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 barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: Runhammar 
Date:   2021-01-20 15:16

Well, the headline is pretty self explanatory: I have a YCL450 in good condition, but the pieces have been really hard to put together and take apart. Now the barell and mouthpiece are stuck and I do not dare use brute force, for fear of breaking something.
(not to be mixed up with my other thread, about a SML Dixie with other issues)
Any suggestions?

Per Runhammar

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: jdbassplayer 
Date:   2021-01-20 18:54

Try this method:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eX4nMcZUj4E&t=3s

If that doesn't work leave it in the fridge for a few hours. Most importantly take it to a tech to have the barrel/tenon shaved down to prevent this in the future.

-JDbassplayer

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2021-01-21 03:46

If it's a relatively new clarinet, then that's normal for the tenon rings to bind in the sockets. It's because the tenons have swollen and the sockets have shrunk with the increased humidity from playing which isn't a massive amount of shrinkage/expansion, but still enough to cause barrels and bells to bind.

Your repairer should only remove a miniscule amount of the wood from the tenon rings to cure this and also to be sure both tenons and sockets fit well and neither bind nor end up wobbly.

Whatever you or anyone else does, please don't sand the cork down as the cork isn't the issue here - cork will compress and when sufficiently greased, will ensure the joints go together and hold well.

Binding tenons and sockets can't be cured by adding more cork grease, but the tenon corks should still be greased regularly but not completely smothered with grease nor left to dry out.

Chris.

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2021-01-21 13:41

> Now the barell and mouthpiece are stuck and I do not dare use brute force, for fear of breaking something.

With all due respect to jdbassplayer and Chris P, neither of you addressed this particular problem. The OP actually has 2 problems and the stuck mouthpiece problem was not mentioned.

Here are some suggestions you might try:

https://www.saxontheweb.net/threads/mouthpiece-stuck-on-the-barrel-suggestions.31243/



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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: sal 
Date:   2021-01-21 15:37

Try a couple of rubbery jar openers. Really not sure what they are called, they are basically 4"x"4" sheets of rubber. Find them in a supermarket, dollar store.
Take apart as you normally would, but put rubbr in your palm- gives better grip without the muscle. This usually works for me.

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: sal 
Date:   2021-01-21 15:43

IMHO, I would not place clarinet in freezer. Between the cold and the zero humidity you are asking for a cracked clarinet.

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: jdbassplayer 
Date:   2021-01-21 17:18

Dan, it’s the same method regardless of what joint is stuck. Besides one of the methods mentioned in that thread you linked is literally the same method as in the video.

-Jdbassplayer

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2021-01-21 18:29

If the mouthpiece has stuck, then that's also on account of increased moisture levels causing the barrel sockets to shrink and the wood binding against the plastic (or ebonite) mouthpiece tenon rings. Resizing the tenons will still address this problem just as it will address any other binding tenon and socket.

Chris.

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2021-01-21 18:33

Runhammar wrote:

> ...Now the barell and mouthpiece are
> stuck and I do not dare use brute force, for fear of breaking
> something.

The good news is that between the barrel and the mouthpiece that's stuck in it there's really not much you can actually break. Sal's suggestion of rubber grippers is good - you can usually get much more traction that way than you can with bare hands. You could even wrap a couple of rubber bands around each piece a couple of times and see if they give you any more traction.

I know people won't like this, but try rocking the mouthpiece just **slightly** back and forth to try to break any surface adhesion between the mouthpiece cork and the inside of the barrel socket. Obviously, you don't rock far enough to risk damaging the socket wall. Often, once you break that contact up the tenon will slide out more easily. Some cork greases get sticky, BTW, and, while they make the joint slide together easily, they can act like a light glue after playing and, especially, after sitting for a short while. You might want to re-evaluate the grease you're using.

Karl

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2021-01-22 00:39

As the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention…

From my readings, any part of a clarinet (after proper greasing) should be able to easily slide into a tenon socket around one-third of the way. If a player has to struggle to even get this far, something is wrong. If the tenon end slides in easily, the dimensions of the tenon end and the socket diameter are probably alright, unless, of course, the bottom of the socket is slightly smaller. Obviously, if the end of the tenon seems a little too snug and you haven’t even reached the cork area...STOP! As mentioned above, the end of the tenon, most likely, is a hair too big and needs to be trimmed down ever so slightly. Again, the tenon should easily slide into the socket the first one-third of the way. If the tenon goes in easily one-third of the way and then takes a rather brute force to get the tenon completely into the socket, again, there is something wrong. One of the problems could simply be not using enough cork grease. (I once bought a new, student clarinet which included the mouthpiece. I simply could not get the mouthpiece on. After returning it to the dealer, I was told that he sold hundreds of this particular brand and the “kids” didn’t have this problem. He then told me flatly that I didn’t apply enough grease.) If, after applying an ample amount of grease, the corked tenon portion still gives a “too snug” feeling, I would first suggest applying a little cork grease to the inside of the socket wall (but not the bottom edge). As the greased tenon is pushed into a dry socket, the grease at the bottom of the tenon cork is going to start becoming non-existent due to being rubbed off onto the dry socket. Applying a thin layer of cork grease to the dry socket wall might be able to alleviate the “tough to put together” problem. Lastly, the cork may simply be a little too thick and may need to be trimmed down.

