I received my repaired Raptor today and am VERY satisfied! It looks brand new! I appreciate you making things right, and I respect an honest merchant who stands by his company's product.

Marc Koblick, USA

MOST EXCELLENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Merci beaucoup, mon ami. I've already started sing praises for the VRII and the Brass Spa. I've owned a ton of B-flats and this is far and away the best.

Gary Maki,

The new VRII Bb is an excellent trumpet. I have used it with my commercial mouthpiece for a variety of performances as 1st trumpet for Dionne Warwick, Marilyn McCoo and Broadway programs and it feels and sounds great. In contrast, I've used it for the Prelude to Carmen brass quintet and for the Arutunian Concerto with my "legit" mouthpiece and it fits beautifully in that setting as well. It is wonderfully smooth without feeling "slippery" and the ease of producing the sound is amazing.

Congratulations on making such a great trumpet.

Calvin Price, Principal Trumpet, San Diego Symphony/LA Film Recording Artist, California

The rim and cup size are just perfect. The sound has a lot of core and is very centered, seems to carry far. Usual high tone range is effortless.
With regards to the couplers, for now my preference is the 5, although I'm still experimenting on the other two. I've decided to keep them. Thanks for nailing this on one try!
The valve guides are great! They gave me a more centered sound and slotting is better, giving an impression of a bigger sound. Combined with the square tuning slide, this gives me a very locked response for legit playing.

Daniel Borja Jr., Kawasaki, Japan

Thank you very much for putting your skills and many years of experience
into the development of this Stomvi-USA S3 Bb trumpet!

At first my interest was captured by my dear friend Jim Manley and of course
by the one and only Lynn Nicholson.
Hearing a great trumpet sound is one, but you still need to play this
instrument yourself to find out what it's all about. Luckily for me there's
a Stomvi dealer very close to where I live and they just started to add the
Stomvi-USA horns to their collection. As soon as I found out I took a trip for a test play.
Well… I still remember I couldn't think of any other word than 'incredible!', without exaggerating.
I just couldn't let it go! Unfortunately they only had one in stock so in consultation I agreed to
wait 'just' two more weeks to give fellow trumpet players a chance to play test it too.
Those have been two very long weeks, let me tell you! Anyway as soon as the stock of S3 horns
grew I got to compare them and find the best one for me. It was very nice to see they're build in
very close quality compared to one another! As a matter of fact, I just found out they're sold out already,
awaiting new stock.

With my dad being a classical and principal solo trumpet player, I've played quite some brands
and trumpets the past 30 years. I've played real expensive ones and some of those overweight ones.
Too many to name them and I don't think it's of added value to do so.
Needles to say I was more than surprised to discover this greatly priced Stomvi-USA S3 horn
outperformed them all (based on my personal requirements that is).
To me this was hard evidence that great quality and eye for the smallest details can surpass a
'highly' priced and/or 'fancy' looking horn.

Long story short, here's what comes to my mind while playing the Stomvi S3:
- Extremely versatile horn (from a great warm/velvet sound to an extremely loud shout chorus)
- Ease of playing/slotting the notes (no need to 'work' some notes anymore)
- Balanced feeling of air resistance
- Very well in tune
- High build quality and extreme eye for details! Just pulling the 2nd valve tube and taking a look
inside while pressing that valve makes you smile instantly… no nobs, no sharp edges…
just as smooth as it can get (and should be).
Using your Flex mouthpiece with your coupler system makes the entire picture complete for me.
Just for fun I took my old horn after I played a few difficult licks on my Stomvi S3… well…ah…
I'll stick to my S3... that's for sure! Life's good now! Thanks again and please keep up the great work.

Edo Masseurs, The Netherlands
I purchased one of your brushed lacquer VRIIs this summer. My first impression taking it our of the box was that it is a beautiful horn to look at. Then I played it. That first time I couldn't put it down, the sound, the ease of working through the entire horn, I just kept moving from etude to etude wondering what kind of player I might be now if I would have had this horn before! The sound is amazing! I love the depth and color it provides. I have never had the prettiest sound, but the color I can get out of the VRII is dark and thick. My wife heard me that first day and immediately told me I had made the right decision in purchasing it.

