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 Stubbins clarinet
Author: anannie (---.sd.sd.cox.net)
Date:   2005-03-05 04:29

I have a Wm H. Stubbins clarinet from my high school days purchased in Ann Arbor, Mi about 1975 or 1976. Does anyone know anything about it? Is it made by another manufacturer with the Stubbins name on it? Any idea of value? It still sounds wonderful and is in great shape! Thanks.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: BG (---.proxy.aol.com)
Date:   2005-03-05 04:43

My recollection of it was that it was offered both as a Vito plastic clarinet with what they called the Stubbins mechanism and also a Normandy wooden clarinet, again with the Stubbins mechanism. These were optional models under both lines and both were manufactured by the LeBlanc Company. William Stubbins taught for many years at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and wrote a book called "The Art of Clarinetistry." I am doing this off of the top of my head without really doing any research first, but I believe this to be correct. The idea of the extra mechanism was to provide an additional and larger vent hole to help the throat tone Bb. Not sure of the value, but the wooden model would certainly command a higher price than the plastic one. Hope this helps a little bit. Perhaps others will contribute additional information!



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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Don Berger (---.proxy.aol.com)
Date:   2005-03-05 13:58

I have a "vintage - logoed" Stubbins, "Made in France by Noblet", quite a good player for a cylindrical 1950's cl GREAT pinch Bb, of course.. Also I "Unearthed" [EBAY] a copy of Wm. S's [highly-opinionated, lengthy] PB book, in which he gives chapter/verse to the cl family AND his invention, US Pat. 2,509,--- [1950's] , have copy, will find ! Its viewable [and search-out-able] on USPTO, see my current thread under Alterna Tiff. Will post later. Don

Thanx, Mark, Don

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet Patent
Author: Don Berger (---.proxy.aol.com)
Date:   2005-03-05 15:00

Close, no cigar ! 2,508,550, issued May 1950, copyable, with help. Don

Thanx, Mark, Don

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Douglas (---.dsl.spfdil.ameritech.net)
Date:   2005-03-05 15:14

That Bb "mechanism" that has been mentioned was called the "S-K" mechanism, designed by Stubbins and developed by Frank L. Kaspar in Ann Arbor.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Ken Shaw (65.217.153.---)
Date:   2005-03-07 16:32

I believe the book is still available. I got a copy a couple of years ago, perhaps from his widow.

Ken Shaw

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Terry Stibal (---.230.51.209.Dial1.Houston1.Level3.net)
Date:   2005-03-07 18:52

Stubbin's book is of variable quality. As mentioned above, he is VERY opinionated about a variety of things clarinet. This can get in the way at times.

However, one thing well worth the purchase price is his complete guide to transposition for the clarinet. His is the only book that I've ever seen the Bb to Eb transposition trick (play the note as written in Eb on the Bb horn by fingering it in the opposite register only omitting or adding the register key), and he has a number of other useful ideas as well.

leader of Houston's Sounds Of The South Dance Orchestra
info@sotsdo.com

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Don Berger (---.proxy.aol.com)
Date:   2005-03-07 21:08

Well said, Terry- Yes his book is interesting from a number of standpoints, his "wordy" detail keeps one reading and YES his transposition tricks, advice etc are comprehensive and well worth the book's cost. I had stumbled on some of the "pretend you're playing a diff horn" trans and benefitted from his descriptions. Glad to learn its still in print, Don

Thanx, Mark, Don

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: clarii (---.bitstream.orcon.net.nz - ISP in Auckland, E7 New Zealand)
Date:   2009-06-02 20:56

i graduated from u. of michigan in 1964 and was a student of w. stubbins. i remembered his frustration because his and frank kaspers sk b-flat key was not accepted by the major cl. manufacturers. i do remembered his saying the normandy wood cl(didnt know about the plastic one) was in the medium range of pro cls. by leblanc. ive never seen either. however id like to comment that the sk key seems to be on all bass cls. for a long time. does anyone know if it indeed is the sk key and when was it first installed on bass. cls. by the way stubbins used a metal cl. mouthpiece designed by them and made by kasper. i met f. kasper for 10 seconds. i biked to his house and bought his cl. mouthpiece for $15.00. i never liked it and was happy i accidently broke it. the woodwind G-8 WAS FAR BETTER. the Howith(sp) english cl. does have a sk key cl. for sale. probably there own design. paul king in new zealand

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Don Berger (---.proxy.aol.com - ISP in United States)
Date:   2009-06-02 21:44

