Leadpipe question...

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by crowmadic, Jan 16, 2007.

  1. crowmadic

    crowmadic Mezzo Piano User

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    I'm thinking the lead pipe is the section that the mouthpiece goes into, but does it include the pipe all the way to the tuning slide? How does it effect tone and playing ability? What are the components that make the difference: brass thickness, length, design, etc..?
     
  2. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    The leadpipe is the piece between the mouthpiece and the tuning slide on a piston valved trumpet, and between the mouthpiece and the valve cluster on a rotary valved instrument.
    It has more influence on the intonation than any other part except the mouthpiece. It also has a lot to say about the subjective "resistance" we perceive (actually impedance as Tootsall pointed out on another post).
    Like every other part of the trumpet, if properly designed for the instrument on which it is attached, it will optimize the playing experience. The weight, thickness, size, shape and material need to be determined by the trumpet builder. Those artists can help you find the appropriate match. A thicker leadpipe really means nothing if the other factors become unbalanced.
    I think many of us would like to be able to put a trumpet together just with a checklist. Without the corresponding experience, the chance of failure is very great. Those artists that I mentioned have the experience!
     
  3. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    For starters, add voodoo to the above list.
     
  4. crowmadic

    crowmadic Mezzo Piano User

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    Vulgano Brother, do you do stand-up-comedy?
     
  5. B15M

    B15M Forte User

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    Why would you say that?
     
  6. crowmadic

    crowmadic Mezzo Piano User

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    B15M,
    Because his statement sounds more sarcastic than educational.
     
  7. B15M

    B15M Forte User

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    He put a lot of time into a sarcastic answer.
     
  8. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    Sorry guys. "Voodoo" is a term I heard first used by Hans Schneider, an old-school Blechblasinstrumentenmachermeister in southern Germany, regarding the typical trumpeter's desire to make a single change in a complex acoustical system and expect miraculous results, bordering on the magical. Add to that the fact that most of the perceived changes are subjective rather than objective; well, things get weird. Anyway, here is a partial list of some of the parameters:
    Leadpipe Material
    Non-Metallic
    Metallic
    Silver
    Brass
    Copper content
    Annealing or tempering (including hand-hammering)
    Leadpipe Thickness
    Bracing including tension and brace material and manufacture
    Internal Taper
    Starting and ending diameters
    Single tapers
    Multiple tapers (including but not limited to trombone venturi)
    Stepped
    Receiver
    Length
    Tuning Slide (interface between inner and outer tube)​

    By the time we ferret out everything, we'll still be faced with a number of problems:

    While a player might have strong preferences as to how a particular material or thickness performs, computer analysis will show no differences.

    As soon as we pull the tuning slide we start changing the length of the instrument (one of the parameters).

    Any dirt, grime, bits of lunch in the horn will affect the acoustical properties.

    Time spent looking for the perfect leadpipe is often much better spent practicing perfectly on our imperfect instrument.

    Clifford Blackburn wrote an interesting article on his leadpipe adventures in one of the early ITG newsletters. Check it out, and have fun! Once you find the perfect leadpipe, please let me know!
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2011
  9. Richard Oliver

    Richard Oliver Forte User

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    I very much liked the Vulgano Voodoo description.

    Apt, humorous, witty, and . . . I DO use special Mojo Valve Oil.

    Regards,

    Richard Oliver
     
  10. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Hans Schneider also builds trumpets for Amrein:
    http://www.music-amrein.com/

    He retired from teaching brass instrument construction a couple of years ago and went to work for Amrein. He said that the Yamaha Masters went through his classes.
     

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