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Thread: stocking dealers, North or central FL?

  1. #1

    stocking dealers, North or central FL?

    My son is young, just starting band. He's interested in trying to change form trumpet to low brass
    His school has an old beater american style euphonium that he can likely use next year.

    but I'm not opposed to searching for a used lower priced horn for him to use.... either a keep at home horn so he doesn't have to drag it back and forth, or if it ends up being a better horn than the schools, something to use as a primary
    I don't want to end up with him discouraged and quitting just because of bad or poorly fitting equipment....

    but our first step is to verify that he in fact wants to switch. Baritone or euphonium or even trombone, etc.... Thought it would be good to get some hands-on over the summer

    None of the dealers around here stock baritones or euphoniums....
    So where does a person go to try different horns and get a feel for likes and wants?

    Know of any stocking dealers in North or central Florida..... say in the general Orlando area maybe, Daytona, Jacksonville, Tampa, etc...?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    West Palm Beach, FL
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    I suggest you call Brass and Reed in Daytona Beach. I'm sure they rent instruments and pretty sure they should have some for sale too. They're at 675 Mason Ave.

    phone:
    (386) 453-1085
    Rick Floyd
    Miraphone 5050 - Warburton Brandon Jones sig mpc
    YEP-641S (on long-term loan to grandson)
    Doug Elliott - 102 rim; I-cup; I-9 shank


    "Always play with a good tone, never louder than lovely, never softer than supported." - author unknown.
    Symphonic Band of the Palm Beaches
    Russian Christmas Music (Alfred Reed)
    El Cumbanchero (Rafael Hernández) cell phone video

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Deltona, Florida
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    25
    Great tip Rick! I called the guy at Brass and Reed because I had thought that they had moved from Daytona to Melbourne. Turns out, that is a different Brass and Reed. Anyway, after seeing your post, I tried your provided number and managed to bother the poor guy on a Sunday evening. (oops!) I had expected a voice mail or some such to confirm address and hours of operation, but I managed to have a nice chat with the guy anyway. He does have two horns in stock right now. A Conn 20I (3 valve bell front), and a Besson Prestige (4 valve pro comp w/ trigger). Both are reasonably priced as used instruments; appropriate to what they are. However he admitted to NOT servicing either horn yet, believing that they were both in good playing condition. He does NOT have baritones or euphs available in his rental program. I plan to go see him myself to take the Prestige for a spin, and meet him for general purposes. Now he does have a full service repair shop, so I'm sure if any problems were detected, he could address them in-house.

    Now, back to the original poster, as to other suggestions. Sam Ash has two locations in Orlando. They Both have told me they have the Jean Baptiste compensating Euphs in stock. I also plan to take my son down there to play test those, because they are basically the same Jin-Bao horns that many companies import from China, and I am interested in using it to get an idea of what the Wessex might sound like. Sam Ash has a policy that fully supports play testing and demo-ing. You'll find a sign in every store that says, "We love it when you touch the stuff!". That said, you may NOT get the highest level of expertise out of their salesmen. But you CAN negotiate prices (to a certain extent). The Lee Rd location also told me they have a vintage Olds 3 valve bell front. I was going to take a look while I was there. Sam Ash can and will move instruments from location to location. This DOES require money to be placed down, but I don't THINK it is the full price of the horn. However, there will be no obligation to buy, and part of your deposit will go to a restock fee, if they have to ship it back.

    Music and Arts has a location near the Millenia Mall. They offer a full range of major manufacturers on their website. But they DO NOT STOCK. In this case, I think you MIGHT have to pay to get the horn shipped, but if you didn't want it, the full price could be refunded. I have not had very good service at their Sanford location, but the Mall of Millenia spot DOES feature 2 very good and knowledgeable repair techs. Since probably one of the best (or most common) recommendations for a beginner horn is to go with a Yamaha, they are in fact the largest Yamaha dealer in the area. You may end up needing them afterall.

