What’s on Amanda’s Bench? A NY FrankenBach!

Hey, Brass Fans!

Here’s a horn I did recently that you might find interesting. You’re probably wondering why I call it a FrankenBach - that’s because it has a 50’s NY body paired with a later Elkhart bell.

It’s not the most perfect specimen you’ve ever seen, and obviously the bell needed replacement at some point, but it’s still a fun player. Compression is low, and though the soldering job done on the bell replacement was not a precise job, it is still quite solid and symmetrical, so I left that alone.

Looks aside, it still plays well and would be a great backup horn, or a great way to get a taste of a NY Bach at a more affordable price. Play it as is, find an age appropriate bell replacement later on, or use it while you save up for that pristine example of a NY Bach. Either way, it still has some years of play left. Check for it in our listings today

Wishing you some inner beauty!


Low compression is a symptom of piston wear, so it’s not really a good thing. Using a thicker valve oil can help on very worn pistons because it fills up the space between the piston and the casing. This horn is quite playable with Berp#3, but will need a valve job in the future to play its best. The best course of action with a vintage horn in this condition would be to play it for a few years, and then do a valve job or full restoration.

Amanda Marquis July 21, 2021

What does low compression mean in describing this horn? Is low good?

Drew July 09, 2021

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