BOOSEY & HAWKES 'Imperial'

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Maker:  BOOSEY and HAWKES, London, UK


Model: ‘Imperial’, a copy of a vintage Alexander


Date: 1961-1962

Type:  F / Bb full double

Bell throat profile: medium

Alloy: silver-plated brass

Bell flare: fixed

Adjustable finger hook

Adjustable duck's-foot

Weight: 2.88 kg / 6lb 4oz

Further details: a very good example of the 'legendary but heavy'

B & H ‘Imperial’, a copy of a vintage Alexander 103 with a central / cylindrical bore of 11.9 mm rather than the current Alexander bore of 12.1 mm.  Its silver plate is in good condition apart from some expected wear inside the bell throat and a few other places. There are 3 expertly-applied patches, none of them particularly eye-catching.


The B & H ‘Imperial’ was the instrument of choice in the BBC Symphony Orchestra’s horn section when led by Douglas Moore during the period 1945-1969.

  A fine horn with very good valve compression and a ringing, compact sound.  Its 4th valve lever, formerly too short for a small left hand, was modified fairly recently by an extension to the thumb plate, bringing it into a much more comfortable position for the player’s hand and thumb.

Case: almost-new lightweight 'Gator' with shoulder strap.

This horn is the 'equivalent' (although heavier) of a vintage Alexander 103 at a fraction of the cost!

NB: although this is a 'Professional quality' instrument, it is also listed in the Intermediate category on account of its very modest price.


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BOOSEY & HAWKES 'Imperial'