IMO, if a clarinet is hard to assemble, it’s going to be harder to take apart, especially near the top portion of the clarinet where more moisture will expand the wood slightly thus making the sockets slightly smaller.

Yes, I’ve had stuck mouthpieces as well as stuck bells, mid-joint sections as well as stuck upper sections to barrels. In the past, the “brute force” method usually worked for me. However, if your keys are a bit thinner and flex more easily, the slight bending techniques mentioned above would probably be a better choice.

Then, after you’ve taken it apart, try to figure out why it was so hard to put together in the first place.

jdbassplayer, please allow me to politely disagree with your assertion that "it’s the same method regardless of what joint is stuck." I view the stuck mouthpiece as being unique because no keys are involved. I wouldn't hesitate to us "brute force" in this situation, however, when keys are involved, I hesitate in using "brute force" to protect the keys. Also, I view the stuck mouthpiece differently because of the shortness of the mouthpiece yielding less bending material available.


Just my two cents worth.



Post Edited (2021-01-22 01:00)

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2021-01-22 01:03

Chris P wrote:

> Resizing the tenons will still address
> this problem just as it will address any other binding tenon
> and socket.
>
Yes, once he finally gets them apart.

Karl

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: jdbassplayer 
Date:   2021-01-22 01:38

<jdbassplayer, please allow me to politely disagree with your assertion that "it’s <the same method regardless of what joint is stuck." I view the stuck mouthpiece <as being unique because no keys are involved. I wouldn't hesitate to us "brute <force" in this situation, however, when keys are involved, I hesitate in using <"brute force" to protect the keys. Also, I view the stuck mouthpiece differently <because of the shortness of the mouthpiece yielding less bending material <available.

The method in the video is the paper method, it involves no brute force and I would strongly advise against using brute force in any situation, that's how you get a snapped tenon! In fact if you read the original post they say they do not want to use brute force. This method does work for any joint and it's so much easier than trying to strain your wrist.

In any case OP hasn't replied so I'm assuming they either got it unstuck or they broke their clarinet and decided to get a new one. In which case I say good job OP/congrats on the new clarinet.

-JDbassplayer

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2021-01-22 02:02

jdbassplayer, your method indeed sounds better, however, I just put my mouthpiece onto my barrel and absolutely could not rock it back and forth in any direction to create the smallest open space. (And, believe me, I tried hard!) I didn't use brute force, however, I did have to twist fairly strenuously to remove the mouthpiece.

That being said, your method still sounds better.

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: clarnibass 
Date:   2021-01-22 09:21

This is why sometimes perception is not necessarily reality. People recommend against "brute force"... but what is that really? A certain amount of force is required to move a stuck joint. It's better to just say... force. There might be a lot of ways to exert this force, but you still need it to move the part.

Actually it's the opposite. If using (brute) force with your hands (possibly with better grips) doesn't work, then you need more force. If you can't take it apart with just force, but rocking with a paper shim works, then it means it used more force.

The paper method is maybe less risky if you are not careful enough using other methods, though too much force rocking is much more risky than too much in the direction of the instrument and just pulling. There is slightly less friction because you are rocking the part, but the same is happening from generally rocking it and/or just using force.

Statistics from the last 20 years or so of removing stuck joints...
Force (brute force if you like) worked 90% of the time. It's very obvious but maybe worth mentioning that you need to twist and not just pull.
Silicone mats (or any type of better grip) helped a lot and sometimes made the difference.
Putting in the fridge (not a freezer) was almost never needed, but helped a few times (I did it more as a test, usually I don't, regardless of what's needed).
I've never had a tenon or socket break or damaged, regardless of method used.
I've never damaged or bent a key, regardless of method used.

In the worst cases, pulling (with grips) or rocking doesn't work. It's the worst case scenario where only forcing a gradually thicker shim works. In those cases, there was no difference between just using force or the rocking (with or without shims). Neither worked. Even in those cases I've never had a tenon or socket break, and this exerts much more force than you could ever have when just pulling with your hands, even if it looks like it's not.

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2021-01-22 18:38

You can apply brute force and simply damage or break things.

Or you can apply brute force in a controlled, constructive and thought out manner and that will be the difference.

Chris.

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2021-01-23 02:42

I agree with Chris P.



Post Edited (2021-01-23 09:29)

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 Re: barrel and mouthpiece stuck
Author: Djudy 
Date:   2021-01-23 22:14

I once had a stuck bell and was shocked to watch my luthier gently rock the joint and easily liberate the bell ! I would not have dared do this myself but he's been at this a long time (retired now and only takes on occasional jobs for a few of us) and it sure worked. To paraphrase a famous songwriter's quote " a few seconds of proper manipulation and umpteen years in the business". I have since succeeded in removing the occasional stuck mp this way *very cautiously* but have not needed it for anything else.





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