Our equipment recommendations

French Horn

We recommend a horn such as a Verus (fixed bell) or a Paxman Academy for young players. These horns are affordably priced and produce a full, rich sound. They also feature an adjustable pinky ring and thumb valve lever which can be fitted to any size hand. A comfortable grip is important. If a young student is struggling to reach the valves, it is likely to cause other problems with posture and embouchure development.

For more detailed advice, see our article How Do I Choose a French Horn?

Mouthpiece

A good mouthpiece, especially for beginners, would be either a Faxx MC, Verus 17.5, or others of comparable size and cost. As a student advances on the horn, they will most likely seek a step-up mouthpiece. This can be explored with the help of a teacher or trained professional.

Tuning Slide Grease

Keeps slides lubricated.

Cleaning Snake

Used for cleaning the leadpipe, where 90% of the chemical deposits occur. We recommend ones made of vinyl, since they better avoid scratching the interior of the horn.

Mouthpiece Brush

Used weekly for cleaning.

Pencil Clip

Provides easy access to a pencil, a needed tool for horn players of all levels. It attaches to the outer slide tubing.

Polishing Cloth

Helps remove hard water spots, dirt, handprints, and grease.

Extra String and Screwdriver

Most horns have string linkage, and over time the strings will break. You should always carry extra string and a screwdriver just in case it happens at an inopportune time.

Maintenance Kit

Contains light rotor oil, light bearing and linkage oil, light slide gel, a vinyl-coated cleaning snake, a mouthpiece brush, a pencil clip, a pencil, a microfiber polishing cloth, and a luggage tag in a vinyl zipper carry bag.