Conn Coprion Bell

Post Reply
ChrisF
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2022 11:40 pm
Location: Florida

Conn Coprion Bell

Post by ChrisF »

Hi all. I'd like to buy a Conn Coprion Bell and I need some advice.
I got 3 options, but I don't know which one will be better or more professional.
1. 1942 -12H,
2. 1966 18H,
3. Director Shooting Stars, I believe is the newest, though all of them have scratches, etc

The thing is I couldn't find anything on google about the story of these Conn's trombones with the Coprion bell. Im wondering which one is the best option and professional model to buy?

Those that say Director on the slide, aren't they student models? Big thanks

Note: As we all know the 18H and the shooting have on the bell a few stars, the 3 band musicians marching and its counterweight says, Conn. The 12H is different, its copper bell looks darker, its graving says Conn LTD ( what do LTD stand for? ) and its counterweight has the three guys band marching, like the 6H played by JJ and many others.
User avatar
Matt K
Posts: 2984
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2018 10:34 pm
Contact:

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by Matt K »

Just a heads up, you need three approved posts before people can PM you or see your email. I’m on my phone so I didn’t get a peek at how many you have.

I’m also selling my Conn corprion and if it isn’t listed yet I can give you details if you are interested. It sounds like it might be in better shape than those others. You can reply again and I can approve your post too if you are interested.
User avatar
elmsandr
Posts: 724
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: S.E. Michigan
Contact:

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by elmsandr »

ChrisF wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 12:42 am Hi all. I'd like to buy a Conn Coprion Bell and I need some advice.
I got 3 options, but I don't know which one will be better or more professional.
1. 1942 -12H,
2. 1966 18H,
3. Director Shooting Stars, I believe is the newest, though all of them have scratches, etc

The thing is I couldn't find anything on google about the story of these Conn's trombones with the Coprion bell. Im wondering which one is the best option and professional model to buy?

Those that say Director on the slide, aren't they student models? Big thanks

Note: As we all know the 18H and the shooting have on the bell a few stars, the 3 band musicians marching and its counterweight says, Conn. The 12H is different, its copper bell looks darker, its graving says Conn LTD ( what do LTD stand for? ) and its counterweight has the three guys band marching, like the 6H played by JJ and many others.
Only that 12H is a professional horn. After they somewhat 'failed' as pro-level horns, Conn used the process to make the director 18H... Those two are the same design level.

As for the 12H; I can never remember between the 10H and 12H, one is a 4H with Coprion flare, the other is a 6H. Neither are particularly rare, they aren't exactly common, as there were not tons made, but they aren't generally sought after.

They are fun to play around with, not sure I would ever do more that fiddle with one, however.

Cheers,
Andy
mcphatty00
Posts: 59
Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2022 2:45 pm
Location: Harrisburg, PA

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by mcphatty00 »

I have the passive goal to find a 10H and take to bell to make my 6H modular.
User avatar
BGuttman
Posts: 4946
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2018 7:19 am
Location: Cow Hampshire

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by BGuttman »

Coprion was an experiment Conn made to try to make horns by a process called Electroforming. In Electroforming, you place a mandrel in a plating bath and build up the bell using electric current. This is different from most instruments that are made from sheet metal. Coprion is actually pure copper and its name was derived from "Copper Ion". I guess it was too hard to figure out how to plate pure brass for the experiments.

The 10H was a 6H with Coprion bell (0.500" bore)
The 12H was a 4H with Coprion bell (0.485" bore)

There was also a 70 series with a Coprion bell; either 76H or 77H (it's a tenor, and not a bass).

Coprion has a reputation of being very warm sounding at pp but very bright at fff. This variation caused it to be rejected by many pros who wanted a more uniform sound across the volume range.
Bruce Guttman
Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orchestra
"Almost Professional"
hyperbolica
Posts: 2183
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2018 7:31 am

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by hyperbolica »

Yeah, the 10h is probably the rarest of the coprion group, it was the 0.500" bore version. I owned one for a while, and it was nice enough, but most people I think would prefer a 6h, or even a 48h, which had the nickel plated yellow brass bell and some fancy fittings, but was spec-wise similar to the 6h. 10h was fun to play for solos on ballads, but it was hard to play in a section. Coprion is really the extreme of red bell materials. You can find some other brands that have offered pure copper bells (Kanstul had one, maybe Rath, Reynolds and probably some others), but the Conns were the most successful.

12h was the 4h (0.485") equivalent with coprion, much more abundant than the 10h, and 18h was the student horn, more abundant still.