    In the past (the 90s?), the best thing to do was to go with the online stores, like Woodwind and Brasswind. They USED to offer trial periods for horns, with you ultimately only being out shipping costs. The Tuba Exchange used to operate the same way, only with a more liberal policy. I honestly do not know if these trial basis policies have changed, but they are both still in business, and easy to find online, and the answers would only be a phone call away.

    Unfortunatly, most Mom and Pop type stores just don't have the buying power to keep these horns in stock, and that is why you have to stick with the bigger chains. But any store that DOES have a dealership, should have access to any of the horns, even Euphoniums. But what is the order time, and what type of deposits are required? But even smaller stores will usually offer a refund, so do your research and ask lots of questions. After that, there is always ebay. However, ANY used horn should have you factoring in an additional cost of $200-300(very high end estimate), for a full service chem clean, felt pads, corks, and springs. There are some good repair shops in the area, and even a company like Music and Arts will repair and service a horn, even if you didn't buy it there.

    Good luck, and please post more on your adventures. Being in this same Central Florida market, with a middle school musician in the family, I am very interested in your experiences.

    One more thing, Gerry Lopez in Oviedo seems to be linked very well online. However, I know nothing about him, it seems to me like he may be running a glorified mail order business. In the coming weeks, I will be researching him further. Also, I have a great personal relationship with Gary Underwood in Winter Park. From time to time, he will get some interesting horns to pass through his shop, but he is MOSTLY a pro-woodwind guy (saxes, almost nothing but saxes!), and that is why I didn't mention him before. There are other places not to bother with, despite any advertising claims, like George's Music, bcause these places are primarily Guitars and Amps. Even many of the smaller stores fall in to this category. At these places, if they have a horn at all, it will be like a pawn shop find. Outside of the I-4 corridor (from Daytona to Kissimmee), I don't have much additional information for you, so if you learn about something that is closer to your area, but still qualifies as Central Florida, then I'd like to know! Thanks!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Central North Carolina
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    If it's a matter of just trying a few things to see if he's inclined to go in that direction, I guess I'd think about contacting other schools in the area (possibly with the help of his music instructor or band director) to see if they have other instruments that he could just try out for a day or two, or even just try out under direct supervision of the band director who has them. Or maybe contact some community or New Horizons bands to see if members would be willing to let a kid try some instruments they own.
    Gary Merrill
    Wessex EEb Bass tuba (Denis Wick 3XL)
    Mack Brass Compensating Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J9 euph)
    Amati Oval Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J6 euph)
    1924 Buescher 3-valve Eb tuba, modified Kelly 25
    Schiller American Heritage 7B clone bass trombone (DE LB K/K9/112 Lexan, Brass Ark MV50R)
    1947 Olds "Standard" trombone (Olds #3)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    West Palm Beach, FL
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    Gary makes a good suggestion. The cheapest route too for someone not knowing for sure if he wants to switch from trumpet.

    jskline5, I suspect you may have talked to Billy Berthrong at "Brass & Reed". He's an excellent brass repair tech. He's worked on my euph, but it's been quite awhile. Gail Robertson used him to service her horn when she lived in Orlando area.
    Rick Floyd
    Miraphone 5050 - Warburton Brandon Jones sig mpc
    YEP-641S (on long-term loan to grandson)
    Doug Elliott - 102 rim; I-cup; I-9 shank


    "Always play with a good tone, never louder than lovely, never softer than supported." - author unknown.
    Symphonic Band of the Palm Beaches
    Russian Christmas Music (Alfred Reed)
    El Cumbanchero (Rafael Hernández) cell phone video

