locally owned music store if that is an option for you.  Ask them to match advertised online prices...they may not be able to, but you might be surprised.   This helps keep some of the money in your local economy, if that matters to you.
The absolute worst thing you can do is to go to a local store, try out a horn and decide its what you want, and then order it online.   
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MikeBMiller
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« Reply #18 on: May 10, 2017, 06:45AM »

I would like to ask everyone to consider using a locally owned music store if that is an option for you.  Ask them to match advertised online prices...they may not be able to, but you might be surprised.   This helps keep some of the money in your local economy, if that matters to you.
The absolute worst thing you can do is to go to a local store, try out a horn and decide its what you want, and then order it online.   

I try to support my local store when I can. But their main focus is on the rock and roll crowd and school bands. They may have one pro level trombone in the store at any given time. Yes, they can order a horn for you, but many stores are not willing or able to bring in a horn for you to try out.
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« Reply #19 on: May 10, 2017, 07:04AM »

The disappearance of the local music store 15 or so years ago was a harbinger of what is happening with today's retail landscape. If people are not willing to pay for the service of, for example, being able to play different horns to select one they like, by paying a higher price for that item, then the retailer is going to stop providing the service. We vote with our dollars, and then some are surprised at the result, which is that only retailers in extremely dense population centers will be able to continue in the old business model, because there are enough customers in the area who are willing to pay for service.

Drive around your city and observe the retail establishments, and notice how many are service businesses, like food, nails and hair, insurance, gyms, auto repair, etc.

This should not come as a surprise. We all voted for it.
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