Best trumpet accessories under $50
All I need is my trumpet, and my mouthpiece, and my mute, and my….wait. Why do I need all this stuff? Am I going to spend a fortune on stuff I don’t need? Every trumpet player will need a few things to support their playing. Yes, a place to practice where you aren’t disturbing people is great. More important, is keeping your horn performing it’s best and accessories that help you perform your best. Your trumpet and flugelhorn have a few, but very important moving parts. The piston valves have very tight tolerances or spaces between them and the walls of the valve cluster. This keeps the air flowing through the horn rather than leaking out into those spaces. Keeping your valves well lubricated makes your fingering more precise and protects your horn. Having the right tools to keep your trumpet and flugelhorn clean keeps it performing at its best. The must have accessories are valve oil, slide oil/grease, and cleaning tools. Click on the topic of interest and it’ll take you straight to that info in this post.
- Beginner Accessories List
- Valve Oil
- Slide Grease
- Slide Oil
- Care and Cleaning Supplies
- Method Books
- Valve Guard
- Music Stands
- Trumpet Cases
Beginner Trumpet Accessories Checklist
Here’s the list of accessories that every trumpet player needs.
Trumpet Cleaning and Care
Make sure you have everything ready to go to clean your trumpet. Pro tip: As simple as it sounds, make sure you have the time to do it right. See our How to clean a trumpet. Rushing is a recipe for mistakes and trumpets are delicate. “Delicate” as compared to the floor if you were to drop it when wet. The dented bell or crushed leadpipe you save may be your own.
Trumpet Cleaning and Care Checklist
- Cleaning Kit (with snake brush and other brushes)
- Microfiber cloths
- Valve Oil (see above)
- Slide Grease (see above)
- Spitballs (for daily use)
Trumpet Cleaning And Care Supplies
When you give your trumpet a good cleaning, you’ll need a bunch of supplies. Why not get them all in one kit? Yamaha makes an excellent one. YAC TRKit.
Trumpet Cleaning Kit
Yamaha Trumpet Maintenance Kit. Includes their regular synthetic valve oil, synthetic slide grease, a “snake”, mouthpiece and tubing brush, and a nice cloth. The YouTube above we show how to clean a mouthpiece. It was pretty gross. Also, an easy hack to make a swab to dry the inside of your leadpipe and main tuning slide before you put it away.
Best Trumpet Microfiber Cloths
There are tons of microfiber cloths so how do you know which one to use when? By how you are using them, that’s how. Most any microfiber cloths are fine for drying your trumpet after washing by gently wiping. When looking for microfiber cloths, make sure the edges don’t have thread holding it together. The reason is, cheaper cloths will use regular thread. That will scratch silver plating and lacquer finishes. Don’t ask me how I learned the hard way.
The other use is for wiping down your trumpet after playing and applying polish after cleaning. This is where you want a softer cloth. These cloths are great for cleaning your phone screen and other things that require delicate cleaning. They are perfect for the delicate finishes on our trumpets, cornets, and flugelhorns. This assortment of 6 clothes is perfect. They are decent sized (9.8 x 9.8 inches) which is perfect for wiping off your fingerprints and moisture (spit).
Best Silver Trumpet Polish
When cleaning your trumpet, you want to safely remove tarnish without removing the silver itself. Many polishes make things shiny because they have abrasives in them, and they are grinding off a layer of the silver. 3M’s Tarni-Shield Silver Polish has no abrasives. It is endorsed by trumpet manufactures. Before using any polish, you want to remove all the dust and dirt on the surface of your horn. This makes polishing the finishing step after you’ve completed our step by step guide on How to clean your trumpet. This stuff keeps my silver plated trumpets shiny. I also use it on my mouthpieces. Make sure to wash your mouthpieces well after using this before playing.
Best Lacquer Trumpet Polish
Lacquer finishes on brass are beautiful as they let the metal shine through. They let the horn vibrate a bit more than silver plating giving a warmer timbre. The downside is they are more delicate than silver plating. This lacquer polish by Music Nomad is a spray bottle which makes it easy to apply. It has ultraviolet protection in it which will help protect your horn if you play outdoors.
For keeping your horn clean after every practice, there is nothing better than Spitballs. Most brass players laughed when they heard about them. They will keep your horn clean and remove spit and crud from your horn after playing. It doesn’t replace regular cleaning where you take everything apart. By using these, you get a clean trumpet without a snake. Well, not as clean as if you did a full cleaning like in our How to clean a trumpet guide, but lots better than if you did nothing. They’ll keep your horn cleaner and reduce the chances of “red rot” which is caused by the acid in your spit. “Red rot” is where the brass tubing of your horn corrodes and can lead to costly repairs. These are cheap insurance.
More Trumpet Accessories
The next set of accessories are “day 2” must haves. Meaning, you can get by without them for a while, but you will need to get them sooner rather than later. It’s been said that “practice makes perfect”. Unfortunately practice only makes permanent. Perfect practice makes perfect. When you practice your trumpet, you want to practice properly, practice the right things. Having the right trumpet method books are those right things. Having a solid, portable music stand lets you focus on your practice and performance playing rather than worrying about your sheet music. And you gotta have the right mute that the music you are playing calls for, right? Last but not least, you need to carry your horn safely and comfortably.
