C.G. Conn / N. DeCarlis “Connqueror” Pocket Conversion
no. 87988 • 1904 / 2008
This started out as a not terribly worn, but pretty well damaged Connqueror C/Bb/A model. The mouthpipe had been bent and snapped off at the braces, and one of the valve pistons was badly stuck.
This was an interesting design to me, because I wanted to keep the mouthpipe very short, and shift the bell length to the left side of the valve block. This arrangement retained the original secondary slide, where Conn would allow the player to convert the cornet to three different keys.
I also wanted to make it Bb only, so the first and third slides had to be longer (it was built with “C” length slides). Since the third slide would have to be redesigned anyway, I moved the original third slide tubes (cut down) to the first slide position, and moved the first to the third, where I’d need shorter tubes, in anticipation of the “fold-back” third slide crook (are you staying with me?). It all worked out in the end. My new third slide was designed to “echo” the design of the modified former key change slide.
As always, the bell was rebent by brass master Robb Stewart, and there are some photos to the left showing some of the steps. Robb also fabricated the “branch” – then next portion of the bell stem which loops back towards the first valve. Once I get these parts back, I do the finish work, and machine ferrules to join the parts to the valve block. Small custom braces are tedious to make, but always add a nice touch to the work -- there’s one on the bell branch, and also one supporting the bell crook to the first valve slide.
The cornet plays as well as any Conn from this period. It has just returned from Anderson plating, where it was silver plated with gold bell wash. I am currently constructing a custom vintage-style carrying case for it.
Length (shank removed): 9.875”
Bell Diameter: 0.0”