Construction and function of the Horn - Philipp Dangas

Construction and function of the Horn

Graphic on the structure and function of the horn in F can be enlarged. It is reference-sensitive [clickable].

Components of the horn in F in small representation
  1. Mouthpipe
  2. Tuning
  3. yoke
  4. Stem
  5. Screw
  6. connection
  7. Bell
  8. Machine
  9. Valve arches
  10. Finger hooks

The tube of the horn, which is wound in a circle, is made of brass. It has a diameter of about 32.5 cm. In its initial course, including the auxiliary tube, the valve system is slender and cylindrical. There is a short cone just behind the mouthpiece. Only after the falls does it become more and more conical. The mouthpiece has the shape of an elongated and narrow funnel.

The 3 tone lowering valves are operated by the player with the 2nd, 3rd and 4th fingers of the left hand. The right hand is inside the falls during play. The player regulates the precise intonation of the instrument by raising or withdrawing the wrist. At the same time, this function of the right hand is of the greatest importance for the development of the typical "French horn sound".

The overall tuning of the instrument can be corrected with the help of the main slide and the tuning slides. There are versions as F, Bb or, more rarely, Eb horn. If a horn consists of 2 tubes, it is called a double horn. Normally this is an F and a Bb horn, but there are also double horns in Bb/high FA

This sound sample of the sound of the horn in F is loud and very metallic [Music composer: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart]
Download size: 135 kilobytes
Key data on the functional principle of brass instruments
Componet/Technology Function
1. Mouthpiece The mouthpiece on brass instruments is the part of the instrument placed on the player's lips.
2. Tube The timbre as well as the pitch is determined by the length of the tube.
3. Valve The tube length can be changed and there are valves to enable chromatic play.
4.  Bell Timbre is also determined. Longer and narrower bells produce a bright sound. Shorter and wider ones produce a soft sound.
5. Overblowing technique Increasing the blowing pressure makes it possible to make the instrument sound in a higher register.