Custom Bell Flare

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Carter1016
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Custom Bell Flare

Post by Carter1016 » Mon Sep 24, 2018 6:01 am

Hi all,

I have a screw bell bass, and unfortunately, the bell flare that I have is quite weak around the screw rim. I bought the horn used, and one of the previous owners had it cut as it was in an airline accident of sorts. I’m looking to see if there are any options to get just bell flares made, hopefully to cut the cost of having to buy an entire bell section

Thanks!
Jgittleson
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Jgittleson » Mon Sep 24, 2018 7:32 am

It would help to know the horn/bell you have.
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Matt K
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Matt K » Mon Sep 24, 2018 9:57 am

Just to make sure you're asking what you think you're asking for: "Bell section" means the neckpipe + tuning slide + bell normally and "flare" means the part from the tuning slide receiver through the end of the horn. On screwbells, it actually can also mean just the bell flare itself and not the stem, the latter of which is from the tuning slide receiver through the part that has the threads for the screwbell.

It sounds to me like you want to buy just the part after the threads, but the way it's worded, you could be looking for an entire bell (because it is in contrast to a "bell section" which is everything but the slide). Pedantic, of course, but clarifying will lead to answers that reflect your actual wants!

Of course, if you're asking for the latter, there are any number of companies that will sell you a bell itself for you to mount onto your bell section. The companies that would be willing to sell you just the flare are probably less - if any - and it may be contingent on being from the same manufacturer. You may also buy a used bell and have it cut. The procedure would be way cheaper than normal as they don't have to work both sides, but just the one.
Carter1016
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Carter1016 » Tue Sep 25, 2018 6:05 am

It’s an Edwards B454 Bass, the part I’d be looking for would be only the flare for a screw bell horn
doctortrombone
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by doctortrombone » Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:14 am

Who made the screw bell hardware? If it's aftermarket, there are many configuration for the screwbell parts. Or are you talking about transferring the collar over to a new flare?
Doug Elliott
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Doug Elliott » Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:41 am

I remember from the Forum days somebody had a bell that had crumpled because it was extremely thin in the area where a screw collar would go, and one suggestion was to make it into a screw bell to strengthen that area. Maybe this the the same bell?
mrdeacon
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by mrdeacon » Tue Sep 25, 2018 11:51 am

Sorry man no one makes just the bell flare. The horn community has a few makers who make individual flares for stock horns like Conn 8Ds but there isn't anything like that for us.

Your only option is to another bell and have that one cut and toss your old bell.
Conn 88H 1980s, Elliott XT
Rath R1 2000s, Elliott XT
Minick Bass Trombone 1980s, Elliott MB
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Burgerbob
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Burgerbob » Tue Sep 25, 2018 12:56 pm

BAC and Lawler both make individual flares. BAC makes them for bass trombones specifically.
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Matt K
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Matt K » Tue Sep 25, 2018 3:20 pm

Burgerbob wrote:
Tue Sep 25, 2018 12:56 pm
BAC and Lawler both make individual flares. BAC makes them for bass trombones specifically.
Unfortunately, Lawler won't sell just the flare unless you're buying a stem too (I asked a few months ago).
mrdeacon
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by mrdeacon » Tue Sep 25, 2018 4:28 pm

Matt K wrote:
Tue Sep 25, 2018 3:20 pm
Burgerbob wrote:
Tue Sep 25, 2018 12:56 pm
BAC and Lawler both make individual flares. BAC makes them for bass trombones specifically.
Unfortunately, Lawler won't sell just the flare unless you're buying a stem too (I asked a few months ago).
I figured BAC is also the same way. But I'm not sure if they will make just the flare.

Might be worth it to ask BAC but to be honest it would probably just be cheaper and quicker to buy a used Edwards bell flare and have it cut by a tech.

OP, I'll revise what I said in my other post, there are companies like Lawler and BAC which will make extra flares for you but they usually need to be for their proprietary bell stem.
Conn 88H 1980s, Elliott XT
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Doug Elliott
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Doug Elliott » Tue Sep 25, 2018 4:36 pm

I would talk to Steve Shires... Steve himself.
I don't know if he'd be willing to do it but I know he can.
doctortrombone
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by doctortrombone » Tue Sep 25, 2018 6:12 pm

Doug Elliott wrote:
Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:41 am
I remember from the Forum days somebody had a bell that had crumpled because it was extremely thin in the area where a screw collar would go, and one suggestion was to make it into a screw bell to strengthen that area. Maybe this the the same bell?
Pretty sure that was me. Conn 88h.
cozzagiorgi
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by cozzagiorgi » Wed Sep 26, 2018 4:15 am

Pretty sure you could order that from some of the small custom shops in Germany
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LeTromboniste
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by LeTromboniste » Wed Sep 26, 2018 4:59 am

I'm sure a lot of the smaller production workshops can do it as a custom job. But is that because you specifically really want to keep it as a screw bell or just because you figure a flare should be cheaper than a whole bell?