I have a jazz quartet and after we played our first song, the guitar player just stared at me and said,"New horn, huh?". The ease of playing it totally opened up a new level of my improvisation. He heard me play things I had never attempted before.

I also love the horn's versatility. You can easily go from playing in a small combo with a beautiful sound, to screaming lead in a show with a sound that rips like a lead player's should. Before I would always have to change horns in order to do that.

My first gig with the horn in the Wind Symphony I play in is coming at the beginning of next month and I can't wait to see what kind of comments I get on it and my playing.

I have always stressed to my students and tried myself to play with what I call "effortlessness". I have always struggled to really achieve it that though. With this VRII however, I am playing better, cleaner and more efficiently that ever before, My goal of playing with real &ldquo effortlessness &rdquo might actually happen!

The horn has really given me a confidence I have not had since I was a kid and didn't know any better. I thank you for building me such a great horn.

Jeff Stevens, Texas

The new Flex mouthpiece is an amazing development on the part of K.O. at the Brass Spa.

I have been playing on the Traditional Flex 1C with the #6 backbore and found it to be very in tune, slotted, and even through all registers. The sound is big and rich with sparkle. The colors work so well in the orchestra fitting in with the strings, winds, and brass, and I have found that to be one of the biggest challenges playing in an orchestra.

I would highly recommend the Flex mouthpiece to anyone looking for a tool that gets the job done and makes you sound great doing it.

Thank you again K.O. for making my life easier and more enjoyable.
Keep up the great work

Frank Glasson, freelance trumpet player, San Diego, California

My new S13A mouthpiece is fantastic! Very efficient and easy to play, but with great core and a full range of overtones in the sound. The day after I got my mouthpiece I had a rehearsal and the sax player commented how good I sounded. "New mouthpiece" I told her! It works very well with my Stomvi Elite Trumpet, a great instrument for any style of playing, from classical to lead.

Frank Abrahamson, freelance, formerly with: Maynard Ferguson,
Wayne Newton, Branson MO shows,

Thanks K.O. for your help and patience in helping me choosing a mouthpiece to meet my needs. I play with he 56th Army Band and I play in a brass quintet, concert band and marching band for military ceremonies. Your flex mouthpieces are just perfect. My supervisor on the quintet (a very qualified trumpet player to say the least) told me how much better my intonation was with the 5D VR mouthpiece.
The sound has a lot of core and is very centered. I settled on the number 4.5 coupler for one horn and the number 4 for my Stomvi Mahler trumpet.
The flex mouthpiece is great product and I will recommend it to anybody. K.O.'s knowledge and patience will help you find what you are looking for. At the end of the day you will be a happy and satisfied trumpet player.

Luis Ortiz, 56th Army Band JBLM, Washington

The horn just gets better the more I play it, and I have actually increased my practical range a step and a half (this is after learning how to play the horn, I initially didn't find it really gave me much of a range boost). Couldn't be happier with it. I tell anyone who will listen about it.
Again, love the horn. It has changed my life. The compliments I get on a weekly basis from my band mates and audience alike are worth the investment alone!

Joe Vivian,

I brought my Chicago C trumpet to the guys at Stomvi to look at, since it was a trumpet that I hated. I was ready to sell it and purchase a new one. After having a chat with a few of the guys, they aligned my valves, and now I am happy to say that it is my most favorite trumpet in my bag. The alignment fixed all the errors in the horn that had been haunting me. Now I can relax and make great music!

