Adding a counterweight?

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Gabriel06
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Adding a counterweight?

Post by Gabriel06 »

My primary trombone, an Olds with TIS, has no counterweight. I've been dealing with it pretty well, but it can get very annoying. Especially when playing plunger. Is it possible to add a counterweight to the instrument?
baileyman
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by baileyman »

Sure. The easy way is to get a spool of solder in the plumbing dept, then wrap it where you think you need it until you think you've got enough. If it's too much, cut some off. It's easy to cut shorter, but hard to cut longer.
Cmillar
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by Cmillar »

You can get this from Hickeys:

https://www.hickeys.com/search/products/sku079240.php

If you need more or less screw length, just get some same size stainless steel screws at Lowes' or somewhere.

I have one of these on my Bach 16M and another on my Benge 165F.

They provide great balance to both horns.
Posaunus
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by Posaunus »

Cmillar wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 8:14 pm You can get this from Hickeys:
https://www.hickeys.com/search/products/sku079240.php
I don't think this solution will work. The old Olds TIS tenor trombones had no cross-brace in the bell section, so there's nothing to attach the counterweight to!

http://itsabear.com/horns/Std-SYM/Std-SYM.html

You may have to have a technician add a cross-brace (and detract from the historical authenticity - and perhaps the sound - of this vintage instrument).

JohnL may have another idea.
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Blabberbucket
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by Blabberbucket »

Hmm... Rath makes a removable counterweight setup that, in concept, is the right idea for installing a counterweight with no permanent modifications. But, it doesn't look like it will work on a TIS horn as you won't be able to get it past the bell brace.

https://rathtrombones.com/trombones/goo ... ce-weight/

Looking at the second picture on that page it looks like they have a fixed version of that weight that can be soldered on. I think that's the least invasive option available for this type of horn, short of having something custom-made.
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BGuttman
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by BGuttman »

I have an Olds TIS like shown above and I have a counterweight on it. They used to solder a screw to the inside of the bow and the weight was retained with a nut. My counterweight is VERY heavy to match the TIS mechanism.

If the Rath system is the right diameter it could be another solution to the problem. I have a King 1130 with a similar problem. These TIS horns without counterweights are VERY hard to hold.
Bruce Guttman
Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orchestra
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baileyman
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by baileyman »

BGuttman wrote: Thu Nov 24, 2022 4:36 am ...My counterweight is VERY heavy to match the TIS mechanism.

...These TIS horns without counterweights are VERY hard to hold.
Ah, TWO spools of heavy solder! :biggrin:
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BGuttman
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by BGuttman »

I tried the solder wire approach, but the wire tended to unwrap (loosen) and move. Since it was a prototype I didn't want to glue it down.

I also tried attaching some D batteries with tape, but the battery tended to "walk" so that it was under the tubing and the thing wouldn't fit in the case nicely.

The late Jim Archer (from TTF) sent me a screw ferrule from an Olds Ambassador for my 1130 but somehow it got lost before I could arrange for it to be put in place.

@Gabriel06, does your Olds have a friction fit? If so, how do you avoid it falling apart while you are trying to manipulate your plunger? That was my main complaint about my Olds -- too many mute inserts and removals, or too much plunger, and the joint fell apart with bits of trombone everywhere.
Bruce Guttman
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timothy42b
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by timothy42b »

BGuttman wrote: Thu Nov 24, 2022 5:49 am I tried the solder wire approach, but the wire tended to unwrap (loosen) and move. Since it was a prototype I didn't want to glue it down.
I did too but couldn't wrap enough.
I'm lucky enough to have a brace so the magnet trick works.
I'm not sure what I'd do without a brace.
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JohnL
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by JohnL »

The best solution for the long term would be to pilfer the counterweight assembly from a trashed A-15 Ambassador.

Until then? Maybe a rubber-covered hose clamp? Then you could add weight (solder, fishing sinkers, etc.) to that. I'd probably clamp it around the ferrule between the J tube and the bell tail; you'd need more weight in that location, but you're less likely to crush something (and that's the one point that doesn't have a taper).
Blabberbucket
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by Blabberbucket »

Good point on the Olds counterweights - I had forgotten about those. Not as elegant looking at the Rath weight but certainly much easier and less expensive to get a hold of. Any repair shop with a decent supply of junk horns and old parts would likely have one floating around someplace that would be very simple to install.
Cmillar
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by Cmillar »

Posaunus wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 9:56 pm
Cmillar wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 8:14 pm You can get this from Hickeys:
https://www.hickeys.com/search/products/sku079240.php
I don't think this solution will work.
Haa! I had no idea what that horn looked like! Heard of them, but never seen one.

Maybe take off a shoe, tie the laces around the end of the horn, and let it dangle?
timothy42b
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by timothy42b »

Oh wait, tuning in slide - no tuning crook. I read that but didn't consider the implications.

This is easy. You need a sleeve that slides over the end of that bend. Something like an old VCR tape case shape. Print one at the library on their 3D printer maybe, or find some Tupperware etc lying around that fits. The weight can go inside or on top, letting you slide it off easily to put in the case.

