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Topics - BLMonopole

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All about Clarinets / Anyone else having trouble logging in??
« on: August 14, 2020, 03:56:43 AM »
I keep getting an error message:

This page isn’t workingclarinetpages.info redirected you too many times.
Try clearing your cookies.

I've cleaned out my cookies, but Google Chrome still won't let me in.  I had to resort to Safari.  I'm wondering if this is a "Me" thing, or if others are having the issue as well. 

I have two Buffet R-13s (a Bb from 1960 and an A from 1981) that are terrific instruments.  I've never played a better clarinet than these vintage R-13s (but I've played many that are every bit as good).

However, I think Buffet's marketing became far more important than its craftsmanship at some point after the 1980s (maybe someone knows what happened with Buffet back then).  Today, you pay thousands for a new Buffet with the expectation that you'll have to send it to your tech before you can really play it. 

Meanwhile, Selmer Paris has been making incredible instruments for at least as long.  I have several Selmer Paris clarinets (bass, alto, basset horn, contra alto) and have owned an Eb and a Bb Series 9* from them that were spectacular. And yet the brand has lagged (a long way) behind Buffet in the clarinet world for a long time (since the R-13, I understand). Leblanc and Yamaha also make great instruments (though admittedly, I haven't ever played any!)

Also, there are many (now vintage) brands that have produced great instruments over the years that are even more unsung: Couesnon, Noblet, Thibouville, Dolnet, Marigaux, Penzel-Mueller, and so many others.

So, why is Buffet so darn popular?  And overpriced?  I can't think of a reason.  So, I submit: BUFFET IS OVERRATED. 

Thoughts?  (Feel free to disagree....I'm probably overlooking something)


So, I thought I was done with Eb clarinet and sold them all.  Easily 3-4 years have passed and I haven't missed them at all.

Now someone is asking me to play one post-apocalypse on a regular basis.  Given how personal and individual these horns are, I'm thinking of buying one again. (I know, just shoot me...)

I don't want to spend a lot, and have briefly considered buying one of those Chinese models.  Yinfente in rosewood is the one that caught my eye.  Anyone have any experience with these?  (I know...I'm sure they're terrible, but thought I'd ask)


All about Clarinets / eBay ad of the week....too funny
« on: February 21, 2019, 04:33:10 PM »

All about Clarinets / Kessler Custom Low C Bass Clarinet - 2nd Generation
« on: December 14, 2018, 04:04:32 AM »
I'm not a paid endorser and I have no relationship with the Kesslers (other than I bought the horn from them), but thought I'd share my experience

I had been looking for a low C bass, and couldn't find one for a price I was willing to pay. After hearing Michael Lowenstern's review of the new Kessler, I decided to order one.

It arrived just two weeks and WOW. It's a terrific instrument. It truly exceeded my expectations in terms of quality (especially keywork, which I was worried would be soft -- but it isn't!), playability (tone, intonation, and it plays right out of the box), and finish (beautiful instrument, nicely thought through and assembled). I'll need to spend some time practicing use of the right thumb keys, but other than that, I'm thrilled.

Mostly, I'm excited that a Chinese-made (and then US-finished) horn could deliver so much quality for the money. It gives me great hope that we will see more and more instruments coming out of China that will be affordable and desirable. Great work Kesslers!

Give this instrument a try! (BTW, I was nervous about ordering it before playing it...but it was a risk very much worth taking)

Absolutely gorgeous instrument in amazing vintage condition, this professional quality instrument plays beautifully top to bottom.  Amazing workmanship from a small Swedish maker. 

As seen in the photos, it's marked "Eric Petterson - Stockholm" on all parts, and has a silver band at the top of the lower joint with Mr. Petterson's signature on it.  The serial number is #8**.  The instrument has many interesting features including rollers, silver-plated keys, an unusually articulted LH C#/G# key, beautiful wood, and a warm rich tone.  No cracks or other damage.  Comes in a newer pochette case. 

In terms of history, Eric Petterson was a clarinetist in the mid-20th century.  His clarinets were copues of the Klose/Buffet instruments of the time, with a few differences (e.g., the rollers, and the raised tone hole for C#/G#).  All of his instruments were hand made in a small workshop in Stockholm with much love and care. 


Vintage Cabart clarinet in key of C. This is a project horn that needs repair to be playable.  The barrel, top joint and lower joint are made of grenadilla wood.  There are no cracks or damage visible. 

Please note that the bell included is not original, it is also made of ebonite.  It does fit on the lower tenon, but a slight gap remains. 

Vintage case in good condition is included.


