Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

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imsevimse
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Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by imsevimse » Sat Jul 13, 2019 2:39 am

Write anything you want to share about the vintage Conn bass trombone models. What do we like about them? What do you know about their similarities and differences? Can you tell their story? Who played them? Modifications? Pictures?

I share a few pictures of my Conn bass trombones: 70h (1952), 72h (1963), 62h (1970), 73h (1977) and 71h (1979). I shared pictures with the help of "imageshare" You upload an image on their server and then copy and paste the URL.

This is the 72h on the left and the 70h on the right.
Image

Both have the same bell profile and they need the smaller cup. They have not the exact valve design and the braces are little different.

The 72h feels a bit larger compared to the 70h The 70h has a bit more "snappy" attacks and brightens up if played very loud. It has another spectra of sound with more colors. I'm thinking it must be the TIS. Both has the B when I pull the f-slide.

Here is the 72h (to the left) next to a 71h
Image

I tested both with the f-valve slide pulled as far as possible and on both the B is possible. Both must have longer slides compared to modern basses. 

I removed the f-tuningslides and compared them. The one on the Conn 72h is longer which means it can be pulled a few centimeters more compared to the 71h, but the maximum total length of both valves seems to be equal when I measure with a string. There is a difference in disposition of what is movable and what is not, but I'm not sure which is best and how this can work.

When I play both horns the 71h seems more thight compared to the 72h which is more open. I wonder what else is different? What about lead pipes? The 72h is an Elkhart from -63 and the 71h is an Abilene from -79.

From the pictures you can se there are differences in the tuningslide and valve section where the 71h misses three braces. 

I'm thinking the reason to build the 71h like this is it then shares the first valve design with the 73h. Maybe it was cheaper to have one valve design for the first valve. A design that works also when they add the next valve to build a 73h. You can see that on the next picture. The 72h and 71h plays different, but is it possible that might not have been their primary intention but a side effect?

Here is the 73h to the left and the 62h to the right.
Image

The 73h bell is the same as the 70h, 71h and 72h.
The bell on the 62h has another profile. It needs the larger cup, the cup that fit most modern basses.

The slide is the same length on 71h, 72h and 73h.
The 70h has a 2 cm longer slide compared to the 71h, 72h and 73h and of course can be extended since it has tuning in the slide. The 62h has a slide that is 4 cm shorter than the non TIS slides but can also be extended like the 70h since it has tuning in slide.

As you can see both the 73h and 62h has almost the same valve design or it's the longer goose neck on the 62h that makes them look a little different.

Both these horns came with the second valve in E. The 73h now has the "Stauffer D-slide" that is no longer made. I had Lars Gerdt (builds trumpets) in Stockholm to build me a copy of that "Stauffer D-slide" to fit the 62h.

When played the 73h feels smaller compared to the 62h.

The 62h is the only one that is red brass. The others are all yellow brass.

I played the same song on all five of them. The 71h and 73h definitely are more "tenorish". The sound of the 70h is very colourful. The 72h feels a bit larger compared to the 70h but I don't think it is. I don't know about any differences in lead pipes? I consider the 62h to have the broadest sound and is definitely largest sounding bass in the herd. All these horns are a joy to play.

/Tom
"Do your best and then do better" ttf_watermailonman
My webbpage: https://sites.google.com/site/brazzmusic
walldaja
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by walldaja » Sat Jul 13, 2019 10:59 am

Thanks for the information. I was holding out for a Conn 110 but the Yamaha got to me first. I did like that the Conn had a mechanical linkage. I have several friends who play 88Hs and have that sound in my head quite a bit.
Dave

Antoine Courtois AC280BO with Christian Lindberg 4CL
Yamaha 421G Bass with Bach 1 1/2G
Getzen 351 Tenor with Yamaha 51D
1967 Olds Ambassador with Yamaha 48
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Finetales
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by Finetales » Sat Jul 13, 2019 11:04 am

I play an Elkhart 72H with Yamaha independent valves as my daily driver. I used to also have a stock single-valve 72H, which I played as my main axe for about a year on all kinds of modern rep until I got the double 72H. It seems like the 62H is the darling of the old Conn basses, while the 70-series (excluding the 70H I suppose) is ignored by comparison, especially as a main bass trombone. But I love the way they play and that classic, more compact sound - it matches my Elkhart 88H very well!
imsevimse
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by imsevimse » Sat Jul 13, 2019 11:50 am

Finetales wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 11:04 am
I play an Elkhart 72H with Yamaha independent valves as my daily driver.
Is the second valve added to the tuningslide of the first valve? This is one way to do it, or is it a complete rebuild?

/Tom
"Do your best and then do better" ttf_watermailonman
My webbpage: https://sites.google.com/site/brazzmusic
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HawaiiTromboneGuy
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by HawaiiTromboneGuy » Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:29 pm

Here’s a link for now. I’ll post more tidbits about it after work.

viewtopic.php?f=13&t=9297
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HawaiiTromboneGuy
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by HawaiiTromboneGuy » Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:32 pm

Here’s another quick link. Not sure if it was marketed as a very large tenor or possible bass at the time.

viewtopic.php?f=13&t=9433
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imsevimse
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by imsevimse » Sat Jul 13, 2019 1:29 pm

HawaiiTromboneGuy wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:29 pm
Here’s a link for now. I’ll post more tidbits about it after work.

viewtopic.php?f=13&t=9297
Nice horns :good: Is that a Conn 70h "Fuchs" model?
HawaiiTromboneGuy wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:32 pm
Here’s another quick link. Not sure if it was marketed as a very large tenor or possible bass at the time.

viewtopic.php?f=13&t=9433
Do you suspect this this to be a 14h or 66h?

What do we know about the Fuchs and 14h and 66h?

