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 Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Ken. 
Date:   2018-12-23 10:44

Can anyone tell me anything about a Frank Kaspar mouthpiece in the link below?

I have posted a couple of photos here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/gbC1FjNQX3KHV3ev9

It has CHICAGO ILL stamped on it which based on what I have read indicates it was made in his earlier years. I'm guessing it is a Chedeville blank. How much would this be worth?

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Bob Bernardo 
Date:   2018-12-28 08:07

Hard to say if it was a Chedeville. I'd have to measure it. The main Cheds came from Cicero, just outside of Chicago. But even these sometimes were not Cheds. I have several and if you want me to measure yours mail if overnight and I'll ship it back the same way. The cost would be about $45 in shipping. It will take me about 15 minutes to measure it and determine what you have. I even have a few Henri Chedeville's. It's possible you could have an Henri not a Charles Chedeville. Or again maybe not. This is why my mouthpieces say Cicero on them.

When he was in Chicago the supply dried out so he got them from several sources but mainly a source I need to keep quiet as they were very consistent. The bore sizes came in 11, 13, and 15. 13 seemed to be very popular at the time. The company also made the Ann Arbor Kaspar version, which is a shallower baffle and chamber and the distance between the rails was closer, but sounded pretty decent, just a shade brighter. Robert Marcellus really liked the 13 bore and a 1.09 tip opening. However on my gauges they are 1.08. He ordered them in lots of 8 usually for his students. The cost then was about $60. Crazy how the prices have gone up. $1000 to $2000 is not uncommon. Is it worth the cost? Don't think so. It's like that ligature that sells for $900 to $1000, and the dead sounding Backun clarinets that sell for $21,000 for a set. Where do we draw the line here?

I actually have the drawings of these, so I'm very confident with what I'm writing.

A lot of people think the numbers had to do with tip openings, but they did not. Only the bore sizes.

There are stories that he used Buffet mouthpieces and Selmer's, but I haven't seen any mouthpieces changed to his specifications. There are special indications to look for that he would do to all of his mouthpieces.

Oh from the pics, the table looks like it is NOT a Chedeville, but that other company I have to keep a secret to. The table is too wide to be a Chedeville. But it's still a good mouthpiece.

Hope this helps.


Designer of - Vintage 1940 Cicero Mouthpieces and the La Vecchia mouthpieces


Yamaha Artist 2015




Post Edited (2018-12-28 08:11)

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: DavidBlumberg 
Date:   2018-12-28 08:59

The Backun's don't sound dead! Maybe a dead player makes em sound dead, but

I play em, and don't remotely sound dead.

Judge for yourself........

https://youtu.be/6Amc5wvdQiQ

http://www.MyTempoMusic.com

http://www.skypeclarinetlessons.com/about.html


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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: J. J. 
Date:   2018-12-28 10:51

So very much misinformation from Bob here, most of it derived from confusing the two Kaspars with the Chedeville cousins. Where to start, really.

**Edited my post to correct my OWN error about the relationship between Frank and Frank L. Kaspar**



Post Edited (2018-12-28 15:18)

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Bob Bernardo 
Date:   2018-12-28 13:37

J.J no misinformation was given. The post was about cities not cousins. The person posting asked if these were Cheds. I don't believe they are. But I did offer to take a look at them. I'm very aware that the cousin lived in Ann Arbor. I NEVER said a thing about fathers or brothers or cousins. So kindly avoid trying to start arguments. The brothers were Charles and Henri Chedeville, nothing to do with the Kaspar's.

David, I tested the Backun's with Backun watching me. One horn had a bad left hand low F/C key and I told him he should take this off of the display because it didn't work, he got mad and with his Zinner mouthpieces they were dead. When I went to try another horn with my mouthpiece Backun took the horn away from me. Actually grabbed it away. He's a mean man. He needs to stop bullying people. He had the same problem with Julian Bliss who no longer talk either. When I was testing all sorts of horns, Selmer's and even instruments from Austria. Sorry to disagree maybe the Zinner mouthpiece made his horn dead. Even Ricardo with the Philly Orchestra had issues with projection so he went to a crystal mouthpiece. Now he too had a fight with Backun and dumped him. When Ricardo auditioned for Cleveland it is no secret that the orchestra could not hear him. Mahler's 4th. So he lost the job.

