SmithWatkins - calling all cornet, trumpet and flugel players!

Discussion in ' User Reviews' started by maestO_SO_musical, Oct 19, 2007.

  1. They have been mentioned in a couple of threads before, but I think that they need a LOT more recognition. They manfacture Cornets (Bb and Eb), trumpets, flugels and fanfare trumpets.

    They are amazing HAND MADE instruments, I feel better than anything that Besson or Yamaha have ever produced.

    I went to Richard Smith's house in Yorkshire a couple of weeks ago to test the cornets and I have ordered one, which will be made by hand, to my requirements.

    Also, I can swap the leadpipes (the bit between the mouthpiece and the tuning slide)

    I have ordered 2 leadpipes -
    one is SO easy to play, brilliant for marches and strenuous band playing
    the other makes a BRILLIANT sound:tup, but is for solos, as it could not be played on for two hours straight.


    THEY ARE THE BEST!:clap: :clap: :clap:
  2. impycornet

    impycornet Member

    I play one - have done for years
  3. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    I believe their flugels are (were?) made by Kanstul - the picture on the Smith Watkins website looks like a CCF925 flugel and from what's listed on the two sites the specs match. Nothing wrong with that, Kanstul instruments are stonking bits of kit and I guess buying a Smith Watkins one means you don't have the hassle of trying to get hold of a Kanstul instrument.
  4. andyh

    andyh Supporting Member

    I've had one for 2 years now. Like the cornet, don't like the case! Top-notch protection but the darn thing near gives me a hernia lugging it around :)

    First day I had it I was a little careless putting it back into the boot of the car and just brushed against (honestly) the car's rear light cluster. Oops - isn't that a big crack that's suddenly appeared? :oops:

  5. stopher

    stopher Member

    Got a cornet and its brilliant - even dropped it in a christmas concert and it bounced (got a row off Richard Smith in Harrogate when he fixed a trigger spring for me and spotted a small dent!)

    remember reading somewhere that some of the parts are made by Kanstul to his spec and then he puts them together - I used to have a Besson Meha trumpet that had lots of similar parts to the Smith Watkins cornet I have got and found out that Kanstul made those for Besson so i think a few people get the bits ready made and solder them together.
  6. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    - compare the Kanstul to the Smith-Watkins and they are surprisingly similar in basic design!
  7. bennem

    bennem Member

    The Smith Watkins instruments are Kanstuls. This may have changed but they are shipped unfinished to the UK, Smith Watkins fit lead pipes and then they are finished by Eclipse e.g. sliver plated.
  8. andyh

    andyh Supporting Member

    Almost right... Eclipse don't do any work on the K2 model, the one with the fixed leadpipe.

  9. Well, in his workshop he had bits of flugels (bells etc.) hanging off the wall, so I think that he does make them...

    Not 100% but I think that's right
  10. 007ish

    007ish Member

    Just for general info. Our Flugel player (Newport Borough Brass) has just taken prized possession of a Richard Smith prototype :cool: . What makes this model different is the positioning of the trigger and the fact that there are TWO :eek: , yes two triggers. Lovely tone, great build quality, really comfortable to hold and use, no reason for any more intonation problems (excuses) :wink: A 5 Star piece of kit :clap: :clap:
  11. brasscrest

    brasscrest Active Member

    Almost all instrument makers buy pre-made parts and then complete the instrument to their own specifications. I wouldn't expect that Smith & Watkins have an in-house brass forge or the means to draw raw brass tubing in their shop. The more rough forming that is done by the metals supplier, the more time the finisher has to work on the finer details.
  12. andyh

    andyh Supporting Member

    Yes ,and there's a lot of co-trading between small makers. 'A' will hand-craft bells for 'B', despite the fact that 'A' has a competing product. Same for leadpipes. It's not as cut-and-dried as it appears from the outside...

  13. By the way, I'm getting nothing for plugging them :)
  14. 007ish

    007ish Member

    Neither am I (ref. previous post) but do you think if we work to keep this thread on the front page there may be ?? Whats the going rate for internet advertising these days :)
  15. I've paid for the full flight case. It's lighter and it's BRIGHT BLUE!

    Sorry about that, but I should be able to recognise it from a distance.
  16. Never thought of that. Well, they get about 50 quid an hour or something like that for these soppy adverts on the top and sides. Hmm, good idea.
  17. No, but I wouldn't be surprised. Have you seen the size of the place?
  18. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    Erm no we don't - nothing like 50 quid an hour in fact. Those "soppy" ads go some way towards our huge running costs - but nowhere near fully covering them. Its a sad fact that tMP is still mostly funded from John's own pocket.

    TBH we'd rather we didn't have the ads there, but as things stand its a simple equation - no ads or no tMP.
  19. Oh right - I know that some websites get fifty quid an hour - must be those million visitor a day websites
  20. Jonny5Stars

    Jonny5Stars New Member

    Yes but, won't a SW cornet stick out like a sore thumb amongst a front row of Besson/Yamaha/Courtois?
    An individual player will have to opt for similar instruments to his colleagues.
    (Read an article that Martins Committee trumpets had a similar problem blending with other makes.)

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