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 Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Professor Clarinet 
Date:   2019-02-25 11:44

Hi,

I recently purchased a Buffet E12F in December (warranty goes for a year). I really like it but the tenon attaching the barrel and the upper joint is way too tight, when my teacher tried my clarinet to fix a seperate issue he couldn’t even put his barrel on. It’s really irritating to assemble and disassemble the clarinet and I was wondering if it’s better to leave it and have it tight for the next few years, then wear itself out so it becomes smoother(does that happen?) or if I should take it to the repair technician to sand it down. I could also claim the warranty on the instrument and have it replaced, but I’m not sure I want to do that because I really like how it is now.



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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2019-02-25 15:34

My common sense advice to you or anyone having this issue would be to have a qualified tech adjust either the interior of the bore socket or the top the tenon of the top joint. What's funny about that is that I have the same issue (perhaps not to that extent though) and yet I have not done anything about it......yet. It is a bit insidious because (at least in my case) it is not an issue with an aftermarket barrel that I use. But it is an issue with both Buffet R13 barrels that I got at time of purchase (which points to the tenon as the issue....sort of).


Sigh


The problem will not go away by itself and with wood (mine is Greenline) the issue may even get a little worse over time.


WE need to get this adjusted immediately, it will make OUR lives so much easier!




..............Paul Aviles



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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Tony F 
Date:   2019-02-25 17:15

This seems to be a recurring problem with Buffet, one they have known about for years and which they have consistently failed to rectify. I've sorted several just within the band I play in. Take it back to where you bought it and have them rectify it under warranty. It's not a big job, they can probably do it while you wait. The risk of inducing a crack is greater than the chance of it improving by itself.

Tony F.

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2019-02-25 17:33

The idea of taking things back to the original seller and invoking the warranty is great for some things but great clarinets are pretty specialized items. When I find a good horn the ONLY person I want touching it from that point out is someone I trust with the specific issue. Money out of pocket (and unless you're talking a repadding) is usually small and NOT the most important aspect of the problem.


I can give my last experience as an example. I got my horn through the Buffet Showroom in Manhattan. The staff is experienced in moving the sale along through your authorized dealer in such a way that you can walk out with your horn on the spot! But I don't think they have much of a repair shop (perhaps none) and even if they did, I have not gone through work with them on anything before.


Of course you could argue an easy repair such as a snug fit between joints should be easy for anybody. I would argue that you want someone who has seen that sort of issue thousands of times before, much as the Buffet Showroom has seen SALES thousands of times before.


Everyone has their forte.





..................Paul Aviles



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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Tony F 
Date:   2019-02-25 17:39

Good point, Paul.

Tony F.

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2019-02-25 20:03

Tony F wrote:

> This seems to be a recurring problem with Buffet, one they have
> known about for years and which they have consistently failed
> to rectify.

So, is the tenon too big or are the stock barrels too small? I would think the problem is with the tenon outside diameter if the OP's teacher couldn't even get his barrel to start over the tenon, but we don't know what barrel that was.

Karl

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2019-02-25 20:37

In my case I would err on the side of the upper joint tenon. Even the Taplin-Weir barrel is perhaps a bit snug all the way on. Of course I always use a barrel that will leave room for emergencies. But if the emergency is too snug then I would have a problem.





................Paul Aviles



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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2019-02-25 22:45

The OP, I assume, is talking about the tenon material binding in the barrel or not even fitting into the end of the (teacher's) barrel, not a cork that's too thick? I have occasionally found that my Buffet-style and Selmer 10G barrels wouldn't fit over the top of the tenon of a student's instrument - usually not, as I remember, a 10G or Buffet.

Karl

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Professor Clarinet 
Date:   2019-02-26 00:04

Hi everyone,

I think I’m leaning towards having a bit of the tenon taken off (to answer one of your questions, yes it is the tenon and not the cork). Also, my teachers barrel was an R13. Something I neglected to mention on my first post was that my old Yamaha 4C mouthpiece couldn’t fit in the barrel either. Does this mean both the barrel and the tenon and to small/big respectively?



Post Edited (2019-02-26 00:08)

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2019-02-26 01:00

Professor Clarinet wrote:

> my old Yamaha 4C
> mouthpiece couldn’t fit in the barrel either. Does this mean
> both the barrel and the tenon and to small/big respectively?
>

Well, that's what you need to take a little time to figure out. You have to keep in mind future compatibility with other barrels and mouthpieces. The best thing (unless you have a collection of barrels and mouthpieces in your desk drawer as many of us have) would probably be to take it to a skilled repair tech who could try a number of barrels and probably several mouthpieces - or even take direct measurements if he knows what they should be - and decide what material needs to be removed from where.

Karl

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: gatto 
Date:   2019-02-26 03:57

The only problem of this kind which I know by own experience is that the barrel (or the bell) fits onto the cork, but the problem are the final mm where wood touches wood. You should find out whether it is the same problem in your case, or a different one. In my case a professional repair tech could fix the problem easily with a fraise machine in 1 or 2 minutes.

With mouthpieces fitting into the barrel socket I never had problems.

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: shmuelyosef 
Date:   2019-02-27 04:29

It's always interesting to me how much discussion there is about tenons and barrels. The problem could be multiple things, but some simple measurements make a big difference. The first thing is to make sure it is not just a fat cork...although experienced WW players will be familiar with this one.