Generally, the coprion bells played very dark at lower volume, but could get crazy bright when you pushed them hard. Yellow brass starts out brighter, but doesn't get as crazy. The real draw I think is just the look. There are those who claim to like the sound, and claim that you can't crack a note, or it doesn't break up at volume. If you don't push them too hard, they don't get obnoxious. There seem to be opposing claims when it came to coprion at high volume. When I had my 10h, I kept it at low levels. It seemed to me to play best with a sound like you were in a smoky jazz bar playing really laid back ballads.
ChrisF
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2022 11:40 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by ChrisF »

Matt K wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 4:46 am Just a heads up, you need three approved posts before people can PM you or see your email. I’m on my phone so I didn’t get a peek at how many you have.

I’m also selling my Conn corprion and if it isn’t listed yet I can give you details if you are interested. It sounds like it might be in better shape than those others. You can reply again and I can approve your post too if you are interested.
What model of Conn do you have? Send me pictures please. Thanks
ChrisF
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2022 11:40 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by ChrisF »

BGuttman wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 7:54 am Coprion was an experiment Conn made to try to make horns by a process called Electroforming. In Electroforming, you place a mandrel in a plating bath and build up the bell using electric current. This is different from most instruments that are made from sheet metal. Coprion is actually pure copper and its name was derived from "Copper Ion". I guess it was too hard to figure out how to plate pure brass for the experiments.

The 10H was a 6H with Coprion bell (0.500" bore)
The 12H was a 4H with Coprion bell (0.485" bore)

There was also a 70 series with a Coprion bell; either 76H or 77H (it's a tenor, and not a bass).

Coprion has a reputation of being very warm sounding at pp but very bright at fff. This variation caused it to be rejected by many pros who wanted a more uniform sound across the volume range.
Thanks for your response. I always read your comments.
So, of all my 3 options above, would you say to go with the 12H or the 18H?

2. The word Director on the slide, is for student models?
3. My other question was LTD what does it mean? thanks
User avatar
BGuttman
Posts: 4946
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2018 7:19 am
Location: Cow Hampshire

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by BGuttman »

Director was the student model. The 18H, one 20H, one 22H, and one 27H all were Directors. Conn reused numbers so there are non-Directors with some of these numbers. The first Director was right around the end of World War II to take advantage of the booming student market and has remained the Student model to this day.

LTD was because Conn called themselves Conn Ltd. like an English company. Ltd stands for Limited Liability, but only in the UK. In America the term is Incorporated (Inc.).

Note that the 12H is a professional grade instrument comparable to a King 2B or Conn 4H (i.e. small bore and most suitable to lead in Big Band or small combo). 18H came in two "flavors" -- one was 0.485" bore, and later ones were 0.500" bore. They are not bad instruments, but there were better models sold at the same time.

If you are looking for a more general purpose horn, I'd suggest you look elsewhere. Unfortunately, most of them will not be Coprion.
Bruce Guttman
Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orchestra
"Almost Professional"
ChrisF
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2022 11:40 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by ChrisF »

elmsandr wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 5:52 am
ChrisF wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 12:42 am Hi all. I'd like to buy a Conn Coprion Bell and I need some advice.
I got 3 options, but I don't know which one will be better or more professional.
1. 1942 -12H,
2. 1966 18H,
3. Director Shooting Stars, I believe is the newest, though all of them have scratches, etc

The thing is I couldn't find anything on google about the story of these Conn's trombones with the Coprion bell. Im wondering which one is the best option and professional model to buy?

Those that say Director on the slide, aren't they student models? Big thanks

Note: As we all know the 18H and the shooting have on the bell a few stars, the 3 band musicians marching and its counterweight says, Conn. The 12H is different, its copper bell looks darker, its graving says Conn LTD ( what do LTD stand for? ) and its counterweight has the three guys band marching, like the 6H played by JJ and many others.
Only that 12H is a professional horn. After they somewhat 'failed' as pro-level horns, Conn used the process to make the director 18H... Those two are the same design level.

As for the 12H; I can never remember between the 10H and 12H, one is a 4H with Coprion flare, the other is a 6H. Neither are particularly rare, they aren't exactly common, as there were not tons made, but they aren't generally sought after.

They are fun to play around with, not sure I would ever do more that fiddle with one, however.

Cheers,
Andy
Thanks Andy for your response. I believe right now the best option I have is the 12H, though the 18H from 1966 is also a vintage right? btw it doesn't say Director on the leadpipe receiver like the Shooting stars.
ChrisF
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2022 11:40 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by ChrisF »

BGuttman wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 11:45 am Director was the student model. The 18H, one 20H, one 22H, and one 27H all were Directors. Conn reused numbers so there are non-Directors with some of these numbers. The first Director was right around the end of World War II to take advantage of the booming student market and has remained the Student model to this day.

LTD was because Conn called themselves Conn Ltd. like an English company. Ltd stands for Limited Liability, but only in the UK. In America the term is Incorporated (Inc.).

