Posted by Joe S. on January 23, 2000 at 18:41:51:
In Reply to: olds tuba posted by JRoach on January 23, 2000 at 14:47:00:
Toby Castle is an honorable guy, and probably would let you return it, if you don't like it, based on my experience with him. The Olds is a typical ¾-size tuba, with an 18" bell and about a .68" bore, maybe smaller. This instrument is very similar in size to the Conn 2J-3J-4J-5J-Holton/Harvey Phillips-Getzen/CB ¾-size instruments (although some that I just mentioned are CC), and the Olds O-99 was built very well, originally. It plays a little stuffy, just like all of the other instruments listed above do.
I always thought that if Selmer U.S.A. took this Olds-origined body, offered in in BBb and CC, and mounted their approximately .725" bore sousaphone valveset on it (instead of the original "peashooter" valveset), they would have a winner. I never bothered to communicate this to them, knowing that Selmer U.S.A. didn't G.A.S. (obviously, as they are now buying Yama-tubas and selling them as their own).
Allied Supply Corporation may still have a few replacement parts for these (This tuba was also known, engraved, and sold as the Reynolds model TB-10.), but is probably about out of most parts. Replacement mouthpipes for these are NOT a problem, if the pipe is rotted.
Selmer bought the tooling for this instrument in 1980 and manufactured it with the name "Bach" on it until a couple of years ago, when Selmer U.S.A. moth-balled production of all of this stuff in favor of buying "harmony brass" instruments from Yamaha and stenciling their "Bach" name on them.
If the valves are all worn out, you could probably get a repairman to undo the valveset from the instrument, ship it off to Dave Secrist in Indiana for a total rebuild and remount the valveset in the instrument for well under $500 total cost (guess). The valves may very well be just fine, but of course I haven't seen Toby's Olds tuba.