Mouthpieces Time to try a new mouthpiece - Tenor


Hong Kong
Hi All

I know this is the tired old question but I wanted some opinions on my next move.

I finished grade 6 on the Alto in May and after we have had a baby I've been bit too busy to take on any more grades for now. I always planned to move over the the Tenor and I have been working slowly through the 48 etudes (like I'm up to No. 5!). I spend half my practice time on this and the other half playing along with Aebersold tracks to work on improvising.

With that in mind, I am using a Selmer C* (with Vandoren Reeds - blue) for the classical and my teacher has suggested that I consider getting another mouthpiece for the Jazz. I'd like to aim for an open mike night some day.

So I'm in the market and not sure what I really want.

Ideally, it won't be too loud as I live in an apartment (Both the Tenor and the C* have been good with this in comparison to the Alto) but offer some more flexibility with sound. The C* sounds a bit too straight for want of a better word.

Anyway I would appreciate any suggestions (Including reed combinations). I like all sorts of players from Coltrane to Brecker, lately Mike MacArthur has been rocking my car ;)

Thanks in advance.
I have just started using a PPT onyxite for tenor........................amazing mouthpiece! You will not be disappointed...
I recently went through this for my Keilworth tenor. I ended up with a Lebayle LR2 metal piece and a Phil-Tone Sapphire hard rubber, which is the one I'm playing all the time at the moment.

The best advice I had was to try as many out as I could ideally from retailers that would permit returns. The others that I looked at included a Jody Jazz HR (nice but not quite the one for me but could be lovely) and a Vandoren Jumbo Java that had been modified to be a bit less loud. I'd definitely look at Vandorens again, possibly a Java or a V16.
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+1 for the PPT, and it'll play at whisper elvel if you want, but it's best FFF
+1 for the Java, (I've not tried the Jumbo though) it suits all the various styles that I have to play, can be quiet and subtoney/subtle, but also loud and bright when you want/need it. :thumb:
With regards to both:

What tip size should I be thinking of and any reed suggestions?

Thanks :)
Just throwing in a cheaper option that performs well above its price tag (especially used prices).
So I'm saying that whatever your budget is, its hard to be disappointed with these.

Saxscape FatCat
Saxscape Namia

Slightly different but feeling the FatCat would be more Apartment friendly.

Somewhere around 0.102" which is almost equivalent to a 7 in otto link language. You're on your own with reeds though :)

There are many prototypes available that may have a 'rougher' finish but I belive otherwise as intended.
Can someone advise on where to view / see reviews of / buy the *Saxscapes please?

I'm also in the market for a new tenor mpc. My Vandoren V16 T8 is too wide for me and is in the Yard Sale as I type.

I'd love a PPT (heck, I've got the video and some of the PDF guides :) ) but I'm probably a bit too neophyte for it, as yet. I'll aspire to it though.
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if you click on the buy something link at the top of the page, you'll be able to navigate to the PPTs. Sound clips there as well. For reviews - try Daveysaxboy's posts here.

They do come up used occasionally, but not often, most of us tend to keep them.

Rico RJS work well with PPTs, I use a 2H on the 8*, should give you a starting point.
UPDATE: I decided to put my brain into gear and *found them.

Well done......
But you know what? I actually wouldn't be inspired enough by any of that to buy one.

Yet I still like them.
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Okay, well I've ordered one (PPT onyxite for Christmas)

Thanks for the recommendations!
Okay, well so far so good..... sort of.

It seems to want a different thickness of cork (can't pull it out far enough to get it in tune). That said I don't want to change it because it is perfect for the selmer mouthpiece.

Otherwise it was a lots more tame than I expected, I'm looking forward to getting to grips with it.

What to do about the cork?
There is no real standard for the bore of the shank so this is quite common.

If the cork is too thin you could have it replaced to fit the mouthpece, but if you use more than one mouthpiece and the other is too tight there are other solutions:

  • Wrap some paper or something round the cork
  • Have the bore of the other mouthpiece opened up - you can do this yourself with some sandpaper and quite a lot of spare time
  • Have the wider bore mouthpiece made narrower by painting inside with nail polish - I haven't tested this but have heard of people doing it.
Enjoy your PPT
To deal with different mouthpiece bores, wrap some PTFE tape around the cork. Any plumbers merchant or DIY store will sell it. It is non'sticky and forms a good seal.
Is that something I can do every time I play or is it a semi permanent solution?

Is that something I can do every time I play or is it a semi permanent solution?

It should be fine until you want to use a mouthpiece with a narrower shank bore.

I thought of one other thing you can do:

If the cork has become very compressed, heating it will expand it. I mask off the neck with something then rotate the cork in some steam from a kettle. Do this carefully it doesn't need much to expand the cork and holding it it too long may loosen the glue that's holding the cork.
Thanks all.

I should be a bit clearer about what I'm doing. At the moment I split my practise between working on classical pieces and then attempting Jazz.

On the advice of my teacher I bought the new mouthpiece, my plan is to work up to an open mike night or something :) so I am switching mouthpieces half way through my practise.

Thats why I am not keen to permanently fix the cork. I don't think it is too compressed just better suited to the Selmer mouthpiece.

So I am really looking for a temporary fix :)

In the meantime, I am pleased with the mouthpiece so far, only struggle is seeing the reed on the white mouthpiece reminds me I am going blind!

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