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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000951.txt from 2003/06

From: "Anthony Wakefield" <>
Subj: [kl] New thumb rest invention?
Date: Thu, 26 Jun 2003 05:56:21 -0400


I have a young beginner who has been playing for 8 months and has taken his
UK grade 1 exam. He is small, but came to me with a real Bb clarinet (not a
small C or Eb) already purchased. I took him on and immediately got him a
sling. He still finds the weight somewhat challenging. He says he has
difficulty holding the instument standing, even with the sling, so I sat him
down. His thumb still aches somewhat, even with a comfortable (for me)
thumb rest. An alteration to it would not be too enlightening, so I started
to think of whether a Kooiman would be suitable for a small child`s hands.
Before I could make further enquiries comes the moment for his exam - last
weekend. Rightly or wrongly I advised his parents to encourage him to stand
up for his exam - in UK only 14 minutes for Grade 1. He turned up with his
mother on Saturday with his right hand thumb bright green. I was so shocked
frightened initially, that I thought he had done some serious damage, and
that he
had come to tell me that he wouldn`t be able to play. I then realised that
his right thumb had placed over it a finely shaped sleeve of soft velvety
fabric, around a couple of mm thick. Shaped and properly sewn to form a
comfortable sleeve which certainly made supporting the instrument (together
with his sling) no further problem. It was custom made to fit the thumb
securely yet comfortably. It would not fit my thumb. I was told it was so
easy to make, but would need to be made larger (or new ones) as the thumb
grows in size.

Try it. Even an old glove with the thumb cut off at the base would be a
quick test for anyone who wishes to experiment, but of course the material
may not lend itself to the amount of comfort required in this case.

I would think there will certainly be no patent for this, and I have no wish
to make a fool of myself trying to patent a right hand glove for the thumb
only :<)
Tony W (the right hand thumb`s friend)

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