Note that the 12H is a professional grade instrument comparable to a King 2B or Conn 4H (i.e. small bore and most suitable to lead in Big Band or small combo). 18H came in two "flavors" -- one was 0.485" bore, and later ones were 0.500" bore. They are not bad instruments, but there were better models sold at the same time.

If you are looking for a more general purpose horn, I'd suggest you look elsewhere. Unfortunately, most of them will not be Coprion.
Thanks BGuttman for your response. well, the thing is, I'm looking for a Coprion bell for personal /artistic reasons. of course, I would like the instrument to have some quality as well. Conn is the most brand I have seen available out there, and also the most affordable. I own a king silver sonic 3b. an Olds recording, both beautiful horns.
User avatar
elmsandr
Posts: 724
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: S.E. Michigan
Contact:

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by elmsandr »

ChrisF wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 1:11 pm
elmsandr wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 5:52 am
Only that 12H is a professional horn. After they somewhat 'failed' as pro-level horns, Conn used the process to make the director 18H... Those two are the same design level.

As for the 12H; I can never remember between the 10H and 12H, one is a 4H with Coprion flare, the other is a 6H. Neither are particularly rare, they aren't exactly common, as there were not tons made, but they aren't generally sought after.

They are fun to play around with, not sure I would ever do more that fiddle with one, however.

Cheers,
Andy
Thanks Andy for your response. I believe right now the best option I have is the 12H, though the 18H from 1966 is also a vintage right? btw it doesn't say Director on the leadpipe receiver like the Shooting stars.
18H + Coprion bell = Director whether it says so or not. If you are unclear, take a look at Conn loyalist; the 10H and 12H have a lot more nickel trim, "reversed" tuning slides, nickel oversleeves, Nickel bottom slide bow, etc...

The directors aren't terrible, but they aren't the 10/12H.

Using the director bell on a 6H slide... that might be interesting, but I wouldn't spend much money on that.

Cheers,
Andy
ChrisF
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2022 11:40 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by ChrisF »

elmsandr wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 1:54 pm
ChrisF wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 1:11 pm

Thanks Andy for your response. I believe right now the best option I have is the 12H, though the 18H from 1966 is also a vintage right? btw it doesn't say Director on the leadpipe receiver like the Shooting stars.
18H + Coprion bell = Director whether it says so or not. If you are unclear, take a look at Conn loyalist; the 10H and 12H have a lot more nickel trim, "reversed" tuning slides, nickel oversleeves, Nickel bottom slide bow, etc...

The directors aren't terrible, but they aren't the 10/12H.

Using the director bell on a 6H slide... might be interesting, but I wouldn't spend much money on that.

Cheers,
Andy
thanks
Last edited by ChrisF on Mon Jul 18, 2022 6:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
ChrisF
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2022 11:40 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by ChrisF »

Guys thank you so much for all your replies.
For the 12H Im thinking of buying all serial numbers math but its patina is worn out.

Is it possible to refurbish it to make it looks new without losing its dark color?

if so, Would anybody recommend to me who does it?

Thanks
User avatar
Matt K
Posts: 2984
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2018 10:34 pm
Contact:

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by Matt K »

ChrisF wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 6:48 pm Guys thank you so much for all your replies.
For the 12H Im thinking of buying all serial numbers math but its patina is worn out.

Is it possible to refurbish it to make it looks new without losing its dark color?

if so, Would anybody recommend to me who does it?

Thanks
First, here's a listing to the ad that I forgot to make last week:

https://trombonechat.com/viewtopic.php? ... 46#p183746

Looks like it's a 18H. I'm not sure the bore size. To me it doesn't play like some of the brighter Conn Corprions I've played but who knows. It could be the .485 model.

With regards to your question, the patina doesn't take long to develop but a really nice patina that's cured for awhile takes, well, awhile to get back. Especially if you're not in a humid environment. So if you refurbish the bell, it'll be shiny and get dimmer over time (or what you typically call "new"!). There are some things you can do to artificially make unlacquered brass patina faster, though I've never personally done it and I'm not familiar with any tech who offers the service (though I'd be curious if this is more common than I'm aware).

If you're interested in my 18 over the 12, I'd be happy to give it a satin finish which will clean up the bell, leave it unlacquered, and show you what it'll look similar to after a few months. I did that to a King 606 bell in March and it's patina is pretty nice looking now, but I live in a pretty humid climate.
ChrisF
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2022 11:40 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by ChrisF »

Matt K wrote: Mon Jul 18, 2022 4:46 am Just a heads up, you need three approved posts before people can PM you or see your email. I’m on my phone so I didn’t get a peek at how many you have.

I’m also selling my Conn corprion and if it isn’t listed yet I can give you details if you are interested. It sounds like it might be in better shape than those others. You can reply again and I can approve your post too if you are interested.
which one do you have? Please send me the details about it. model, etc? thanks
stewbones43
Posts: 170
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2018 5:11 am
Location: Somerset, UK

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by stewbones43 »

Just a thought; are you aware of the Coprion bells on some Blessing trombones?

