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 is this clarinet faulty
Author: Runhammar 
Date:   2021-01-19 02:58

Hi everyone

I just bought an inexpensive clarinet second hand - an SML Dixie, unknown age. Wood.
It seems like an ok instrument, but one thing is quite strange: when I play a low G (concert f) it invariably comes out very pitched, closer to G sharp than to G. It is like a guitar with a string out of tune.
This i find strange. I know pitch vary on a clarinet and you have to work with it when playing to get the tonality, but one that is so completely and consistantly off by close to a half step? I do not see any way that the instrument physically could have thrown one note off, especially as it is one played with all holes covered.
I am now indecisive whether I should ask for a refund or if the problem can be solved. I would prefer if it could, because the instrument is quite nice and I only paid the equivalent of 50 dollars. Still, if it cant be played...

Looking forward to be enlightened

/Per Runhanmmar

Per Runhammar

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 Re: is this clarinet faulty
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2021-01-19 03:18

How does the D a twelfth above [D5] tune?


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 Re: is this clarinet faulty
Author: Runhammar 
Date:   2021-01-19 03:26

interesting, Ill have a listen tomorrow. Its to late here in Stockholm to play the clarinet...
Will get back.

Per Runhammar

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 Re: is this clarinet faulty
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2021-01-19 05:03

I have a Boosey and Hawks 1010 that does the same thing (the twelfth above is just fine) I came to believe that this was not too uncommon on big bore instruments using cylindrical bore mouthpieces.......ya just have to lip the difference.

Not sure about yours. I'd say without knowing the specifics, that this is NOT good, NOT correctable and you should return the horn.

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

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 Re: is this clarinet faulty
Author: Fred 
Date:   2021-01-20 08:29

I had an SML Marigaux at one time that was quite simply the most beautifully made instrument I have ever owned. But as gorgeous as it was, I couldn’t get past my suspicion that it’s tuning was European. It was not a simple matter of choosing the right size barrel either. I hated to let it go because it was so beautiful, but I did.

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 Re: is this clarinet faulty
Author: Runhammar 
Date:   2021-01-20 14:45

Thank you for your response. However i do not quite understand this about European tuning. As I understand this would affect the whole instrument, not just one tone.
The problem with my clarinet is a distinctly high g-note at lowest position.
Unfortunately one of the corks fell off and broke in small, dry pieces as i tried to assemble the instrument yesterday, in addition to all of the metal rings falling off. This means I haven't been able to test the high D.
Still grateful for more input. The seller seems unwilling to admit any fault.
Another thing that arouses suspicion is that the ligature does not fit the mouthpiece. In order to tighten it I have to pull it down well under the marking lines. This leads me to wonder whether the mouthpiece is wrong for the instrument. Could this affect the tuning so that one note is a half step higher?

Further: Lets say the instrument has been lying around unused for years (the dry cork and disintegrated glue would suggest this, including a stale smell). Could this have affected the wood and thrown one tone out of tune?

I will now try and jury rig the instrument and play to test the high D. A lot of tinkering around for 50 dollars, I know, but it's all knowledge down the road...


Per Runhammar

Reply To Message
 Re: is this clarinet faulty
Author: Runhammar 
Date:   2021-01-20 15:12

Mystery solved!
A tired spring caused the g# button not to close properly.
Right, this leaves me with an instrument in pieces that I might patch together if its worth it.
Case closed and all can now relax.

Per Runhammar

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