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Paratrooper / airborne bugle ww2

Article about: Hi, Can someone help me with this bugle? I believe it a British Army bugle but not sure whether this is original WW2, post war or just a replica. Many Thanks Pisaufi

  1. #21

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    Which rather suggests this Indian firm, which is still in business had a trade with both "Empire" and American military as a supplier of bugles. This is not surprizing really as even some WW1 era "British" bugles were Indian manufactured. In fact the company "Thomas Dawkins", often seen marked on 1916 marked bugles, (205-7 City Road, London) is believed to have been a retailer and not a maker. Dawkin's supply is believed to have come from India.

  2. #22

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    Hi everyone,

    A little late to the thread but I'll chime in with a couple of opinions that may help. I speak as a former professional brass player and collector of military brass instruments, for whatever that's worth.

    The bugle that started the thread, as already noted, may well be a 'real' bugle that is playable and could have been manufactured by a company who also made military bugles. There's a very high chance of this, as there was a huge market for them to equip Scouts, Boys' Brigade, school groups and more. Often, the only difference is the broad arrow stamped on the bell. In this case there is no obvious maker's stamp but this is also not that strange (it could even be under the badge). What I can say is that the badge has been fitted to bump up the attractiveness and price. This is not an airborne bugle!

    The easiest way to be sure is to play the bugle. Properly made instruments sound better and, to a player, feel authentic to play. Fakes often have air leaks which are obvious when played but, even without leaking, fake instruments do not make a clean sound or play in tune. From the pictures I can say I like the quality of manufacture, there are details that most fakes omit, the patina does not look artificial and the mouthpieces are correct bugle designs. Trumpet or cornet mouthpieces on the market are not the same. The separate mouthpiece has an extension designed to lengthen the bugle and change it to a lower pitch.

    The one thing I do not like is the diamond shaped bracket holding the ring for the mouthpiece chain. All the 30+ original bugles I own have oval brackets, including British, Indian, US. The chain is definitely not original - these are always bigger, thicker chains and often go missing. A close up image of the bracket and ring might make it clear if this is just a rare anomaly or if it's been added later.

    Finally, the second instrument posted by Jerry is not actually a bugle. It is a cavalry trumpet, longer in length and almost definitely pitched in Eb (nice, by the way. I have never seen an Indian-made cavalry trumpet before). You can see the tubing is narrower and the flare on the bell is different. This lower pitch actually allows higher notes to be played on the harmonic series, meaning more melodic variety is possible in the cavalry calls. Almost all bugles around the world are pitched in Bb.

    I hope this helps. I'll try and post a few pictures to illustrate these points over the next couple of days.

    Matthew

  3. #23

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    Quote by tubist73 View Post
    Hi everyone,

    A little late to the thread but I'll chime in with a couple of opinions that may help. I speak as a former professional brass player and collector of military brass instruments, for whatever that's worth.

    The bugle that started the thread, as already noted, may well be a 'real' bugle that is playable and could have been manufactured by a company who also made military bugles. There's a very high chance of this, as there was a huge market for them to equip Scouts, Boys' Brigade, school groups and more. Often, the only difference is the broad arrow stamped on the bell. In this case there is no obvious maker's stamp but this is also not that strange (it could even be under the badge). What I can say is that the badge has been fitted to bump up the attractiveness and price. This is not an airborne bugle!

    The easiest way to be sure is to play the bugle. Properly made instruments sound better and, to a player, feel authentic to play. Fakes often have air leaks which are obvious when played but, even without leaking, fake instruments do not make a clean sound or play in tune. From the pictures I can say I like the quality of manufacture, there are details that most fakes omit, the patina does not look artificial and the mouthpieces are correct bugle designs. Trumpet or cornet mouthpieces on the market are not the same. The separate mouthpiece has an extension designed to lengthen the bugle and change it to a lower pitch.

    The one thing I do not like is the diamond shaped bracket holding the ring for the mouthpiece chain. All the 30+ original bugles I own have oval brackets, including British, Indian, US. The chain is definitely not original - these are always bigger, thicker chains and often go missing. A close up image of the bracket and ring might make it clear if this is just a rare anomaly or if it's been added later.

    Finally, the second instrument posted by Jerry is not actually a bugle. It is a cavalry trumpet, longer in length and almost definitely pitched in Eb (nice, by the way. I have never seen an Indian-made cavalry trumpet before). You can see the tubing is narrower and the flare on the bell is different. This lower pitch actually allows higher notes to be played on the harmonic series, meaning more melodic variety is possible in the cavalry calls. Almost all bugles around the world are pitched in Bb.

    I hope this helps. I'll try and post a few pictures to illustrate these points over the next couple of days.

    Matthew
    Great stuff, not allowed to play mine!

  4. #24

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    Matthew, thanks of the update on my Indian made cavalry trumpet.

    By a strange coincidence as this thread started about an airborne bugle, this trumpet actually came to me with a pair of Indian made Para wings, though of course there is no history of them being together before I bought them
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Paratrooper / airborne bugle ww2  
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  5. #25

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    Interesting, Jerry, although I agree there may be no connection except both items were made in India. I believe some airborne units did use bugles and hunting horns to communicate after a drop (famously shown in A Bridge Too Far) but, from what I've read, these were the normal Bb bugles which are quite compact. The cavalry trumpet would be a nightmare to carry and use in an airborne role!

    Here are a couple of photos of a standard Bb bugle next to the Eb cavalry trumpet, just to compare with yours. The bugle is from 1915 and stamped to the 4th Battalion Grenadier Guards. The trumpet is the one I mentioned above, dated 1938. You should be able to see the mouthpieces, chain and other details clearly. Both still play very nicely, despite the many dents.

    Matthew

    Paratrooper / airborne bugle ww2Paratrooper / airborne bugle ww2Paratrooper / airborne bugle ww2Paratrooper / airborne bugle ww2Paratrooper / airborne bugle ww2Paratrooper / airborne bugle ww2

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