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Story 078 – 1950 – Innovation Quality

The know-how makes the music

Wieland alloys make musical instruments sound

Well-known manufacturers of percussion instruments such as gongs and cymbals rely on Wieland's primary materials. Strips, sheets and tubes from Wieland are also used in the manufacture of brass instruments.

Everybody knows the round, shiny metallic, slightly curved "discs", which are an indispensable part of every drum kit and are often used by drummers to full extent. But hardly anyone knows that – to create these cymbals – ancient, traditional experience, a lot of know-how and a lot of skilled detail work are involved – as well as often alloys from Wieland.

One example is the Swiss cymbal and gong manufacturer Paiste, one of the world market leaders in this field. Like other producers, the company has been purchasing starting material from Wieland for around 70 years, mostly in the form of so-called blanks made of brass, bronze or nickel silver. Paiste uses the latter to produce the world's largest playable gong with a diameter of 228 centimetres. The company is celebrating great success with its Formula 602 cymbal series, whose cymbals are made of a bronze alloy with 20 per cent tin content. Only Wieland is able to produce blanks made of this alloy in series production and thus at a consistently high quality. This is an important criterion as the quality of the alloy makes a significant contribution to further workability and of course to the sound of the percussion instrument.

These criteria are also decisive for brass instruments. In this field, Wieland supplies brass or nickel silver starting materials to many renowned manufacturers: sheets for the production of bell flares, tubes for the manufacture of mouthpipes, tuning and valve slides as well as strip for harmonica reeds. Especially for brass instruments, not only the metallurgical quality but also the perfect surface finish of the starting material from Wieland plays an important role.

In addition, brass and bronze wires are used for plucked and stringed instruments; brass reed plates are often used in accordion production.

For decades, many musical instrument manufacturers have relied on Wieland starting materials - some exclusively. It is therefore very likely that a piece of Wieland is contained in a large part of the music we listen to, helping provide the top-quality sound.

Gong with a diameter of two metres

Gigantic: Paiste produces gongs made of nickel silver from Wieland that are both visually and sonically impressive – including the world's largest with a diameter of over two metres.

bronze cymbals

Excellent: The bronze cymbals of the Formula 602 series by Paiste with a high tin content are very popular with drummers around the world.

trumpet

Eye catching: Many manufacturers of brass instruments rely on alloys from Wieland – not least because of the optical and sound quality of the strips, sheets and tubes supplied.