How much does weight matter from horn to horn?

Discussion in 'Horns' started by MUSICandCHARACTER, Apr 16, 2004.


    MUSICandCHARACTER Forte User

    Jan 31, 2004
    Newburgh, Indiana
    Mr. Wilk posted in another thread:
    In an exacting world, answers such as "bigger than a bread box, smaller than the Empire State Building," are ludicrous. It seems that manufacturers have no problem stating such precise measurements as bore dimensions, mouthpiece characteristics, etc., why not the actual weight of their product? After all, some older comeback players might find that information useful and if not, then at the very least the information will prove useful to the shippers

    And Butch posted this nice link:

    Obviously, Mr. Wilk didn't like comparisons, he wanted someone to get out a scale and weight them. Even when they were weighed, they all came up between the mid 30's and low 40's in ounces. 3 or 4 ounces (rough average) is not "bigger than a bread box and smaller than the Empire State Building" type of comparison.

    Those few extra ounces mean nothing to shippers. Most cases weigh several POUNDS.

    So, since we hijacked the last thread, I thought I would ask: How much does the total weight matter? From the chart Butch supplied, everything but the Taylor was in a very tight range. The Taylor was close to double the weight. No Monettes on the chart.

    If a horn played the way you wanted it to, would up to 7 ounces make a difference? Doesn't balance make a difference? If you threw a Taylor and a Monette off the Empire State Building, would they hit the ground at the same time? :p

    I still think that manufacturers don't either think the weight is important, or don't want players to rule out a horn because of weight (I doubt Taylor is going to advertise theirs) so they don't publish them. Like Mr. Wilk said, they publish every other little detail.

    I personally find the balance of a horn much more a factor in "comfort" than total weight (within reason -- I have never picked up or played a Taylor or Monette).

  2. ronald wilk

    ronald wilk New Friend

    Mar 25, 2004

    You might be surprised to learn that Taylor does indeed list the weights of their trumpets to the ounce!
    In addition, although the manufacturers may feel that weight should not enter into the decision making process, are you prepared to allow them to decide which facts you need to know and which you might find irrelevant? Yes, it was interesting to note on that helpful comparative weight chart, that many of the listed horns fell within a tight range. However, the chart's existence does serve to illustrate my point and, that is, that the weight of a horn is a piece of data that should be made available. Not because of its questionable influence on the tone producing capabilities but merely because it is a useful piece of descriptive information that for some may be as valuable as finish, the presence or absence of a supplied case, etc.
    Anyhow, I asked what I thought was a simple question and unfortunately or fortunately, it generated considerable discussion, some of it off topic but I thank you all just the same. I am most appreciative of the gentleman who supplied the link to the weight chart, which, although not capable of answering my direct question, allowed a useful extrapolation.
  3. chetbaker

    chetbaker Pianissimo User

    Nov 17, 2003
    I totally agree with your assessment of balance vs. actual weight. I have a Taylor "Chicago Standard Model" and a Schilke B1L trumpet sitting out on stands in my studio right now. The Taylor weighs about 3 1/2 lbs. as opposed to the Schilke being about 2 lbs. I have absolutely NO problem going from one horn to the other as far as the weight is concerned. In fact, the Taylor is probably the most well-balanced horn I've ever held. So as to your question wouldn't judge trying/buying/playing a horn based on how much it weighs. However, on the flip side, I could understand why Ronald and others might be concerned in regards to the weight of a prospective horn. We all know a general rule...a lighter weight horn gives the player a totally different response and timbre as compared to a heavyweight instrument. If someone is looking for a specific type of response/sound it would be very helpful to know ahead of time in which "ballpark" a certain horn might lie in as far as weight goes as it would possibly lead us in the right "direction" as to the certain brands/models that may be correct OR incorrect for us to try ( based on our individual needs/desires). In other would help each of us get to our "perfect horn" a little more more quickly. For instance...if a player is looking to play Maynard charts the logical choice of a horn probably wouldn't be a Monette "Raja"! :p But, on the other hand, somebody doing alot of Mahler might not want a Burbank Benge either! :lol: So, while a weight of a horn does enter into the equation of how a particular horn might play, characteristic-wise, I wouldn't eliminate any given horn based solely on the weight of it! Just my two cents... FWIW!! :wink:

  4. camelbrass

    camelbrass Mezzo Forte User

    Nov 5, 2003
    Dubai, UAE

    Couldn't resist :)

    Like Butch I play 2 very differently weighted trumpets. Is that difference an issue to me? No.

    The real issues are sound and projection not weight.

    Just my take on it.



    MUSICandCHARACTER Forte User

    Jan 31, 2004
    Newburgh, Indiana
    See what trombone players deal with:

    This is the Ergobone. Designed primarily for bass bone players with double rotor inline valves and lots of plumbing. I have never heard a bass bone player ask about weight unless the weight was related to sound. Play the horn with the best sound. Balance is important I agree.

    2lbs or 4lbs, trumpet players do not need an ErgoPET just yet :D


    MUSICandCHARACTER Forte User

    Jan 31, 2004
    Newburgh, Indiana
    In the mail today was the new WWBW catalog. I was wrong (go figure).


    ShulmanSystem For Brass
    Like having a lesson with one of the trumpet greats every time you use it, the ShulmanSystem was developed by virtuoso trumpeter Matt Shulman to eliminate detrimental embouchure pressure and body tension, while taking your body alignment and air-stream-to-mouthpiece delivery to an entirely new level. It's the modern trumpeter's perfect companion for performing, teaching, marching, or simply practicing.

    I guess if your trumpet is too heavy, you can get help now too. Available at:


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