Tuba Fingering Chart

tubafran

Active Member
20 years ago I bought one of the first Boosey Soveriegn EEb Tubas. In the case was a fingering chart which I re-call indicated that Es and As (treble clef) should be played on third valve in preferrence to first and second.

Having been taught to play on first and second I proceeded to learn the revised fingering and have maintained this since. I now still favour third but alternate freely between first and second or third dependant on the key, ease of runs etc.

I also believe that the note is more in tune (relative to my playing) on third.

QUESTION: do new tubas come with the same fingering chart?
QUESTION: what fingering do other people use or teach?
 

Well Worth It

Active Member
As far as I'm aware, the only fingering needed to play a tuba is 321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321
:lol:
 

BBBfYBS

Member
Well Worth It said:
As far as I'm aware, the only fingering needed to play a tuba is 321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321
:lol:

Im sorry Well Worth It but i find your remarks offensive and out of order. In my experience i have never known a tuba player to use this combination of fingering. 12121212121212121212 is i feel the most common with the exception of players such as mr Duncan and mr Harald using 1234123412341234. :lol:
 

Thirteen Ball

Active Member
I always play my top A on 3rd, rather than 1st and 2nd, mainly cos our top cornet at my old band told me it was easier. It just flattens it slightly up there and stops you overpitching, according to him. (Hi Ken!) :) Rest of the time, I use first and second pretty much everywhere.

Having just moved onto BB however, I'm finding it easier to get my low E (First, second and fourth) with third and fourth as there's less tubing to chuck the air round and it doesn't sound so wooly, and I always used to play my pedal A on my third for the same reason.

As with anything else, it's what suits you best.

Oh, and I didn't get a fingering chart with my Eb cos it's an aincient and pretty beaten up imperial that's been dropped about fifty times! :roll:
 

Blagger

Member
I have heard orchestral Tuba players talk about using alt. fingering to get slightly different sounds. e.g as on euph when playing a top G (treble clef) - adding your 4th valve flattens both the pitch and the tone (becomes slightly darker) by adding length to the tubing.
It really has more to do with the individual player and instrument IMO
 
Well Worth It said:
As far as I'm aware, the only fingering needed to play a tuba is 321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321321
:lol:

Why would they need that many valve changes to go POM, POM, POM, POM?
 

Thirteen Ball

Active Member
[quote="sunny_jimbob] Why would they need that many valve changes to go POM, POM, POM, POM?[/quote]

You boys would sound mighty thin without us. :wink:
 

Okiedokie of Oz

Active Member
OK, I only came across this info recently, and haven';t fully commited it, but it'll give you an idea and if someone can see whjat I am saying,t ehy can correct me.

Due to the nature of wind resistance and so forth, the overtone series is never 100% accurate. In the key of C (TC) lets, number the positions of the open tones.

C 7
B 6
E 5
C 4
G 3
C 2
C 1 this is the pedal tone


Now using these numers, the only "pure" notes are 1, 2, 5 and 7. 3 is flat, and 4 and 7 are sharp.

Now if we were to transpose these positions down a minor third to A, the 4th tone A will now be sharp also. As we know, third valve is the same as 1+2 however slightly flatter. Playing A on third will bring it more in tune....

Well that's the idea, I might have the finer deatils wrong, but it DOES have something to do with the tuning of the harmonic structure and A on 1+2 being sharp. However, I think E is in tune on 1+2
 

Darth_Tuba

Active Member
Well Worth It said:
Blind Panic induced by those little splodges on paper.

Well Worth It, do not jest about such serious conditions as "Black Note Fever!" It is no laughing matter, and is the second most common disease amongst bass players, the first being a special kind of arthritis that prevents them from reaching into their back pockets to buy a round! :wink:
 

Laserbeam bass

Active Member
Darth_Tuba said:
Well Worth It said:
Blind Panic induced by those little splodges on paper.

Well Worth It, do not jest about such serious conditions as "Black Note Fever!" It is no laughing matter, and is the second most common disease amongst bass players, the first being a special kind of arthritis that prevents them from reaching into their back pockets to buy a round! :wink:

"Black Note Fever" is such a serious condition, that there has been a charity set up to benefit all Bass players who have seen this extremely rare phenomenon. Each time this occurs it costs £750.00 for the rehabilitation. Please give generously at WWW.BNFWelfarefund.org.uk
 

MoominDave

Well-Known Member
Okiedokie of Oz said:
OK, I only came across this info recently, and haven';t fully commited it, but it'll give you an idea and if someone can see whjat I am saying,t ehy can correct me.

Okiely-dokely...

Okiedokie of Oz said:
Due to the nature of wind resistance and so forth, the overtone series is never 100% accurate. In the key of C (TC) lets, number the positions of the open tones.

C 7
B 6
E 5
C 4
G 3
C 2
C 1 this is the pedal tone

You missed out G on top of the (treble) staff - this is 6, Bbish is 7 and top C is 8.

Not quite sure what you mean by "wind resistance", but it's to do with the shape of the wave in the pipe not quite matching our equally-tempered scale (fudge, fudge - can explain more clearly and tediously if people want) when you play harmonics that aren't powers of 2 (i.e. Cs).

Okiedokie of Oz said:
Now using these numers, the only "pure" notes are 1, 2, 5 and 7. 3 is flat, and 4 and 7 are sharp.

No - the Cs are always in tune. If one's Cs are not in tune with each other, it's either down to one not blowing it correctly or the instrument having severe dents/bends in significant places.

The real figures (relative to equal semitones) are:

Cs - in tune
Gs - a smidge sharp - about 1/50th of a semitone, which is not usually really noticeable.
E - flat - about 1/7th of a semitone
Bb - very flat - about 1/3rd of a semitone

Okiedokie of Oz said:
Now if we were to transpose these positions down a minor third to A, the 4th tone A will now be sharp also.

Nope - see above.

Okiedokie of Oz said:
As we know, third valve is the same as 1+2 however slightly flatter. Playing A on third will bring it more in tune...

3rd valves are tuned flat by some manufacturers to aid tuning on C#-Eb, though which makers I'm not sure of. 1+2 is just as likely to be as in tune on any given instrument - the combination of valves will only make it some 1/12th of a semitone sharp relative to equal temperament; far less out than the open E.

Okiedokie of Oz said:
Well that's the idea, I might have the finer deatils wrong, but it DOES have something to do with the tuning of the harmonic structure and A on 1+2 being sharp. However, I think E is in tune on 1+2

Not really - E on 1+2 is a slightly sharp harmonic (6), and 1+2 will make it a little sharper. It's still better than open, though. Trombones rule!

Sorry for dissecting your post like this, but you did ask for corrections.
 

Okiedokie of Oz

Active Member
No Dave, I am glad you corrected me. As I said, I knew it was something like that.......either way the principal was right, even though the details weren't!
 

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