Michael (and maybe Robin), Many manufacturers with a brass bodied guitar in their range claim to use Bell Brass. Now, I don't know too much about bells but bronze (an alloy called bell metal) is a far more common material and all, even small hand bells are cast. I do know that alloys suitable for casting are seldom suitable for rolling out into thin sheet or strip such as is used to make guitar bodies. So is the metal just called 'bell brass' to suggest a bell-like or somehow enhanced tone when actually it is just stock sheet brass. Noticeably the Busker Deco and NRP models just say 'brass'
Post by Michael Messer on Apr 1, 2011 22:56:01 GMT
As far as I can recall, the first time I heard the term 'bell brass' was by the OMI Dobro company in the 1970s to describe their brass bodied guitars. I think it comes from the early advertising for National in the 20s and 30s where they used 'these guitars ring like a bell' type of wording. This somehow got picked up by OMI and used in their advertising, and from there it found its way into far eastern descriptions of brass bodied National-style guitars.
You are correct Michael, varying the proportion of the 2 metals and adding small amounts of other substances produces all the various brass alloys with a wide and differing range of properties. Purpleorange, I think the bell brass reeds on your harmonica is just another example of free license by the manufacturer in an attempt to suggest that the particular instrument has better tonal qualities. Also googling bell brass doesn't produce any brass founders or metal suppliers so I think it must be a mythical beast invented by the musical instrument industry. Nick