The trombone

Whats to say about trombones…

The pipe construction

Plastic pipes

PVC cable pipe is thin and well bendable. It can be found in electrical supplies. There are different sizes, so it is not difficult to find two tubes that fit into each other. Of course, water pipes also work, but they are considerably thicker.

There are two ways of realizing the arch:
1. Heat. Fill the pipe with sand, so it doesn’t kink. Then gently heat it and slowly bend it around a can.
2. Corner pieces. Just get some official corner pieces and connect the individual pipe pieces with them.

  • Easy to find, easy to process.
  • The pipe’s diameter is mostly thicker than needed. So the instrument will ask more air from your lungs to bring out the sound.
Trombone made out of tent poles

Tent poles

Ideal for building a travel trombone. Because the metal is hardened, it will not bend. So you can either use a thin plastic tube for the bend or simply leave it out in favour of portability.

  • Light weight and durable. The perfect travelling trombone!
  • Good pipe diameter results in easier playing experience.
  • It’s hard to find two tent poles, that fit into each other.

The Mouth piece

I guess the mouthpiece is the part with the highest impact on the overall sound of the trombone.

Nut mouthpiece

This mouthpiece is made out of a nut. 18mm – 22mm are good nut sizes. To attach them to the pipe system, a small rest of the pipes can be used. Heat the pipe up, until it’s formable, and then fit it carefully into the nut. After cooling down, close potential gaps with something like clay or chewing gum. This might not work well with thick-walled pipes (> 1 – 2mm).

  • Easy to find and indestructible
  • It connects well with thin-walled pipes.
  • The shape is not that ergonomic.
Mothpiece for trumpet and trombone

Original mouth piece

Normally my honour would prevent me from using not self-made mouth pieces, but after realizing the big difference between all mouth pieces I ever made and original ones, I am hooked on the original ones.

I even carry two of them with me, because they drastically change the pitch.

  • By far the best sound results
  • Heavy
  • Not self-made and can be even in used quality pricey.

Plastic pipe mouth piece

These are made out of plastic pipes with different diameters. So one fits to the pipe system of the trombone, the other one to your mouth. To connect both of them, heat the ends with a heat gun or a gas oven or the heating source of your choice and then melt them together. Make sure that the pipe is out of HD PE, PE or PP. Other materials might not connect well.

  • Light and solid
  • Super cheap and easy to do
  • The sound is not the best and as it is not perfectly shaped, it takes more of your breath

The Bell

Trombone bell made from a plastic bottle

Plastic bottle

A basic plastic bottle.

  • Indestructible!
  • Super simple to do and available everywhere,
  • The sound is OK, according to the price.

Paper machee

You can just wrap many layers of paper around the form of your choice.

The form can be done by spraying a mountain of foam and then cut away everything until you have a nice bell form. Another option is the creation of the bell with the help of a plastic bottle. Remove the bottom of the bottle, then cut strips lengthways. If you press down the bottle, the stripes will spread evenly.

  • You are very free in the creation of the form and size
  • Cheap and easy
  • Little time-consuming
  • Paper machee is surprisingly durable, but not water-resistant at all.

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