French Horn/old pan american
I bought an old piston valve pan american french horn. The serial# is 192078. I am having trouble finding out anything about it. Any info? Thanks.
Hello, firstly it's not strictly speaking a French horn, but a mellophone or "marching French horn". Although both are pitched in F (often these have an Eb slide as well), the difference is the length of tube, a true French horn has twice the length of this one. The bore is also different, the French horn is smaller at the leadpipe. This design went out of fashion in the second half of the 20th century, replaced by the forward-facing mellophone.
The Pan American company was a subsidiary of Conn, making probably slightly cheaper instruments for the school and college band market. The serial number list here http://cderksen.home.xs4all.nl/ConnSerialsPanAmBrass.html
would date your horn to 1950.
These horns aren't particularly valuable as there are many lying around in attics and there's no demand for them as playing instruments, as they're basically obsolete. I have one which I bought on Ebay about ten years ago, it cost me $100 including shipping to the UK. They're a fun instrument to mess around on, say for a jazz trumpeter to try out, otherwise they look good on a wall...
Anyway, hope this was helpful.