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M/Pieces - Ligs Re-Lacquer a mouthpiece?

Yanno

Member
Messages
119
Location
Woodbridge, Suffolk
Hi all,
For a few months now I have owned a real vintage (well probably only 80's but it looks worn :S) well its an Otto Link "super" tone master.
I have only played it to see what the tone is like- but not really had much experience with it.
Downside to it is, its quite worn, eg. the "lacquer" has worn in places- probably only around 50% original lacquer still in place.
in some places it has even worn down to a coppery/ bronze colour (not sure if this is the metal its made from?) this has occurred especially around the facing.

My main question is- will it be dire/ worth it for it to be re-lacquered? as I would quite like to keep the piece due the warm tone they can produce.

I can email photos if anyone wants to have a look and tell me any tips and give some info.

Thanks
Yanno
 

AlanU

Member
Messages
625
Location
Enfield, North London
Yanno, don't do it.
It plays well and you like it?
Why jeopardize that?

Is it alto/tenor?
What ligature do you use?
I use a 70s metal Link on my vintage altos and it's finish is a bit worn too.
The box for mine says 'bell metal' which I assume to be a bronze alloy.

A few months ago I really improved its responsiveness. I suppose you'd call it hand-finishing.
Quite a simple process really, but you need to be bold about altering your mouthpiece.
Send me a PM if you're interested.
 

jonf

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,616
Location
Betelgeuse
Metal mouthpieces aren't lacquered, they're plated with metal. Usually made from a brass, which goes green if left raw. They have an initial plate of copper, then a top plate of gold or silver, which being expensive is applied as thinly as the manufacturer can get away with. These are also soft metals, so they wear off, leaving the copper or even bare brass exposed.

You can get them replated, but it's a specialist job, and once done the facing will need to be refinished. I wouldn't do it if I were you. I also have an old Otto Link which in places is worn down to the brass. I'd never have it replated for fear of messing up how it plays. Just playing it regularly and giving it a quick wide down each time it gets put away keeps the verdigris at bay. I have the same issue with an Oleg Maestro alto piece worked on by Brian Powell. It's worn and pitted but plays fantastically, and having it replated would seriously risk changing a great and unique mouthpiece.
 

griff136

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,040
Location
I live in Exmouth Devon.
Im with Alan and Jon, if it plays nicely leave well alone.

Ive had some really nice looking saxes and mouthpieces and they havent played as well as the rough looking ones in most cases.
 
OP
Yanno

Yanno

Member
Messages
119
Location
Woodbridge, Suffolk
Hi again,
Its a 7* Tenor m/piece and the ligature is the standard one
The ligature seems to be in a better condition to the piece- it maybe newer than the mouthpiece its self?

But with this i have decided to leave it as i couldn't let something as good as this go to waste.
Thanks everyone :)
 
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