Buying/renting musical instruments.. - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 09-07-2009, 11:44 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Pinoikoi View Post
yep, that's the other thing.. this is my first 6th grader dealing with this.. but I have three other sons... do I buy an instrument that I hope will get "passed down" or is that too much of a far fetched dream?
I really think that every child who wants to play an instrument should get to pick their own. May be your other kids will be like mine and feel that a musical instrument would require too much effort on their part.

Prices for different types of instruments are very, very different. And having an instrument that fits a child's size is more of an issue with strings than with brass. When my girls were little, we went through several violins, I think we still have a few around her somewhere! I don't think kids outgrown their trumpets!

I played cornet and then french horn back in the 70s, and my parents REALLY shopped around. My first instrument came from a pawn shop. Buying used means that it will be worth about the same amount of money in couple of years that it is worth right now.

Trumpet is a VERY cool instrument.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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Old 09-07-2009, 02:22 PM
 
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this is my first 6th grader dealing with this.. but I have three other sons... do I buy an instrument that I hope will get "passed down" or is that too much of a far fetched dream?
Here in Grade 5 the band teacher gets all the students to try out the instruments. Then they get to pick based on which ones they are able to use. My dd wasn't able to make sounds out of the clarinets or sax's. The kids can try any instrument they want. My dd got the trumpet, who knows what my other 2 will be using in 3 & 4 years when they get there. It may be the trumpet, it may be one of the sax's.

In her grade there are only 3 of them playing trumpet, alot of kids playing the clarinet, flute & alto sax.
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Old 09-07-2009, 02:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Here in Grade 5 the band teacher gets all the students to try out the instruments. Then they get to pick based on which ones they are able to use. My dd wasn't able to make sounds out of the clarinets or sax's. The kids can try any instrument they want. My dd got the trumpet, who knows what my other 2 will be using in 3 & 4 years when they get there. It may be the trumpet, it may be one of the sax's.

In her grade there are only 3 of them playing trumpet, alot of kids playing the clarinet, flute & alto sax.
Well we are going to the "open house" that one of the music stores is doing... ds will try out the trumpets there.. then we will go look at the other used one I found.. I figured we will have to get him some supplies no matter what instrument we get him- oils for example. His teacher sent home a list.

I attended a school that used to be run BIA then went to State ownership. The population obviously went WAY down in the turnover (like a third of the previous pop?) anyway, the school donated ALL of the instruments it had for the band that it could no longer support to the other high school in the area (different district). I remember being really upset about that. I mean, I am glad those kids got to enjoy the instruments that probably otherwise would have remained rotting in storage, but on the other hand we were losing a HUGE part of our tradition..no more even remote possibility of band for us. I imagine not all the instruments were in working order, some probably would have been just used for parts, but still, it was a LOT of instruments. I still wonder how in the world they got away with that. I think that if that had happened today the school would have been forced to auction them or sell them at surplus or something..
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Old 09-07-2009, 05:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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UPDATE: We went to the open house- the musicians there helped him produce the proper sound. Then we went and looked at the other $100 trumpet we saw on craigslist.. It is much shinier and has no dents. It has a hard case. The lady said she bought in Pennsylvania for her son (now grown) used for $400 but I am not sure how accurate that is because we bought it and took it back to the music store. Anyway, that guy said it was made in Taiwan, but didn't recognize the manufacturer name.. so I don't know maybe the company is now defunct (Conservarte?). Regardless he said we did fine for a $100 horn just that the parts may be pricey because he would either have to find a fit from a different company or manufacture a part..

Anyway, the music store helped us out a lot, so we bought all his cleaners, oils, brushes, book and stand there.

SO GLAD we are done with this little adventure! (and ds seems REALLY happy with his trumpet!) :
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Old 09-07-2009, 06:48 PM
 
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Large instruments are sometimes provided for free to students willing to play them. Tubas, baritones, sometimes french horns and oboes (since they are expensive to rent/purchase), base clarinets, larger saxs, cellos, etc. And don't forget percussion - nothing to buy except a practice pad, a small bell set maybe and sticks/mallets.

