I now have the honor of auditioning what I've heard to be the best trumpet available, Flip's Wild Thing. I'm planning on writing this in stages, as my audition will have several highlights (at least they will be for me) First, you can't help but notice the fine craftsmanship of the Wild Thing as soon as it's taken out of the case. Smooth lines, beautifully designed bracing and the HUGE bell flare! I couldn't wait to get my Warburton 5SV/4 piece and take this Thing for a ride but it had to wait, I was busy at work. I let my brother-in-law have first crack at the Thing yesterday. He too is a comeback player. I helped him select his Bach 37 3 years ago. When he started playing simple scales I thought he was going to go nuts! He loved the sound (so did I). One of the first things he noticed were the valves. He likened them to a bike with index shifting, they are there when and how you want them. He played flat fingered and still the valves were right on. He stuck to the #2 slide and then started to play some Miles riffs he knows. Right off the bat I noticed how crisp and clean each note was. Slotting and intonation were right on! He never sounded like that on his Bach. He compared the Thing to his Holton MF horn, an early 80's large bore. At least he tried to compare them, it was no contest for the Thing. Each note he played on the Thing was right there in front of you, the Holton really sounded muffled compared to it! His range on the Thing was about a fifth higher on the Thing as well, and with so much less effort and great intonation! I gave him Tom's card, don't be surprised if you see and order come your way real soon Tom! I get to try it tonight at our church orchestra practice and afterwards as I practice for a solo I am doing for our anniversary celebration this Sunday. I'll post my initial impressions tomorrow!