/Tom
"Do your best and then do better" ttf_watermailonman
My webbpage: https://sites.google.com/site/brazzmusic
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by Bone2Bwild » Sat Jul 13, 2019 2:28 pm

I have nice a 1971 Abilene 62H. I bought it about 18 months ago and I'm part way through splitting the triggers using some lovely instrument innovations parts. When I got it the valve top plates were very loose and had to peined to fit securely. I also closed down the bearings and lapped them back in. The F section was quite flat, so I had to cut some off the tuning slide.

The slide wasn't bad, but I've taken it apart to make it as straight as possible :-) I might pull the leadpipe, but haven't decided on that yet.

It came with a long thin D slide, so I'll stick with that as it plays fine and looks quite cool.

I'm looking forward to playing it again - it's much more interesting than my modern 62H which is quite one dimensional.

I'll post some pics when I've finished it :-)

Andy
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by Burgerbob » Sat Jul 13, 2019 3:42 pm

I had a 60H for a while. I had the leadpipe pulled because the old one was trashed. It was a neat horn, but like any single I couldn't imagine what to do with it. Even now, a year after I sold it, I can't think of a gig where it would have been a better choice than my other horns.
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by Savio » Sat Jul 13, 2019 3:45 pm

Tom, how did you get all this nice trombones? I have the 60h and two 70h. Thanks for posting pictures of these wonderful trombones. I believe it's a big difference between 60 and 70 series. But between the different 70 series the difference is not that big. Consistency was maybe not the strongest side among the vintage trombones, so no example of let's say 70h are the same.
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HawaiiTromboneGuy
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by HawaiiTromboneGuy » Sat Jul 13, 2019 11:32 pm

imsevimse wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 1:29 pm
HawaiiTromboneGuy wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:29 pm
Here’s a link for now. I’ll post more tidbits about it after work.

viewtopic.php?f=13&t=9297
Nice horns :good: Is that a Conn 70h "Fuchs" model?
HawaiiTromboneGuy wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:32 pm
Here’s another quick link. Not sure if it was marketed as a very large tenor or possible bass at the time.

viewtopic.php?f=13&t=9433
Do you suspect this this to be a 14h or 66h?

What do we know about the Fuchs and 14h and 66h?

/Tom
Yes, that is a special order 70H Fuchs made with yellow brass.

As for the other horn, I’m not entirely sure which exact model this is. It shares similar characteristics with the old 14H and 66H models.
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by bigbandbone » Sun Jul 14, 2019 7:59 am

I just bought a 1963 72H. Playing mainly big band and a little community band. It's my first bass bone. I'm still in the honeymoon phase with it, but thumbs up so far. Trying to decide on a mouthpiece right now.
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by Finetales » Sun Jul 14, 2019 10:06 am

imsevimse wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 11:50 am
Finetales wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 11:04 am
I play an Elkhart 72H with Yamaha independent valves as my daily driver.
Is the second valve added to the tuningslide of the first valve? This is one way to do it, or is it a complete rebuild?

/Tom
Complete rebuild. Looks like a Xeno from a distance! I'll try to get a good pic sometime today.
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by Bloo » Sun Jul 14, 2019 7:49 pm

Played a 110H from the 60s with a custom Hagmann valve. It was loaned from a professor at my local uni. I played bass in a community brass choir for a year. It blended easily and was loud enough to only be one of two basses.
I also used it to play a few performances with my brass quintet. We performed before the choir a few times, and travel arrangements meant I was unable to take my tenor. With a tenor mouthpiece, the 110h still sounded wonderful and did the job. Not as well as a tenor, but as well as a bass could.

The 110h suited any style I wanted to use it for, and even stepped outside of the role and filled a tenor role on occasion. It was a dream to play. The only thing I don't like is how large the bell is. Would much prefer a 9 - 8.5 inch bell over the 10" monster I played.

Overall?
I really want one and I ache every time I play my current bass.
I'm partial to vintage Conn horns, and new Getzens.
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by hornbuilder » Mon Jul 15, 2019 7:38 am

Bone2BWild. Your horn is not Abilene if it was made in '71. The move didn't occur until 1973. There were horns made in Elkhart with "Made in USA" engraved on the bell, which carried over fir a few years in Abilene, before they switched to "Abilene, Texas" engraving. Check the serial number, that is the only definitive piece of information to determine where it was made.
Matthew Walker
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Bass Trombonist, Opera Australia, 1991-2006
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by Bone2Bwild » Mon Jul 15, 2019 3:29 pm

hornbuilder wrote:
Mon Jul 15, 2019 7:38 am
Bone2BWild. Your horn is not Abilene if it was made in '71. The move didn't occur until 1973. There were horns made in Elkhart with "Made in USA" engraved on the bell, which carried over fir a few years in Abilene, before they switched to "Abilene, Texas" engraving. Check the serial number, that is the only definitive piece of information to determine where it was made.
Thanks Matthew - I wasn’t aware that the move wasn’t until 1973. I’ll check the serial number for the year. It’s definitely Abilene made as it is engraved on the bell. It looks like Elkhart parts assembled in Abilene, but maybe that’s just wishful thinking 😀.

It definitely knocks the modern 62H into a cocked hat!

Andy
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Re: Vintage Conn Bass Trombones - pictures, specifications, characteristics. Who played them?

Post by sf105 » Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:03 pm

bigbandbone wrote:
Sun Jul 14, 2019 7:59 am
I just bought a 1963 72H. Playing mainly big band and a little community band. It's my first bass bone. I'm still in the honeymoon phase with it, but thumbs up so far. Trying to decide on a mouthpiece right now.
A good 72H (they weren't all) is a lot of fun. Watch out for the unusual shank on older Conns, Doug Elliott makes appropriate shanks, and I like Bill Symington's 1 1/2G copy.

S
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