Sean Gehricke, USA

It's easy for me to talk about my two V-Raptors because they are simply the best horns I have every played! And that comes from playing for the past 50 years. I have a silver light weight, and a gold heavy weight horn. They are amazing horns, each in their own right. I use the silver horn the most, as I play lead in the San Luis Valley Big Band, in Alamosa, Colorado. Alamosa is a small community with a big band. An unusual situation to say the least. The love of big band jazz is the glue that keeps the band together. For a non-professional band made up of &ldquo jazz addicts &rdquo with day jobs, we are still able to play Basie, Kenton, Herman, and Maynard charts. The lead parts are demanding! The V-Raptor makes it possible for me to play the lead with power and edge. I actually sound better now than I did when I was in my twenties playing in Los Angeles.



Like many players, I have run the gamut with horns. I've played nearly all the major brands. When I tried the V-Raptor about two years ago, I was blown away (pun intended). I had purchased a Yamaha, Bobby Shew model, and was very pleased with it. Then I discovered the V-Raptor and compared the two. Much to my surprise the Raptor was more responsive, more centered, and added about a third of an octave to my range! That was all it took. I bought the two horns and I am telling everybody I know about the horn.



Thanks for making such great horns!

Rob Williams, Colorado
www.psych-k.com

My first experience with Stomvi was during a consultation with K.O. Skinsnes regarding valve alignment. It never occurred to me how important alignment was and Mr. Skinsnes explained why my horn was having the trouble that it was. I asked him question after question and he was eager to respond to every single one. After my consultation, I asked him about trying out a few mouthpieces and, yet again, my mind was blown with all of the intricacies of the mouthpiece and how important things like “the gap” are. K.O. set me up with a 3D VR Flex mouthpiece and it has changed every aspect of my playing! My low register speaks and my high notes float. My flexibility is better and the centering of pitch happens much more naturally; not to mention that my tone production has significantly improved. About a month after our original meeting, I asked Mr. Skinsnes if I could send him my Bb trumpet for a valve alignment and luckily he was able to get the job done before ITG! The process between me shipping it off and the shipment back took only two weeks and honestly with the job he did I would have waited 2 years. It’s a completely different horn! My previous tuning problems have completely gone out the window and my slotting is so much easier. I also got my valve pads changed from felt pads to K.O.’s unique valve pads and they are phenomenal! My valve speed is faster and the response all around is phenomenal. Between the mouthpiece and the horn, my personal experience with the folks at Stomvi USA (especially K.O. Skinsnes) was superb! If you want the BEST work done on your horn for an affordable price, there is no better place to go to than the people at Stomvi. I would recommend them to any trumpet player out there. My experience has been great and I look forward to doing more business with K.O. and the folks at Stomvi USA in the future. THANK YOU!

Edsel Rivera-Rios Senior, Music Education, Texas Tech University

I have a regular weight original V-raptor. It saved my butt a few weeks ago. I doing a pit orchestra and couldn't shake a bad cold. I had problems taking in a deep breath without coughing. I didn't need that full breath on the v-raptor for it to work. We also had to do a quick, down-and-dirty recording of the bows. The v-raptor's sound projected beautifully with such a rich sound. I felt the horn was doing all the work because I sure wasn't. It printed to tape beautifully.

Garry Chun, Freelance, Honolulu, Hawaii

The first day I did an A-B-C comparison between my Bach Strad, the Shew 8310z and Raptor 2, I wasn't convinced that either was better than what I was currently playing (a Bach, playing exclusively commercial, rock, lead). I was able to take the Shew out of the running early due to personal preference. That's until I took the Raptor with me on a few gigs over the weekend. Friday night's gig had me and the sax player I gig with saying &ldquo well, I don't think it's better than your Bach, but keep playing it this weekend before you make up your mind.&ldquo It must have been those 2 days that really flipped the switch for me in how the Raptor needs to be played vs the Bach. Keywords are &ldquo free and easy.&ldquo I took a relaxed approach, and the thing lit up for me. This contrast became more evident as I played on the Raptor more. The Raptor allows me to play relaxed and just blow the horn, while I felt my Bach needed me to push more air and exercise my chops more to get the same results. The Raptor can be pushed and can take air, but it doesn't need it to sound brilliant. By Sunday, after my third gig with the Raptor, and some more comparison playing at the house just to make sure, it was time to convince the wife to get on board with freeing up some funds for the last trumpet purchase I'll ever need to make. I experimented at home with other mouthpieces, and this horn can be colored to fit any gig I need to play. I couldn't be happier with my new horn. I am going to be experimenting with the different slide and valve cap combinations just to see how versatile the horn is over the coming days.

