How a Tuba is Made
The Surface Finish
How are silver and gold finishes different?
Either nickel silver or gold-colored brass are used for the metal of a tuba and how it is finished determines the instrument's final color. Silver plating will make a silver tuba, whether the metal is nickel silver or brass, while a clear lacquer coating keeps the brass' golden shine.
There are also two-tone instruments
For high-end tubas, nickel silver is used for the slides because of its durability and sound quality. A brass tuba with a clear lacquer finish and nickel silver slides will be a two-tone, gold and silver instrument.