Hi and welcome, clarii, we have discussed the S-K and Wm S frequently , the latest thread [in our archives, Search, above] under the title Identifying an Old Leblanc. It will answer many of your questions, and several of us will be happy to talk further and learn more about this fine/contraversial teacher. Don

Thanx, Mark, Don

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: donald (---.jetstream.xtra.co.nz - ISP in Auckland, E7 New Zealand)
Date:   2009-06-03 12:46

Hi Paul, hope you're doing fine!
the SK mechanism is not quite the same as the "register exchange" mechanisms of other design (and used on student bass clarinets). On "RE" mechanisms it is an "either-or" design... one hole for reg key, one for the throat B flat.
On the SK mechanism it is "one hole for reg key, two for the throat B flat", so if the mechanism goes out of adjustment you can still play the clarinet- only the Bflat will be a little out of tune.
Interestingly, the Wurlitzer Reform Boehm clarinets i recently sold to a BB member had an SK type mechanism rather than register exchange....
it's late, need sleep
keep playing the good tunes
dn

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: clarii (---.bitstream.orcon.net.nz - ISP in Auckland, E7 New Zealand)
Date:   2009-06-08 03:24

hi donald thanks for email and info. im not very good on the net but somehow did it. i have a 84 yr. old friend in auckland named ken wilson who lived and played in the states yrs. ago. he has a pair of the wurlitzer reform cls. talk about keys! everywhere. have you ever seen or tried the howith(sp) cl with the b-flat mechanism? i did and couldnt see much difference in sound. my favorite fingering for b-flat is to resonate the side b-flat key using 2,3,6 and low f key-same for third space A. ive gotten so good at it i can use it most of the time.
can you tell me why resonating works? what does it do. trick the cl. by allowing more air into the bore. or like electicity does it GROUND the cl.
im assuming you are don berger or are you someone else? also i still play my 1960 r-13 cl. it has a great sound(of course i contribute a little) and people want to buy it. does it have a smaller bore than now or better wood-what do you think? i know your very busy so no hurry.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Don Berger (---.proxy.aol.com - ISP in United States)
Date:   2009-06-08 13:46

Hi again, clarii - no, donald and I [Don] live far apart, his ISP address is also yours in your N Z, I'm in the USA, 'tis a small world !! Concerning resonate fingerings, that's in the [highly technical] acoustics area, and I certainly can't discuss it knowledgably. I believe at one of your NZ technical universities, there have eeen some publications re: tech. acoustic investigations, so, OTHERS Please Help. TKS and Regards, Don

Thanx, Mark, Don

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Gary Van Cott (---.lv.lv.cox.net - ISP in Las Vegas, NV United States)
Date:   2009-06-09 01:17

The book is not in print as far as I know. A number of years ago I was told by the company that had been selling it that they had shipped the remaining copies to his daughter. I tried to contact her (they gave me a phone number) but my messages were never returned.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: SStubbins (---.dsl.spfdmo.sbcglobal.net - (AT&T Internet Services) Highlandville, MO United States)
Date:   2012-08-17 14:20

Nice to know that my father's clarinet and books, etc. are still discussed.
I actually have a few books, The Art of Clarinestry.
I am his eldest daughter, Sara.
I live in Missouri now but always visit Ann Arbor every other summer.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: MarlboroughMan (---.lightspeed.bcvloh.sbcglobal.net - (SBC Internet Services) Cleveland, OH United States)
Date:   2012-08-17 14:56

"Interestingly, the Wurlitzer Reform Boehm clarinets i recently sold to a BB member had an SK type mechanism rather than register exchange...."

Just ran across this....I too have had a copy of the Stubbins book for a couple of decades now, and have always wondered about the "S-K" mechanism. Is there really any difference between Stubbins's "development" and the mechanism used by Fritz Wurlitzer? I believe Wurlitzer (or one of his predecessors in earlier Reform-Boehms) had developed that long before Stubbins.

I've never seen a Stubbins up close, though, and my Wurlitzers, while relatively early, are not early enough to tell (they were built in 1951).


Eric

******************************
The Jazz Clarinet
http://thejazzclarinet.blogspot.com/

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Chris P (---.proxy.aol.com - (America Online) , United Kingdom)
Date:   2012-08-17 16:45

Just seen on your Wurlitzer page it states the reform Boehms have a new speaker key/improved Bb design from 2011 onwards - is the new design the one with or without the wrap-around speaker key?

