The horn is a brass instrument consisting of about 12–13 feet (3.66–3.96 meters) of tubing wrapped into a coil with a flared bell.
Descended from the natural horn, the instrument is often informally and incorrectly known as the French horn, but since 1971 the International Horn Society has recommended the use of the word horn to avoid confusion; as the commonly played instrument is not, in fact, the "French horn", but rather the wider bore "German horn".
However, in the English speaking world "French horn" is still the most commonly used name for the instrument.
Horns have valves, operated with the left hand, to route the air into extra tubing to change the pitch.
Most horns have lever-operated rotary valves, but some horns like the Vienna horn use piston valves (similar to trumpet valves).
A horn without valves is known as a natural horn, changing pitch along the natural harmonics of the instrument (similar to a bugle), but with a wide range of notes due to the long tubing.
Three valves control the flow of air in the single horn, which is tuned to F or less commonly, B?.
The more common double horn has a fourth valve, usually operated by the thumb, which routes the air to one set of tubing tuned to F or the second set of tubing tuned to B?.
Triple horns with five valves are also made, tuned in F, B?, and a descant E? or F.
We don't carry many French Horns in stock due to the instrument not being as popular as others. How ever we do have a full range in our books starting with the Besson 600 series.
Although we rarely carry them in stock, we do get Alexander French Horns from Mainz on a regular basis as special orders.
We also carry Jupiter French Horns but again on special order only. If you are intrested in an instrument that you don't see, please just drop us a line. From time to time we have some second hand French Horns in stock but this is quite rare.