Trumpet/Besson trumpet

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Question
I have a besson trumpet that has a strange rotary valve switch on the 2nd valve slide. Any info on this?

Answer
I'll assume you misstated where the rotary valve is.

Many, many years ago some trumpet parts for orchestra were written in the key of A because they were difficult to play on a Bb trumpet. Because good musical instruments were expensive, a system was developed to change the key of the trumpet from Bb to A more easily. This is what your rotary valve does. If you turn it (assuming it turns), your Concert Bb tuning note becomes Concert A.

Your valve slides likely have lines scribed on them; the valve slides need to be longer as well for the entire instrument to be in tune with itself in A.

These pieces are rarely played today in their original key; most have been transposed. Modern trumpets are made without this feature.

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Thomas Krueger

Expertise

I can answer your questions about Buescher trumpets and cornets. I have been playing Buescher for 35 years and collecting for 7.

Experience

I first started playing my grandfather's Buescher 400 trumpet in 1975. Since then I have done a lot of research, including original catalogs and advertisements that I own, correspondence with other Buescher owners, and obtaining my own Buescher collection, including six trumpets and three cornets.

Education/Credentials
I am a technical writer with 15 years experience. I have also been playing trumpet since 1975 and collecting Buescher for the past 7 years.

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