KO and his team have done a fantastic job putting this horn together. I am not a professional by any means, but I do play a lot, and I am grateful that this horn exists and that I am proud owner.

Thanks to KO, and also to Mike Thompson and Jim Manley for answering any question I had about the horn during the decision process.

Joe Vivian,
www.hillbillyhorns.com, www.theaccentsband.com, www.facebook.com/TommyVandtheWorks

WOW! You nailed it on the head with this one. I used it for a recording yesterday and had the most comfortable deal I can ever remember. I'm really looking forward to this next week as I have a lot of recording and a few gigs to play.
Thanks so much for your attention and patience. This has to be the most comfortable well responding piece I've ever had in my life.
This piece rocks!

Jon Trimble, Freelance, Branson, Missouri

I visited the shop with a hope that K.O. could come up with some advice for a more efficient setup for lead trumpet playing. My current setup felt like lots of work.
Long story made short. I came out with a new Stomvi USA Bb Trumpet and matching new mouthpieces with couplers.

I've fallen in love with my Stomvi, outperforming my $4000.00 custom handmade horn. It is beautifully made, build quailty is the best I've seen.
With the Flex 3C and #3 Flex Coupler it is a soft jazz horn. Change it to the super efficient S14A VR with J6 backbore and #4 coupler and I have a killer lead sound for big band and salsa.

The flex mouthpiece cups have a unique design with a very nice sound. The designs have some undercut, this is good for me since I use some lip engagement.
The coupler system helps me add some additional gap which I need to make the most efficient setup.

I now use my Stomvi for everything, and I don't look back.

Thank you K.O.!

Rune Aleksandersen, freelance trumpet player, Norway

To all aspiring Gabriels the Holy Grail is the ultimate mouthpiece--and each "new" iteration commands attention--As a third chair concert band player(disclosure) I had found the "perfect" rim(for me) in the Parduba James model but the large bite forced me to underplay for blending--The new Stomvi Flex design skillfully married to the Parduba rim is the long sought "Pearl of Great Price" that lets me blow away with a more centered pitch; and a great resonant and harmonious sound, with less air--Eureka!

Luther True, Rockwood, Tennessee

Over the past two years, I have hosted two trumpet symposiums here at the university where I teach. We were very fortunate to have K.O. here as a clinician and consultant for both of our events. During each of his consultations with students and professionals in attendance he was able to make a tremendous difference from a variety of angles. In every session, the FLEX mouthpieces were by far a better sound than the current mouthpieces played. There was an answer for every issue or question, and in every instance substantial improvements were made. I watched this occur over a dozen times with similar results across the board.

After two consultations for myself, I’ve moved to the FLEX mouthpieces from other celebrated brands simply because they provide consistently better results and offer a greater spectrum of flexibility from a sound and articulation aspect. I am eagerly awaiting a piccolo, cornet and flugel version (fingers crossed)!

Max Matzen, Lubbock, Texas
www.depts.ttu.edu/music/Faculty/MaxMatzen.asp

The VRII is by far the best trumpet on the planet. The colorful sound, the intonation, and overall playability is unmatched by any other trumpet. It dominates any big band while playing lead, sizzles in a salsa band and provides a warm sound for brass quintet and orchestral settings. Loud or soft, the sound is crystal clear and full. This is the sound I was looking for. I couldn't possibly be happier! Thank you K.O., Carlos, and Forrest for providing me with the best tool for my trade.

Erick Jovel, Freelance, Los Angeles, California
www.erickjovel.com

I have decided your are not just an artesian who creates horns and mouthpieces, you are a dealer (as in pusher) who services the neurotic/addictive needs of trumpet players. Your cunning plan is to just keep improving everything until all the trumpet players are in the poor house! You will be the only trumpet player left, and hence in high demand. Very clever in deed!

