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Author Topic: Wedge Mouthpieces  (Read 3055 times)
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connman93
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« on: May 06, 2015, 10:04PM »

Hi all,

I recently picked up a Wedge copy of a Schilke 59 and I'm not too sure about the rim concept.

Have any of you had experience with these mouthpieces? Positive or negative, I'm just curious.

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« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2015, 12:23AM »

I have one in about that size. I does work very good. But you must becareful to put the mpc in your horn the right way. Sometimes I am thinking of getting a wedge slightly bigger. It is actually a very good idea.
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« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2015, 05:03AM »

I'm not too sure about the rim concept.

I prefer rims on my mouthpieces.  :-P

I play on Wedges, and for me they're great. Different people react differently to them. For me, the largest difference-maker is a positive change in endurance. Talking with friends who have tried them, the reactions pretty much run the gamut: they feel really uncomfortable, they slot better, they change how the corners focus, or no noticeable difference. IMHO they're well-worth checking out, anyway. And how they feel now may change compared to five years from now as your playing changes.
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TromboneMonkey

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« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2015, 08:59AM »

I think the concept is sound in theory.  Some players achieve increased flexibility and articulations with narrower rims. But endurance suffers. We'll with the Wedge one gets the best of both worlds.

I personally did NOT find the claim that one can use a smaller rim size to be true.  But that's me. Ultimately I just use a narrow rim mouthpiece and use less pressure.
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« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2015, 10:58AM »

Hi all,
I recently picked up a Wedge copy of a Schilke 59 and I'm not too sure about the rim concept.
Have any of you had experience with these mouthpieces? Positive or negative, I'm just curious.

Where to start? First, I guess you would call me a true WedgeHead by now. About 6 years ago, I bought a modified Bach 6.5 AL from Dr. Dave after playing a conventional MP for many years. At that point, he didn't make his own blanks for trombone mouthpieces. Like many converts, I could tell the difference immediately - tone, range (in both directions) and endurance. I would try my stock MP from time to time just to see if the whole thing was mental. That would only last a bar or two before returning to the Wedge. Since they were both Bach MPs (one wedged and one stock), I don't think the comparison could have been fairer.

About 4 years ago, I thought I should try a smaller MP to see if it would help on the upper end. I ordered a Wedge 12C and coincidentally started taking lessons at the same time. My teacher convinced me to go bigger (huh?) and loaned me a Bach 5GS for a couple of weeks. It was love at first blow.

My dilemma: what to do with the 12C (which I hated for reasons to numerous to list). I called Dr. Dave and traded it for a Wedge 5GS which I've been playing ever since.

My Shilke equivalent is a 51, and the difference is absolutely stunning - for me the Wedge is the clear winner. As counter intuitive as it seems, the rim contour of the Wedge does exactly what it's designed to do, as long as you get the alignment right.

I know they don't work for everyone, but since you already have one, give your Wedge a fair trial - maybe a couple of weeks - and see if you can feel and hear the difference as I and hundreds of others have.

Good luck,

Joel

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Matt K

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« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2015, 11:17AM »

For those of us who strongly prefer lexan or delrin rims on brass bottoms, he is thinking about doing a screw rim line for trombone pieces, similar to his trumpet pieces.  He's making one for me right now.  I haven't responded well to other rims, but I figure I'll really give it a fair try since the silver feels so much different to me than the lexan/delrin (his are delrin) and a brass/steel bottomed mouthpiece responds SO much differently than a full delrin piece.
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Geordie
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« Reply #6 on: Apr 14, 2017, 04:50PM »

Am hoping to take delivery of a used Wedge piece next week. Will use in my small bore Olds and, probably King 3b. Dr Dave and others have talked about the transition process to using  a Wedge. Would like to understand how people have managed this process and lessons learned from doing it.
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tbathras
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« Reply #7 on: Apr 14, 2017, 04:59PM »

