Dialing things in - You and/or the Hardware

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by trickg, Feb 28, 2015.

  1. Davidcat

    Davidcat New Friend

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    Jan 22, 2015
    Humanizing a titanium mambo stomvi.

    That was the only trumpet that I've bought new. in a BCN shop, "I was young ..42.. and was having 5 degree, now I am 49 and ,,,,still in 5 , by the way excuse my googlienglish

    How i said above. I meet the mambo, while playing brother borrowed getzen eterna 900 . and not trained to drive such new ferrari trumpet. Perfection but with lots of CV / Hp to deal . upper register still not showed hers subtilities to me... but still waiting
    books
    Used then vb1c mpc on eterna, in the mambo where +750 cv engine, lots of tuned notes, like laser shoots.Not made to arban studies at all, sleeped years, but before some bad tlc removing stuck mp. induce red rot,

    Just replaced leadpipe, by one of my junk goodies, same lengt, same inside diameter at mouthpiece receiver and at end of conus.

    There are two diferences between these mid pipe leadpipes. New one is just half the thicker stomvi is. and new one is different in angle progression.

    As a result now ...I `ve got a new curiosity...... Now I need to play....some day one of these legends xl bore committes. That mambo sounds and feels me closer to my deluxe 1954 MC Than other horn. No sounds and feels closer to any of my other horns.
    And I like it.

    Excuses for such heterodox dissertation.


    I agree stomvi mambo titanium oppinions. (searched in TM yet)


    best wishes and thank you to read me.
     
  2. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I figured I'd post back to my own thread with a bit of an update.

    I've got an Easter gig coming up - I got hired along with another player to do some 2-part trumpet stuff, and so I decided to see what I could do to maybe make my Schilke B6 a bit more suited to the task. I've made 3 changes:

    1.) removable tuning slide brace
    2.) Curry Hex caps
    3.) Different mouthpiece - Schilke 14

    The first couple of days I practiced with this setup, the whole thing felt foreign. (At some point I should probably get a Warburton mouthpiece with a similar rim to my 4SVW, but for now the Schilke 14 is fine.) But I will say this - the horn is darker with a thicker sound, (at least perceived by me it is) and the slotting is MUCH more secure. This will be my setup for the upcoming Easter gig, and I think it's going to work quite well for it.

    Just thought I'd toss that out there.
     
  3. Dennis78

    Dennis78 Fortissimo User

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    Maybe tweeking makes us practice more? Just like a new horn makes us want to play it more so when we change something we put a few more hours in and actually become better because we're just playing more then we say to ourselves maybe that little mod really helped
     
  4. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    Dennis, for me it's not guesswork - I've been at this long enough, and I play well enough, that I know that these little things make a difference, and it has nothing to do with me getting an additional inspiration to practice.

    This might sound like a sad concept to some on this board, but as much as I still enjoy playing trumpet and enjoy music in general, I practice mostly to maintain my ability so that when I go out and gig, it's not harder than it needs to be, rather than because I like it. I practice because I get paid to perform, and therefore there is a certain responsibility to keep my chops at a place where I'm not a detriment to the ensembles I play in.

    In any case, especially where adding or subtracting mass is concerned, it makes a lot of sense. Take cymbals for instance. the character of a cymbal can be completely changed, simply by changing the thickness/mass to the bell, or deciding whether or not to lathe the bell. You can change the character and sound of a cymbal by CLEANING it! (This goes back to a discussion/disagreement we had years ago about the difference lacquer or even heavy tarnish can make in how a trumpet sounds and responds.)

    It's a lot more complex than just a decision or inspiration to practice more though.

    On another side note, there's a pretty big difference between tweaking and tweeking.
     
  5. Dennis78

    Dennis78 Fortissimo User

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    Not making a slam on your abilities, I hope to one day be as good a trumpet player as I am an electrician. For me it would take a little longer to notice a difference and then a little more longer to adjust and dial myself in to the change. It's only partially sad that you only need to maintain, it's cool in that he'll yeah but it sucks to make it sound like a dead end. I can attempt to learn something everyday to make my job easier and to be more efficient
     
  6. neal085

    neal085 Mezzo Forte User

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    Patrick, thanks for posting this thread. I've enjoyed following it, as I've been kicking some of this stuff around for a while.

    I've stuck with one horn and mouthpiece for quite a while now, and it's been nice to know that any inefficiencies in playing are of my own doing. Not tweaking anything has freed me up to just work on my chops with no regard to equipment, but I don't have the playing experience that you do - not even close.

    However, something I kick around at times is this - similar to your initial post:

    Is there an ideal horn/mouthpiece setup for each player that is going to work best with their embouchure and style? If so, how practical is it to spend time figuring out what that is and making that your go-to setup? I love my setup and have no reason to switch in that I don't feel like it is really holding me back. It's comfortable enough and certainly familiar.

