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A 475?

Postby Yane » Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:02 am

I have a King Eb sousaphone, model 1260 I think, from 1939 by serial #. The horn has decent valves but the rest looks like it was in a war on the losing side. My local repair guy has done heroic work getting all the slides loose and decently aligned, and it plays way better than it has any right to. It seems a bit flat, and when I measure some valve loops the pay seem notably longer than my other Ebs though way short of a Bb. Oddly the main tuning slide is stamped “A475”; could this be a (very!) low pitch horn? Seems rather late and very very low pitch if so, any thoughts from the collective wisdom assembled here?
David

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Re: A 475?

Postby iiipopes » Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:26 am

Quite the opposite. Standard pitch is (debatably) A=440. Larger the number, higher the pitch. My initial thought was that this may be a high-pitch horn, but "high pitch" for brass instruments was somewhere in the range of A=453. It is probably just and index or reference number for the part.
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Re: A 475?

Postby Yane » Wed Apr 17, 2019 1:59 pm

Doh. Thanks.
David

King 1241, B&H Eb, Barcone Eb Sousa, Sterling Euph, King 1260 Eb (Rastootin)
Lake Murray Symphony; Columbia Community Concert Band; Capitol Brass; Die Lustigen Muzikanten; Seed and Feed Marching Abominable
Columbia, SC
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Re: A 475?

Postby Art Hovey » Mon Apr 22, 2019 11:21 pm

When I was in college the school owned a King Eb with 3 front pistons and recording bell. Some of the valve tubing was way too long. I would not be surprised if your sousaphone is from the same period, assembled with the same mistaken measurements. The problem can be corrected easily with a hacksaw, a file, and a Korg.
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Re: A 475?

Postby Matt Walters » Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:22 am

Many old H.N. White vintage King tubas had the last few serial numbers of the valve block stamped on the main tuning slide ferrule. Never saw a pitch reference stamped on King tuba ferrules before.
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Re: A 475?

Postby Yane » Tue Apr 23, 2019 2:15 pm

Thanks for the inputs. I love the sound with a PT88 but a 24AW makes for better intonation. As it sits I figure I rescued the horn from a sad fate as wall decor.
David

King 1241, B&H Eb, Barcone Eb Sousa, Sterling Euph, King 1260 Eb (Rastootin)
Lake Murray Symphony; Columbia Community Concert Band; Capitol Brass; Die Lustigen Muzikanten; Seed and Feed Marching Abominable
Columbia, SC
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Re: A 475?

Postby iiipopes » Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:07 pm

Try an 18-style mouthpiece on it. Being a little larger in diameter but not quite as deep as a 24AW, I find 18-style mouthpieces give great projection and intonation on souzys: Kelly, Blessing, Kanstul, even Faxx. I keep a Kelly and a Kanstul that Jim New made with a 1.28 cup instead of the stock 1.26 cup. I have had the use of a Blessing in the past. I don't do the Bach mouthpieces anymore, because I have had several over the decades. Every one of them had a different rim, all the way from Mt. Vernon style to Wick style, a different cup diameter, all the way from 1.26 to 1.29, and a different throat, all tending towards the large or larger; none of them were "spec."
"Bessophone" w/ 2-piece Imperial Blokepiece,
Lexan 32.6 Modified Helleberg rim & modified .080 extender
Wessex BR115 & B&H 3-valve comp w/ Wick Ultra SMB6
King Super 20 trumpet w/ Bach 3C/76
Fanned fret bass and electric guitars
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Re: A 475?

Postby Yane » Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:27 pm

I tried several different 18s, all with similar rims and cups and wildly variable backbones; didn’t care for any of them. Yeah, really odd because an 18 is otherwise very similar to another mouthpiece which I love on another horn.
David

King 1241, B&H Eb, Barcone Eb Sousa, Sterling Euph, King 1260 Eb (Rastootin)
Lake Murray Symphony; Columbia Community Concert Band; Capitol Brass; Die Lustigen Muzikanten; Seed and Feed Marching Abominable
Columbia, SC
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