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 Grenadilla vs cocobolo
Author: thereallukasj 
Date:   2017-07-15 08:18

Sorry to start another thread but i searched and couldnt find any info regarding the acoustical and feel differences between cocobolo and grenadilla wood in say a Backun clarinet of similar model.


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 Re: Grenadilla vs cocobolo
Author: Wes 
Date:   2017-07-15 09:27

Backun had recordings of both clarinets on his site.

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 Re: Grenadilla vs cocobolo
Author: lisseyjj 
Date:   2017-07-15 21:55

I have briefly tried out both a Backun grenadilla and cocobolo instrument. I tried a Protege with silver keys go there and a MoBa with gold keys in Cocobolo. Unfortunately, I couldn't compare the sound of the Protege in the different woods and the MoBa in different woods.
The grenadilla has a very powerful sound, with a large projection. The cocobolo has a very, very warm tone. When I played the MoBa there was a LOT of resistance even with the same, usually free-blowing mouthpiece, but was fine on the grenadilla Protege. This could be down to differences in the bore and barrel etc. of the MoBa, being a professional instrument. The sound I made from it was very blowy and fuzzy.
I only played a few bars with the MoBa cocobolo because I knew it was well out of my price range and I already found an instrument I was happy with when I was trying clarinets. I would love to have the opportunity to play around with a cocobolo instrument more, but I don't think my parents would agree considering how they just bought my new one for me.

So to summarise,
Grenadilla has a brighter and more powerful, projective tone.
Cocobolo has a warmer, more subtle tone.

If you have the ability to try two of the same instrument in different woods side-by-side, I would definitely give it a go. Maybe have a second pair of ears in the room too so you can have another opinion on the tone qualities.

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 Re: Grenadilla vs cocobolo
Author: shmuelyosef 
Date:   2017-07-16 23:59

Couldn't you similarly summarize?:

- The Protege has a brighter and more powerful, projective tone.
- The MoBa has a warmer, more subtle tone.

....or conversely,
- The silver keys impart a brighter and more powerful, projective tone.
- The gold keys impart a warmer, more subtle tone.

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 Re: Grenadilla vs cocobolo
Author: TomS 
Date:   2017-07-17 03:10

Cocobolo has lost favor with some barrel makers due to the instability of the material and tendency to crack more than Blackwood. The Cocobolo barrel bore often need to be lined with a hard rubber insert to assure better tolerance for everyday playing and conditions. I hate to think how an entire Cocobolo instrument might behave over time ... it IS very pretty though ... might be worth any trouble you might have!

I have found that Backun's Colobolo barrels do warm up the sound of my wooden and greenline material clarinets ... don't do a thing for my hard rubber instruments, which already have a warm (but with clarity and power) sound. I think it's mainly the acoustical specifications and somewhat the weight and density of the material that determine the sound, not so much magic properties of wood. Try one of Tom Ridenour's hard rubber barrels and just see ...

My R13 greenline does warm up a bit using Cocobolo (and rubber) barrels, and I know that if I have a problem, it's a relatively cheap item to replace ...

It's all fun ... relax and enjoy ...


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 Re: Grenadilla vs cocobolo
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2017-07-17 15:26

Cocobolo is a less dense and less stable wood compared to granadilla. The advantages are in it making for a lighter weight instrument compared to granadilla and also it has a different resonance.

I especially loved the cocobolo MoBa A clarinet - incredible instrument!


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 Re: Grenadilla vs cocobolo
Author: rtaylor 
Date:   2017-07-19 21:42

An interesting side note and little off topic (my apologies)for comparison people could find entertaining.

Karl Leister made many recordings over the years of the Brahms Clarinet Quintet.
His very first recording from 1968(?) on Deutsche Grammophone was recorded on an Ubel Cocobolo german system clarinet. All of his subsequent recordings were made on Wurtlizer's in Grenadilla.

I find it interesting to hear a great player over the years of his career change things up and what the results are.


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 Re: Grenadilla vs cocobolo
Author: Grabnerwg 
Date:   2017-07-20 17:13

Cocobolo is an excellent acoustic material, and can be used to make lovely clarinets.

Cocobolo is also more reactive to changes in humidity than African blackwood. If you can "baby" your clarinets and protect them from big changes in humidity cocobolo is a great choice. If you can't, you might be better to stick with African blackwood.

Walter Grabner

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