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Installing a Trombone Guard

I stopped by our local band supplier, Carolina Band Supply in Brevard, NC, and borrowed one of their Jupiter student-line trombones (with owner Scott Cowan's , of course). Knowing this would be the first time I had ever installed a full set of trombone grips, I felt a little worried. But it wasn't long before I discovered that Larry, our designer, really knew what he was doing and made the installation a piece of cake.

1. I opened the package and laid out the three pieces so I could identify them properly. From left to right: neck guard, left hand grip, right hand grip.

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2. First I did the neck guard. I ran the lace through the first set of holes, making sure to thread the lace through the soft side first (the lace poked in the soft side and was pushed out of the leather side).

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3. As you can see from the picture below, I tied up the grip as if I were lacing a shoe.

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4. I wrapped the extra lace twice around the tube. Then I tied it with a knot, leaving the excess tucked in. Voila!

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5. On to the left hand grip! As you can see, I started the lacing the same way that I did with the neck guard.

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6. Time to "turn the corner"...


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7. This seemed at first like the tricky part. How do I get the lace to go in the correct direction at that 90-degree angle? I wrapped the lace around both sides in a figure 8, almost like a Sheep Shank knot, pointing the lace in the right direction for the post portion of the grip. That's all there was to it.

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8. Then I completed lacing the portion around the post.

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9. I then wrapped the excess lace around the guard, near the end, and secured it with a simple knot, just as I had done with the neck guard.

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10. Now that I had the hang of the left hand grip, I laced up the right hand grip without a hitch because the process is exactly the same. Then I had them all laced on and looking great! A few prize shots of my handiwork:

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