Posted by Chuck on January 21, 1999 at 13:29:55:
The Besson 983 and 993 both feature adjustable/removable thumbrings that clamp to a tube that runs vertically between the valve cluster and the bell. I have never been able to use the thumbring (beefy enough to moor a small barge), as it holds the thumb at approximately right angles in relation to the other fingers of the hand, which to me is exceedingly uncomfortable. Looking at other instruments with valve-front configurations (mostly euphoniums in my case), I note that the usual practice is to orient the thumb roughly parallel to the other fingers, which seems to be quite comfortable.
I've asked B&H about this, but have gotten no definitive reply. Do any of the other 983 owners out there have any thoughts on this?