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Thread: Sterling / Perantucci 1065HGS Euphonium - Just picked up

  1. Sterling / Perantucci 1065HGS Euphonium - Just picked up

    I'd been thinking about getting a euphonium for a while, as it's kind of an obvious doubling opportunity for a trombone player. I played some baritone/euphonium back in high school, so It was good to finally pick up a nice one with the compensating system, which translates well to the F-attachment on a trombone.

    I saw a Perantucci / Sterling 1065HGS from Great Britain on the Dillon music website, and it looked pretty good, and had a large shank mouthpiece receiver, which is always nice. I had been meaning to pick up a Hammond 11L mouthpiece for a while, which compares well to the Schilke 52D, so I already had another reason to go down there. I asked them to get the horn out, and sat down annoying everyone with the "tenor tuba" part from Mars for the next hour, in addition to what I could remember of scales, tried out the upper, middle, and lower ranges, and as far as I could tell, it was a good horn I meshed well with, so I took it home.

    I had known before however that there isn't nearly as much out there on the Sterling brand as there is on the Boosey & Hawkes and Besson models. From what I can tell, Sterling started making euphoniums under the Perantucci name for a while. The serial number on the horn is 753*** , so I don't know if there is any way to tell exactly how old it is. It's got the usual dents and dings on the lower end, and some of the valve tubes, but nothing major. The valves themselves all work well, and I didn't see any major wear, damage/ etc. The main tuning slide does look a bit twisted, but still slides in and out without issue. Not sure if that's just something that happens sometimes, or whether it's from original manufacture.

    Anyway, I'm liking it so far, so I wondered what thoughts were on this horn. Thanks!
    Sterling / Perantucci 1065HGS - Hammond 11L , Bach 42T - Laskey 59MD, Kanstul 1588CR - Hammond 11ML, Yamaha YBL-612 RII - Faxx 1 1/2G

  2. #2
    Bottom line: I think it's probably a very good horn.

    Sterling came into being after a bunch of Besson workers reportedly got fed up with the cheap labor the factory was relying on more and more, so these working, including the manager of production, left Besson to form Sterling. Not surprisingly, the euphonium they made was similar to the Besson, but with some improvements that gave it slightly better intonation and response. Steven Mead was one of their consultants in the early days.

    I became aware of them in the late 1980's. Custom Music was the sole importer in the USA and was helping fund some of the horn's development. They added "Perantucci" to the name to help make it seem like their own brand. I became a Sterling artist in 1990, and played Sterling until 2012. I helped Sterling to improve the instrument, and I gathered that this was jointly funded by Sterling and Custom. Custom tried to make these changes exclusive as a Perantucci version, but Paul Riggett, owner of Sterling, would not agree. He figured if he tooled up to make improvements, he would not want to keep making the old version. So Sterlings purchased in England and Sterling purchased as Sterling-Perantucci in the USA were the same instrument.

    They use stainless steel pistons, so I doubt there is any valve wear for you to worry about. As long as the slides move where you want them to be, there is probably no worry there either.

    The production numbers are/were not very high, so the first 3 digits of the serial number are not much help for dating it. Doug Ruby, one of the forum moderators, may be able to help you pin down the date when he is back online fully in a couple weeks. In the 1990's the finger buttons were 6- or 8-sided (can't recall which) vs. just being round. Also, the plastic guide on the side of the pistons were round in those years. Sometime in the 2000's they went to using Bauerfind valves, which had rectangular guides. I think they went to round finger buttons around the same time.

    The horn improved during all those years, but even the early samples were nice instruments.
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams E3, Denis Wick 4AL (classic)
    Instructor of Euphonium and Tuba
    Twitter: davewerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    YouTube: dwerden
    Owner of TubaEuph.com, DWerden.com

  3. I've been playing a Sterling Virtuoso for a few years after migrating from a early 2000s Besson Sovereign 967 (which suffered from the quality issues the Besson factory was having at the time) and a mid 90s Yamaha 642 (a fine horn but it didn't have the darker British sound I wanted), and a 2015 Wessex Dolce trigger model that was not one of the company's finer efforts. The Sterling is the best overall euphonium I have ever owned, and I consider it to be a "lifer".....although I also have an Adams E1 I'll play in certain circumstances, and it is an absolutely stellar instrument.

    Paul Riggett owns Sterling Instruments, and I'm under the impression it's a much smaller outfit than the likes of Besson and even Wessex. Sterling's website has been essentially non-existent for years, and the company does not really promote its products outside a few performing artists and select trade shows and events. Thus it is relatively difficult to obtain information about Sterling instruments - including serial numbers, of which there exists no database to cross-reference for years of manufacture.

    I'm certain your Sterling is also a fine instrument. Riggett does a good job making high-quality hand-crafted instruments, I have not heard any stories of Sterling owners having a bad experience.
    James Kircoff
    Genesee Wind Symphony - principal euphonium (Sterling Virtuoso 1065HS and Adams E1 Custom w/ Parker 4G Houser)
    Capital City Brass Band (2019 NABBA 2nd section champions) - 1st baritone (Besson BE956 w/ Denis Wick 6BY) and 10 piece ensemble (Getzen 1052FD w/ Bach 1G)

  4. Thanks so much! The valve guides are round, and stainless steel is definitely nice. Not having to worry about oxidation is always a plus, especially when compared to the aluminum core valves used on some trombones. They work great until the teflon wears off.

