Getting back in the swing of things. Long tones, mouthpieces, and exhaustion?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Ayukawa, Jul 6, 2014.

  1. salebow

    salebow New Friend

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    I'm not going to be gold plating any of my mouthpieces. If I want one of those, I'll outright buy one. I like my 3C the way it is. :)
     
  2. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    If you want to know what drilling REALLY does to the mouthpiece, check this out:

    Mouthpiece forms - Institute of Music Acoustics (Wiener Klangstil)

    It changes the intonation in a predictable (but not necessarily good way), it reduces efficiency - which can help if the trumpets intonation is screwed up (like certain Bach C trumpets) and it does none of the stuff that most of the posters here claim.

    It may seem counterintuitive, but drilling the mouthpiece out does NOT make for a freer blow. As a matter of fact, just the opposite happens and if you have 2 identical mouthpieces and drill one out, you can prove it to yourself.

    I am not a universal advocate of gold plate either. Generally a couple of weeks after the plating, the gold surface gets a lot of "microscratches" that hold moisture and make the mouthpiece feel "bigger". For certain players, that moisture also reduces the "grip" that their lips have on the rim - their range goes south.

    I think that drilling out a good mouthpiece is the best way - to destroy it. There are certain cases where an oversized throat can compensate other deficiencies but the ONLY way to do it right is to change the backbore and throat at the same time so that everything stays in balance. That means Pimp my Piece has NOTHING to do with better and a lot to do with fantasy. I have done it, compared like mouthpieces and discarded the "broken one". I also compensated for deficiencies in my Bach CL 229H with a more open throat AND backbore.

    Comeback players beware: you generally do not do yourself any favors by drilling out a mouthpiece yourself.
     
  3. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    Rowuk, I ruined one of my favorite mouthpieces ever by drilling it. I was assured by the guy with the numbered bit set that it was the best thing I could do for it. It effectively turned it into a paperweight - that was a hard lesson learned back around 1998, and I've always recommended against it for people who have told me they were considering it. This was coincidentally the first mouthpiece I had adjusted for gap, so when I replaced it, I had to try to adjust the new one for gap as well, and I don't think I ever quite got it right.

    On the mouthpiece I had where I had the rim gold plated, fortunately it was new enough that some light buffing with a buffing wheel on my bench grinder/buffer was able to take the gold plating off of the contact surfaces without wearing through the silver plating to the brass beneath. What really surprised me was the profound detrimental difference the gold plating made in how that mouthpiece played. To be fair, this was a mouthpiece I used as a lead mouthpiece, so when I lost the grip the silver plating provided, my lips sort of smooshed all over the place - I could play it, but I didn't like it at all.
     
  4. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Patrick,

    your story matches my experience - although I switched to gold plated mouthpieces in 1997 and after getting a handle on "slick" everything was OK. I also think that "proper" gap adjustments are not done at the mouthpiece shank, rather at the receiver with inserts or if it is way out, through repositioning.

    After knowing the physics it is very easy to see how much BS is out there concerning mouthpieces. I find that disappointing as in our information age there is a lot of great research available for those interested. I have taken part in many research projects but am not an engineer, so I can only report on what the test group discovered, not so much about the mechanics of why.

     
  5. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

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    interesting discourse --- with me, I have always figured out that companies have designed mouthpieces for the most efficiency and sound. , deep mpcs, shallow mpcs, etc. ---- but in each case I figured the throat size determined by the company would be the most beneficial to the average player, meaning they could get decent sound out of the mouthpiece without altering it.
     
  6. ultratrumpet

    ultratrumpet Piano User

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  7. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Here is what Bach says now:
    http://www.bachbrass.com/pdf/AV6001 Bach Mpce Manual.pdf

    If you look at the picture, you see that the throat is part of the backbore. Just drilling out screws up this relationship. The backbore has to be adjusted with the throat - and many times the roundover between the cup and throat must be redone as a sharp transition causes other issues.

    Vincent Bach did NOT expect his clients to pull out a drill. Experienced techs had reamers to do the job correctly!
     
  8. richtom

    richtom Forte User

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    Exactly as Rowuk stated. Bach would carry hand reamers with him and give them to buyers of his mouthpieces. Drilling with a drill bit lengthens the throat which does screw up its relationship to the back bore.
    Rich T.
     
  9. ultratrumpet

    ultratrumpet Piano User

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    Exactly as stated in the article by Scott Laskey I shared w/ all of you, i.e.Mouthpiece throat size " Q: Should I have the throat of my mouthpiece enlarged.
    (That "you and rowuk" didn't bother to read.)

    "A former employee of Bach once told me that when mouthpiece sales were down, he would then "as a keepsake of their visit to the Bach factory" give people the tool we commonly refer to as a hand reamer, or jeweler's reamer...." and later in the article "he (Bach) expected players to open the throat of their own mouthpieces."

    Today we have skilled brass techs to do the work.

    If your happy using "tight" throat sizes and (long and restrictive backbores) & it works for you, great.

    OF COURSE: Don't do the work yourself using standard drill bits. If you do what to experiment always use a brass tech.

    Garfield Cadets
    1962
    [​IMG]
     
  10. WannaScream

    WannaScream Pianissimo User

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    Based on my own comeback & mouthpiece experiments, start out with the one that is most familiar and comfortable, and build your chops back up. It will be a while before changing mouthpieces will make a significant difference. I was using a modified 3C (with worn off plating), and then played a Megatone 1D for a while, which was the closest stock dimensional match. That one made me work, and had a darker sound than I wanted. I tried other 3C's, I tried a Screamer mouthpiece- too shallow, thin & stuffy. Eventually I settled on a Warburton 4SV with a 5 backbore, but it works for me because my embouchure had changed, not the other way around.
     

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