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 Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: jthole 
Date:   2017-07-15 14:28

My Buffet Crampon BC20 came with a 64mm barrel (no wonder that I had to pull out a lot). With a "one mm and a bit" wooden ring between the barrel and upper joint it plays very nice in tune (also much better throat tones), so a 65mm barrel would probably do the same. I tried a 65mm Buffet E13 barrel, but didn't care for the sound; too stuffy.

Are there any reasons why a longer barrel would be a better long term solution than using a tuning ring? Probably a modern barrel would need to be adjusted for the 1960's BC20, because I guess the taper would be different (did not measure it).

My objections against a tuning ring are that it's slightly clumsy, and easy to lose. But the price of a small piece of wood is lots lower than a new barrel ;-)

Thanks for your opinion!

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 Re: Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: Ed Palanker 
Date:   2017-07-15 17:20

If the clarinet is consistantly sharp than yes, a longer barrel is better. You need to try several different Buffet or after market barrels to find the proper one for your clarinet - mouthpiece combination. Even the same make and model, each will play slightly different. Try as many as you can to find the perfect one.


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 Re: Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2017-07-15 17:29

I think a longer barrel is just more convenient if, as Ed says, your clarinet is consistently flat. Was the BC20 originally supplied with the 64 mm barrel?

I also second Ed's suggestion that there's enough variability among individual barrels even of the same make/model to make trying several worthwhile.


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 Re: Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: jthole 
Date:   2017-07-15 19:06

If I have to believe the various online sources, the BC20 was at least available with a 64mm barrel. I believe it was designed for the French market, where 442 ~ 444 Hz was the norm.

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 Re: Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: WhitePlainsDave 
Date:   2017-07-15 20:55

So what's better, a high end tuning barrel from the likes of Paulus and Schuler or Chadash, or a longer or shorter (one size) barrel?

I'd guess the ability to spend money, and whether the different size barrel improves the clarinet's intonation or merely adjusts it to the "ensemble of the day," and whether the barrel blends well with the rest the instrument might be factors.

Its "evidence of just one" but I think McGill plays the P&S barrel. But perhaps that's more to do with the flexibility of adjusting "the pipe's" length than ideal sound compared to a barrel though could made to just that adjusted length (which may change after an hour of play.)

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 Re: Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: jthole 
Date:   2017-07-16 23:29

Thanks all. By the way, with this warm (25 °C and up) weather, I need a "2mm plus" ring with the Portnoy mouthpiece. For now I am not going to change anything, but ultimately I think I need a 1,5mm longer barrel.

Post Edited (2017-07-17 00:35)

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 Re: Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2017-07-17 00:04

The BC20 Bb I recently serviced also had a 64mm barrel.


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 Re: Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: TomS 
Date:   2017-07-17 03:23

Barrel need to be short enough to allow you to tune if the temperature is a couple of degrees cooler and long enough to allow the use of a reasonable amount of pulling to bring the instrument in tune. You may pull at the very top (MP) as well.

During the hot weather here in central Arkansas, I keep my house at 68-70 (F) degrees and makes a noticeable decrease in pitch, over most other playing situations where the temperature is usually warmer.

I usually pull at the center as well, and use tuning rings everywhere except the bell. It adds to the joint stability, keeps water from collecting in the gap and provides a repeatable pull amount ... acoustically, not sure it they help ... perhaps for very long gaps ...

Only downside of tuning rings are that you have to keep up with them and they are easily lost ...

Muncy Winds have MP and center joint tuning ring sets for cheap.


Post Edited (2017-07-17 03:24)

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 Re: Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: jthole 
Date:   2019-03-04 01:13

The issue has resolved itself over time, without having to use tuning rings, or having to pull out excessively.

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 Re: Tuning ring, or longer barrel?
Author: donald 
Date:   2019-03-04 11:30

A little bit of blue tack ("ticky tack" in USA I believe) can be used to keep tuning rings in place, and has worked quite well as a long term solution to a 65mm barrel that needed to be turned into a 66mm. The tack (very carefully and sparingly applied) can also be removed quite easily if you decide you no longer need the ring. It pays to clean the socket well before you put it in.

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