support Tutorials CDs PPT mouthpieces
  • All posts re: Fake (counterfeit) saxophones and scams are now in their own subforum here:

    Fakes and Scams

Ligatures Can a mouthpiece really be that finicky..

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
Bought a sakshama Florida mouthpiece..I spent 2 days trying different reeds ligs etc to no avail..the piece just sounded stuffy. It played well with a legere no 2..Finally found a no 2 red box that made it play, a no 2 plasticover and a no 3 woodstone..out of around 30 reeds in dsj 2m rigotti gold 2 1/2 m and soft, green box 2, 2 1/2 and 3, gonzales 2 1/2 and bss 2 1/2..tbf its cost me more in reeds than i care to think..The seller assures me there is nothing wrong with the piece. When it pays it plays well..I have played other links and they hve not beenvso reed fussy..can a Florida style hnd made piece be that reed fussy..
 

Jimmymack

Senior Member
Messages
1,318
Locality
London
I don't know the reason but I played RPC for many years and it took me a long time to find a reed that I could rely on to work straight away. I could get others to play but it was usually too much struggle. I loved the piece otherwise I would have given up but in the end I settled on Rigotti 2m, 2l was too soft 2s was too strong.

I tried all sorts of others but it needed that strength before I could happily play it without elaborate and lengthy breaking in procedures. I've no idea why this was so hard, I've switched to a different mouthpiece now and can get a lot more brands and strengths to work with satisfactory results although the Rigotti 2m still reigns supreme.

The thing my RPC and your Sakshama have in common is that they are both hand made so maybe that's where the answer lies. Nobody will admit that it's not perfect and the natural tendency is to blame yourself but I don't think this is necessarily the right conclusion. Some people can make anything play, and I usually can, I played a really crappy Link that fought with me, for years, but that RPC mouthpiece needs a particular type of reed for me to get the best out of it and I won't let anybody tell me different. I bought it used and who knows if the seller had the same experience, and didn't want to let on, I still love it but I've found something that gives me what I want without having to fight for it. I think the answer to your question is yes it can be that reed fussy.
 

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
That sakshamas a great guy..really quick reples to e mails...tbf i keep getting told its me wrong emboucher etc get a bit cheesed of with it..I thought there was something wrong with it he said send it back and hed check great service..im now sure its just reed finicky when it played it was a fantastic sounding piece..the javacreds 2 play well but i thought they might be a bit soft for a 7*..
 

Dr G

Member
Messages
858
Locality
Northern California
That sakshamas a great guy..really quick reples to e mails...tbf i keep getting told its me wrong emboucher etc get a bit cheesed of with it..I thought there was something wrong with it he said send it back and hed check great service..im now sure its just reed finicky when it played it was a fantastic sounding piece..the javacreds 2 play well but i thought they might be a bit soft for a 7*..

I thought you were already moving it on.

If the Java Red 2 works well, then there ya go. With time, you may develop an embouchure and airstream better suited to it.

As I recall the Sakshama pieces that I played, he tends to like a thin tip rail. If you don’t align your reed well, the response will suffer. Is that finicky? Not in my book.
 

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
Thats not the issue @Dr G..as @Jimmymack said maybe some pieces are a bit more fickle...i cant be lining up the reeds right on the reds and ishimoris and not on all the rest.its not alwys the individual sometimes its the gear.
 

Dr G

Member
Messages
858
Locality
Northern California
Thats not the issue @Dr G..as @Jimmymack said maybe some pieces are a bit more fickle...i cant be lining up the reeds right on the reds and ishimoris and not on all the rest.its not alwys the individual sometimes its the gear.

Spot on. If the mouthpiece works very well with some reeds, but not others, it may be that the rest of your reeds need attention. Have you flattened them?
 

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
Spot on. If the mouthpiece works very well with some reeds, but not others, it may be that the rest of your reeds need attention. Have you flattened them?
Hi @Dr G yep quick passover with the geek. Even bought 3 new greens all stuffy..think its just really finicky and its taken a lot of time to find what works on it..plays great with certain reeds so cant be faulty...I had a morgan piece like it, sold it on nd tbe buyer loved it..just not overly reed friendly..
 

nigeld

Too many mouthpieces
Café Supporter
Messages
8,012
Locality
Bristol, UK
It might be the combination of the saxophone, the mouthpiece and you that is finicky.
Or maybe the mouthpiece is just rather unforgiving.
Some setups are problematic. in my opinion, life is too short to spend much time on them.
 

