John Packer Blog

Welcome to the John Packer blog. Here we’ll keep you updated on all the latest happenings at John Packer Ltd, all the latest music news, musical instruments and competitions.

Month List

Lovely weather, fancy a cornet?

by Administrator 6. August 2013 15:38

The John Packer Ltd Brass Department were busy this weekend receiving  various used instruments to add to their growing range of secondhand stock. Amongst them are 5 professional level Bb cornets which are now ready for sale at fantastic prices.

Smith - Watkins K2 Bb cornet in silver plate for £1450 including a flight case. This professional level large bore cornet with 1st and 3rd triggers was handbuilt by the famous Smith - Watkins company near York in the UK. The cornet is in good condition and plays very freely over the entire range, there are a few small dents around the bell area near the valve block which are too small to show up on photographs. The serial number is #709. For further details on this wonderful cornet please quote CS655245

Yamaha Maestro YCR6335S Bb cornet in silver plate for £750 including the original hard case, 3 mutes and a mouthpiece. This is a fine example of the popular large bore Maestro cornet from Yamaha, this instrument is in a very good condition and would suit a player going up through the grades and beyond grade VIII. For more information please quote CS655246

B&S Challenger II Bb pro level cornet with gold brass bell and leapipe, 1st and 3rd triggers in a very good condition. This cornet would suit any good player looking for a professional instrument with a lovely mellow tone. Hard case and mouthpiece included in the sale, asking price £775. Ref CS655250

Besson 927 Sovereign Bb cornet in silver plate for £850 including a hard case. This is the medium large bore professional level Sovereign cornet with 1st and 3rd triggers which is highly sought after. This instrument would suit a player looking for a professional instrument with the famous 'Besson' brand name. There a few small dinks in the bell section and some scratches on the valve block, although these are purely cosmetic and will not affect the playing of such a fine instrument. For further details on this instrument please quote CS655247

Bach Strad 184 Bb silver plated cornet for £750 including a hard case and mouthpiece. This is a professional medium large bore cornet made by Vincent Bach and would suit a player looking for an instrument to take them up through the grades and beyond. There are some areas of pitting and wear to the silver plating where the instrument has been held by previous player. These cornets do not appear very often on the secondhand market so be quick to take advantage of this rare opportunity. Please quote CS655248 for further information.

If you are interested in finding out more about any of the cornets above or any other instrument, please contact us on 01823 282386 (option 1) or email Steve Herbert, Brass manager at

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Yamaha Calls Change on Selected Student Instruments

by Administrator 8. March 2012 11:44

YAMAHA have just launched some new models/variations on some of their student lines. This is part of a review of their position in the market place, so some instruments have been discontinued while others have revised specifications. We're all going to have to learn some new model numbers as, for example, old favourites like the 275 saxes and 250 clarinets are now the 280 and 255. Groups affected are all in student/step up areas of trumpets, cornets, clarinets and alto/tenor saxes. We've new models in stock. Keep reading to find out about all the changes.



The Yamaha YTR1335 & 2335 trumpets have been replaced by the YTR2330 trumpet. This instrument features new caps and buttons on the valves, Monel alloy pistons, an adjustable 3rd ring, thumb hook, 3rd slide water key and yellow brass two piece bell. It also comes in a lightweight gig style case.

There now is a YTR3335 trumpet, with many shared features of the 2230, along with a brace and reversed tuning slide. It comes in a lightweight hard case, two carry handles and an external pocket for music.

The YTR4335G has become the YTR4335GII It has a fixed 3rd ring unlike the earlier student models, which helps the tone of the instrument. The case is also upgraded from the 3335 model and includes an additional shoulder strap.



The YCR2330III has a new round shaped leadpipe which makes the instrument much more free-blowing and easier to produce a good sound for students. It also now has an adjustable 3rd ring which wasn't found on the previous incarnation of this model. It is supplied in a standard cornet case.

The 4000 series cornet has also undergone the same treatment as the 2000 series. This model already had monel alloy pistons and as with the 4000 series trumpet, has a fixed ring. The case is also slightly upgraded.

Yamaha's Soprano cornet - the YCR2610S has also been upgraded.



Both the alto and tenor saxophone has changed model numbers from the 275 to the 280. The standard spec on this model includes things like a gold lacquered body and keys, high F#. Changes include a new neck receiver which makes the crook more stable. The low B-C# connection has been mechanically improved which has a positive effect on the tone. The case remains the same as previous.

The 475 models have moved to 480 models in alto and tenor. They feature new octave keys - which are now compatible to take Custom necks - easily upgraded. The engraving on the bell is also new.



One final instrument that has been reviewed is the JP250 - now the YCL255S. Still made from ABS resin there are two major changes. The thumbrest is now bigger and stronger (and still adjustable) and the bell is now lightweight making it easier to hold and play. It also comes with a newly designed case.

