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Thread: Trigger usage

  1. Trigger usage

    I've seen some posts on how some players use their trigger, but I haven't seen this question addressed. So for those new to a trigger, how does it work for over-all initial tuning? What I mean is that in an ensemble or band setting, we get the tuning note after a short warm up, and we adjust our main tuning slide to that note and generally leave it throughout our playing (with maybe minor tweaks when needed). Can a triggered tuning slide be adjusted similarly? Or does the slide always stay fully pushed in because of the spring? Or does it vary based on the instrument brand?

  2. #2
    Most triggers have a "stop" to let you set the initial tuning note's intonation. As you play, you have the option of pushing the trigger to move the slide out further for any notes that are sharp. When you release the trigger, the slide has a spring to return it to the stop. There is generally no option for moving the slide IN with the trigger.

    The one exception I know if is the Conn Connstellation from the 1960's. It had a thumb ring to move the slide in or out, against a spring-loaded center detent. At least, that is what I THINK I remember.
    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. Makes sense, David, thnx.

  4. Quote Originally Posted by davewerden View Post
    The one exception I know if is the Conn Connstellation from the 1960's. It had a thumb ring to move the slide in or out, against a spring-loaded center detent. At least, that is what I THINK I remember.
    Dave, The Connstellation was a one way trigger like the modern ones. There was no center detent. You set the initial pitch using the thumb screw in the tuning slide brace with adjustments in the various valve loops. There was a very strong "snap back" spring that would bring the slide back to initial position. The thumb trigger was intended for the 4th valve range below low F and the C and Cb above that if played using 3rd valve instead of 4th. Otherwise the pitch tendencies of a Connstellation was the same as any other 4 valve Conn, which meant things tended a bit flat rather than sharp. High range, high A and above were particularly problematic in terms of flatness.

    Doug
    Sterling Virtuoso 1052HS & Adams E3 Prototype 0.70 Top Sprung valves
    Sterling Virtuoso 1050HS baritone
    New England Brass Band
    Winchendon Winds/Townsend Military Band

  5. #5
    Thanks for the correction, Doug. So I think that leaves my quest for a 2-way trigger in the unicorn/Bigfoot category!
    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. There was a Gemeinhardt horn that was being marketed a few years ago that did 2-way trigger. Also, I saw the trombone instructor from Eastman use a Besson trigger as a 2 way trigger by tuning the horn in pitch with trigger half-way down and then moving in both directions (as one would when playing a trombone). But there was no center position.
    Sterling Virtuoso 1052HS & Adams E3 Prototype 0.70 Top Sprung valves
    Sterling Virtuoso 1050HS baritone
    New England Brass Band
    Winchendon Winds/Townsend Military Band

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by daruby View Post
    There was a Gemeinhardt horn that was being marketed a few years ago that did 2-way trigger.
    Somehow I missed that one! Was it handled by Big Mouth Brass? I know they had a euphonium made by Gemeinhardt, which I was able to test. It had no trigger, though. My understanding at the time was that Gemeinhardt was returning to their core competencies and abandoning such instruments as the euphonium. Supposedly that left further development in the hands of BMB. But BMB no longer has a euphonium in their catalog, so...?

    Quote Originally Posted by daruby View Post
    Also, I saw the trombone instructor from Eastman use a Besson trigger as a 2 way trigger by tuning the horn in pitch with trigger half-way down and then moving in both directions (as one would when playing a trombone). But there was no center position.
    I have seen discussions of this technique a few times, but I tend to write it off as impractical. It certainly would work, but I would be concerned about the extra strain on the left hand. Of course, that is based on my own experience with the original Sterling trigger, which had a very stiff spring. I know Custom Music had a B&S model with a trigger, which had no tuning "stop." Perhaps it was meant to work in a bi-directional way. And the spring was very light. The downside of that, in theory anyway, is that to make the tuning slide so loose it doesn't need a strong spring would compromise the seal to some extent.
    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. How does it work on the Adams E-1?

  9. #9
    Hello,

    The Reynolds Contempora "Diatonic" baritone horns did have 2-way tuning devices. Some years ago I owned a three-valved example. The tuner was mounted similarly to the one on the Connstellation but also allowed the player to "pull in" to correct a flat note. The four-valved model was similar to the Connstellation in all other respects.

    Tom

  10. Quote Originally Posted by Roger View Post
    How does it work on the Adams E-1?
    Roger,

    All triggers on compensating euphoniums work as Dave describes. They go flat but not sharp and generally have some sort of adjustable stop mechanism for tuning. This is because most compensating euphoniums are designed to play in tune when properly setup and using the 4th valve appropriately or just a bit sharp. There may be some flat notes, but usually the tendency is sharp. In some cases (Bessons in the 6th partial) they may be quite sharp. Each brand and to a lesser extent individual instruments within a brand are different.

    I find that my Adams E3 would not benefit much from a trigger as it is pretty close across the range. I could use a trigger for C and Cb just above pedal Bb and for 6th partial F, but other than that it is usually within + or - 5 cents. I do use 3rd valve instead of 1-2 for my middle G.

    My Sterling needs the trigger. Of course down in the 4th valve range but also low F (4th valve), middle F# (2-3), G (1-2), G# (1) as well as 6th partial Eb (1), E (2), and F (open).

    Doug
    Sterling Virtuoso 1052HS & Adams E3 Prototype 0.70 Top Sprung valves
    Sterling Virtuoso 1050HS baritone
    New England Brass Band
    Winchendon Winds/Townsend Military Band

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