Silver coming off of Bach Strad??

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by TheTrumpetMan13, Sep 15, 2010.

  1. TheTrumpetMan13

    TheTrumpetMan13 New Friend

    Sep 15, 2010
    I have had my Bach trumpet for about 2 years now. It is in very good playing and cosmetic condition, except for a little bit of silver coming off on the 3rd valve slide. Is this normal?
  2. ComeBackKid

    ComeBackKid Fortissimo User

    May 11, 2009
    Yorba Linda, CA
    Nothing is 'normal'. But, it is rather common. Several posters have reported this problem with their Bach trumpets although it is very puzzling why this should happen as Bach has the plating done by Anderson which is right across the street from the Bach plant and Anderson generally has a good reputation. Perhaps Bach just specifies the minimal thickness for the silver.

    At the same time, it could be your body chemistry. A number of members here have reported that the sweat from their hands will eat through lacquer or silver very quickly. The solution seems to be to use a hankie or other protective material between your hand and the trumpet.
  3. xjb0906

    xjb0906 Piano User

    May 2, 2009
    Charlotte NC
    I have had my Strad since 1995. Most of those years it sat in a case untouched. For the past 18 months it has been in hands for 1-3 hours per day with no wear on the silver plating. Maybe Bach has changed something since 1995.
  4. Bucaneer61

    Bucaneer61 Pianissimo User

    Oct 17, 2007
    Buckhannon, WV
    My body chemistry eats silver and lacquer within a year or so. For that reason, I have the deluxe leather specialties valve guards, (the ones with the extra flaps for the bell, leadpipe and third valve), on all my horns. Never had a problem after installing them.

  5. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    I am not convinced that the Bach plating of the past was anything close to "world class". I have owned 3 silver Bachs in the course of my career. The one that I still have a 229/25H CL still has "most" of the silver. Both of the other horns were in pretty bad shape within 5 years. My chemistry does not change when I play Bb or C, so the difference must be the horns.

    I don't know what Bach does today, but just because Andersons plates the horns does not mean that they are optimally prepped before going there. Still, I have a lot of respect for what Ted Waggonner has accomplished at Bach. Most of the bigger horns that I have played in the last couple of years have been very good - and no bad ones. It is very possible that things have turned around.

    2 years is a pretty short time if the horn has been well cared for.
  6. trumpetsplus

    trumpetsplus Fortissimo User

    Jun 11, 2006
    South Salem, NY
    At a rehearsal the other night I was shown a 2 year old strad where the silver was worn through at a point where there is no player contact. It was worn (smooth), not bubbled. I imagine that the silver was just extremely thin at that point, maybe after the final polish at the factory. The rest of the horn was absolutely fine. Go figure!
  7. wolfmann

    wolfmann Pianissimo User

    Aug 19, 2010
    Does sound like they are having problem.
    Ive had mine for 30 years and it looks just fine.
    And YES i have caustic sweat,I wipe it down after every use.
  8. RHSbigbluemarchingband

    RHSbigbluemarchingband Mezzo Piano User

    Jan 17, 2009
    I have a 1970 Strad, and the only silver that has started to tarnish, is where my fingers grip the valve casing, and thats about it. It has small, unnoticeable black dots, but now I just make sure I wipe it down after every use, or where a pair of cheap gloves.
  9. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    WHAT!? Silver plating coming off of a Bach? I've NEVER heard of that happening before. :shock:


    I don't think I have ever seen a Strad that has had any real use where the plating around the valves DIDN'T bubble and flake off. (Except for with guys like the above who take the time to wipe their horn down after each and every use - I never did that with mine, hence the plating problems. I've not had the problem to nearly the same degree with my Schilke.)

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