Posted by js on October 19, 2002 at 22:33:42:
In Reply to: Holton 6/4 BBb - Update posted by Tony E on October 19, 2002 at 01:31:45:
I've heard of a few Holtons that can be played in tune, and I do believe the owners of those instruments (you, for instance).
I also know from looking at quite a few old Holtons that they (actually not very many total were made)were quite inconsistant: Some were heavy (thick). Some were light (thin). Being handmade, many of them had manufacturing errors, such as paper-thin outside perimeters of bows. Most of them played with a horribly flat 3rd partial. I suspect the taper of the big top bow, because that is where I've seen the most inconsistancy of taper. The ones that I've seen with very fat top bows seem to have the unusable 3rd partial. I would guess that your top bow is one that looks more "normal" - more like the Hirsbrunner York Model or the big B&S (which do not have this 3rd partial problem, generally). I'm glad you got some good repair work, but I'm sure that if you don't now have the "famous" 3rd partial problem, neither did you have it prior to any mouthpipe re-repairs. The 40-cents-flat third partial problem typical of most Holton 6/4 tubas is simply not a problem that can be fixed by remanufacturing a mouthpipe, nor by switching mouthpieces.
Congratulations on having a great horn, and being able to appreciate it!