Music Stands

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by alanl58, Aug 19, 2007.

  1. alanl58

    alanl58 Member

    Everyone has one, and they come in all shapes sizes and prices, but is there a prefered make/style of music stand? Mine fell apart in the haste to get away from a rainy Carnival this evening, and I just feel the need to buy something a bit more practical.

    The solid style is out because of the winds that we have to contend with on the North Cornwall coasts, and pink blue or red would be in appropriate, but black or chrome are ok.

    But what about features? The "plastic" knobs are not very useful when they fall off after a few gigs; extending arms on the top are ok, but look hideous when music is pegged down; springs wires on the bottom ledge are ok, but not really practical.

    What is your best music stand, and why?

    alanl58

    Edited: no not "everyone has one", there seems to be a trend to "forget" them when it means carrying a bit of extra weight - I could mention the worst offending instruments, but no doubt you have your own favourite contenders!
     
  2. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    We have a set of the K&M stands for jobs, and, with one reservation they are standing (no pun intended honest!) up quite well to being hurled around in the boots of cars etc. They have a nice big 'desk' and fold down to a reasonable size. They are heavy, but not stupidly so. We have tool bags to cart them around and provided there is not more than 6 in a bag the weight isn't too bad.

    Now - that reservation. The thumbscrews, are made from brass, and screw into a cast aluminum block. Any metallurgist will tell you that brass and ally are dissimilar metals and as such the ally corrodes - to the extent that the thumbscrews seize solid - especially when exposed to the rigors of the British "summer". After finding this out we greased them and the layer of grease is enough to prevent this from happening, but its still a disappointing oversight bearing in mind the stands cost more than 50 quid each.

    I'd recommend them as they are a mile better than anything else I've seen, but if you're gonna buy one / some make sure the threads are greased up if they have any chance of being in a damp environment. :)
     
  3. iancwilx

    iancwilx Active Member

    My home practice stand is about 20 years old.
    I don't know where it came from but I certainly didn't buy it.
    It must have fallen apart at least half a dozen times.
    I've always found it pretty easy to repair with a rivet or suitable sized nut and bolt.
    Ive even re threaded the ally block and replaced the tightener screw with one found in my tool box.
    I'd bet that most stands can be DIY repaired for well under a fiver.
    Buy a new one ?? - as a staunch Yorkshireman I can only say " 'Ow Much" ?
    - Wilkie
    PS: Bass players ALWAYS carefully fold up their stands after gigs and place them in the appropriate container !!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 19, 2007
  4. Bass Trumpet

    Bass Trumpet Active Member

    I have a 'Wenger' stand for home practice. It doesn't fold down, it's more of a conductor type stand, but I have found it to be very good. You can get Arban, Lafosse (3 volumes) and a number of solo pieces on it with no hassle. I think they're about £40 in the shops but it's built to last.
     
  5. Cornet Nev.

    Cornet Nev. Member

    I bought a couple of cheap Dixon stands a few years back now. One is for home use and the other for away, they have stood up well to the throwing around and are chrome and black plastic. Not bad for I think £11-00 that I paid for them. However as it is only myself who uses them, I do take care with assembly and folding up, in the hands of a stranger they probably could suffer.
     
  6. on_castors

    on_castors Member

    They sound like the same K&M model we have at Royal Spa Brass - much chunkier than the ten quid a time variety, at least as big as any orchestral or conductors stand I have seen, once opened up, and with a handy metal "flag" on the bottom of one leg which is good when the wind is blowing and you can put your foot on! My only complaint is the huge size of the tripod arrangement means it can get in the way of feet if you are short-sighted, and need the part touching your nose in order to read it! (Thanks to not much of my variofocal lenses being good fro reading!)

    I have had a look in the K&M site (http://www.k-m.de) though, and can't see them there - in fact nothing they list is anywhere near as heavily built as these are, and I am CERTAIN they are that brand, so I can only assume they have discontinued them!
     
  7. GJG

    GJG Active Member

    Might be worth having a look at http://www.ratstands.com/

    I've used the "Jazz" stands before, (although I don't own one) and they're very good. Depending on what you're looking for they can be a bit pricey, but you do get quality, and they will last.
     
  8. alanl58

    alanl58 Member

    "I'd bet that most stands can be DIY repaired for well under a fiver."

    Yes this is true, and I have already used the rivet gun and spares box, but this time one of the plastic knobs has come off, exposing a hex Allen key head. But I have now dropped or mislaid four Allen Keys, and frankly feel that cheapo stands are just that, and something more substantial that will last 20 years would be a good investment, hence this thread...

    Keep the advice coming folks...

    AlanL58
     
  9. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    The ones we have are here, admittedly I had to dig around on their website to find them (on the last page of their stand range - you'd have thought they'd put the most expensive stands on page one!). The stand you describe sounds a bit like some of the older stands we have a Wigston with a flat base, you have to unscrew the thumbscrew underneath and the legs fold out through 90 degrees. I don't think these were made by K&M though. :-?
     
