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The Trombone ForumHorns, Gear, and EquipmentMouthpieces(Moderators: BGuttman, Doug Elliott) Need Suggestions for Alto Trombone Mouthpiece
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Author Topic: Need Suggestions for Alto Trombone Mouthpiece  (Read 1609 times)
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heinz gries

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« Reply #20 on: Nov 18, 2017, 02:55PM »

What alto do you play?
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« Reply #21 on: Nov 19, 2017, 09:00AM »

The horn is a JinBao from the HornGuys with a Stauffer leadpipe. Currently using Dennis Wick 10CS with an opened throat. Works pretty well, but asking to see if I can make it work even better.  FYI I use different rim and cup sizes in my horns. Right tool for the right job thing. Switching stuff up doesn’t bother my playing at all.  Appreciate the input.
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Doug Elliott
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« Reply #22 on: Nov 19, 2017, 09:20AM »

The JinBao is stuffy but I haven't tried it with that leadpipe.  How far does the Wick's shank go into the receiver?
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« Reply #23 on: Nov 19, 2017, 09:21AM »

Even with the improved leadpipe, that horn has a bad low range. It's really just a learner's instrument. I don't think any combination of leadpipe and mpc will make it a really satisfying horn to play.
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Doug Elliott
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« Reply #24 on: Nov 19, 2017, 09:24AM »

But it looks just like a real instrument...
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« Reply #25 on: Nov 19, 2017, 10:31AM »

It looks just like the Slokar horn. A better horn would probably help out a lot!
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« Reply #26 on: Nov 19, 2017, 11:07AM »

I have a Bach 39 alto, a rather small alto. It can be played with a lot of different mouthpieces. It depends on what kind of sound you want. Do you want to sound like a small tenor or do you want a "lighter" touch. I have used the Yamaha 48A as well as several other mouthpieces: Bach 15E, 12E and Hammond 14S and 14XS, and the Christian Lindberg alto mouthpiece - can't  remember the number of that one now maybe it was 15CL?. All these are alto mouthpieces. All work. The only one that I struggle with is the Bach 15E that came with the horn because the rim-size is so small. I can't squeeze my lips in to that mouthpiece.  After long search I finally settled with a Bach 12E. That mouthpiece gave me the best alto sound when I played Mozarts Requiem and Brahms Requiem, but that was more than 20 years ago and at that time my tenor mouthpiece was a Bach 12C. I still think I got the best sound from that 12E.

I have also tried my small tenor mouthpieces. Bach 12C, 11C, 7C but do not like the sound. Maybe if you want to sound more tenor-ish, but then why don't use a small tenor.

Today I played the second symphony of Mendelsons. It was for alto, but I used my Bach 6 VII and a Bach 6 3/4 C. Think my 12E alto sound is a bit small for that one. Could have done it on alto with the Yamaha 48A though.

/Tom
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« Reply #27 on: Nov 19, 2017, 12:46PM »

Even with the improved leadpipe, that horn has a bad low range. It's really just a learner's instrument. I don't think any combination of leadpipe and mpc will make it a really satisfying horn to play.

My experience was actually the opposite. I had a hard time making the Jin Bao I was borrowing sound good and wasn't really learning how to play alto until I got a really good horn I that didn't have to fight against. Which I since then sold because I wasn't playing much modern alto anymore, but going back to a Jin Bao when I do need a modern alto, I can now make it sound good. I don't think I could if I hadn't had a good instrument to learn on first. I wouldn't recommend the Jin Bao as a learning instrument, more as a back up horn.

Little funny thing, a Jin Bao alto was used at a major symphony orchestra's concert I attended... Quick calculation, the principal trombone was playing an instrument worth 10,000 times less than that of the soloist playing in the same concert :-P
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« Reply #28 on: Nov 19, 2017, 01:35PM »

Jin bao works better if you don't touch the tuning slide. Most altos do
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« Reply #29 on: Nov 19, 2017, 04:13PM »

I found that when I had a JinBao with the improved leadpipe, that one of Doug's shanks specifically for alto made a substantial improvement. But I also play on an XT104N/C for alto stuff, so the larger rim definitely helps out my alto playing.  That said, also consider that the alto is going to give a different response than a tenor.  What you are experiencing might be more perception rather than an actually stuffy lower register. An alto does not have the carrying power in that range compared to a tenor trombone, especially if you're comparing it to a large bore. 

