I got this on recommendation from a fellow player, so expected a well finished and reliable product.
On mine, the extendable tube was very stiff and the release button at the top difficult to operate. One drip of machine oil loosened it, but should this have been required on a brand new item ?
I also found that the locking mechanism on the cone shaped support that slides up and down the central rod did not work, so that the cone would not stay in position under the weight of the trombone. I was careful not to get oil on the rod, so this was not the cause. It is a rather basic design and relies simply on friction between the plastic knob on the end of the lever and the rod. I could probably fix it by roughening the rod/knob in some way, but that would invalidate the guarantee, so it will have to go back for replacement.
The general level of service provided by Thomann to my order was exemplary, so I expect they will respond very positively to this difficulty, and if so, I would not hesitate to use them again.
2 weeks later, I can say that Thomann sent me a return slip and replaced the stand, so they get full marks for that. I can now see that the problem on the old stand was that the clearance on the locking knob was just a bit too small to allow the lever to be pushed into its locking position. More force might have done it, but neither I nor my colleague who has had one of these Hercules stands for 2 years could operate it. The lock on the new stand is just workable. The operating lever is short and awkward to get at being next to the base of the sliding cone, so it requires strong fingers. In fact, I was afraid that I might break it in forcing it to lock. However, after a few tries, it works, and may ease up a bit with use. The design concept is OK, and overall its a good quality stand and sturdily built, but the lock mechanism needs improvement in my view.
This is a quite nifty little thing. You can store it in the bell of the trombone and it can be unfolded in a very short time. I see two problems with the stand, one being that it weighs enough to alter the weight distribution of the trombone, making it more difficult to carry the 'bone arond with you in its bag. This might actually only be a problem when you use it together with the 600 gram pbone, as I do. The other problem is, that the telescopic mechanism is really weird. If you make a mistake when unfolding the stand, it will not be stable. If you ddo it properly, it's quite ok, though I won't use it for my bigger 'bones. All in all it does its job, but no bells and whistles for this one.
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