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Discussion in 'Mouthpieces / Mutes / Other' started by JHarris, Jul 20, 2004.
What kind of experience s have you had with them?
Good ones i hope or do you think they suck?
I really like them. I first got turned on to Warburton stuff when I purchased my Schilke... it seems I needed a more open backbore than what I'd been using. My first "GR" was actually a Sparx #4 cornet piece. I enjoyed it so much that when I got to looking for a replacement for the Warburton (I wanted a more comfortable rim and a bit more brightness in the sound and ease in the lower register), Bruce Lee recommended a GR 66*** (which is a custom model having a slightly different rim than the more main-stream GR pieces...but a rim that is virtually identical to the Sparx).
I've also acquired a GR 66** which has a shallower cup and somewhat tighter backbore; I'm still "experimenting/getting used to" this one but results so far are encouraging.
I find the endurance significantly improved with them, the resistance is nice and low (I like low resistance), and the sound and intonation complements the horns that I use them on: an old Getzen Eterna 800 large bore cornet, a Schilke B1, and an Eclipse MR.
Are they worth the price? Well, the way I figure it, the mouthpiece is the one component that is "most intimate" with your face so it's worth the money for the comfort. They might not be for everyone (although it seems that the GR catalogue grows every month or three) but when you find the "one" that works for you then it is a no-brainer.
A lot of folks wouldn't kick about spending $140 (or much more) on a decent case for their horn but can't square themselves with the idea of spending a like amount on a mouthpiece. I figure if I spent a bunch of money on a GREAT horn, then a little extra to keep it safe AND make sure that playing it is as enjoyable as possible is a good investment.
IMHO, YMMV, FWIWCFM & etc.
After years of playing a Mt Vernon Bach 1 1/2 C, I downsized to a GR G 66***, because I don't play enough now to keep my lip in shape on the Bach. Since then I have acquired also the NB 66****, (another GR product) which has almost the same cup volume as the G 66***, but with a slightly tighter back bore. The bite is a little sharper also, which I prefer. It doesn't give me quite as dark a sound, but it helps the crispness of my articulations a great deal. Frankly, I like both mouthpieces very much.
Mouthpieces are such a personal thing, it's hard to make recommendations to someone else. I never found a mouthpiece I prefer to the GR pieces. The quality is second to none. Talk to Bruce Lee and I think he can guide you to something you will like. GR makes an excellent piece.
O.K., stupid question time....what are the '****' behind the GR 66?
I've often wondered about these mouthpieces. The Schilke MP's seem to give me good results. How do these GR mouthpieces compare?
The stars indicate that the mouthpiece rim has been especially designed for Gary Radke himself. If you check the website for GR you'll see that apparently he has a dental formation that is such as to cause him to look for a really comfortable rim that still can be "handled" accurately. The "star series" (I believe they actually call them the Northern Brass Custom series? Bruce?) indicates that it has such a rim.
The best bet is to pop on into the GR website and check out their charts... you'll soon see the relationship of *, **, and *** etc. Then if you think you might benefit from such a rim, just download and complete the form that is available... or send a private email to Bruce and "chat" with him ( you can frequently find him online with MSN Messenger) and discuss your situation... he knows what he's talking about.
GR has a number of different series of mouthpieces with an inside diameter of .660 inches (for example). The various series have different style rims, even though the inside diameters are the same. The "G" rim was designed by Gary Radke for his own use after dental work as Tootsal suggested. It's a little wider than the stock GR rim. But the stars refer to cup volume. The more stars, the greater the cup volume. Thus a G 66 *** has greater cup volume than a G 66**. The stars are a way to compare different pieces within a given series. There are also possibly some variations in back bores that accompany different cup volumes, but I don't know all the details, except for the pieces I play. A G 66** has a tighter backbore than a G 66***, as well as a smaller cup. It's more of a lead piece than the 66***.
But you wouldn't want to use the stars to compare mps in different series like for example a 66** and a 63***.
The GR folks and/or Bruce Lee can explain all the details about the various pieces. I recommend you call Bruce. He doesn't sound like I do, but the last time I had a mouthpiece question, I got him to play the various models over the phone to give me an idea of their relative tone characteristics. That plus his advice was invaluable in narrowing down just the mp I was looking for.
I will say that Bruce has heard and seen me play and that helps. But he hadn't heard me the first time I bought a piece from him, and his advice was right on that time also.
I play a GR 3M, GR Cornet #7 and #5 and I think GR mouthpieces are great. Much more comfortable and play sooo much better in every respect than my old Bach 3C. Obviously mouthpieces are a very personal choice but I would definitely recommend them and say its worth checking them out.
If you can find a dealer that has been trained by Gary to do a mouthpiece fitting then I highly recommend it. I've found the perfect rim for me since spending a few hours with Brian Scriver. They're a little expensive but tottally worth it.
To anybody interested in buying a GR mouthpiece, I would recommend that you try one, or a bunch, before you buy it. There is nothing like putting the mouthpiece into your horn and blowing on it. Then you can get a sense of what they are like. Nobody can fit you by phone. Just as nobody can fit you a pair of shoes, pants, or anything else by phone.
These mouthpieces are different from anything else that I have tried. I didn't care for them, but that doesn't mean that you might not like them. Go to your local store and try a bunch. If you order directly, it's yours. NO backsies.
You can email Brian Scriver at [email protected] or call him at
(705) 715 - 7060 between 9:00 am - 5:00 pm EST, Monday - Friday for a free consultation. Brian is Gary's business partner.
A consultation is valuable because GR mouthpieces are designed to work best when a specific rim contour (rim + 'alpha angle' - the angle at which the rim merges into the initial part of the cup wall) is matched with your facial structure. Some of the GR pieces will not work for you at all and some will be wonderful, but going into a shop and picking one up at random doesn't guarantee you will pick up a piece that matches your chops correctly.
The other thing is that they tend to sound brighter from behind the horn then they actually do to the audience - due to something with the overtones they produce, although I can't explain that yet! :wink: