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Braces (not for your face)

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Regular Member

Joined: 24 May 2021
Posts: 13
Location: Topeka, KS

PostPosted: Thu Sep 16, 2021 6:14 am    Post subject: Braces (not for your face) Reply with quote

I have tried the search feature but have not seen a thread on this so I wanted to ask the crowd about bracing on our beloved instrument.

I know that brace location and affect the response of the horn but how does the type of brace effect the horn? I've seen some horns with stress-free point to point bracing like Conns, Then there is the ever loves Z-Brace that we all know about and then the Summit-Style sheets of brass that serve as braces.

What does this do to a horn? Is one "better" than another?

Would appreciate the thoughts of you horn heads on the matter
Vintage horns are like a box of chocolates, you never know what you have until you put it to your mouth!
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Andy Cooper
Heavyweight Member

Joined: 15 Nov 2001
Posts: 1066
Location: Terre Haute, IN USA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 16, 2021 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I reviewed some of your previous posts and see that you are really into vintage horns and having your tech restore them.

I would suggest this approach. Find a couple of like trumpets on - say - shopgoodwill.com. Two King 600's would work. You can usually get these for less than $70 shipping included - much less than Yamahas or Ambassadors. Determine that they play about the same. (Set the gap and align the valves. You can learn to do the alignment yourself and save money.) I would strip the lacquer on both horns. It makes solder clean up easier.

Buy an adjustable tuning slide brace.
Not sure if this can also be used on the bell/leadpipe. Kanstul used to make a "Sound Post". Or you can always tape braces on for testing.

Keep one trumpet as a "control". Experiment with the other.
The TrumpetHerald has several posts about modifying the bracing on Besson 2-20's and Olds Ambassadors.
You could start your reading here:
Jason Harrelson has opinions on the subject as does Monett.

Here's something from the BachLoyalist:

Your local tech needs your money but you might enjoy learning to solder. It's not difficult. OK it's difficult to do neatly and neatly on lacquered and silver horns. Sloppy but usable work on stripped horns isn't tough. Stick to a hand held butane torch - watch a bunch of videos - keep a fire extinguisher handy etc.

You will learn something but there are limits to using student horns. They tend to be sturdy but unsubtle. Pro horns are more sensitive to small changes.

Have fun.
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