I have just bought a Boosey and Hawkes Emperor trumpet serial number 269009. The seller had refurbished it and removed all the lacquer, describing it as "raw brass". This is my first trumpet and I was wondering if you would answer a couple of questions?
How should I treat "raw brass" to keep it looking good?
Can you tell me its year of manufacture?
I paid 135 for it. Is this reasonable, and how much should I insure it for?

Thank you very much for your time and expertise.

Norma, Raw brass allows the horn to resonate freely and improves the sound. Some people are allergic to raw brass and you want to be careful if playing it for extended periods. If you start to develop a rash you will need to have it re-lacquered. The look depends on how you want to keep it. Many people like the look of aged brass, in this case leave it as is and it will develop patina on its own. If you want to keep it shiny then use a good auto paste wax, like Meguires. That will protect it and keep the shine for around 6 months. Then just clean it and apply again.

The price you paid is reasonable as long as it is in good shape. They are good playing horns and your's was made when B&H were still making quality brass. The serial dates it to about 1957.


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Mike Pawul


I am familiar with most trumpets, cornets, and flugelhorns. I can answer most questions about playing and musicality. Best of all, if I can't answer it directly I play regularly in several bands and have many "old timers" that are familiar with most things that I am not. I collect, repair, and refinish old and new horns and have sold over 1700 with more than 900 on ebay


I have played since 1965 and studied with many directors and trumpeters. I have been collecting since 2002 and have over 150 horns in my personal collection. I have done repair and refinsh since 2003 and have done work on over 2500 horns.

Kosair Shrine Brass Band and Dance Band, The Notables, The New Tones, Bourbon City Brass Band, River Cities Concert Band, Derby City Brass Band, University of Louisville Community Band, Member of Trumpet Players International Network (TPIN), Bugles Across America (BAA), Member of the National Association of Professional Band Instrument Repair Technicians (NAPBIRT)

I played at Brunswick High School. I played through college and have a BS in Business Administration from Trinity College. Of course, I am still learning from all my friends that play and work on trumpets around the world.

Awards and Honors
Without being vain, numerous awards and have played in several honor bands.

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