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 Bb side trill key
Author: sfalexi 
Date:   2003-03-30 00:57

I'm just wondering about something. Ever key that I've seen on a clarinet only raises itself off the tonehole a few mllimeters. The register key (being most important IMHO), the upper side trill keys have pads limiting how far they can be raised, etc. However my Bb key has a very thin pad on it and when I press it down it raises up very high (it looks like a little more than half a centimeter). Does this key normally raise higher than the others? I never really paid too much attention and maybe the cork has worn itself too thin and I haven't realized it.



US Army Japan Band

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 Re: Bb side trill key
Author: wjk 
Date:   2003-03-30 13:15

I had some of the cork shaved from this key to allow it to vent better. In my personal opinion/experience-- I'd say each instrument/player may need this done to varying degrees. Certainly, the cork may wear/compress over time essentially leading to the same effect.

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 Re: Bb side trill key
Author: Gordon (NZ) 
Date:   2003-03-30 13:43

The opening of a pad is determined by the thickness of the pad, how deeply the pad is glued into the pad cup, the thickness of a felt or cork (that silences the opening at its limit), AND the geometry of the key, which can easily be modified, by slightly bending the metal, either on purpose or by accident.

The register key needs to open only as far as it needs to, to reduce the 'fuzziness' of the Bb to a minimum.

Other factors also contribute to the fuzziness of this Bb, e.g. shape and material of the pad, the design & location of the vent itself, and any blockage in the vent.

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 Re: Bb side trill key
Author: Don Berger 
Date:   2003-03-30 14:24

Gordon says it well, my knowledge/experience is quite elementary, but I try to reduce note fuzziness, even at the expense of sharpening the note, such as on the C#/G# and B nat/F# "baddies". Re: this trill key, I'd suggest "tuning" this useful Bb to your liking [for me as a 7th!!]. Don

Thanx, Mark, Don

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 Re: Bb side trill key
Author: Mark P. Jasuta 
Date:   2003-03-31 16:33

Hi all,
Applying standard poppet valve design criteria; Max flow sound /air or whatever occurs when the pad is lifted off the seat (tonehole) 30% of the inside diameter of the tone hole. Anything after that has no effect other than slowing your fingers down to cover this extra distance. This is why manufacturers generally stay close to this spec. It's all about playing speed, but even the fastest fingers playing on the weakest sprung keys with the least possible movement will have a limit. Yamaha has this down to a science.

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 Re: Bb side trill key
Author: Gordon (NZ) 
Date:   2003-04-01 02:12

Fascinating. Trust Yamaha to have the theory practically applied.

I wonder if there is a slight difference where the material is a factor. A typical poppet valve is metal (?), or at least a faitrly rigid material, whereas we may also have to consider the annoying buzz of a pad membrane vibrating?

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 Re: Bb side trill key
Author: Mark P. Jasuta 
Date:   2003-04-01 15:00

A poppet valve is a type of valve that is all the way open or shut and not in between. Using a poppet type valve to vary, (throttle) results in flow noise and an unstable flow. They can be made of any material that suites the application. The membrane vibration on a clarinet pad is a separate issue. I usually "iron" the pad to tighten the membrane. This usually works, but if not I either change the pad, or use cork in that spot. (of course you will be going from buzz buzz to thump thump. lol)

Best Regards

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 Re: Bb side trill key
Author: David Spiegelthal 2017
Date:   2003-04-01 16:41

Mark P. Jasuta,
If you want to avoid both 'buzz buzz' and 'thump thump', consider using leather (kid) pads. I now do all sizes of clarinets with them, and they are my favorite. Cork pads are too hard and often don't seal well, and bladder (skin) pads buzz and and too susceptible to cutting and tearing. Just my two-hundredths of a euro's worth......

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