All profit supporting special needs music education and Help Musicians
Tutorials

M/Pieces - Ligs Crystal Mouthpieces

Andrew Sanders

Northern Commissioner for Caslm
Messages
2,773
I had an interesting conversation yesterday with a clarinetist who uses an old Vandoren glass mouthpiece.
He's had it about 30 years and swears by it. Appearently the weight of the mouthpiece really helps to keep the piece in place with double lip embouchure. He says that they were made in Italy under license from Vandoren (Any ideas Milandro?).

Anyone have any information about these pieces. I'm interested in the method of manufacture, type of glass used and what do they sound like. Also if anyone has one I'd love a go!

Sax and glass my dream thread!
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
true, crystal mouthpieces are made by Pomarico both under their name and many other brands. They are specialists of the Crystal mouthpiece.
http://www.pomaricompieces.com/mouthpieces.html

They produce Mouthpieces for clarinet and saxophone. Refacing these mouthpieces can be done by the company of by few refacers who know how to deal with Crystal (they are not made of simple glass).
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Andrew Sanders

Northern Commissioner for Caslm
Messages
2,773
true, crystal mouthpieces are made by Pomarico both under their name and many other brands. They are specialists of the Crystal mouthpiece.
http://www.pomaricompieces.com/mouthpieces.html

They produce Mouthpieces for clarinet and saxophone. Refacing these mouthpieces can be done by the company of by few refacers who know how to deal with Crystal (they are not made of simple glass).
Thanks Milandro.

Crystal only refers to a glass that has over 6% lead content. It doesn't mean they are made from rock crytal.
The lead softens the material and in this instance would make the material easier to grind and finish. (Like traditional cut glass).
Normal soda lime glass would crack and spall on the edges.

It looks to me like the mouthpieces are blown by hand into a graphite mould and then worked and faced after cooling. Cutting and polishing is normally done with diamond pads followed by pumice on a felt pad. I bet that's how it's done. Lots of work unless you're computerised. Which I am not.

Thanks again to Chris and Milandro.

Anyone got one?
But I don't supose Pomarico would tell me this
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
No I didn’t think they were made of rock crystal :)

I have had a few for Saxophone. Nice but the ones I had were all too small for me.

Pomarico is rather secretive about the way they make mouthpieces but must be as you said
 

Andrew Sanders

Northern Commissioner for Caslm
Messages
2,773
I tried a pomarico a few months ago, I really didn't like it.
Interesting Pete.
Was it the sound you didn't like, or having a lump of glass in your mouth.
I'm really hoping that these bits of glass have been annealed properly as the internal stresses could make them explode!
I suppose the grinding process would set any time bombs off!
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
the Mouthpieces that I did try were just too small but actually didn’t feel too different form a hard rubber piece that was too small
 

jonf

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,680
the Mouthpieces that I did try were just too small but actually didn’t feel too different form a hard rubber piece that was too small
Me too. I tried one on clarinet years ago, and I guess I sort of expected it to sound extra smooth, pure, and, well, glassy. Nope. Just like a conventional ebonite one. Bit of a disappointment really.
 

tzadik

Member
Messages
356
Despite the hard material... Pomarico crystal piece tend to play very mellow.
The internal design is very peculiar... and it limitates volume and projection, even with open pieces (9/9*/10*).
They are good when a low volume is required.


They converted/adapted the internal design from clarinet mouthpieces... but on saxophone mouthpieces the results are "questionable".
 

baritonesax

Member
Messages
256
I have 3 or 4 crystal clarinet mouthpieces - can't remember for sure. All rather open. Two Buffets and one Lucchi at least. Rather tough mouthpieces to like unless you like raucous clarinet - which I don't. I don't think they provide any really special qualities over ebonite.
 

Andrew Sanders

Northern Commissioner for Caslm
Messages
2,773
Strange that the clarinet pieces are "raucous" and the sax ones "very mellow".
I wonder if the internal chamber on these pieces are the same or similar.
I wouldn't have thought raucous clarinet would fit into the classical palette very often. Probably used for that evil, shouty rock that seems to be loved in Europe!
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
:) if the sound would depend on the hardness of the material then there is really a future for the famous (unfortunately to date only postulated!) Cheese mouthpiece. Think of all the possible variation given by hardness and fragrance of the different cheeses!
 

aldevis

Surrealist Contributor.
Cafe Moderator
Messages
12,125
:) if the sound would depend on the hardness of the material then there is really a future for the famous (unfortunately to date only postulated!) Cheese mouthpiece. Think of all the possible variation given by hardness and fragrance of the different cheeses!
Kenny G uses one for recording.
 

Andrew Sanders

Northern Commissioner for Caslm
Messages
2,773
:) if the sound would depend on the hardness of the material then there is really a future for the famous (unfortunately to date only postulated!) Cheese mouthpiece. Think of all the possible variation given by hardness and fragrance of the different cheeses!
Saw an alto sax in the oxfam shop on Saturday and there was a smell of cheese coming from the case. Do you think someone's tried it?
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
possibly! I Know Stephen Howard had published a picture of one on SOTW but I cannot find it anymore.......
 

Pete Thomas

Chief of Stuff
Commercial Supporter
Messages
13,979
Interesting Pete.
Was it the sound you didn't like, or having a lump of glass in your mouth.
If I remember correctly it was just rather stuffy and didn't feel very responsive

Strange that the clarinet pieces are "raucous" and the sax ones "very mellow".
I wonder if the internal chamber on these pieces are the same or similar.
I wouldn't have thought raucous clarinet would fit into the classical palette very often. Probably used for that evil, shouty rock that seems to be loved in Europe!
If it had been raucous, I might have liked it better.
 
Saxholder Pro

Staff online

Help!Mailing List
Top Bottom