Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

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Burgerbob
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by Burgerbob » Fri Jan 01, 2021 2:05 pm

Conns get chrome wear too, and their valves aren't invincible... seems silly to single out Bach in that respect.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by FOSSIL » Fri Jan 01, 2021 2:51 pm

Burgerbob wrote:
Fri Jan 01, 2021 2:05 pm
Conns get chrome wear too, and their valves aren't invincible... seems silly to single out Bach in that respect.
Conn slides wear if they are not properly maintained. Well cared for they last for years. When I've owned Bachs, they have worn more quickly than anything else I've used. A great Bach is wonderful indeed. It still wears. I don't think that's silly.

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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by Bach5G » Fri Jan 01, 2021 4:19 pm

A friend’s dad loved to play. When he passed away in 2019 I got to play his 1960-ish 2B Silversonic and was surprised by the wear/loss of chrome on the slide. I’ve never seen that in a King. He’d obviously played that horn a lot.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by Kingfan » Fri Jan 01, 2021 4:33 pm

Bach5G wrote:
Fri Jan 01, 2021 4:19 pm
A friend’s dad loved to play. When he passed away in 2019 I got to play his 1960-ish 2B Silversonic and was surprised by the wear/loss of chrome on the slide. I’ve never seen that in a King. He’d obviously played that horn a lot.
... or didn't keep it properly aligned/maintained. I picked up a 50s 3B from a guy in his 90s and this is what came out of his slide when I cleaned it.
slide cleaning 1.jpg
slide cleaning 1.jpg (44.83 KiB) Viewed 1791 times
I'm not a complete idiot, some parts are still missing! :D
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by Bach5G » Fri Jan 01, 2021 4:41 pm

The horn was otherwise in pristine condition. He took very good care of it. The slide was quite good despite the wear.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by Posaunus » Fri Jan 01, 2021 4:48 pm

No question in my mind that slide wear can be minimized by proper care and maintenance.
My King 2B (1958) and Conn 88H (1972), both purchased new and well cared for since, show almost NO slide wear, zero plating loss, etc.
What's the "secret?"
• Carefully clean slides (both inner and outer) after each use, and store dry.
• Have slides aligned if any signs of dragging or after a traumatic event.
(My 88H saw a tech once after a fall, and once for general maintenance. My 2B has never been in hospital!)

I don't play my trombones 6 hours/day, but I expect that they would still be in great shape even so, if my hygiene and maintenance protocol were followed.

Do you clean your trombone at the end of playing it every day? If not, expect wear and shortened lifetime.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by LeTromboniste » Fri Jan 01, 2021 5:39 pm

This has sparked an interesting argument.

I too think it's highly player-specific. I definitely know people who need to change instruments quite frequently. My former sackbut teachers has to get a new instruments indeed every 10 years or less, he gets holes on his outer slides or near the tenon. On the other hand my undergrad teacher played the same stellar 70's Conn 88H for years and years of daily use as a high-level professional. He did feel it was starting to be worn out when I was studying with him but that was after much, much more than 10 years. He passed it on to a friend of mine so it's still in use (not sure if it's his main horn anymore though) and working well.



Just a remark regarding the original quote and the translation, and the hypothesis that they mean the tastes have changed...as a native French speaker that is not the meaning I get. I understand it pretty non-equivocally as "contrary to string instruments that age well and the older the better, our instruments last us for only 10 years maximum, and they are easily replaced". I don't understand it to mean an instrument will be completely shot after 10 years either, just that they expect to have to change every 10 year or less. Also keep in mind that the American trend for boutique/modular instruments has had nearly zero traction in France, where the standard has been yellow-belled Bach 42s and the Courtois 42-inspired instruments for quite a while, and still is. The 2nd player in this video seems to have a 42 or AC420, the principal has an AC410, which is an older model from when Courtois was experimenting with heavyweight slides and bells and resonance plates about 10-15 years ago, and has been discontinued for a few years now. If he agrees with his colleague about trombones never lasting more than 10 years, I guess he's probably about to change it then :shuffle:
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by Kbiggs » Fri Jan 01, 2021 6:06 pm

FOSSIL wrote:
Fri Jan 01, 2021 2:03 pm
Bachs wear out...simple. A lot of other stuff lasts better.
Early Bachs last much better. 80's onward Bachs were built to wear out...I got that from a company rep.