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
It might be the combination of the saxophone, the mouthpiece and you that is finicky.
Or maybe the mouthpiece is just rather unforgiving.
Some setups are problematic. in my opinion, life is too short to spend much time on them.
Lol, Sax is fine, im fine, think the piece just needs matching up..do agree with the sentiment tho..
 

Pete Thomas

Well-Known Member
Commercial Supporter
Messages
16,219
Locality
London
Even bought 3 new greens all stuffy..think its just really finicky and its taken a lot of time to find what works on it..plays great with certain reeds so cant be faulty...I had a morgan piece like it, sold it on nd tbe buyer loved it..just not overly reed friendly..

All this means is that the mouthpiece may have a table that is not flat, either intentionally or due to some distortion. You need a mouthpiece to play fine with different brands and cuts of reed - it it doesn't then either get it fixed so that it does or move it on.

No mouthpiece should need a specific reed to make it play, that sounds like an excuse for a dodgy mouthpiece. Bit like the wrong kind of snow excuse when British rail ground to a halt, even though snow was predicted they weren't ready for the type of snow that happened to fall on that winter day.
 

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
Yeah the maker
All this means is that the mouthpiece may have a table that is not flat, either intentionally or due to some distortion. You need a mouthpiece to play fine with different brands and cuts of reed - it it doesn't then either get it fixed so that it does or move it on.

No mouthpiece should need a specific reed to make it play, that sounds like an excuse for a dodgy mouthpiece. Bit like the wrong kind of snow excuse when British rail ground to a halt, even though snow was predicted they weren't ready for the type of snow that happened to fall on that winter day.
Yeah sakshama said i can send it back to him but he's away til feb...then another 4 weeks to complete and return plus the cost...sooo much for e bays buyer protection I wanted to return it but i didn't say it was really damaged just picky and didn't work for me.Oh well £400 down the swanny..but hey at least ive closed my account..
 

Pete Thomas

Well-Known Member
Commercial Supporter
Messages
16,219
Locality
London
Oh well £400 down the swanny..but hey at least ive closed my account..
That's the risk of gambling. You get the fun but then you should accept the risk that you can end up making a loss.

Hence it's best to try before you buy, or investigate all the details of a return policy.

itd not really damaged just picky..

To me that implies damaged or badly made. In this case I would assume damaged, but probably wouldn't actually look like damage.
 
Last edited:

Pete Thomas

Well-Known Member
Commercial Supporter
Messages
16,219
Locality
London
I'm trying to think of another analogy.

Say you had a bow and arrows. All the arrows were perfect but they always veered to the left. You'd say that there was something wrong wrong with the bow. But then you find some arrows that are a bit bent to the right and you then find they all hit the target.

Is that a good bow that just happens to be "arrow picky" ie it works fine as long as the arrows are also out of whack?

I think you'd prefer a bow that didn't require bent arrows.

Or a rowing boat that just went round in circles. Then you find that it goes straight provided one oar is half the size of the other one.

You should not need to compensate for what may be the main defect.
 

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
Yep thought i was covered all beware..don't try to be honest with folks hit it with a lump hammer and return as damaged in transit..who'd have thought that " doesn't work for me" is legally transferred to change of mind...
 

Pete Thomas

Well-Known Member
Commercial Supporter
Messages
16,219
Locality
London
" doesn't work for me" is legally transferred to change of mind...
The legalities are all regulated either according to the T & C you agree to when buying but can also be overridden by the consumer rights of the relevant jurisdiction.

Change of mind is covered by UK consumer rights for distance selling, but not once you've tried something out . Unless specifically stated in the T & C which it often is (for example on Amazon). But to expect to try something and decided you don't like it, then send it back actually costs the seller money because they either receive something that they can no longer sell as new, or else have to pay to clean or refurbish.

For example our policy does cover trying a mouthpiece out, but it must be returned as new, and by that I mean it's fair that a showroom car may have had someone else sitting in it but not spilt a cup of coffee on the drivers seat.