    I definitely think it sounds good, and the valve action is good without any sticking. Coming from trombone there was only a bit of adjustment. I had tried previously to double on Tuba, and that simply didn't work for me. I tried a bunch of different tubas, but could never get one to actually play "right". Probably my sound concept was off in some way, breathing, etc.

    My big challenge, after gaining some ability on the horn, is to learn treble clef Bb transposed music. I've avoided it for years, but if I want to play in any British style brass bands, it's a must.
    Sterling / Perantucci 1065HGS - Hammond 11L , Bach 42T - Laskey 59MD, Kanstul 1588CR - Hammond 11ML, Yamaha YBL-612 RII - Faxx 1 1/2G

  5. #5
    Here is a video of me playing a very similar horn. It had a heavy gold brass bell, which yours does as well. I was using a Wick 4BL for this recording:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4YVF2LvQehE

    I liked setting the 3rd valve slide so I could use 3 on middle G concert (A in treble clef). For the upper Eb concert (F in treble), the horn was sharp, so I used 13 for that note. Going up from there, the next 2 notes are also sharp, so I would use 24 on E natural concert and 4 on F concert.
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams E3, Denis Wick 4AL (classic)
    Instructor of Euphonium and Tuba
    Twitter: davewerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    YouTube: dwerden
    Owner of TubaEuph.com, DWerden.com

  6. Quote Originally Posted by tbonesullivan View Post
    My big challenge, after gaining some ability on the horn, is to learn treble clef Bb transposed music. I've avoided it for years, but if I want to play in any British style brass bands, it's a must.
    Indeed - this was my biggest challenge when I started brass banding a couple of years ago. I had learned how to read treble clef from a polka band I played in previously, but brass band music is more technical so I had to sharpen my reading skills.

    There are different ways to learn treble clef from bass clef. I started by thinking of the treble clef C4 as a bass clef Bb3 (i.e., the lowest note in a traditional concert Bb scale), and used it as a reference point to identify concert Fs and concert Bbs up the staff. Over time you stop having to think about what the notes are, and you can identify them by their treble clef nomenclature.
    James Kircoff
    Genesee Wind Symphony - principal euphonium (Sterling Virtuoso 1065HS and Adams E1 Custom w/ Parker 4G Houser)
    Capital City Brass Band (2019 NABBA 2nd section champions) - 1st baritone (Besson BE956 w/ Denis Wick 6BY) and 10 piece ensemble (Getzen 1052FD w/ Bach 1G)

  7. #7
    I should also point out that you are using a compensating instrument. So on a trombone with F attachment, you know that a low Eb is played with the trigger plus a long 3rd / short 4th position. That's because 3rd position is the right length to lower to Bb horn a whole step, but with the trigger you are playing an F horn and need a longer throw for a whole step. The same issue exists with a standard 4-valve euphonium (where 4 functions as your F attachment), but some horns have a compensating to help. Here is an easy way to understand the situation:

    http://www.dwerden.com/comp/aCompInt...owFlow_F4.html

    BTW, for your 2nd space C in bass clef, us 4 instead of 13. And for the B use 24 instead of 123. Same is true for F and E below the staff. That is standard for all 4-valve euphoniums.
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams E3, Denis Wick 4AL (classic)
    Instructor of Euphonium and Tuba
    Twitter: davewerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    YouTube: dwerden
    Owner of TubaEuph.com, DWerden.com

  8. With the treble clef, I think the transposing part is harder than reading treble clef. I also play guitar, so reading that is something I do with trombone, as well as alto and tenor clef. I've just never had to play a "transposing" instrument before, as guitar transposes an octave, and trombone doesn't transpose. It shouldn't be too bad though. I know some have pointed out that it's pretty much the same as reading tenor clef, but part of me thinks not the best way for a long term understanding.

    I can see that some of the F-attachment tendencies will transfer over, but others will not. Also some of them don't make sense, as there is no slide, and others won't work, because again, no slide. Alternate positions from trombone don't really serve any purpose on a fully valved instrument, and also they wouldn't work anyway due to tuning issues.

    Once I get used to it, I'll probably have to sit down with a tuner to find out what type of 3rd valve slide tuning works the best for my setup.
    Sterling / Perantucci 1065HGS - Hammond 11L , Bach 42T - Laskey 59MD, Kanstul 1588CR - Hammond 11ML, Yamaha YBL-612 RII - Faxx 1 1/2G

  9. Treble clef is the same as tenor clef if you add two flats.
    James Kircoff
    Genesee Wind Symphony - principal euphonium (Sterling Virtuoso 1065HS and Adams E1 Custom w/ Parker 4G Houser)
    Capital City Brass Band (2019 NABBA 2nd section champions) - 1st baritone (Besson BE956 w/ Denis Wick 6BY) and 10 piece ensemble (Getzen 1052FD w/ Bach 1G)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Hidden Valley, AZ
    Posts
    643
    I started out on cornet in '63, was shifted off to a crappy baritone in Jr. high.

    Upon making band in high school, the 1st chair guy told me "You ain't S... if you don't read bass clef."

    Challenge answered quickly, been bi-lingual ever since.

    DG
    3 notes and the truth.

    1966 Besson 181 highly modified New Standard, early model Wick 4AL
    1918 Hawkes & Son euph 3&1 original
    1917 Conn C/D/Eb mellophone original
    1915 York Bb tenorhorn original, Bach 5GS

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