General Refurbishing Q

Discussion in 'Trumpet Repair and Modification' started by AcrylicAce, Jul 15, 2009.

  1. AcrylicAce

    AcrylicAce New Friend

    Jun 23, 2009
    I am interested in getting into refurbishing old trumpets and don't know where to begin learning about the subject.

    I know absolutely nothing about it but it seems like something that would be fun to learn.

    Does anyone have any advice for learning this trade? Are there books/dvds/internet sources on this subject?

    Anything would be much appreciated.


    EDIT: just to make clear... I am not just talking about just refinishing old trumpets... I know there is a lot of info on these forums for that. I am more talking about removing dents, getting old trumpets that don't play anymore working again, refinishing how the pros do it, etc etc.
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2009
  2. A.N.A. Mendez

    A.N.A. Mendez Utimate User

    Oct 25, 2005
    Sunny Ca.
    There are brass tech schools. Just learning how to apply lacquer CORRECTLY takes years, not to mention the prep work.
  3. ComeBackKid

    ComeBackKid Fortissimo User

    May 11, 2009
    Yorba Linda, CA
    There is a wealth of information on the internet, both free and for fee, that addresses this issue. However, refurbishing instruments, particularly brass, requires a lot of practice and hands-on experience to know when things are going right. Removing bell creases and tuning slide dents takes a finely-tuned touch and you can quickly ruin a good horn if you do it wrong. Soldering is another area that takes a lot of practice so that you don't wind up with ruined lacquer or solder all over the place or a repair that won't hold.
    I am speaking as one who has tried it. I purchased a number of 'fixer' horns on ebay just to practice and I still am not at the point where I would work on someone else's horn - or even my own valuable one. I think that you would do well to find a school that teaches this subject or else find a repair shop where the owner/tech will allow you to become an "apprentice" and work alongside as the tough stuff is being done. Also, there are places that sell specialty equipment that is used for dent removal, fixing stuck slides (which can create huge damage if done wrong), as well as chemicals for stripping, cleaning and prepping brass for refinishing. And, this equipment can be quite expensive.

    By the way, the above points all relate primarily to MODERN brass instruments. If you want to start working on the antiques, you will need an other skill level entirely. So, be prepared for about as much work as if you were going to go to medical school.

    Good Luck in your efforts.
  4. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    Buy the Eric Brand book. 2nd Front Page
    The trumpeter's guide to alchemy and pounding out dents, too.

    Have fun!
  5. AcrylicAce

    AcrylicAce New Friend

    Jun 23, 2009
    Thanks for the info, i really appreciate it.

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