The biggest issue I had was remembering to make sure the mouthpiece was always right side up.  You figure out pretty quick when it isn't.
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Terraplane8Bob
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« Reply #8 on: Apr 14, 2017, 07:18PM »

I got my first "Wedge" [Delrin] about a month ago and have been enjoying it tremendously. I have another on the way with a shank specifically sized to fit the recessed leadpipe on my King 8B and have ordered the "tone modifier" just out of curiosity even though I love the straight Delrin mouthpiece as it is.  I have a 1G Bach mouthpiece in my collection which I have always hated, but for some reason the "Wedge" 1G is marvelous !  It's a  fact that you must pay attention to the orientation of top and bottom when using a "Wedge".  I had a situation recently where we were playing a lot of plunger mute notes and I was surprised at how many notes I was "clamming" !  It turned out that in order to hold up the bulk of the horn [10 1/2" bell] while playing the plunger notes, I was twisting the mouthpiece a good 20 degrees off the proper alignment !  Lesson learned !   
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TromboneMonkey

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« Reply #9 on: Apr 15, 2017, 02:09PM »

The biggest issue I had was remembering to make sure the mouthpiece was always right side up.  You figure out pretty quick when it isn't.

To me this is why the design works.  It forces proper placement.
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« Reply #10 on: Apr 16, 2017, 08:20AM »

It's a  fact that you must pay attention to the orientation of top and bottom when using a "Wedge".  I had a situation recently where we were playing a lot of plunger mute notes and I was surprised at how many notes I was "clamming" !  It turned out that in order to hold up the bulk of the horn [10 1/2" bell] while playing the plunger notes, I was twisting the mouthpiece a good 20 degrees off the proper alignment !  Lesson learned !   

Exactly why I had to send back a Wedge after trying it for a week.

To be sure, the mouthpiece provided a great sound, but I felt that I would have to compromise my playing style too much in order to justify hanging onto it.

For me, if anything in my alignment to the horn and mouthpiece wasn't just perfect, I'd end up clamming and playing worse.

Which is hard for many of us to do...given that on some gigs you have only a moments notice to pick up and play your horn after flipping pages, resetting music, putting down a rhythm instrument and then picking up your horn to play your part, looking around at other players while improvising, turning your head to nod at someone for a cue, or maybe even having your wrist cocked at a slightly different angle due to fatigue, having a heavy mute in the bell, or just feeling like haveing you wrist at a different angle just 'cause it feels better in the moment.

I'd think that if you were constantly in an orchestral situation (or similar) and had time to wait and look at your music, know exactly when you have to play or not, and have time to maintain perfect alignment to you horn all the time, then the Wedge could really work for you.

Look at all the trumpet players who use them.... it's pretty easy to keep fairly perfect alignment and relationship to a trumpet on your face pretty well in any playing situation.

Trombone players have to avoid stand with their slides, move around more, and use more arm movement, etc. etc.

So, all the more power to those of you who can make a Wedge work for them. It really does have a great sound to it!
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Geordie
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« Reply #11 on: Apr 16, 2017, 10:20AM »

Read the replies to my post with interest. Thank you.
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musicofnote

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« Reply #12 on: Apr 16, 2017, 11:47AM »

I have both the Wedge 1 1/2G and the Wedge S59 for my Yamaha 822G. Love both. I've been slowly working into the S59, meaning mostly using the Wedge 1 1/2 for actual literature practice, but warming up and doing low-register exercises on the S59. I also used the S59 for pieces requiring extensive gutter work. I see however, that the tone quality over all except at the upper extreme - for me above high g - is getting very usable, not flat any more. I can see myself using it for almost everything and only resorting to the 1 1/2G in extreme high pieces, like in a Big Band where I'my doubling 2nd parts. The basic sound is not quite as "poppy" as the 1 1/2, but is creeping towards that, the more I play it.