  10. on_castors

    on_castors Member

    No, these are K&M... the logo is extra large on them as there is plenty of room to stamp it, (far more classic examples of German engineering than any tiddly little BMW or Panzer Tank!) and they are WAY, WAY heftier than any in the current range on the website, yet are immediately recognisably the same concept and design as any lightweight model you would find for 10 quid on eBay, only a lot heavier, and more sophisticated - probably capable of supporting the entire large print edition of Wagner's Ring, with all the instrumental parts bound in the same volume! ;-)

    I expect them to last centuries - it's overkill really!
     
  11. sevenhelz

    sevenhelz Active Member

    My Dad recently bought me something that claims to be from outstanding.org (which doesn't appear to be what you're looking for, so don't bother) which I think he said cost him £20 - reduced because it was the last one. It's fairly solid and has a largish "desk", which is nice, but all the bits that turn are either too tight or too loose... I guess you don't always get what you pay for :(
    It's still good though :) in that it doesn't fall down under the weight of an arban. also I found the accompanying gig bag incredibly amusing.
    good luck with the search!
     
  12. stopher

    stopher Member

    Just bought a few Musisca stands for my school. Been used for years in Bangor uni - they have a cupboard with about a hundred in. Ok, a bit of a problem carting a load about but are pretty solid - only problem seems to be the thread going in the red handle but that can be overcome with a bit of tape!

    In one of the catalogues I get in school, they are going for £60 each but better to go straight through http://www.musisca.co.uk/ direct as you can get them for £40!
     
  13. Robhibberd29

    Robhibberd29 Active Member

    Well I hope these K&M stands mentioned above are better quality than my K&M fold up bass trom stand, I've had it about four years and it's ready for the scrapper, I've been really disappointed with the quality of it for a well known high tech German Marque with a price tag to match.
     
  14. on_castors

    on_castors Member

    The basic model K&M stands I have played on elsewhere are OK, but nothing like these, nor like old fashioned stands. They do have about 3 main qualities though, and I presume the cheapest range are made in or at least are competing with low far eastern manufacturing costs, so are going to be pretty lightly built.

    I have noticed that everyone now seems to struggle when it comes to folding up "standard" type stands - everyone over 30, (but without arthritic hands!) finds them all no bother whilst everyone under about 25 all but wrecks them at first attempt; bending the arms, stripping the threads and even snapping them off at the neck! The judicious regular use of slide grease on the screws and the main clamp at the neck of the stand seems to solve most problems, but brute strength and ignorance still prevails with some: Instead of using another stand to act as a lever on the butterfly screw (when they still have this type) or on the triangular headed screws, they bust them instead! Those with plastic fittings get busted quickest :-(

    Royal Spa Brass use stackable Musisca stands at the Band Room, (someone else has linked to their site) so none of these problems there, but I have to say I dislike them, they are slow and difficult to adjust, and reposition, (a problem for a myopic bass player with variofocals who needs to move line of sight depending on size of the sheet being played from, as I can't alter eye position like you can with a smaller instrument as the instrument height is fixed by placing it on my knee!) They are very strong and durable though
     
  15. Daisy Duck

    Daisy Duck Member

    The ratstands jazz stand is brilliant - it's sort of telescopic and a really good stand - also light to carry around.

    Not that I can afford one :(
     
  16. alanl58

    alanl58 Member

    Well so far I have looked closely at the Musica and Jazz websites, and just wonder how these designs stand up to strong winds (even today when the temp reached 24C we still had a hefty wind with it!), and uneven surfaces such as grass, cinder car parks, or even the crazy paving of our local Bude Bandstand?

    Surely they cannot be as stable as a three legged stand?

    Does the solid tray not act like a sail in strong winds?

    What is your experience?

    Alanl58
     
  17. on_castors

    on_castors Member

    Never used the Musisca stands out of doors, so can't be certain, but they are very heavy, so might not be so bad, although the base would not be so good on uneven ground, and it is not as suitable for using with a foot on the base as a tripod based stand. The ones we have are mesh type, not solid, so doubt the wind would be a particular problem, although any stand suffers with this as soon as you add sails in the form of music sheets!
     
  18. sevenhelz

    sevenhelz Active Member



    I contest this most strongly! In our youth band, admittedly, we lost a few stands every now and again, but we quickly taught the culprits how to stop costing us money! The adult bands I've been in are far worse - the cavalier approach seems more prevalent with older folk, perhaps used to more rugged models of stand ;) back in teh day when things were made to last eh?
    x
     
  19. DMBabe

    DMBabe Supporting Member

    Hi!

    You've probably gone and bought a new stand by now but I just got myself a bargain. A full size orchestral stand which folds down into a shoulder bag (supplied) for the bargain price of £17.99. Arrived yesterday and is totally sturdy, quite heavy and has 3 (very thick tubular) legs similar to microphone stands. Got it from the unlikely source of maplin electronics website (man I love froogle!). Delivered it within 4 days of ordering (which isn't bad allowing for the weekend in between).

    Let me know what you think!

    D:D
     
  20. alanl58

    alanl58 Member

    Hi DMBabe

    This looks good, and fulfills most of my criterea, but what are the securing knobs made of?

    Part of my problem is the plastic covering over metal screws - this fails/breaks off under pressure and you are left with an almost useless stand!

    And does the music plate fold up? I guess not looking at the construction.

    Thanks for the info, I might well buy one of these; and Maplin are my preferred supplier of electronic bits anyway..

    Alanl58
     

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