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    NYC metro area
    Posts
    354
    Quote Originally Posted by jskline5 View Post
    Sam Ash has two locations in Orlando. They Both have told me they have the Jean Baptiste compensating Euphs in stock. I also plan to take my son down there to play test those, because they are basically the same Jin-Bao horns that many companies import from China
    I did not know that the Jean Baptiste horn is the JinBao 1150. I just looked at the photo, and it does look like the JinBao horn. But I see they supply a 12C mouthpice, and I think that's a bit small for a compensating euphonium. Tom at Mack Brass supplies his with a 6.5AL clone, and I think Wessex supplies something like a Dennis Wick 4 (or a clone of it). If you're thinking of buying a JinBao horn, I highly recommend Mack Brass or Wessex, because you'll get outstanding service. I do not say this to denigrate Sam Ash - when I worked as a professional musician, they supplied all my keyboards and amplifiers, and I had a close relationship with many people at that company. Back then, they had brass and woodwind techs available on short notice to tend to the problems of working musicians. I get the feeling when I go to Sam Ash lately that the store is less oriented towards wind instruments.
    Dean L. Surkin
    Mack Brass MACK-EU1150S, BB1, Kadja, and DE 101XTG9 mouthpieces
    Bach 36B trombone; pBone; Vincent Bach (from 1971) 6.5AL mouthpiece
    Steinway 1902 Model A, restored by AC Pianocraft in 1988; Kawai MP8, Yamaha KX-76
    See my avatar: Jazz (the black cockapoo) and Delilah (the cavapoo puppy) keep me company while practicing

  7. #7
    The guy who actually does the imports posts on another forum I post on, they are the the Jinbao 1150

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Deltona, Florida
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    25
    I actually used to work FOR Sam Ash. At the time, (this was several years ago) we weren't told where the Jean Baptiste was made beyond "China". Recently, I read part of a thread where the main guy in charge(now) of Jean Baptiste line said that they were using Jin-Bao. In fact, it was a point of pride that Sam Ash was one of the first companies to get involved with the Chinese export instrumental market.
    Now, the reason why Mack and Wessex are better sources than Jean Baptiste for Jin-Bao (lets say specifically for Euphoniums here), is that Mack will test, and fit and guarantee all instruments passing through. Sam Ash recieves the horns and puts them up on the wall. They are play tested, but any defects or flaws are addressed only AFTER the fact, when a customer detects a problem. Their policy had been total horn replacement, but back in the day, there were plenty of problems. Now, we are aware of the manufacturing standards improving dramatically, so it is probably true that even the Jean Baptiste Sam Ash Jin-Bao horns have also benefitted. But it is companies like Wessex that have really added to the difference.
    Wessex sends experts over to the FACTORY in China, and inspects all horns slated for their import. Many errors have been prevented and corrected in this way. Plus, Wessex's relationship with the factory has allowed them to further customize the horns by offering the floating leadpipe. A Jean Baptiste will be soldered. Further, Wessex offers extras like grime gutters, and upgraded springs and valve dampening pads, and the better mouthpieces, but at the same prices. When I buy, I still plan to get a Wessex, for these reasons.

    But the basic components of the horn are the same, whatever the importing maker's mark says. I originally recommended Sam Ash, because it STILL is a huge store, with alot of horns, and you are more than welcome to try out anything there without having to buy. But Dean, you are correct, even 12 years ago when I worked there, the Band Dept. at Sam Ash was treated like the "red-headed-stepchild" of the store. They were making lots more money with Guitars, keyboads, or Pa equipment, then they were by selling Trumpets or Violins. That said, I really believe that the company remains committed to offering the full range of Band and Orchestra equipment, and that will never change. But sadly, they just aren't positioned to help school band programs, or support music education as well as other stores seem to be. That said, if they have the horn, I bet you can STILL get the cheapest price on it at Sam Ash. Of course, you need to be comparing apples to apples, or say Yamaha 321 to Yamaha 321! But you can still negotiate there, and I have never seen that anywhere else. You may only save 10 dollars, LOL, but it will be the cheapest price! Now as to the mouthpiece selection, I surmise that it is a "gimmick", that forces you to buy an upgraded mouthpiece. Sad, but you can't blame the salesmen. That is something out of their hands.
    Last edited by jskline5; 06-01-2015 at 10:34 AM.

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