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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000014.txt from 2004/08

From: Richard Bush <>
Subj: Re: [kl] Material influence on more time
Date: Sun, 1 Aug 2004 15:29:55 -0400

As a repairman, a clarinet player and one who started out his musical
life on a hard rubber Pedler, I have a few thoughts on hard rubber

When they get old, they oxidize. They basically turn green. Green isn't
bad, but black was the original intended color. I could put up with
green, though. Color really doesn't matter.

What does matter is that hard rubber, just like the Ace hard rubber
combs of the '50's, become electrically charged. This static
electricity attracts every possible type of debris. Debris ends up
becoming imbedded into the pads where they need to seal around the
edges of the tone holes, causing leaks.

I don't think that a clarinet body that secretly wants to be a black
hole in the universe, a garbage can or vacuum cleaner for crud is a
good idea.

Richard Bush
On Aug 1, 2004, at 12:03 PM, dnleeson wrote:

> Concerning the issues that Matthew Lloyd brings up about rubber
> clarinets being of poor quality, there is something very
> important to be said on that issue.
> There is little or nothing inherently inadequate with rubber that
> would cause it to be responsible for the problems you describe.
> Given proper manufacturing and care in design and assembly, a
> rubber clarinet will perform as well as one of wood. It will be
> in tune, play well, and last a long time. (I am not familiar with
> physical issues in working with hard rubber as contrasted with
> some other medium so I may be at a disadvantage here. Someone
> with more knowledge could probably cite things such as difficult
> in cutting and drilling hard rubber.)
> However, the manufacturers who made rubber clarinets in the past,
> chose the medium because it was inexpensive.


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