Chris
Now that’s interesting. I wonder what he meant? Was it design, materials, construction? Planned obsolescence is a choice, although I believe it’s not one that retains consumers in the long run... for most products...
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by spencercarran » Fri Jan 01, 2021 6:56 pm

Corroded leadpipe and pervasive red rot that fast means one of (a) shoddy construction (b) rough use with poor maintenance (c) unusually harsh body chemistry from the player. If (c) there are still some ways to extend the horn's life (protective hand guards, brush teeth before playing, keep the instrument dry and clean it regularly) but sure, if the player has extremely acidic sweat and saliva that will cause some unavoidable damage.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by Burgerbob » Fri Jan 01, 2021 7:00 pm

Sounds to me like trombones can wear out in 10 years, then... :)
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by LeTromboniste » Fri Jan 01, 2021 8:27 pm

Burgerbob wrote:
Fri Jan 01, 2021 7:00 pm
Sounds to me like trombones can wear out in 10 years, then... :)
I don't think anyone here has disputed that they CAN wear out in 10 years.

What is contested is the idea that they WILL wear out in 10 years.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by mbtrombone » Fri Jan 01, 2021 9:08 pm

I believe that a horn can wear out in about 10 years from my personal experience.

I have a wonderful bass trombone, but the horn had a few things working against it from lasting longer.

1) It was played very gingerly for 2-3 years, then daily quite hard for 9 years (two masters degrees and a DMA all performance). Cleaning it regularly was sometimes out of the question due to work or gigs, school, etc. (for reference I just cleaned the bell section today and it took a good 2 hours to do very well).

2) Regular cleaning. The horn got cleaned fairly regularly with a quick bath about every 2-3 months never longer that 6 months (took only about 10 minutes because I would not remove the valve cores to clean, just ran water through the valve section, bell, slide, snaked really quick, then re oiled). The valves were oiled 1-5 times a day depending on use (for reference I oil when I start to play and when the horn goes back in the case at the end of the day most days).

3) I am very acidic! The lacquer on my tenor of the same brand and another brand before the bass pitted in about 2 months of ownership (both were wiped down where I hold and touch daily). I tend to eat through lead pipes in around 4-5 years. All of my horns are polished to mirror finish bare metal where I hold the slide, and where I grab to drain water/spit.

4) The horns valve section was very, very over buffed before it was lacquered (told to me by three repair techs all very reputable). This has led to the installation of two patches on elbows where the change in cabin pressure caused a rupture of the metal elbow during plane flights.

So I have been playing this horn for about 10 years daily since that was when I made the full time switch to bass trombone as my primary (didn't play my tenor for 8 years before the pandemic) and I am saving for a total replacement horn. The current bass will be repaired (parts that are worn out like the ruptured elbows) and turned into my backup (wish I had one when I had the knuckles blow out, both times were in the middle of audition circuits for colleges or orchestras).

Can a horn last longer than 10 years? Of course, my first large bore is from the late 80s or early 90s, my other large bore tenor is about 15 years old, and my bass is about 12 years old. Do all horns wear out absolutely after 10 years? No. But I totally understand why someone might want to get another horn to avoid something like having to find a new horn they like because of a catastrophic failure or accident. Having a back up you like, seems like a good idea for a professional player and replacing before something bad happens seems reasonable as well.

