Another 5 valve Euphonium !

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Highams, Mar 24, 2003.

  1. Highams

    Highams Member

    I have just purchased another 5 valve euphonium to add to my collection.

    Like my other 5 valve, it is made by Josef Highams of 127 Strangeways, Manchester, it is dated 1902, and in silver plate.

    There are 2 slides missing and the 4th. valve needs a cap & stem, but otherwise it's in very good condition.

    I purchased this just from a description, without seeing a photograph, thinking it would be very similar to my other model and was most surprised at the 'Sax' design, where all the tubing is below the valve line. This is very much like the style of the Besson Prototypes.

    Here, however, the bottom bow extends all the way around and a quarter of the way to where most bells start and are attached !

    This makes the bell extremely long and the whole instrument measures some 28" in length. Sitting close to your assistant player would be impossible.
  2. Straightmute

    Straightmute Active Member


    Would I be right in assuming that the fifth valve is an attempt to overcome the inherent intonation problems of the euphonium before the invention of compensating systems? Can't imagine there would be any need for an extended range at that period...

    Never seen one like that before! Given it's poor state, how does it play?

  3. Highams

    Highams Member

    Yes you are right.

    As the compensating system had been patented, various other brands offered alternatives. 5 valves at that time actually was a better idea as it offered so many combinations, and the air was direct through the instrument, not doubled back as in the compensating system.

    With 2 slides missing and a valve needing a stem, I can't blow it yet, but I hope it wont be too long.

    My other Highams plays like a dream !
  4. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

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