Chris.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: MarlboroughMan (---.lightspeed.bcvloh.sbcglobal.net - (SBC Internet Services) Cleveland, OH United States)
Date:   2012-08-17 21:14

Chris--

The wrap-arounds are the new ones, as of last year. You can see it pretty well with this pic:

http://wurlitzerclarinetsamerica.com/images/2011-register.gif

And here's a pic of the old style mechanism:

http://wurlitzerclarinetsamerica.com/images/2010/fingering8.gif

Does anybody know if there is any difference between this old-style Wurlitzer mechanism and a Stubbins?


Eric

******************************
The Jazz Clarinet
http://thejazzclarinet.blogspot.com/

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Chris P (---.proxy.aol.com - (America Online) , United Kingdom)
Date:   2012-08-17 22:33

The old-style Wurlitzer one looks very much like the Leblanc mechanism that opens the extra vent when the thumb is off and the speaker key is held down.

There is a much better Leblanc design fitted to their altos, basset horns and basses that was fitted to some Leblanc sopranos where the Bb vent or speaker vent opened depending if the throat A key was open or not - it had a question mark-shaped rocker running underneath the mechanism that determined which of the vents (throat Bb or speaker) was open, but not both at the same time.

Chris.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: MarlboroughMan (---.lightspeed.bcvloh.sbcglobal.net - (SBC Internet Services) Cleveland, OH United States)
Date:   2012-08-17 23:10

Interesting, Chris...do you happen to remember which Leblanc model sopranos featured that improved mechanism?

As a sidenote, I've gotten some experience now with a Selmer CT and BT...and the throat Bb's on those horns are great, comparatively speaking, to almost any contemporary model clarinet. I'd put them on par with the old Fritz Wurlitzer, even without the additional mechanism.


Eric

******************************
The Jazz Clarinet
http://thejazzclarinet.blogspot.com/

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Chris P (---.proxy.aol.com - (America Online) , United Kingdom)
Date:   2012-08-17 23:14

I've no idea as I saw a couple listed on French eBay several years back - they're pretty old as they had unplated keywork and the other main feature was a doubled RH F/C key (two large pad cups mounted on the same barrel). I got outbid on both of them.

Chris.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Ken Shaw (---.dyn.optonline.net - (Optimum Online) Brooklyn, NY United States)
Date:   2012-08-18 00:21

Chris -

I've seen doubled F/C pads only on Reform Boehms. Do you remember whether the horns had the extra vents, etc. that appear on the RB? Have you ever seen doubled pads on an ordinary Boehm?

Ken Shaw

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Chris P (---.proxy.aol.com - (America Online) , United Kingdom)
Date:   2012-08-18 01:01

It was standard Leblanc keywork apart from those extras but I can't remember if it also had the forked Eb/Bb mechanism fitted. That's the only time I've ever seen the doubled F/C key pads on a French bore Boehm system soprano (as opposed to German bore Boehms and full on reform Boehms) - they're usually fitted on Selmer and Buffet basses and Leblanc Ab sopraninos, but it's not something I've seen before on any Boehm system sopranos. I think these Leblancs were from the '50s or '60s.

Just looked on Steve Sklar's site and he's got a photo of the very thing:
http://www.clarinetperfection.com/galleryclar/Leblanc/Stubbins_sn5941_1948yr/cl01.jpg

Speaker/improved Bb mechanism: http://www.clarinetperfection.com/galleryclar/Leblanc/Stubbins_sn5941_1948yr/cl04.jpg

Copy and paste this link for more info:
http://www.clarinetperfection.com/clsnLeblanc.htm#ql_preClassic

Chris.

Post Edited (2012-08-18 01:21)

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Wes (---.lsanca.dsl-w.verizon.net - (Verizon Internet Services) Redondo Beach, CA United States)
Date:   2012-08-18 03:48

The doubled F/C key was present on a Noblet silver plated clarinet I bought new many years ago. It was made about 1948 and came in a beautiful white rounded case with a case cover.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: SteveG_CT (---.hsd1.ct.comcast.net - (Comcast Cable) Bloomfield, CT United States)
Date:   2012-08-18 20:42

SStubbins wrote:

> Nice to know that my father's clarinet and books, etc. are
> still discussed.