    So... I understand that there are professional consultants that I can go to who can analyze my embouchure and tell me what is the ideal mouthpiece for me. So I think - if I'm going to stick with one setup, shouldn't I stick with the most ideal setup? Or does it even matter enough to spend the time and money figuring it out?

    This doesn't keep me awake at nights, but I do occasionally wonder about it. In the meantime, I'm practicing happily away with one horn, one mouthpiece.
     
  7. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I don't want it to sound like it's a hopeless thing or dead end - it's just a different place in the timeline of my evolution as a musician. I've been pretty lucky along the way - by the time I was 20 years old I was making a living playing trumpet in the Army band program, (and lucky enough to be assigned to great units where musicianship and excellence in performance was a priority - not playing army and doing graduation ceremonies ad nauseum) so I have been fortunate enough to be a part of some really solid ensembles along the way, and I've done performances ranging from simple "music to be ignored by" brass quintet things, to playing at events for the President of the United States and foreign heads of state, to doing shows that were broadcast live on CNN and CSPan, all the way to doing shows in a stadium with 15,000 people in attendance, all on their feet screaming as we did the final push of a show.

    That was my life between age 19 and 29, and I voluntarily walked away from it to do something else.

    In any case, when you play every day - and I'm not talking just obligatory work in the practice room, but rather doing rehearsals and performances, along with working in the practice room - you get pretty in tune to the gear you are using, and you develop a level of proficiency and consistency that is hard to attain or maintain once you get out of that amount of work with the horn.

    Neal, I agree with you to a point with sticking with one horn and one mouthpiece, provided that your setup is a solid setup that works as a middle of the road, general purpose setup. My issue with the B6 is that in my hands, it has always been the most slippery horn I have ever played when it comes to accuracy, although that's compounded by using a smaller mouthpiece, which in my personal experience is much less forgiving than something bigger.

    Back during my early Army band days I mentioned above, I used a vanilla Bach Strad (ML/37/standard leadpipe) and a Marcinkiewicz #2 mouthpiece, which was pretty big. I was very consistent and accurate on that setup, which I'm sure was also probably due to the fact that I played on it so much that everything was second nature. I'm not sure I could have attained that level of consistency with my current horn, even back then, hence the reason I've modded it just slightly in an effort to make it less slippery, and a bit darker.
     
  8. Dennis78

    Dennis78 Fortissimo User

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    Yea this has been a very interesting thread. Now I'm not a pro player or even a great amateur but I do play with a band and try to be the best I can but I never gave equipment a thought until I joined this forum so I guess I've always been happy with my setup. I did however notice a big difference when I went from playing my t602 to playing my b47 it was like everything I was doing just became easier or just effortless if that sounds right
     
  9. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I've always been hesitant to classify myself as a "pro" player - true working pros might take umbrage to me trying to lump myself in with them. I was a very solid high school player, got into the Army band program straight out of high school, (the program that populates base bands - not the premier DC bands) and was lucky enough to be surrounded by some truly talented musicians - it forces you to bring your own level of performance up to that level. I've done some pro-level playing, but I'm not good enough to make it in any of the big three - NY, Nashville and LA - at least not in any of the big studios.

    But I play and gig around - I seem to continue to be on folks' call lists for when jobs come up, although in the last decade or so I've mostly dedicated myself to the one endeavor - playing in the wedding party band. That's when I deviated from playing a middle of the road setup and moved toward a horn and mouthpiece combination that was tailored a bit more toward a brilliant, cutting sound, and that also helped with endurance so I could lay out those kinds of lines for 3 sets.

    There's definitely something in dialing in your gear, and little things can make big differences, especially for someone like me where I don't have awesome high chops, and I don't have awesome endurance. Dialing in the setup can make the difference between me sucking wind by the middle of the second set, and still being able to lay it out at the end of the 3rd set. The difference it made, moving from a LB Bach Strad, to a Schilke B6, was night and day - I had to work to get the kind of sizzle and pop the B6 comes by naturally, but the compromise is a horn that (for me, anyway) isn't as secure as the heavier Bach Strad.
     
  10. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    I had some changes made to my Bach C trumpet. It is now turned into a tuning bell model but still maintaining the front and back brace. The valve cluster brace now has rubber on it as I believe this brace is for damping.
    We also cut down a Bach 25 Bb leadpipe to replace the original H leadpipe. We have added small amounts of weight to strategic positions and the third valve has a slightly heavier bottom cap. We also reduced the spring tension of the spit key (which was one of the major improvements in the improvement of feedback).

    What do I now have: in tune without alternate fingerings, that Bach core and aura, more feedback which makes me more comfortable and drastically increased stability that I am used to when playing my Prana 3. I did not try to make the Bach something that it wasn't, I tried to intensify what the Bach does best and click in things like feedback and stability at any volume level. There is NOTHING that I want to change anymore. Same mouthpiece, same gap, same bore, same case, same bell - how boring.

    I can't explain 100% why everything happened, but we did everything one step at a time and it became increasingly easy to quantify the differences. This horn is HOT!
     

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