Trumpet Method Books
There are a ton of trumpet method books out there. Every teacher has their favorite method. Every band director has their favorite. And of course, we have our favorites too. This section is not to steer you towards one style of teaching or another. We instead present the classics. The trumpet methods that every teacher, band director, and player would recommend as foundational to every trumpet player. Take a look at the top picture on this post, those books are over 50 years old.
Best Trumpet Method
Arban Compete Conservatory Method.
This Music Study was created by Joseph Jean Baptiste Laurent Abram. He submitted it to the Paris Conservatory’s Committee on Music Study for Cornet. J. B. Arban was elected as Professor of Cornet at the Conservatory on January 23, 1869. This has been the “bible” for every trumpet player for over 150 years. It would take a lifetime of practice to perfect each and every one of the some 350 pages. That said, many have dedicated 3 months and were able to play it cover to cover. To perfect them however, would be a noble lifetime pursuit. This version is spiral bound, so it stays flat when opened.
Clarke’s Technical Studies
These studies are well known by every trumpet player. Just hearing them, you know where they are from. They will help you develop your endurance and strength while focusing on good tone quality by keeping your embouchure relaxed.
Take a listen to Andrea Giuffredi playing the “Second Study”. Notice how he effortlessly plays each one like a long, smooth note. Notice how his embouchure doesn’t change as he ascends and descends.
Max Schlossberg, Daily Drills and Technical Studies.
These drills focus on tonguing technique, flexibility, and upper range development. This requires solid airflow through each exercise and register. Using these will develop your endurance and power throughout the scale and beyond.
Best Valve Guard
No matter how well you take care of your trumpet, your hands have oils and acids which will wear down the finish. A silver trumpet (silver-plated) will take the abuse longer than a lacquer finished trumpet, but both will be affected by your hands. Wiping down your trumpet after every session will definitely help. The recommended way to prevent this is to use a cloth when you practice or play. Unfortunately, this is not always possible (during a performance, marching band, solo work, etc.). The best solution is to protect the finish with a trumpet valve guard. The best one we’ve found is by Pro Tec. This guard protects the valve cluster from your hands. Additionally, it has a pad and protection under the two places you support the trumpet, the bell and the leadpipe. These are the two most worn areas because the weight of the trumpet rests on your hands and fingers there. See the diagram for the coverage areas marked “1” and “5”. What we also love about this one is that it covers the third valve slide where your hands also grip the trumpet. This guard lets you hold your trumpet in different ways such as having one or more fingers under the third valve slide.
Best Music Stand
What to look for in a music stand.
Whether you are practicing or performing, you need to support your music so you can focus on your playing, not your sheet music falling over. Having your practice trumpet method book at the right height will ensure your posture is correct and you are using your diaphragm to right.
What should you look for in a music stand?
- Portability. Storing it at home and taking it to school or a performance says it should fold up and have a case to carry it.
- Adjustability. Make sure the tray will present your music whether you are sitting or standing. The angle of the tray should be adjustable and lockable to support different material like your iPad or Arbans.
- Security. Not a German Shepard, but music holders. Make sure it has a way to secure your stuff. Nothing will mess with your playing than having a breeze blow your music out into the audience mid performance.
Best Music Stand – Overall
Gleam Sheet Music Stand
It adjusts from 35” to 55”, the tray is adjustable and locks. The concerns we have are the solid tray can be blown around by strong wind and the music holders could be stronger. You can overcome these by putting your trumpet case against the feet and use these clips.
Best Music Stand – Lightweight
Kasonic Professional Music Stand
If you have to haul around your stand from home to school or performances regularly, this lightweight stand fits the bill. The tray is a set of arms rather than a solid piece like the Gleam above. It comes either with the stand, a bag, and a large clip for extra holding power or with an additional LED music light for low light performances. It adjusts from 18” to 41”, its tray is adjustable and lockable, and the included clip with the built-in arms makes for secure music holding. The concern we have is the shelf is only ¾” deep so thicker materials will be tougher to deal with. What we like, it’s right around 2 pounds.
Most trumpet cases are designed to protect your investment. That means they are strong, well cushioned, and heavy. Modern cases have room to store your mutes, mouthpieces, and other accessories easily. Trumpet bags while not as sturdy as a hard sided case, give you light weight, smaller size, and protection. Some of these Protec cases are higher than our $50.00 accessory limit, but they are protecting your horn.
Best Trumpet Case
Protec Trumpet Case – Pro Pac.
Protec instrument cases are a very well-known brand in the music instrument industry. They make all types of cases and covers to protect musical instruments. This case has a molded wood interior and is thickly padded. It has water-resistant, heavy-duty ballistic 1680 nylon. How tough is this stuff? In the Vietnam war, they layered it together to make shrapnel jackets for the soldiers. So if the exterior material was used to stop grenade fragments, this Protec trumpet case should do a great job of protecting your trumpet. Its straps have solid metal rings and swivel snaps. Best of all, it’s only 4.5 pounds. Pro Tec also makes Backpack straps to make this case really easy to carry.
Best Trumpet & Flugelhorn Case
Protec Combination Pro Pac Case
Another Protec instrument case that is ideal for carrying your trumpet and flugelhorn in one bag is this one. It has four mouthpiece slots and similar construction as the trumpet case above. It’s 7.5 pounds which may sound heavy, but try lifting your empty trumpet and flugelhorn cases to compare.