His clarinets and his throat Bb improvement mechanism come up in discussions fairly regularly, at least several times per year on this board. I have one of his self-branded clarinets that he had built by Noblet as part of my collection. It's a nice intermediate model and his mechanism is a bit more reliable than the competing "Omega Mechanism" released by Selmer around the same time.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: elmo lewis (---.prod-infinitum.com.mx - (GestiĆ³n de direccionamiento UniNet) Xalapa, 30 Mexico)
Date:   2012-08-18 22:57

Sara, The International Clarinet Society has a research library that I'm sure would love to have any teaching materials, books, photos, etc. of your father if someday you would like to make a donation.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: ramspeed (---.dhcp.embarqhsd.net - (Embarq Corporation) Greenville, NC United States)
Date:   2013-07-14 01:49

Hi SteveG_CT I also have a self-branded clarinet built by Noblet (France, Paris) for Stubbins. It's so intricate and interesting, as I am not a musician. I bought it to start an instrument collection. Is it possible to contact you and ask a few questions?
Please advise,
Kindest Regards,
Mike

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: SteveG_CT (---.hsd1.ct.comcast.net - (Comcast Cable) Bloomfield, CT United States)
Date:   2013-07-14 05:48

ramspeed wrote:

> Hi SteveG_CT I also have a self-branded clarinet built by
> Noblet (France, Paris) for Stubbins. It's so intricate and
> interesting, as I am not a musician. I bought it to start an
> instrument collection. Is it possible to contact you and ask a
> few questions?

Fine with me. I usually enjoy discussing clarinets with other people who are interested in them. If you click on my user name above this message you will find my e-mail address.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Jmar38 (---.columbus.res.rr.com - (Time Warner Cable) Wauseon, OH United States)
Date:   2013-10-02 03:35

I have a Stubbins clarinet made by Noblet with # 32432 on it(is that model# or serial#?) It has the Stubbins insignia stamped on it in 2 different places. I purchased it used in 1985 and played it all through high school. I have not been able to find any information on this particular model. All parts are original except the mouthpiece and the barrel I think(there's no Noblet emblem or markings on it) which I accidentally dropped in hight school and had to replace it with a plastic one. Can anyone tell me more about his model or how/where to find more information? My son's music teacher thought it was made between 1959 and 1965 but he couldn't find any information either. He did send me an article from the internet Remedies for the Clarinet's "Sore Throat" but none of the model/serial #'s match the one on my clarinet. I don't know what model it is either. Any information would be helpful. Thank you.




[ Edited - GBK ]



Post Edited (2013-10-02 05:59)

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: ramspeed (---.dhcp.embarqhsd.net - (CenturyLink) Benson, NC United States)
Date:   2013-10-05 04:15

Stubbins clarinet made by Noblet with # 32432 , that's your serial number, the one I have is # 57123.

I purchased the book below.
The art of clarinetistry;: The acoustical mechanics of the clarinet as a basis for the art of music performance,
Stubbins, William H

But did not get a chance to peruse the subject matter.
I purchased mine at an antique store.
Reply if you need any other information.
Mike

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Jmar38 (---.columbus.res.rr.com - (Time Warner Cable) Wauseon, OH United States)
Date:   2013-10-10 19:55

I was able to discover Stubbins applied for the patent Aug. 5,1948 and it was approved May 23,1950. In 1959 at a NAMM tradeshow Stubbins premiered the S-K mechanism and it was only offered on some Noblets for only a few years. A retired band teacher who volunteers at a local school worked with and studied under Stubbins and has shown interest in purchasing my clarinet. I wish I could find out more about it and hopefully he can tell me more. Thanks for your response.
JMar



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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Ed Lowry (---.dsl.scrm01.sbcglobal.net - (AT&T Internet Services) Sacramento, CA United States)
Date:   2013-10-10 21:10

Leblanc made them for their top of the liine models as well. A restored one is for sale on e-bay ... (not by me). Do a search on clarinet stubbins and it'll come up.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: donald (---.dialup.xtra.co.nz - (Telecom New Zealand Ltd) Auckland, E7 New Zealand)
Date:   2013-10-11 00:51

Hi,
interesting to read this thread again, and to see the mix up above- Paul King (who posted as "clari") had met me several times, had coffee with me and even car pooled with me in 2000 once a week for a whole school year- but didn't realise it was me posting AND that the Wurlitzer clarinets i mentioned were ones i had bought from Ken Wilson some years previously...