Packers sell piece of Brass Band History

by Administrator 21. October 2010 10:44

AFTER selling a rare Roundstamp Sovereign cornet in record time this summer, John Packer Ltd has been sent a silver-plated Schilke Eb Soprano cornet with Beryllium Bell from a customer to sell on behalf of Wingates Brass Band.


Schilke soprano cornets are considered to be among the finest soprano cornets made in the world and this particular cornet has some unique brass band history to go with it. Originally purchased as a gold soprano with a beryllium bell in the 1980's by the Wingates band, it was used by a legendary player, highly regarded amongst brass band circles.

The instrument is being sold by Brass Department Manager Steve Herbert of John Packer Ltd. Offers are being invited for thispiece of brass band history. Steve can be contacted on 01823 282386 or by e-mail

PHOTO: The piece of brass band history.

John Packer Ltd Sell Rare Cornet in Less Than 24 Hours!

by Administrator 7. August 2010 10:21

A RARE Boosey & Hawkes Roundstamp cornet sold in a record time at John Packer Ltd.


The pristine B&H - which was being sold on behalf of a customer - was advertised on John Packer Ltd, 4Bars Rest & Facebook before selling.

A professional player and teacher travelled two hours to be amongst the first customers to view it.

It was a unique sale as the instrument had never been played, coming in its original tissue paper, labels from the B&H factory in Edgware road and original small blue case.

B&H marked their instruments with the famous Roundstamp/globe between the years 1978-1985- reputed to be when they made their finest instruments.

Brass department manager, Steve Herbert, had said this would be a unique sale and was delighted to sell the cornet so quick for the customer.

“It just goes to show how quality instruments get snapped up. You’ve got to act quick when instruments like these become available.”

Steve added that he’s seen an influx of new client sale instruments.

“The day after I sold this cornet, I received 12 new instruments from customers to sell - including another roundstamp – although this one has been played. Clearly we must be doing something right!” 

Anyone interested in client sale instruments can view them on the website following the links to second-hand instruments, by calling Steve on 01823 282386 or emailing

PHOTOS: The rare B&H roundstamp cornet that sold in less than 24 hours!

John Packer Ltd Selected to Sell Rare Cornet

by Administrator 5. August 2010 10:12

JOHN Packer Ltd is delighted to be selling on behalf of a customer a rare Boosey & Hawkes Roundstamp cornet. This once-in-a-lifetime sale is extremely uncommon.

Still in its original wrappings, this immaculate large bore silver-plated Sovereign cornet was bought in 1979 and is believed by the owner to have been never played.

The instrument has the original tissue paper and labels from the B&H factory in Edgware Road. It also comes in its original small blue case.

B&H marked their instruments with the famous Roundstamp/globe between the years 1978-1985- reputed to be when they made their finest instruments.

This cornet is as good as when it left the factory and therefore will command a price which reflects its reputation and condition.

Brass department manager, Steve Herbert, said this would be a unique sale.
“It’s very rare to have an instrument that’s never been played before as a client sale. I don’t think an instrument of this notoriety will be on sale for long.
“Any player familiar with the kudos of the Roundstamp, or a collector will be itching to get their hands on it. It’s almost the same as finding a brand new Picasso in the loft.”

Offers are invited to Steve at John Packer Ltd. Steve can be contacted on 01823 282386, or via email
Any offers made will be put to the owner.

PHOTO: The rare B&H roundstamp cornet up for sale.

Wow! What a Phenomenon!

by Administrator 17. June 2008 16:44

In the last six months we have had orders of over 1500 John Packer JP Cornet MKII (SW) 171 & 271.

These instruments are designed for both experienced players and training bands.

See what the Critics Say:

"I was instantly impressed by the build quality and feel of the instrument (which we had in sliver plate) and noted that the valves had a smooth action without having to be oiled before I played it. In the hands the instrument feels evenly weighted, and the triggers are similar to those on the Yamaha models."

"The addition of the Smith Watkins lead pipe is a real stroke of genius, as I believe no-one makes cornets better than Richard Smith. As a result the cornet has a very free blowing feel, and a rich sound throughout the range. Whilst testing the instrument I was really impressed with the evenness of sound quality, and the ease of playing in the upper register. Intonation was good and whilst the notes just above the stave were a little sharp (as they are on most cornets) the trigger soon rectified that."

"We are now looking at replacing more of our older cornets with the JP Cornet 271L MkII (SW), which at the bargain price of £199.00 puts a lot of its more expensive competitors to shame. Whether you are a student on a budget or a band looking to kit out a section without breaking the bank, you could do far worse than to look to JP."

Pete Collins. (Pete is the Musical Director of the Foresters Band and a well known teacher).
Click here to purchase a JP171SW or JP271SW

PHOTO: JP171SW Cornet