I have over 25 used trombones (tenor or F-trigger) and over 50 used trumpets (Bb) ALL in good playable condition. These are mostly student or intermediate level instruments, mostly US manufactured, ranging in price from about $150 to $600+. As a semi-professional horn player, I take pride in every trumpet or trombone I sell. No garage sale or "found in the attic" or "PROBABLY needs a little oil" horns. You can try a horn in SW Portland, then drive to Troutdale, then Wilsonville, then stop by Welches OR you can try several of my horns side by side, compare them, and save the wasted time and mileage. Appointments can be made for times from 7 am to 7 pm, 7 days a week. Cash only, of course. Thanks for looking and if you look elsewhere, I pray for your good luck because we need more new musicians.
HOW TO BUY A NEW OR USED STUDENT HORN
As a professional brass player of 40+ years, the purpose of my guide is to let students, parents, and come-back players know about shopping for a quality trumpet. Be aware that for the beginning student a normal Bb trumpet is always recommended to learn on. Keep in mind: "Instructor approved," "Found at a Garage Sale," "German type," "From grandma's attic,"' or "You won't find a better Instrument at this price" etc. means absolutely nothing on a website or anywhere else and is a Red Flag! Remember just because a bargain trumpet looks great doesn't mean it's a good instrument and all that glitters is not gold.
Low end trumpets with names you have never heard of are often unrepairable because of the poor metal quality, thus music stores don't carry the parts or even attempt to repair them for good reason. Most of these "Instruments" are made in 3rd World sweatshops in India, Pakistan & Mainland China by the same company and sold under different names, most of the names European sounding. Some intentionally have names very similar to a quality brand name to trick the gullible.
Do research on any trumpet brand you want to buy and the seller. This is why God invented Google. Any reputable musical instrument manufacturer should have its own website, distributors and sell its product in music stores not just on the Internet. Are there any reviews or complaints on the web? Where are they made? Is the shipping cost overly high and what's the return policy if they send you an inferior instrument? Are you stuck with paying their overpriced shipping, handling and probably a hefty restocking fee not to mention your time and cost to send it back if it's no good or just plain shoddy? The seller has nothing to lose and everything to gain even if you ship it back! Forget about the positive feedback, most customers see a beautiful looking trumpet which arrives quickly and they immediately leave positive feedback and don't realize they have an inferior "instrument" until the valves get sticky or it falls apart a couple months later. They seldom think to go back to leave the new negative feedback to warn others or they are afraid they will receive retaliatory feedback. So be sure to thoroughly check for any and all feedback about defective merchandise whether it's a trumpet or any other instrument they sell.
If the instruments are high quality there is very little chance of ever hearing such feedback because they are always inspected before being sent out by any reputable manufacturer. Make sure you have it in writing that any manufacturer you buy a trumpet from understands you will not tolerate this and you expect them to refund all your money including shipping, handling costs on both ends and you will file fraud charges if this happens.
Buying your horn from a reputable store or used instrument source enables you to compare a variety of horns side by side. This is impossible if you are driving from one garage sale to the next. Even if you can't play yet, you ought to see how the horns feel in YOUR hands when you can compare them one to another. You can also see the condition of the lacquer, welds, dings, scratches, corks, etc. If you already play, run a few scales more than an octave to see how the horn seats and reaches both the high and low end. Think, would you buy shoes at a place with only one pair in your size?
If you don't play, make sure a qualified trumpet player tests your trumpet when you buy it and ALWAYS get a written guarantee so it can be returned locally. Beginners will not know if it's them or the trumpet that doesn't sound right. Your child deserves to learn on a well made instrument not some cheap piece of junk that will make a great table lamp or a poor boat anchor. These shiny, but horrible trumpets, even if they continue to work will make playing it a trial for your child to learn on.
The used moderately higher priced PROVEN brand names such as Selmer-Bach, Conn, Blessing, Holton, etc. are of much better quality and worth every penny, They can be repaired and will have resale value. If you can't afford to buy a quality horn or you are afraid your child may lose interest in playing the trumpet, then rent one for the time being or find a used one in good condition. A good used horn from an established name manufacturer is always a better deal than renting. Another reason for going this route is that a used instrument dealer won't be pushing this month's special or any particular brand or model. Importantly, often you will be able to sell the horn for about what you paid for it, assuming that it has been cared for. If you decide to keep it, it may be passed down to your children's children. You are NEVER saving money buying junk!
do NOT contact me with unsolicited services or offers