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 Leblanc 476 (bell problem)
Author: Ed Granger 
Date:   2007-08-25 15:16

I just acquired a Leblanc 476, which I believe is a "Classic" based on my archival research. Serial number is 6603 on both main sections, which makes it pre-1964, possibly by a good bit. It is marked "476" on the upper section, but is not labeled "Classic." "Jump" trill keys. It is in very good shape overall and plays nicely - it should be even better with some work. My problem is with the bell, which is cracked like a highway on a late-season episode of Ice Road Truckers. Two major cracks running all the way through both ends, and at least two others. These don't seem to be affecting the sound too much currently, at least based on swapping bells with some of my other instruments. I checked the archives regarding bell cracks, but most of the examples cited don't involve the level of destruction I'm dealing with. So the obvious question is how to cope with the situation: is the original bell even fixable with super glue or worth fixing? Should I replace it, or play the original until the sound is affected before getting a new bell? If I do replace, what will work well with this clarinet? Or should I just subsitute a bell from another of my instruments? If it is repairable, should I avoid using the bell until this is done? Any suggestions welcome - and thanks for considering my questions.


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 Re: Leblanc 476 (bell problem)
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-08-25 16:19

It should be easy enough to fix with superglue, and the rings will hold it all tight. And once glued, cleaned up and polished, the repair should only be visible under strong light (sunlight) and only you will know the location of the cracks as others around you won't notice.

Former oboe finisher
Howarth of London
1998 - 2010

The opinions I express are my own.

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