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Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby 58mark » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:00 pm

OK, I had a whole "unboxing" video planned where I was going to video me playing the tuba fresh out of the box, but the tuba arrived a whole day early and my tripod was in my wife's car, so I said "screw it, I'm playing this thing"

First of all, shipping was expensive, but amazing (I got a demo model so Jonathan had to ship it from Great Britain). It got here in less than 48 hours after he gave it to FedEx. incredible. It was packed and protected great, arrived without incident. The airplane must have been traveling at ludicrous speed.

Now to the tuba. This horn is a copy of the Cerveny Arion, which is a squat body version of the cerveny 68x (I'm assuming since it's a copy of a Czech horn, that's where the name Prague comes from) For those of you that don't know, the reason the valve cluster looks like a miraphone 186, is because the miraphone is also a cerveny clone, so this is a very tried and true design.

Don't do this horn an injustice by calling it a 3/4. It may be small in size, but it packs a PUNCH. I can't believe the massive "big boy" sound it has. It reminds me SO MUCH of my piggy I had for 20 years, but because it's a BBb, even has a deeper tone. Incredible tone for only a 15 inch bell. the tone is great for a tuba of any size or key, but especially remarkable for such a tiny horn. Mighty Midget indeed.

Tuning is spot on, the only note that I found that is eve a concern is low BBb, which centered about 20 cents low, but that may be partly due to the fact that I haven't played a BBb tuba for more than a few seconds at a time for more than 25 years. It's possible it could center on its own with more playing. I'm VERY impressed at the intonation of the rest of the horn, even usually problematic notes like the C in the staff that can be flat on many tubas is perfect. D in staff is nearly spot on, wouldn't even think about using an alternate fingering. Eb below the 4th ledger line is a little flat, as it usually is on almost every instrument, but it lips fine

here is is between my 601 and my Eb
Image

Size comparison with a miraphone 186


Image


One odd thing... The valve linkage is at an odd angle. Never seen this before, I can only assume it's on purpose. It's not bad, just different and takes some getting used to. It requires me to use a curved finger hand position, where I've always played flat fingered. Maybe that's a good thing, but it is different.
Image

here's me playing the first "BBb" things that popped into my head, LOL


https://youtu.be/_alzBdhJl9w" target="_blank
Last edited by 58mark on Thu Dec 03, 2015 11:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby Dan Schultz » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:25 pm

I would have to raise those finger paddles quite a bit. Maybe there's enough adjustment in both ends of the connecting rods to get the job done.
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby bort » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:27 pm

Congrats!

How much did the shipping cost? (Never sure what "expensive" really means.)

Also, are you sure the valve paddle angle is what's intended? I mean maybe it is, but I've never seen a rotary tuba like that either. I guess if it works, it works though.

How tall (er, short) is the tuba?
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby 58mark » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:29 pm

It does seem like the connecting rods are too short.

you would think that the geometry of the linear action would be less efficient the way it is set up.
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby 58mark » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:31 pm

bort wrote:Congrats!

How much did the shipping cost? (Never sure what "expensive" really means.)

Also, are you sure the valve paddle angle is what's intended? I mean maybe it is, but I've never seen a rotary tuba like that either. I guess if it works, it works though.

How tall (er, short) is the tuba?



$200. I would rather have paid less if it meant getting it a week later, but I didn't know that was an option, it may not have been.I didn't need this horn by the end of the week, but I don't want it to sound like I'm complaining.

it is 31 inches tall or short
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby bort » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:46 pm

Thanks. Yeah, that's not cheap, but I've spent far more than that to ship tubas far shorter distances.
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I know this horn as the Dalyan Prague...

Postby Ulli » Thu Dec 03, 2015 1:01 pm

...and now it comes as Wessex Prague?

Dalyan RIP :cry:
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby bloke » Thu Dec 03, 2015 1:08 pm

58mark wrote:It does seem like the connecting rods are too short.

you would think that the geometry of the linear action would be less efficient the way it is set up.


http://www.westfieldfasteners.co.uk/A4_Allthread_M3.html
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby bort » Thu Dec 03, 2015 1:34 pm

bloke wrote:<snip>.uk</snip>


Hrmm, so this could've been fixed there before it was sent out? :P
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby 58mark » Thu Dec 03, 2015 1:37 pm

bloke wrote:
58mark wrote:It does seem like the connecting rods are too short.

you would think that the geometry of the linear action would be less efficient the way it is set up.


http://www.westfieldfasteners.co.uk/A4_Allthread_M3.html


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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby hrender » Thu Dec 03, 2015 1:53 pm

How would you compare the Prague to the Arion (CBB-683) from which it is copied?
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby 58mark » Thu Dec 03, 2015 2:00 pm

never played one in person, but I can't imagine it being better than this
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby Davidus1 » Thu Dec 03, 2015 2:03 pm

Congrats on the new horn. I've owned two Cervenys in the past. A piggy CC and the huge 693 Kaiser. Liked both horns very much. Thanks for the review. Enjoy!
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby bloke » Thu Dec 03, 2015 2:13 pm

58mark wrote:
bloke wrote:
58mark wrote:It does seem like the connecting rods are too short.

you would think that the geometry of the linear action would be less efficient the way it is set up.


http://www.westfieldfasteners.co.uk/A4_Allthread_M3.html


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Alternately, you could find some 1/8" diameter smooth s.s. rod and only thread the ends (prettier), but that would also require buying a 3M die and a die wrench.

http://www.tacomascrew.com/s.nl/it.A/id.25607/.f?gclid=CPGJoeylwMkCFRCNaQodey8M1w
http://www.ebay.com/itm/5pcs-Right-Hand-Metric-Thread-Die-Wrench-Set-Pitch-M3-M4-M5-M6-M8-/331616658693
http://www.ebay.com/itm/30mm-Diameter-Die-handle-Stock-Holder-Wrench-/110777275678
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby bisontuba » Thu Dec 03, 2015 2:17 pm

Nice tuba :D enjoy!
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby 58mark » Thu Dec 03, 2015 3:28 pm




I've used all thread before and covered with a stainless steel tube before I bend it. Looks nice
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby bloke » Thu Dec 03, 2015 3:45 pm

I understand...
The $32 (??) of stuff linked above would give you an oem look, less stuff to deal with, no chance of surface-against-surface vibration, and some new fun toys.

:tuba:
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby 58mark » Thu Dec 03, 2015 3:51 pm

You're right, I've used those sets before, I'll have to consider it
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby Dan Schultz » Thu Dec 03, 2015 4:13 pm

58mark wrote:It does seem like the connecting rods are too short.

you would think that the geometry of the linear action would be less efficient the way it is set up.


From an engineering perspective... the force vector is the same. It's in a straight line between the two attachment points. The angle on the rods is only for clearance so the rod end doesn't interfere with the stop arm.
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Re: Czech out my review of the Wessex Prague

Postby Wyvern » Thu Dec 03, 2015 4:29 pm

Mark, Pleased to hear the Prague has reached you safely. I will need to check if they all have the angled paddles. I must say have never noticed. Certainly nothing that has worried me while playing a Prague.

I can no doubt obtain rod of different length when I visit the factory in January if it causes dicomfort. I have on more than one occasion got the rod on the 5th valve of horn changed to different length when I test played at factory and found uncomfortable.
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