meanwhile- I would like to note once more that....
"the SK mechanism is not quite the same as the "register exchange" mechanisms of other design (and used on student bass clarinets). On "RE" mechanisms it is an "either-or" design... one hole for reg key, one for the throat B flat.
On the SK mechanism it is "one hole for reg key, two for the throat B flat", so if the mechanism goes out of adjustment you can still play the clarinet- only the Bflat will be a little out of tune."
... and that many people are unable to tell the difference between the two. The Leblanc clarinet mentioned by Ed Lowry is NOT the SK mechanism (though, on Ebay the seller has eroneously described it as such). Leblanc made soprano clarinets with an exchange mechanism in addition to the SK and the two are often confused.
Meanwhile- the advantage of the SK is its simplicity and reliability. I have played clarinets with this type of mechanism where it appeared to make little difference, but also clarinets where it made a huge improvement- so obviously the size/placement of the vents etc makes a huge difference.
A fine player here in NZ owns a Tosca A clarinet that has had (what is essentially) an SK mechanism retro-fitted by a craftsman in Switzerland. It made a HUGE difference to the throat B flat. This mechanism resembled the newer Wurlitzer one linked above.
There is a close up photo of the SK mechanism in the Jack Brymer book- but even he mistakenly describes it as having seperate holes for the register key and throat B flat, which it clearly does not.
dn

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: donald (---.dialup.xtra.co.nz - (Telecom New Zealand Ltd) Auckland, E7 New Zealand)
Date:   2013-10-11 01:17
Attachment:  SK type mech.jpg (313k)

Ok, being relatively useless at computer stuff, i'll try to download a picture from my phone. This is of the "retro fitted B flat mechanism" on a Tosca A clarinet that i mentioned above, but opperates in the same way as the SK mechanism... let's see if this works....

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Tony F (---.lnse1.win.bigpond.net.au - (Telstra Internet) Albert Park, 07 Australia)
Date:   2013-10-11 02:32

Nicely done1

Tony F.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Jmar38 (---.columbus.res.rr.com - (Time Warner Cable) Wauseon, OH United States)
Date:   2013-10-11 02:49

My clarinet has a similar key but it is straight and doesn't curve around like that. My clarinet was made around 1963 that's about all I know as far as getting an exact date. Nice picture!

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: ramspeed (---.dhcp.embarqhsd.net - (CenturyLink) Benson, NC United States)
Date:   2013-10-11 03:33
Attachment:  Noblet57123.JPG (121k)

# 57123
Made in France by Noblet
Wm H Stubbins
This is a picture of my instrument.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Ed Lowry (---.dsl.scrm01.sbcglobal.net - (AT&T Internet Services) Sacramento, CA United States)
Date:   2013-10-11 03:34

It's generally agreed that the standard R-A fingering produces an inferior tone, which clarinetists either endure or work around with various, often awkward, alternate fingerings. The Stubbins and other mechanisms have been invented with superior results, yet they remain an anomaly.

Why is this?

Are the results not so superior?
Are the alternate fingerings good enough when needed?
Or are clarinetists a conservative lot, unwilling to commit to something new?



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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: donald (---.dialup.xtra.co.nz - (Telecom New Zealand Ltd) Auckland, E7 New Zealand)
Date:   2013-10-11 05:04
Attachment:  SK mech.jpeg (640k)

I'm on a roll... here's the pic from the Jack Brymer book.

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Ken Shaw (---.dyn.optonline.net - (Optimum Online) Brooklyn, NY United States)
Date:   2013-10-11 12:13

Donald -

Who is the Swiss craftsman who made the modification?

The Stubbins mechanism (for which the patent has expired) is unlike other throat Bb mechanisms because it keeps the register vent open rather than exchanging it for the second trill key or a duplicate hole. In my opinion, the best design links to the throat Ab key rather than the A key.

On your photo, the register vent extends well above the surface. Am I correct in assuming that it does not extend into the bore? Does it have a metal liner tube?

Thanks.

Ken Shaw

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 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: Jmar38 (---.columbus.res.rr.com - (Time Warner Cable) Wauseon, OH United States)
Date:   2013-10-11 21:15

That's what my clarinet S-K mechanism looks like. Thanks for the picture.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Stubbins clarinet
Author: donald (---.dialup.xtra.co.nz - (Telecom New Zealand Ltd) Auckland, E7 New Zealand)
Date:   2013-10-11 21:40

Ok- the two pictures i have posted are of different LOOKING mechanisms, but if you examine them clearly you will see that they both operate in a similar fashion. In both instances the register vent AND the extra hole are open for throat B flat. So while the "swiss" version (that seems to be the same as that on the Wurlitzer clarinets) LOOKS different from the SK, it actually achieves exactly the same thing. The difference Ken Shaw notes has been mentioned in this thread already at least twice.

As for details re the Swiss one, i don't know the name, but should be able to find out without too much trouble. Both James Fry and Phil Green have had this installed, so if you know them you can ask them directly. The photo was taken "on the fly" at the Sydney Con in july and at that time it didn't occur to me to look inside the upper joint to see if the reg vent went into the bore.



Post Edited (2013-10-11 21:41)

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