I used to have a Blessing Artist model with a Coprion bell-0.500in bore and 8in bell. It played nicely but I didn't need it and it had to go.

Cheers

Stewbones43
Conn 36H(Pitched in D/A)
B&H Sessionair
Besson 10-10
Conn 74H
Yamaha YSL-641 with Yamaha Custom Slide
Conn 88H Gen II with Conn SL4747 Slide
Besson Academy 409
Rath/Holton/Benge Bb/F/G or Gb/Eb or D Independent Bass
ChrisF
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2022 11:40 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by ChrisF »

stewbones43 wrote: Tue Jul 19, 2022 2:55 pm Just a thought; are you aware of the Coprion bells on some Blessing trombones?

I used to have a Blessing Artist model with a Coprion bell-0.500in bore and 8in a bell. It played nicely but I didn't need it and it had to go.

Cheers

Stewbones43
Okay, I will check that out. thanks
Crazy4Tbone86
Posts: 1037
Joined: Tue Jan 14, 2020 10:52 am

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by Crazy4Tbone86 »

ChrisF wrote: Wed Aug 03, 2022 9:08 pm
stewbones43 wrote: Tue Jul 19, 2022 2:55 pm Just a thought; are you aware of the Coprion bells on some Blessing trombones?

I used to have a Blessing Artist model with a Coprion bell-0.500in bore and 8in a bell. It played nicely but I didn't need it and it had to go.

Cheers

Stewbones43
Okay, I will check that out. thanks
Were any of the Blessing bells actually "Coprion?" Were they actually produced by electroplating copper on a mandrel?

I thought the Blessing bells were sheet copper spun on a mandrel. Maybe I am wrong.....Conn and Blessing did share a lot of parts. I just thought that the electroforming process was something unique to Conn.
Brian D. Hinkley - Player, Teacher, Technician and Trombone Enthusiast
User avatar
elmsandr
Posts: 724
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: S.E. Michigan
Contact:

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by elmsandr »

Crazy4Tbone86 wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 7:48 am
ChrisF wrote: Wed Aug 03, 2022 9:08 pm

Okay, I will check that out. thanks
Were any of the Blessing bells actually "Coprion?" Were they actually produced by electroplating copper on a mandrel?

I thought the Blessing bells were sheet copper spun on a mandrel. Maybe I am wrong.....Conn and Blessing did share a lot of parts. I just thought that the electroforming process was something unique to Conn.
Some Blessing bells were in fact electroplated. Many more (my estimate) were spun, I'm not sure if they were copper or red brass. I'm not sure who would have the best knowledge of when changes were made there, the folks that I know that knew the Blessing operations are now gone.

Cheers,
Andy
Posaunus
Posts: 2419
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2018 9:54 pm
Location: California

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by Posaunus »

Wasn't the name Coprion trademarked by Conn?
Crazy4Tbone86
Posts: 1037
Joined: Tue Jan 14, 2020 10:52 am

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by Crazy4Tbone86 »

"Some Blessing bells were in fact electroplated. Many more (my estimate) were spun, I'm not sure if they were copper or red brass. I'm not sure who would have the best knowledge of when changes were made there, the folks that I know that knew the Blessing operations are now gone.

Cheers,
Andy"


Thanks Andy.....I did not know that. It doesn't surprise me though. After all, Blessing made so many models based on Conns in the second half of the 20th century.
Posaunus wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 2:20 pm Wasn't the name Coprion trademarked by Conn?
Yes, I think it was one of their many trademarked marketing terms. Blessing probably just called theirs "Seamless Copper Bells" or something like that. I cannot come up with any catchy terms that combine Blessing, Electroplated and Copper. How about "ElectroBlessed" or "BlessPlaCoppered?"
Brian D. Hinkley - Player, Teacher, Technician and Trombone Enthusiast
User avatar
elmsandr
Posts: 724
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: S.E. Michigan
Contact:

Re: Conn Coprion Bell

Post by elmsandr »

Crazy4Tbone86 wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 5:40 pm
Posaunus wrote: Fri Aug 05, 2022 2:20 pm Wasn't the name Coprion trademarked by Conn?
Yes, I think it was one of their many trademarked marketing terms. Blessing probably just called theirs "Seamless Copper Bells" or something like that. I cannot come up with any catchy terms that combine Blessing, Electroplated and Copper. How about "ElectroBlessed" or "BlessPlaCoppered?"
Lol... Blessing, as a general operation, was far too cheap to anything that would represent "branding". Pretty barebones operation, even when I visited them in the '90s. They had a handful of full-time employees, but quite a bit of their labor were folks employed elsewhere in town picking up a few extra hours....

Cheers,
Andy
Post Reply

Return to “History of the Trombone”