Selmer Bundy bass clarinet all set up and ready to play. This is a used vintage horn in good condition and recently repadded. There is some normal wear and tear (small dents and scrapes), but nothing significant -- see photos. We believe that this is a 1960s-1970s era instrument in very good condition.

We had this all set up for my son, who has now become a drummer. (Ah, kids!)

Includes Fobes debut mouthpiece, Rovner ligature and cap, cork grease, and peg.  Includes original case which is solid and functional, but shows some wear. 


All about Clarinets / Basset Horn
« on: June 10, 2018, 09:44:40 AM »
I have been waiting to purchase a basset horn for a while, and finally came across one that I could afford on eBay recently. 

I'm posting pics here mostly just to show off....but it is a gorgeous horn that with just a little refurb, will be an incredible player.

All about Clarinets / Basset Horns -- Does anyone actually own one?
« on: May 05, 2016, 09:33:40 AM »
I've been playing quite a bit of chamber music lately, and have become enamored of the idea of a basset horn and the expanded repertoire it would allow me to play. 

That said, I'm also aware that there really isn't THAT much music for them (i.e., not much call for them as part of a standard ensemble), they are wildly expensive even used (at least compared to other clarinets), and can be cantankerous (i.e., something like an alto clarinet) and a challenge to play well. 

Does anyone own one who is willing to share experiences? 

All about Clarinets / MOLD! Ugh! How to Refurbish a Case?
« on: May 04, 2016, 11:37:36 AM »
So, I was able to get my hands on a beautifully preserved Selmer Paris Rosewood Contra Alto clarinet from the late 1950s for what I consider a real bargain.  It is in (mostly) gorgeous shape, and plays like crazy. However, when I sent it to my tech for an overhaul, he found mold in the bore. Ugh. 

I wasn't incredibly surprised since it is in its original case which smelled more than a bit musty.  My tech will, of course, clean the instrument thoroughly during the overhaul.  However, the horn needs a new home, or at least its current home thoroughly fumigated. 

A new case would be nice....but incredibly costly.  I'm thinking that someone must refurb cases like this.  Any thoughts on who? 

And, I guess that I can rip out the old fabric and foam and replace it (there's gotta be a youtube video on that), but has anyone actually done the case refurb themselves and can provide words of encouragement? 

Thanks in advance.....

All about Clarinets / Clarinet \"Family Picture\"
« on: July 13, 2014, 05:30:40 AM »
Before I started selling off \"my clarinet stash\" last year, I took a picture (sadly, not a very good one!) of the full range of horns I had at the time.  Pictured here are:

Ab sopranissimo
Eb sopranino
C soprano
Bb soprano
A soprano
Eb alto
Bb bass
Eb contra alto

I continue to play the Eb sopranino, Bb soprano, and A soprano quite regularly.  The alto, bass, and contra alto on occasion....and the C soprano when I\'m feeling too lazy to transpose at church.

All about Clarinets / Just for Fun: Ab Sopranino
« on: July 13, 2014, 05:13:23 AM »
Photo of an Ab sopranino clarinet that I purchased, refurbished and sold last year.  It was awfully tiny (14\" long from tip of mouthpiece to end of bell) and impossible for a guy with big hands like me to play. but it could certainly squeal!

I don\'t miss it, but was glad to have had one to care for and noodle around with.....

All about Clarinets / MCS (Mediocre Clarinet Syndrome)
« on: May 09, 2014, 10:54:48 AM »
This is an affliction that strikes many of us.  It happens when you see a cool, old, unusual, or unfamiliar clarinet on that infernal auction site and somehow feel compelled to bid on it.  \"This may be the one,\" you say to yourself, \"the one that has been prophesied....a true diamond in the rough.\"  You buy it.  You tinker with it.  A lot.  You make it playable.....even spend extra time to really do a great job.

But, in the end, it\'s still mediocre.  Not all that good.  Maybe not too bad though.  So you put it in a pile somewhere with the dozens of other mediocre clarinets you bought previously and hope that you can sell them for a small profit on eBay.  It\'s like a clarinet \"catch and release\" program.

All about Clarinets / Great deal, bad plating
« on: April 19, 2014, 05:19:17 AM »
So, I was able to pick up a Buffet r13 in A for what I think is a very reasonable price on the evil auction site.  The clarinet arrived quickly, and it plays absolutely beautifully.

There is just one issue -- the plating on the keys is quite worn and is coming off in several places. It\'s not just an aesthetic issue as in some places the ragged plating is sharp and uncomfortable.  The seller didn\'t fully disclose this, but did show that there were some problems with the keys (a few were covered in cork).  

After some discussion with a couple of techs, I\'m working on getting it replated through one of them.  Has anyone else done this before?  

Here are some before pictures….

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