If the latter, then forget about it. It's just as easy to make a whole bell than just a flare, probably actually easier. The extra square foot or so of sheet brass costs maybe a few dollars more in materials. Fitting the flare with a screw rim is itself probably more work and cost than that difference, let alone that making that new aftermarket flare precisely to match your existing stem, without the original mandrel it was made on, makes it a not so easy job.

So yeah getting a whole new bell is probably cheaper, getting the same model and having it cut and made into a screw bell working with two matching parts probably still is as well.
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cozzagiorgi
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by cozzagiorgi » Wed Sep 26, 2018 5:30 am

cozzagiorgi wrote:
Wed Sep 26, 2018 4:15 am
Pretty sure you could order that from some of the small custom shops in Germany
E.G. www.schallstueck.de
harrisonreed
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by harrisonreed » Wed Sep 26, 2018 6:36 am

You can have one made. Buy a new bell from edwards. Have it cut at the same spot as your current bell (though this is probably a bad idea, and what weakened the first bell), so that the flares and stems can interchange. Done. And cheaper than having a one off flare made.
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Matt K
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Matt K » Wed Sep 26, 2018 7:29 am

I think there might be a little bit of putting the cart before the horse so to speak - there are a few things that are still not totally known that might make this easier depending on some context. Yes the bell was damaged previously but the location may or may not be optimal yet. Coincidences do happen!

I would contact Edwards and see what they say since it is their bell afterall. It is correct - to the best of my knowledge - that the screwbells are not typically made separately but made and then cut in the appropriate spot. That doesn't necessarily mean that you'll have to purchase the whole thing if that is your object. Not every bell comes out perfectly so a "B" stock bell from Edwards might be fine if the problem is above the spot you want to cut anyway for example and Edwards might be perfectly happy to sell just the flare - win/win so to speak.

Edwards does have a pretty good sale right now where some bells are like $400 on their website. You see used ones pop up now and again too. That's probably not much different than the price you'd pay for the flare alone. A whole bell would have to be cut but fortunately if you aren't interested in keeping the current bell... you could potentially reuse the parts though if its in the wrong spot you'd probably be best advised to just start from scratch unfortunately. One of the more expensive parts about the mod for trombonists at this point is that the threads aren't nearly as available as they are for french horns. They oft must be modified so they are the right dimensions for the desired location. $$$ because of the labor involved. Also cleanup afterwards.

However, all that said -> what does it mean that the flare is weak around the screw rim? Is it loose or something? Maybe it just needs to be resoldered?
Carter1016
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Carter1016 » Wed Sep 26, 2018 7:48 am

Matt K wrote:
Wed Sep 26, 2018 7:29 am

However, all that said -> what does it mean that the flare is weak around the screw rim? Is it loose or something? Maybe it just needs to be resoldered?
It’s not loose or anything. One of the previous owners had the horn in an airline accident and the bell was damaged. He installed the screwbell to fix some of the problems without having to buy a new bell. However, the flare about 3 inches below the screw rim is extremely weak, probably due to the metal being rolled out. I’m not really for sure
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Matt K
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Matt K » Wed Sep 26, 2018 7:52 am

So you can say, bend the metal with your finger? Or are you having trouble putting it on? I'm just wondering if there's actively a problem or something your'e trying to avoid down the road?

For that matter, a little sheet metal could be soldered to the spot in a ring below the existing ring (where the metal is 'weak') which would make it much sturdier and probably cost hundreds of dollars less --- potentially even enhancing the sound.
Carter1016
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Carter1016 » Wed Sep 26, 2018 8:41 am

Matt K wrote:
Wed Sep 26, 2018 7:52 am
So you can say, bend the metal with your finger? Or are you having trouble putting it on? I'm just wondering if there's actively a problem or something your'e trying to avoid down the road?

For that matter, a little sheet metal could be soldered to the spot in a ring below the existing ring (where the metal is 'weak') which would make it much sturdier and probably cost hundreds of dollars less --- potentially even enhancing the sound.
Yes that’s exactly right. I can see my finger through the metal with a light amount of pressure. No trouble putting it on. I was thinking about the extra metal added, I’m just waiting to see the estimate on both
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Matt K
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Matt K » Wed Sep 26, 2018 8:47 am

Remember that some bells are just really thin. You just don't touch that area often most likely. I've had some really nice bells that were so thin you could roll dents out with your fingers! Nothing wrong with them, they were just super lightweight.
Carter1016
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Carter1016 » Wed Sep 26, 2018 9:12 am

Matt K wrote:
Wed Sep 26, 2018 8:47 am
Remember that some bells are just really thin. You just don't touch that area often most likely. I've had some really nice bells that were so thin you could roll dents out with your fingers! Nothing wrong with them, they were just super lightweight.
Right, the thing with my flare is that it’s only weak in the one ring that I mentioned. The rest is just fine of course
Doug Elliott
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Re: Custom Bell Flare

Post by Doug Elliott » Wed Sep 26, 2018 11:14 am

Is it really worth trying to save something that's a problem just because you already own it? It sounds like you should just get a new bell and have the ring transferred if that's what you want
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