When someone brings me a clarinet, the first thing that I do is measure the bore of the socket and the tenon O.D. I do this at the top and bottom, and also perpendicular and parallel to the grain. With new-ish clarinets, half the time the tenon has gone out of round (even at the bottom when there is a metal tenon ring!). Often, one or the other will have a taper...probably from finishing with too heavy a cut or too fast a feed at the end step.

The out-of-round you can test well by greasing the cork well, aligning the logos or whatever, and then just assemble by pressing (no twisting). If it goes together easier this way, it is probably out of round. Conversely, try pressing it together at 90 degrees misalignment and see if this is much harder.

However, the measurements always point immediately to the answer. A bore gauge and dial (or vernier) caliper is all you need.

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2019-02-28 00:26

"Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight," EXPLAINED!!!!



I had a visit with the wonderful Jonathan Anderson of Onks Winds this morning and he fixed my issue with a thin strip of wet/dry 180 grit sandpaper. The explanation is that when Buffet (notoriously so in their finishing process) trimmed the cork, a burr was created in the wood just at the line that is the bottom of the cork. A quick sanding made everything just fine.


Still I would recommend that you let a qualified technician do this work. Jonathan did have to angle the strand of sandpaper and try things out and go back a few times to get things just right.......and he does this sort of work ALL THE TIME.


Now all my barrels fit great all the way to the bottom (turns out I can even use my 66mm with one millimeter to spare........if the trumpets don't muck things up!).




...............Paul Aviles



Post Edited (2019-02-28 05:14)

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: clarnibass 
Date:   2019-02-28 11:56

>> The explanation is that when Buffet (notoriously so in their finishing process) trimmed the cork, a burr was created in the wood just at the line that is the bottom of the cork. <<

That's almost never the reason for it. In theory, a burr created from trimming the cork is extremely unlikely to cause it. It is too small. In practice, 100% of the cases I've seen had a significant amount of the shoulder length causing it, not just the thin place where it touches the cork. I've seen more than a few cases where the tenon inner shoulder actually measured larger than the socket diameter and/or it actually got worse the farther from the cork it was. Actually it's quite rare that the top of the shoulder (closest to the cork) is worse than the bottom. For some reason it's usually just the inner shoulder but sometimes it's both.

Your case was in the minority where sanding a bit apparently solved the problem (even though he used a relatively aggressive paper).

I'm wondering if it's much more common on Buffets because Buffets are more common? I mean, the number of tight tenons I see on Buffets compared with other brands is roughly proportional to the number of Buffets I see compared with other brands.
I recently had to fix this issue on two new Selmer Privilege clarinets.

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2019-02-28 17:38

Point taken.


I believe I've heard the issue coming up amongst newer Buffets a bit more and extrapolated without personally seeing these other examples. I apologize for that.


There is, however, a tendency for there to be "finishing" issues with Buffet. Since the cork trimming falls into this category along with perfunctory felt based pads and overly spongy white synthetic silencing materials (affecting functionality of crow's foot for example) I was too quick to view the awkward trimming is a broader problem.


It may be helpful to solicit our members to see how many instances of this are currently showing up.


Oh, and in my case the clarinet material is Greenline, not wood, which may explain the use of the more aggressive sandpaper.






................Paul Aviles



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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: shmuelyosef 
Date:   2019-03-02 23:59

I tend to agree with Nitai, that the tenon problem is generic to wood clarinets, and they all have instability. As an aside, I also build wood furniture in my shop, and I have observed that over the last 50 years, the wood used for clarinets (similar to furniture) has increasingly had wider spaced annual rings with more variability in spacing and parallel. This suggests that younger trees are being harvested. Such wood is inherently more unstable than the outer diameters of old growth harvest (like my 60-70 year old Selmers). The Greenline is only the beginning of a transition to engineered materials, which will most likely emerge (eventually) as far superior once the appropriate materials are engineered and adopted for high performance clarinets.

I recently scored a NOS Yamaha Custom clarinet for my own use that was probably not sold because it had a joint that could not be assembled with a tenon that was (in one dimension) larger than the socket (which was still round). It was an easy fix and with new pads/etc is a wonderful instrument.

Just fyi, for many sanding jobs, I find it useful to back wet-dry paper with packing tape (the clear 2" wide 3M material) and then use a cheap Fiskars paper-cutter to slice precision strips for various demanding sanding jobs, like tenon adjustment and tenon corks.

It is too bad that Buffet quality control continues to be an issue; Yamahas continue to improve, and Selmer is good but not great (from what I have seen). The situation is much worse in the saxophone world, where as far as I can tell, Yamaha and Yanagisawa (by far the best) are the only vendors who at least try to provide a horn that plays out of the box.

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: Jarmo Hyvakko 
Date:   2019-03-03 12:38

And in 20 years all the joints are loose, very loose...

Principal Clarinet, Tampere Philharmonic, Finland

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 Re: Barrel/Upper joint tenon too tight
Author: clarnibass 
Date:   2019-03-03 13:11

>> Oh, and in my case the clarinet material is Greenline, not wood, which may explain the use of the more aggressive sandpaper. <<

That's very different then. The number of Greenline or any plastic clarinets I've seen with tight/stuck tenons is negligible (zero Greenlines so far).

I'm half guessing that the problem is instability of the wood, since I assume they are machined to the same dimensions and probably fit ok immediately after manufacture.

Sometimes it's a slower process. I always remove the minimum amount necessary, since you never want to create a wobbly joint. It happened a few times that I had to fit a tenon a second time, a few months after the first, since it got tight again.

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