Exceptions are for custom made orders, which cannot easily be sold to somebody else. I even had that discussion with the credit card portal Worldpay legal team who insisted I have a return policy on mouthpieces. They conceded though, that it needn't apply to custom orders.

And it never applies to knickers either. I hope.
 

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
All complex stuff but surely no one wod buy a mpce if they cant try it..change of mind should be that..if i didn't like it id just sell it on but i cant as i dont know if its broken..
 

Pete Thomas

Well-Known Member
Commercial Supporter
Messages
16,219
Locality
London
All complex stuff but surely no one wod buy a mpce if they cant try it..
But they very often do.

Isn't that what you did in this case? And you said it's difficult to return as the seller is away until Feb.

And also, there are mouthpiece makers who do not have a return policy. Whether they do or not should be part of a business plan. If they accept returns they need to bear that extra expense in mind and decided whether they charge more to make up for the returns, or whether the fact they accept returns means they are respected for that and so maybe sell more anyway. It's tricky one.
 

Dr G

Member
Messages
858
Locality
Northern California
There are people in the middle of that mix as well. Consider the case where the mouthpiece maker offers adjustments to the buyer’s satisfaction, but the buyer has chosen a mouthpiece that is just not suited for them, whether a wrong choice of baffle style, chamber size, or tip opening. I have read posts of people buying a large tip opening with little baffle, then whine because they cannot blow it. Similarly for cases where someone orders a small chamber, high baffle piece, then complain that they can’t get a “vintage” sound out of it.

The preferred middle path is where the experienced buyer talks to the tech, and describes their current setup and where they are trying to go, then the seller suggests a mouthpiece. If that doesn’t work, then the buyer and seller TALK, make adjustments, and carry on. If the buyer has too little experience to express their needs, or blindly picks a mouthpiece without knowing what to expect, it all falls to the maker for no good reason.

@eb424 I suggest you find a shop where you can try various mouthpieces to find a style and tip opening that works for you. Sitting down with an experienced teacher would take you miles in the forward direction. I wish you well.
 

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
But they very often do.

Isn't that what you did in this case? And you said it's difficult to return as the seller is away until Feb.

And also, there are mouthpiece makers who do not have a return policy. Whether they do or not should be part of a business plan. If they accept returns they need to bear that extra expense in mind and decided whether they charge more to make up for the returns, or whether the fact they accept returns means they are respected for that and so maybe sell more anyway. It's tricky one.
It was a private sale from e bay...TBF the seller did not have a returns policy..I thought I was covered by e bays money back guarantee but it transpures that the mouthpiece not working isnt one of them. I pay return and delivery postage..the only other expense they have is sanitising..It is sakshama that is away until Feb then i have to post to croatia so he can check it out...
 

eb424

Senior Member
Messages
2,744
Locality
london
There are people in the middle of that mix as well. Consider the case where the mouthpiece maker offers adjustments to the buyer’s satisfaction, but the buyer has chosen a mouthpiece that is just not suited for them, whether a wrong choice of baffle style, chamber size, or tip opening. I have read posts of people buying a large tip opening with little baffle, then whine because they cannot blow it. Similarly for cases where someone orders a small chamber, high baffle piece, then complain that they can’t get a “vintage” sound out of it.

The preferred middle path is where the experienced buyer talks to the tech, and describes their current setup and where they are trying to go, then the seller suggests a mouthpiece. If that doesn’t work, then the buyer and seller TALK, make adjustments, and carry on. If the buyer has too little experience to express their needs, or blindly picks a mouthpiece without knowing what to expect, it all falls to the maker for no good reason.

@eb424 I suggest you find a shop where you can try various mouthpieces to find a style and tip opening that works for you. Sitting down with an experienced teacher would take you miles in the forward direction. I wish you well.
I do have a teacher tbf...my sounds fine I still need lotsa work...All it was is that i have played links before and they wefe stuffy..Even my pro mate ahreed..I had no issue playing them and love the tone..I play between a 6* and 7* so when i saw the hand finished piece I thought that it would be ideal maybe a tad large as some 7*s are but that I could sell it on if it was..I must admit I was expecting it to play tho..lesson learned e bay account closed, stick with the lebayle metal it plays great but avtad bright sometimes..
 
Top Bottom