General Question

finkelitis's avatar

How do I go about buying a used trumpet?

Asked by finkelitis (1907points) November 15th, 2010

I’d like to get my girlfriend a really good trumpet for her birthday. Unfortunately, a quick look tells me that they’re crazy expensive, and out of my price range. I’d like to try buying a good one used on craigslist, but I know nothing about what to look for. Can anyone help me with the details of what’s important when it comes to trumpet buying?

I’d like to spend less than $500. She also has a trumpet already—I think it’s just not that good. Passable.

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7 Answers

wundayatta's avatar

No. Don’t do this. Give her a budget and go out with her to get a trumpet. A trumpet is a very personal thing. Kind of like a husband or a wife. You need to try out a lot and see which one fits you the best. Which one allows you to be the player you want to be.

I think it’s a wonderful idea and I know you want to do something nice for her. But this is not where you want to give her a surprise. Also, $500, even with a used trumpet, won’t get you very far, I don’t think.

Anyway, I would look at the local serious instrument stores in your area. I’d research the best trumpets and then find out who carries those. I’d take her there—they might have used trumpets, too. But that’s just me. Every time I got a new horn, I tried at least ten. These are babies I’m going to be living with, most likely, for many years. I don’t want to have to get a divorce.

BarnacleBill's avatar

You might be able to get a deal at a pawn shop, but you have to know what you’re looking for. I agree with @wundayatta, you are probably going to want to have your girlfriend make the selection herself, and be in on the search. That would be fun to do together; you would be learning about something that’s important to her. That in itself is a gift.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

I 100% agree with @wundayatta. My boss gave me a certificate for $500 to buy a saxaphone at a local store. I appreciated the fact that I could pick out the right one for me and pay extra to upgrade. He also paid for the first five lessons because I never played one before. It was a really nice touch.

Skippy's avatar

Yup – Pawn Shops and local music stores. Check with the music stores that rent band instruments. Since Football season is over, many rented are being turned in for the kids that don’t participate in other than marching Bands.
Yes, take her and let her try them. You’ll find one at the right price. I’ve even seen them at my local Goodwill store…. Leave your options to shop open!

Sunny2's avatar

Taking your girl friend along is an absolute necessity. Does she have a teacher who could advise you as well? The fact that you thought about this will really please her and completing the search together could be fun or frustrating. It’s the together thing that will matter most. Good luck!

finkelitis's avatar

Thanks for the advice, everyone. I may go a different way on a birthday present this time, but this was important for me to know.

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