JIRACEK 'Bohemia' Model 110 hand-horn

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  A very good reproduction hand-horn by Jiracek


& Sons: Model 110, “Bohemia", a copy of a typical


valveless horn played in Bohemia in the late 18th and


early 19th century.  


 It comes with all crooks from C alto down to B


flat basso.


These comprise:


C alto; Bb alto; A; G; F; E; Eb; D; C basso, and a coupler

which in combination with the C basso crook gives Bb



Having spent several hours testing this hand horn, I was particularly impressed by its sensitive playing qualities.

Being lighter in weight than some current examples, its bell's thinner brass seems to allow more subtle stopped sounds than those available from thicker bells.


It can be played at 'modern' (A=440) pitch, and its tuning slide allows a lower (A 430) ‘classical’ pitch on crooks down to F, and then its added tuning slide extension legs permit A430 to A 415 from E downwards through to Bb basso.


Since it is unlacquered, some of the crook surfaces are slightly tarnished, but can be restored to a shine quite easily using a good brass polish (preferably not 'Brasso' in its liquid version, which smells of ammonia whereas Brasso 'wadding' does not.)

It must be mentioned that there is a slight 'ding' on the D crook's tubing near its tenon, but this does not have any effect on its playing.


The horn comes with a hard case for the body ('corpus') and a well-padded rectangular 'semi-soft' bag with compartments for the crooks.


With a slightly larger cylindrical bore than an equivalent French instrument, the Jiracek Model 110 is less resistant than the latter, being very suitable for occasional use by a modern player who wishes to play the valveless horn without having to make too much adjustment to the speed of the air-stream.




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JIRACEK 'Bohemia' Model 110 hand-horn