As has been mentioned, it's imperative, that the little dots are in the 12.00 o'clock and 6 o'clock positions. Dr. Dave told me that a variance of +/- 10 degrees is ok. At first I didn't feel the position, but put little strips of black tape on the mp shank and the receiver to line up when inserting the mp. Still have them on, although now after several weeks I have learned to feel the right position on my chops.

All in all, I'm happier with the S59 (and the 1 1/2) than I am with the tenor versions I've tried. I sent back a 5GS and will be sending back a 4.5G when I get the 4G Dave is sending. But that will have to beat the Bousfield S4 I have, which I like very much on my Rath R400.
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« Reply #13 on: Apr 16, 2017, 12:15PM »

Would one get the same size Wedge rim that one normally uses? I.e if I usually play a 101 mm, do I order the same size Wedge?
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« Reply #14 on: Apr 16, 2017, 12:56PM »

Be glad you have those dots. In the earlier years Dave was not putting them. I was struggling about 5 years with a trumpet mouthpiece before contacting Dave to ask what was wrong....

Ellrod,

Normally they feel slightly bigger. I may be fine with the next smaller size, but that's to be confirmed by a test.
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Geordie
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« Reply #15 on: Apr 20, 2017, 09:37AM »

The piece I mentioned in my post of 14 April arrived!  Have spent a couple of hours with the  Wedge Bach 6.75 equivalent on my King 3b, Olds Recording and Olds  Special. General first impressions of my experience: 
Thank goodness for the dots that help the player orientate the piece. The side cut always are not easily obvious.
May be a honeymoon effect but I thought the slotting, particularly in the upper registers was better than on my Fischer 12c piece (which is great btw). Sound was dense and bright but not too bright.
Mid/low register was fuller/darker than I expected  and would have been a credit to a much larger horn. For a piece that is claimed to help the upper register I was pleasantly surprised by how well the lower register played, including pedals. 
Not sure yet about claims that it helps fatigue. Will do a long flexibilities session and find out.
Overall impression?  Generally positive. Too early to say if I'll ditch  the Fischer, but I'm going to carry on with this piece in practice, take it to rehearsal next week and see how things develop in relation to my 12c. If any one can suggest any comparator tests it would be great to know what has helped you.
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« Reply #16 on: Apr 20, 2017, 09:59AM »

It may take up to 3-4 weeks to get really used to it. I would advice you only then to do the stamina/fatigue test.
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Dr Dave
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« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2017, 08:48AM »

I thought I would chime in here to respond to one question and provide a bit of an update on Wedge mouthpieces.
Regarding choosing a rim size, if you currently play a 101 sized screw rim the best match would indeed be a Wedge 101 size. We measure or rims at .05 inches into the cup, and our sizing is intended to match up with other screw rims. The feel is a little different due to the shape, but the size transition should be fairly smooth.

Other new developments are the addition of a stock shank designed to fit in deeper 88H and similar receivers, a European medium shank option, a Remington shank option, and models in clear and coloured acrylic. I would like some feedback on what players would like to see related to some or those options, so I will post some questions asking for input. Meanwhile, always happy to answer Wedge related questions.
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bonenick

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« Reply #18 on: May 04, 2017, 09:07AM »

I would like some feedback on what players would like to see related to some or those options, so I will post some questions asking for input. Meanwhile, always happy to answer Wedge related questions.

Hi Dave,

After few months on Wedge 7C I can say that sometimes I wish the rim was a bit thinner than it is. That's MY impression. I may be  very wrong on this, but I feel like I would gain on flexibility by having a thinner rim, though it works quite well just as it is.
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« Reply #19 on: May 04, 2017, 06:32PM »

I don't think you can be right or wrong about preferring a narrower rim. It is quite possible that you would have more flexibility with a narrower rim. The question is always what the trade off there might be in terms of comfort. I would be very happy to make you a custom 7C Wedge with a slightly narrower rim.  :)
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