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Trumpet Discussion Discuss Mute issues in the General forums; An embarrassing thing .. my mute keeps falling out of my trumpet. The mute is relatively new, and is a ...
  1. #1
    Pianissimo User
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Mute issues

    An embarrassing thing .. my mute keeps falling out of my trumpet. The mute is relatively new, and is a combo straight/cup. I have a raw brass Harrelson (don't know if that matters). Last night during rehearsal it fell out during the middle of a piece (I cursed but luckily no one heard me during the fort part of a piece). I pushed it a bit too hard and one of the corks fell off. HELP please.

  2. #2
    Forte User
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Grand Rapids, Mi.

    Re: Mute issues

    I have found that gently breathing onto the surface of the bell where the corks of the mute are to mate, causing a haze of moisture in the mouth of the bell helps a lot in keeping mute corks from slipping. This is especially so with mutes that have full enclosure sheet cork for a seal to the bell of the trumpet. An example is the Harmon type mutes.

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    Many others no room to list

  3. #3
    Pianissimo User
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Re: Mute issues

    I tried breathing in the trumpet to no avail.

  4. #4
    Forte User nordlandstrompet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008

    Re: Mute issues

    If the bell taper and mute taper is very different
    you can adjust the corks by using a file, knife or other
    grinding device to make the horn and mute fit together.

    Cut/grind small amounts and test until the mute fits.

    Use a sand paper to do the final adjustment.

    Trumpet bells come in various "sizes" so the mute corks are often
    oversized and you need to adjust them to the horn.
    If you can not stand up as a good role model, please sit down!



    Chicago Custom X-VR Lead


    BrassNor Alexander Custom cornet
    BrassNor Versatile Bb Custom trumpet

  5. #5
    Forte User
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Clarksburg, WV

    Re: Mute issues

    rough up the cork a little and then breath on the bell like oldlou said and once the mute is in, give it the smallest twist to lock it in. Sometimes the cork gets smooth and gets a glazed look to it. The smoothness makes it hard for the mute to stay in.

  6. #6
    Moderator Utimate User rowuk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006

    Re: Mute issues

    It may sound gross, but I have always licked my corks before inserting them in the bell. Never had a problem with them falling out.
    Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.

  7. #7
    Piano User gglassmeyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Cincinnati, OH

    Re: Mute issues

    sometimes the mute corks have to be sanded down a bit. Breathing into the bell does help. If the mute corks are too thick, only a small portion of the cork will meet the bell ( the end that's inserted first). You end up with just a small bit of the cork touching. Sand the corks down to where more of the cork surface meets the bell. If you do this it should stay in with minimal compression.
    Greg Glassmeyer

  8. #8
    Pianissimo User
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Kokomo, IN

    Re: Mute issues

    Often the cork is dry and I've found applying a very light coating of slide (cork) grease on the corks helps do two things--it prevents squeaking and allows for a better fit. Of course, Harmon's especially like the blowing in the bell. If there's a short passage without ample time to blow into the bell I usually plan to hold it in with my left hand.

  9. #9
    New Friend
    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    Re: Mute issues

    I just ordered a Harrelson Summit with the 5.25 inch bell and was concerned that my mutes might not fit. I asked Jason about it and he said that it is sometimes necessary to add cork to the mute. I have not received my horn yet, so I have not tried it, but that was the advice I received.

    Let me know if it helps.


    Vintage Benge CG B-flat Trumpet
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    Vintage Couesnon Star Flugel
    Harrelson Summit - On order

  10. #10
    Pianissimo User Bourbon City's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Indianapolis, Indiana

    Re: Mute issues

    Try borrowing a spray bottle from a trombone player friend and spay your mute's cork at the beginning of play. It may help you.
    Dale Schmidt, P.E.
    Bridges to build and Rivers crossed...

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