Don't be afraid to ask. You might be surprised that schools don't always offer this information

So far, my 4 oldest children have all played different instruments - my son the percussionist, my dd 17 plays baritone (for free), my dd 15 the flutist ($100 used flute - same flute since 5th grade) and my 8 year old plays violin, by far the most expensive, since they "grow" w/you child, she's on her 3rd violin already and we are just renting.

Good luck,

Alyssa
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Old 09-08-2009, 06:21 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Angelstill View Post
clarinets are easy to pick up used for around $100 for a beginner model.


It is much cheaper to buy used than rent. Keep in mind though that if they stick with it, you will want to upgrade in 2 years.

Please let your child have this amazing opportunity and support them with whatever they want to do with it.

Being in a musical ensemble teaches tons of skills well beyond just how to play an instrument. Just do it for him! You will not regret it. I promise you.
Yep, my Dad got me a starter clarinet for about that much. And I used it all the way through. I eventually got a better mouthpiece, but the instrument itself was fine. Upgrading is a good idea if you have spare money, but it really isn't necessary as long as you get a good instrument to start. I'd recommend the OP ask a friend who plays the instrument, if at all possible, to help them purchase it.

Edit-ah you got a trumpet. That'll be fun for him, but not so much for you. Bwhahaha. I kid, kinda. Maybe you have a shed.

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Old 09-08-2009, 07:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Edit-ah you got a trumpet. That'll be fun for him, but not so much for you. Bwhahaha. I kid, kinda. Maybe you have a shed.
He's having fun with it. He was studying his book last night learning the keys. He sounds like a baby elephant.
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Old 09-08-2009, 10:17 PM
 
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Renting is the norm around here, but it's a rent-to-buy situation with most of the established companies. My dd's violin is about $40/month, and it's a reasonably good instrument. So far, we've paid in about $1200 and will be able to apply that to the purchase of an instrument that should take her much farther when we decide to do that.

We have an outstanding music program and learning to play the violin has been life changing for her.
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Old 09-08-2009, 10:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by alllyssa View Post
Large instruments are sometimes provided for free to students willing to play them. Tubas, baritones, sometimes french horns and oboes (since they are expensive to rent/purchase), base clarinets, larger saxs, cellos, etc. And don't forget percussion - nothing to buy except a practice pad, a small bell set maybe and sticks/mallets.

Don't be afraid to ask. You might be surprised that schools don't always offer this information

So far, my 4 oldest children have all played different instruments - my son the percussionist, my dd 17 plays baritone (for free), my dd 15 the flutist ($100 used flute - same flute since 5th grade) and my 8 year old plays violin, by far the most expensive, since they "grow" w/you child, she's on her 3rd violin already and we are just renting.

Good luck,
Just make sure you get the total story. In our district, you can't take those large instruments on the bus, so if your kid decides to play one of them, they either need to have one at home (and use the school's at school) or be driven to and from school every day they have band/orchestra. Needless to say, they have a very hard time getting parents to agree to have their kid take those particular instruments.
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Old 09-08-2009, 11:13 PM
 
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I'm so glad you found your son's instrument. I was going to suggest pawn shops. There is a huge number of instruments there here. I played clarinet and trumpet in school and my dd had to go and pick the viola. Your son may have good luck. I have had my trumpet (silver) for 30 years and it has never been in the shop.
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Old 09-09-2009, 01:43 PM
 
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Pinoikoi, I'm sorry I didn't see this sooner. I played trumpet throughout school. I'd be happy to offer any advice.

I do think the PP was right on about you might need to upgrade in a few years if he really likes it. This holds true for many instruments and certainly for trumpets, too, depending on what you started out with. Way back when I was in school, "Bundy" was the beginner brand. I started out with a Bundy cornet which was typical way back then in the dark ages. Most of the "trumpet" players in the 6th grade band were actually playing cornets. Those of us who continued with it upgraded to trumpets sometime around 8th or 9th grade. The Bach Stradivarius in silver was the horn of choice back then. Check out this article for more advice on student trumpets. I think this guy knows what he's talking about.

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Old 09-09-2009, 03:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ah well, he's happy, that's all that matters. My dad is sending me a check for $100. He said he wanted to help pay for this (he has always supported "educational" things in some way).. so I will use that money towards fixing one of the parts of the trumpet that apparently is supposed to slide off for cleaning but is currently stuck. (Ds' teacher says it needs to be heated at the horn store and then it will slide off.. probably just due to being in storage for awhile)..