The weight doesn't have to hang inside where the brace goes. It can be around or on top of the tubing.
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BGuttman
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by BGuttman »

The Conn 38H, 40H, and 42H (TIS) trombones had a brace in the J bend where the cross brace of a tuning slide would be. They then attached a larger Conn weight to it. Nice idea. Don't know how hard it would be to install a brace on the Olds (or my King).
Bruce Guttman
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CharlieB
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by CharlieB »

Gabriel06 wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 5:11 pm My primary trombone, an Olds with TIS, has no counterweight. I've been dealing with it pretty well, but it can get very annoying. Especially when playing plunger. Is it possible to add a counterweight to the instrument?


I would not hesitate to have a tech solder in a vertical bell brace to hold weights.
It will not devalue the collector value of the horn, as it can be easily removed.
First though, I would experiment with different weights hung at the proposed brace location to determine how many ounces will be needed to make the horn comfortable to play. Probably two commercially made weights, or one large custom weight. My Olds Recording is not as nose heavy as your horn, and I had to put 12 ounces of counterweight on it.

P. S.
Have you priced plumber's solder lately? Home Depot......$26 per pound
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Gabriel06
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by Gabriel06 »

BGuttman wrote: Thu Nov 24, 2022 5:49 am @Gabriel06, does your Olds have a friction fit? If so, how do you avoid it falling apart while you are trying to manipulate your plunger? That was my main complaint about my Olds -- too many mute inserts and removals, or too much plunger, and the joint fell apart with bits of trombone everywhere.
Yeah my horn is friction fit. I keep the bell snug in my palm and then just use my fingers to move the plunger like how Al Grey does. The big issue with plunger is being able to play without looking at the ground, because now that both hands are towards the front of the horn it just wants to fall forward. I've been able to deal with it pretty well by firmly holding the bell with my thumb.
Inserting mutes is the huge issue for me with friction fit. Usually I'll hold the the bell section and slide section together in my left hand and then put the mute in. My horn also has no slide lock so that's necessary anyway so my slide doesn't fly away.
Despite all the quirks of the horn it does sound beautiful.
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officermayo
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by officermayo »

JohnL wrote: Thu Nov 24, 2022 8:02 am The best solution for the long term would be to pilfer the counterweight assembly from a trashed A-15 Ambassador.
Gabriel06,
I have a spare Ambassador turning slide w/counterweight you can have if you can't find another. LMK. Your Tech could cannibalize it for your TIS.
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1940 USMC Issued King Liberty
1932 Olds "Military"
1939 Olds Super
1940 Olds Special
1944 Olds "US" Standard
1946 Olds Standard
1946 Olds Studio
1947 Olds Recording
1948 Olds Ambassador
1960 King Cleveland Superior
Massimo69
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by Massimo69 »

For me without counterweight the horn plays more easily and freely... I take off on all my trombones... My opinion
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BGuttman
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by BGuttman »

Massimo, I'll bet you've never dealt with an older TIS instrument. The slide section is easily 3 times the weight of the bell section. After all, you are missing two braces in the bell section and have one more in the slide section. I have one TIS trombone that doesn't need a counterweight -- a Holton Paul Whiteman. The TIS tubing is VERY thin so there is not as much weight difference.
Bruce Guttman
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timothy42b
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by timothy42b »

Gabriel06 wrote: Fri Nov 25, 2022 7:20 pm Inserting mutes is the huge issue for me with friction fit. Usually I'll hold the the bell section and slide section together in my left hand and then put the mute in. My horn also has no slide lock so that's necessary anyway so my slide doesn't fly away.
There is a trick that helps if you have room. I wouldn't have come up with this on my own but a couple of experienced players showed me.
Turn the trombone horizontal and lay it (lie lay have lain, lay laid have laid - sorry, can't help it!) on your lap with slide to the right, gooseneck to the left, outside of the bell braced against the inside of your left thigh.
You can insert a mute as hard as you want. The bell isn't going anywhere and there is no force on the slide connection.
This requires some room and you have to use left hand on the horn and right on the mute, so it won't always work.
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heinzgries
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by heinzgries »

perhabs like my ajustable counterweigh
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Posaunus
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by Posaunus »

timothy42b wrote: Sat Nov 26, 2022 6:43 am Turn the trombone horizontal and lay it on your lap with slide to the right, gooseneck to the left, outside of the bell braced against the inside of your left thigh.
You can insert a mute as hard as you want. The bell isn't going anywhere and there is no force on the slide connection.
This requires some room and you have to use left hand on the horn and right on the mute, so it won't always work.
In addition to space to either side of you, you also need a lot of time to perform this maneuver - not always available!
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jacobgarchik
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Re: Adding a counterweight?

Post by jacobgarchik »

if I'm doing friction fit with a mute I tie the bell section to slide section with a shoelace.
Pretty sure the popularity of plunger and wah wah mutes was what led manufacturers to make the bell lock standard.
For my 4h I had a tech put a bell lock on. Pretty cheap and easy to do.
Played an 82h for years, .522, 8" bell, the early model, no brace, even bigger and heavier than a small olds. You definitely have to build muscle strength.
I would try an aftermarket grip like a Neo tech to see if it makes the counterweight unnecessary.
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