The last thing I will say is that I think that trombone players in general are very cheap. We tend to find spending more money on instruments unacceptable for some reason, but compared to other musicians and professions we really have nothing to complain about. Reed players are constantly having to spend money on reeds, pads, etc. String players have to buy rosin, strings, re-hair bows, etc. Percussionists just have a ton of instruments they have to buy and sticks/mallets constantly need to be replaced or repaired.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by Burgerbob » Fri Jan 01, 2021 9:39 pm

LeTromboniste wrote:
Fri Jan 01, 2021 8:27 pm
Burgerbob wrote:
Fri Jan 01, 2021 7:00 pm
Sounds to me like trombones can wear out in 10 years, then... :)
I don't think anyone here has disputed that they CAN wear out in 10 years.

What is contested is the idea that they WILL wear out in 10 years.
I see a lot of the former here, honestly.

Do I think every trombone wears out in 10 years? No, but they can.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by mbtrombone » Sat Jan 02, 2021 12:21 am

spencercarran wrote:
Fri Jan 01, 2021 6:56 pm
Corroded leadpipe and pervasive red rot that fast means one of (a) shoddy construction (b) rough use with poor maintenance (c) unusually harsh body chemistry from the player. If (c) there are still some ways to extend the horn's life (protective hand guards, brush teeth before playing, keep the instrument dry and clean it regularly) but sure, if the player has extremely acidic sweat and saliva that will cause some unavoidable damage.
Also, for what it's worth protective hand guards can really make the problem of damage from sweat/acid way worse. If they are not removed a lot, or the horn is played a lot, and they are made from cloth or leather they will trap a ton of sweat/acid from some players right up against the lacquer or plating. I had a set on a horn and I am fairly sure that is what made the pitting happen so quickly. I also bought a king 2b that had a really damaged neck pipe caused by a leather wrap that wasn't removed often.

Just my observations on two horns that had them. I took all of them off of my horns after seeing the damage and confirming with a few studio mates at the time that they had similar experiences. Better to let the horn dry and wipe of excess oil/sweat/acid/what ever we are putting on the horns.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by dershem » Sun Jan 03, 2021 5:00 pm

Hilarious! My Bach 36 dates to 1947. My King 2B dates from1054. My Reynolds (which I got from Brookmeyer) dates from 1951. I played a few gigs with Bill Watrous in his last couple of years, and he was still playing the same Bach 16 he'd had for 40 years.
If you take proper care of your horn and do not abuse it, it will last a lot longer than 10 years.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by BGuttman » Sun Jan 03, 2021 6:37 pm

dershem wrote:
Sun Jan 03, 2021 5:00 pm
... My King 2B dates from 1054. ...
Wow! That's OLD :tongue:
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by timothy42b » Mon Jan 04, 2021 6:01 am

Posaunus wrote:
Fri Jan 01, 2021 4:48 pm
• Carefully clean slides (both inner and outer) after each use, and store dry.
I think moisture is the enemy of brass. While we play it's going to stay wet but it can be dry more of the time.

I keep mine dry on the stand, with the outer slide removed and hung over the hand brace upside down. That would have been to risky when kids were small or the dog was a puppy but it works now.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by BillO » Mon Jan 04, 2021 7:30 pm

timothy42b wrote:
Mon Jan 04, 2021 6:01 am
I keep mine dry on the stand, with the outer slide removed and hung over the hand brace upside down.
Ditto. This works well. Where I am this time of year my slides a bone dry in 24 hours.
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by dershem » Sun Jan 10, 2021 9:34 am

BGuttman wrote:
Sun Jan 03, 2021 6:37 pm
dershem wrote:
Sun Jan 03, 2021 5:00 pm
... My King 2B dates from 1054. ...
Wow! That's OLD :tongue:
Practically a sackbut. Either than or a typo. :D
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Re: Trombones wear out in 10 years (says Paris Opera)

Post by FeelMyRath » Sun Jan 10, 2021 2:27 pm

dershem wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 9:34 am
BGuttman wrote:
Sun Jan 03, 2021 6:37 pm


Wow! That's OLD :tongue:
Practically a sackbut. Either than or a typo. :D
A typo you say?
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