If he needs a nicer horn in the years to come, we will cross that when we come to it, I guess. I should have a better idea if he is going to stick with this and will have more time to save up for a nicer one by then.. but for now, he's happy, so I'm happy.
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Old 09-09-2009, 06:25 PM
 
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Originally Posted by alllyssa
Large instruments are sometimes provided for free to students willing to play them. Tubas, baritones, sometimes french horns and oboes (since they are expensive to rent/purchase), base clarinets, larger saxs, cellos, etc. And don't forget percussion - nothing to buy except a practice pad, a small bell set maybe and sticks/mallets.

Don't be afraid to ask. You might be surprised that schools don't always offer this information

So far, my 4 oldest children have all played different instruments - my son the percussionist, my dd 17 plays baritone (for free), my dd 15 the flutist ($100 used flute - same flute since 5th grade) and my 8 year old plays violin, by far the most expensive, since they "grow" w/you child, she's on her 3rd violin already and we are just renting.

Good luck,

Just make sure you get the total story. In our district, you can't take those large instruments on the bus, so if your kid decides to play one of them, they either need to have one at home (and use the school's at school) or be driven to and from school every day they have band/orchestra. Needless to say, they have a very hard time getting parents to agree to have their kid take those particular instruments.
I guess this must vary from district to district. My daughter who plays baritone borrows her instruments from the school. She has a marching and a concert baritone that she leaves at the school and she has another marching and concert baritone that she keeps at home to practice on.

So she actually borrows 4 horns from the school free of charge.

Alyssa
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Old 09-15-2009, 12:42 PM
 
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Renting is the norm around here, but it's a rent-to-buy situation with most of the established companies. My dd's violin is about $40/month, and it's a reasonably good instrument. So far, we've paid in about $1200 and will be able to apply that to the purchase of an instrument that should take her much farther when we decide to do that.

We have an outstanding music program and learning to play the violin has been life changing for her.
1200$?!? is this a typo and you meant 120$? we just looked at a rent to own brand new outfit yesterday and it was 550 + tax and that included everything.

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Old 09-19-2009, 07:52 PM
 
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1200$?!? is this a typo and you meant 120$? we just looked at a rent to own brand new outfit yesterday and it was 550 + tax and that included everything.
$550 violins don't sound very good.

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Old 09-20-2009, 07:13 PM
 
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1200$?!? is this a typo and you meant 120$? we just looked at a rent to own brand new outfit yesterday and it was 550 + tax and that included everything.

No, it wasn't a typo. Actually, her tutor and her strings teacher at school are advising us to wait a bit and continue to pay in so that we can get her a higher quality instrument that will take her through high school. You can certainly get a violin for $550, but it's not going to be a particularly good instrument.

That's why I like the rent to own program. If my younger daughter decides not to continue the flute, I'm not out a ton of money. In the meanwhile, she can play a decent quality instrument.
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:45 PM
 
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My DD started clarinet in 5th grade. I know zero about clarinets. She and DH went to the music store (there's only one in town) and they got her all set up with renting to own a clarinet. I think we only made like 3 payments of $40 on it?

About upgrading, I started flute at age 25 when DH got me one for my b-day. I played it for a while and then wanted to upgrade to an open hole flute. The music store had a payment plan, I just had to agree to keep their "instrument protection plan" (or something like that) on the flute until I had payed it off. That was maybe $25 or something for a year. So I'm sure a music store would work something out with out with you if you decide to get a better trumpet down the road.

Way back in the dark ages when I was in school, the school system rented out the more expensive instruments (I played French horn and my parents rented that) for cheap in order to get kids to play them I guess.
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Old 09-22-2009, 04:27 AM
 
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My 4th grader just started playing trumpet in the school band (which is optional) and we're paying $22/month for the rental. The place we're renting from gives us an option to switch from renting to a "rent to own" after 9 months. The going rate around here is between $20-$25/month.

Re: the OP's craigslist trumpet... I do recognize the brand name. Back in the days of elementary/middle school band, a few kids were playing Conservante saxophones... this was back in the mid to late 80's.

When I started playing clarinet in elementary school, Mom bought me an old resonite student model Bundy clarinet. I should have kept it.
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