Have you tried another alto that did have a really great low range (in comparison to your Jin Bao)? Or are you comparing it to the a tenor? Because your approach might just need to be more nuanced and/or putting in enough time to get used to the sensation of the bell being in a different spot/bore being smaller than a tenor.
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« Reply #30 on: Nov 20, 2017, 04:48AM »

Ah where to begin...
To Doug - the Wick seems to fit the receiver almost identically to my king or XO jazz horn

For the others - the low range is not suffering with any of these mouthpieces I have mentioned. Quite the contrary, it seems to get stuffy a bit in the upper register, but not with the Wick.   I have also altered the horn to improve the focus and slotting and that has made a fantastic difference.  (Added a trumpet Acousticoil to the gooseneck)

Here’s the thing. None of the pieces are awful...I simply want to find what is optimum for that horn.
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« Reply #31 on: Nov 27, 2017, 09:39AM »

I have found a Shilke 45B.  It works very well.
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heinz gries

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« Reply #32 on: Nov 27, 2017, 12:22PM »

I have found a Shilke 45B.  It works very well.

for its small size, this mouthpiece has a great full sound Good!
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Helmut Voigt alto with modified 36 Bach slide and brassark copper leadpipe
Conn 34H alto in D
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Getzen Super deluxe silver plated and copper rim bell
Getzen 3508
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« Reply #33 on: Nov 30, 2017, 03:54PM »

Don't be afraid to take some risks, and don't be afraid to make a bright alto sound, as compared to a little-42B sound. 

Last month I played the Mendelssohn Lobgesang (also published as Symphony nr. 2) with an early instruments group using my Lätzsch alto, and the mouthpiece I used was a very short, very V-shaped little thing that may have once belonged to a German alto horn, plus a short tuning bit.  Cup diameter is under 23mm.

I didn't make the sound people might have expected - but the response, both in and outside the section (BTW we were all playing old German trombones), was universally very positive.

Granted, I also tried a JK 7C, a couple of 12Cs, a Miraphone bass trumpet mouthpiece, a Bach 15EW, and a half-dozen old, anonymous German mouthpieces, and they all felt too big for this horn. It sang with this itty bitty lil' thing.

Your embouchure can probably be more flexible than you think it is, given the chance.
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« Reply #34 on: Dec 01, 2017, 08:02AM »

I wish to thank you all for your comments! The Shilke mouthpiece I have found seems to be working rather well . As far as the brand horn is concerned,if you're a good player you can make anything sound decent. That being said a better horn is much easier to make sound good. This particular JinBao alto has been playef by several people who own altos: Yamaha, zzz Shiires, and. Conn. Their comments were that mine is a pretty good alto, they liked the way it slots. I did not tell them I put an acoustical in it.

I have played in public once and gotten favorable comments from fellow trombonist, and listeners. So how bad it be?
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« Reply #35 on: Dec 01, 2017, 08:15AM »

I took my JinBao on a trip last year and ended up sitting in on several tunes on a jazz quartet gig.  I don't know how it sounded out front but it felt terrible, like I had to work really hard to get any projection.  But that was maybe a different situation.
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« Reply #36 on: Dec 02, 2017, 07:04AM »

I took my JinBao on a trip last year and ended up sitting in on several tunes on a jazz quartet gig.  I don't know how it sounded out front but it felt terrible, like I had to work really hard to get any projection.  But that was maybe a different situation.

Probably sounded good  Good! I think it is brave of anyone to use an alto on a jazz quartet gig. I know it can be done because we have one member at the forum,  jazzaltobone who improvise and sound fantastic in that context. I would probably fail completely with an alto in a big band or a jazz quartet because I have never done that. Hard to imagine my alto sound in a big band or jazz quartet. Think I would have to change mouthpiece for that and try to sound like tenor.

/Tom   
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« Reply #37 on: Dec 02, 2017, 07:19AM »

I'm playing my K&H on this, starting at about 7:00

https://youtube.com/watch?v=3M2cw36qEd4
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« Reply #38 on: Dec 02, 2017, 07:48AM »

I'm playing my K&H on this, starting at about 7:00

https://youtube.com/watch?v=3M2cw36qEd4

Wow Good! such great playing from you all!!!

/Tom
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Visit my page at https://sites.google.com/site/brazzmusic/

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