Thanks for the wonderful creation of the S13A VR Flex Mouthpiece. The mouthpiece plays great in the upper and lower range! What a rare thing that is. I am getting the best G ever.

Rob Williams, Lead trumpet - San Luis Valley Big Band, Alamosa, Colorado

Now that my "honeymoon phase" is over with my new Flex VR mouthpiece; I thought I would share my thoughts with you regarding it. To be very honest with you; when I first saw your Flex VR mouthpieces at this year's NAMM Show, it certainly was not love at first sight. After using "tone intensifiers" and &ldquo mega" heavy mouthpieces I thought... "These look like boring traditional mouthpieces so I doubt if they could create any magic for me". Well, after a few blows, I was wrong! The sound was perfectly rich without being dull. I validated this by also listening to raw (no effects) recordings of myself in order to better understand the sound from the other side of the bell. I then found that even though it had a nice full color to its core sound and warm tone, I did not have to sacrifice playability and response in the higher register. When I played it (along with many other well known branded mouthpieces) during a blind test with my overly honest Wife, she responded... &ldquo That one makes you sound like a professional! &rdquo On a separate note, your expertise and customer service is truly amazing! I remember after you asked me several questions (while fitting me with one of your mouthpieces) it was the FIRST mouthpiece you recommended that fit me the best and the one I purchased! Even though I played several more of them, I kept coming back to that first one! Your straight forward, patience, and respectful approach with me showed your true commitment to ALL Trumpet players (not just professionals) and your passion for the optimization of the ever elusive "equipment plus player" equation. In closing, I would like to say that I am 100% confident that your great Flex VR mouthpiece has finally ended my (25)+ year "mouthpiece safari." If someone welded it onto the receiver of my horn, I wouldn't be the least concerned! Thank You & Congratulations on designing and manufacturing what I strongly believe is the best mouthpiece I have ever played!

Dan O'Donnell,

I have to say that my S6A VR Vs c (with coupler #5) has really improved my playing. As most of trumpet players, I want to play high notes, and I have tried for the last 35 years to play in the upper register. Something magical happened with this mouthpiece. I can now easily play an F or G above high C when I feel like it. Even the lower register feels better now, both sound and ease of play has improved.
Thank´s for all your advise and support.

Dan Warvne, Sweden

The new Flex 1.5C Vs gives me more core and guts to my sound without losing the brilliance I need. I also do not need to open up the throat to get that big sound I want, so it remains very efficient. It is extremely responsive (I also do not feel that I need 'forever' to warm up... It just works really well really quickly). I have gotten a lot of compliments on the tone. The response, control, and intonation all enable me to play more easily. This mouthpiece makes it more intuitive for me to achieve the sound I have in my imagination when I play.

Karl Sievers, DMA Professor, Chair of Brasses, School of Music, University of Oklahoma Principal Trumpet, Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Oklahoma

I've played a Schilke 13A4A since around 1973. Mostly I'm called on to
play lead but also play with small horn sections using one mouthpiece
for all styles. The Schilke has been a great mouthpiece but I always
felt there were a few shortcomings I had to compensate for. Namely,
slotting, which includes the issue of playing passages easily and
having the notes fall in place, and playing a good double C (Bb,C#
were fine). After reading reviews, testimonials and with the help of
K.O., I decided to try the flex S13A VR VS. The edge of the rim is
just enough to get that 'slot' which makes the passages so much easier
to play without forcing the notes but is not too much edge so it still
feels comfortable. It generally takes less effort to play in and
slightly above the staff but can take a massive amount of air if I
choose. My range didn't really increase but now allows for an easy
double C. The players next to me say it has a wider spectrum of
partials, which I would agree with. My next goal is to try the S3 to
replace the Yamaha 6310Z and Burbank Benge MLP. Thanks Stomvi. I love
the mouthpiece and I'm not looking back. You guys are great to work
with!

Dean Artall, Freelance, Texas