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Repairing a Dukoff mouthpiece

JTHANK

Member
Messages
33
Locality
Hong Kong
Hi all,

Haven't shared for quite some time. Besides my day job, I have been practicing a lot, joining a band, and getting more into repairing...

As for mouthpiece refacing, I had tried some on my own mouthpieces previously. I recently got this poor Dukoff D7 Alto Mouthpiece from someone who had dropped it accidentally. Given that he has no intention of getting it fixed, I decided to step up and try saving it.

Here are some photos of how the mouthpiece looks before the operation. Hope you would enjoy this post!

Cheers,

JT
 

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jrintaha

Senior Member
Messages
283
Locality
Helsinki, Finland
Please take photos of your process, would be very interesting to see.

I've actually started tinkering around with two nameless stock mouthpieces to see what I can adjust in a mouthpiece. I'm keeping one as-is for reference, doing all the modifications to the other one to see how they affect it.
 

altissimo

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,349
Locality
leicester
some useful info here -

 
Last edited by a moderator:

JTHANK

Member
Messages
33
Locality
Hong Kong
Thanks altissimo, I did come across this video and it is very useful.

I actually have already finished this project, just thinking how I should present it and breaking it down in a few posts so it is easier to understand what I had done.

Here are the major issues that I found on this mouthpiece (listed roughly in the order of my workflow):

1. Bent tip and shank
2. Machine marks on table and rails
3. Disappearing tip rail
4. One side of the rail is much thicker than the other one

I first cleaned the mouthpiece with a ultrasonic cleaner, then I followed the video that altissimo posted above to get them back in shape. Here are some photos after this step and the tools I used.
 

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JTHANK

Member
Messages
33
Locality
Hong Kong
After unbending the tip and shank, using #800 sand paper on a flat surface, I removed the machine marks on the table and rails.

I also use filers to roughly shape the tip rail with reference to a reed.

At this point, the mpc is playable but as shown in the photo, the two side rails are not balanced: the rail to the right in the photo is much thicker. I struggled if I should go further to deal with it 'coz the owner of the mpc had been playing on these uneven rails and still sounded great.
 

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JTHANK

Member
Messages
33
Locality
Hong Kong
The idea of going further to perfect the mpc stayed in my head over the weekend, so I decided to give it a shot. This is done using filers again, and a lot of patience. The material is very soft on the Dukoff, so besides filing, it is possible to "burnish" some spots and shaping it the way I want with a screwdriver to some extent.

After the side rail was reshaped, I filed the baffle and chamber just to clean it up and made it more smooth. Filers, sand paper, steel wool were all used for this.

Then, I defined the inner part of tip rail more carefully and precisely.

Lastly, the mpc is refaced with #800 sand paper on a flat surface, a set of feeler gauges, and a homemade glass gauge.
 

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JTHANK

Member
Messages
33
Locality
Hong Kong
Looks good. How does it play?

It played well but the shank is bigger than the metal Beechler I use, so I have to push it further to the neck to try and have a hard time playing in tune. Regardless of the intonation, it sounds "bigger" compared to the Beechler and gives more sub-tones. Altissimo notes are easier to hit.

I would hand it back to the owner and see what he thinks about it.

Personally, I would not consider buying a Dukoff. Not because of its sound, but it is just too fragile.
 

Ivan

Undecided
Café Supporter
Messages
7,818
Locality
Peeblesshire
Well you've made the table a thing of beauty
 

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