Lastly I offered to help Backun fix the Zinner mouthpieces, He just walked away and didn't say a word to me. When we run into each other now we don't talk. His horns are not worth the money and if people want to support him great! So if people want me to write a book to answer a simple question I'll tell the people to write to me offline.

No my answers were correct. I told the person posting what he needed to know. Nothing more and nothing less.


Designer of - Vintage 1940 Cicero Mouthpieces and the La Vecchia mouthpieces


Yamaha Artist 2015




Post Edited (2018-12-28 14:08)

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: RWodkowski 
Date:   2018-12-28 14:26

Henri and Charles Chedeville were cousins...not brothers



Post Edited (2018-12-28 14:48)

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2018-12-28 21:53

Wow...this can get confusing!

In the following link, Charles and Henri are brothers...
http://www.woodwindforum.com/clarinetperfection/chedeville/

In this link, they are noted as cousins...(Go down to 4th paragraph)
https://retro-revival.com/products/artiste-replica-1930s-charles-chedeville-paris-bb-clarinet-mouthpiece

IMO, due to conflicting information on the Internet, I can see how easy it would be for anyone to get confused.

Now, to possibly add to the confusion or clarification...
http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=340726&t=340726 (Read clancy's first response, first sentence)

I'm simply going to take Ramon's word as fact.

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: RWodkowski 
Date:   2018-12-28 23:09

I got my information from Henri Chedevilles family

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: donald 
Date:   2018-12-28 23:17

Dave Tuttle has written some informative articles in The Clarinet on this topic.

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Bob Bernardo 
Date:   2018-12-28 23:56

Actually I think they were brothers, the Chedevilles. But there is some confusion here. Research is not accurate. Some say they were cousins, others say they were brothers. It doesn't matter. Mouthpiece production with Charles was stopped around the late 1940's. They used the same mouthpieces.

I was exposed to pesticides at Rico and some of my memory was effected such as this. But in this case it really doesn't matter as I DID answer the persons question that posted about the Kaspar.

The Cicero bores were larger, just like the Cheds. One of the key factors in figuring out if Kaspar was using Cheds.

A lot of Chedevilles were not marked. Yet some had 2 C's that were reversed which looked like an 8. These are a few clues to look for when searching for old mouthpieces.


Designer of - Vintage 1940 Cicero Mouthpieces and the La Vecchia mouthpieces


Yamaha Artist 2015




Post Edited (2018-12-29 00:45)

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2018-12-29 01:12

Dan,

Thanks for this link. Bob Shepherd used to teach sax at Loyola University many years ago down here in New Orleans, and of course has made a name for himself as a very successful studio player. I had no idea that he was associated with (yet another) attempt to create a replica of vintage Chedeville clarinet mouthpieces. (In this case, apparently a Charles Chedeville rather than an Henri Chedeville). Do you know anyone who's tried them?



Post Edited (2018-12-29 03:15)

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: TomS 
Date:   2018-12-29 09:45

Forget the Kaspar ... some were great, many were not. This I've been told by others that should know about such things ...

We are blessed today with more choices of more consistent and possibly better designed MPs. Behn, Mclune, Ridenour, Fobes, Hawkins, Backun, etc. have great designs and at less than you'll pay for a good Kaspar.

My new clarinet teacher has a drawer full of vintage and/or expensive boutique MPs that are not played anymore. The MP of choice, for quite some time, is a Vandoren M30/13.

I've found that clarinets that are seemingly "dead" (often with more resistance) as compared to an R13, can be revived with a lighter/brighter MP and reed. The advantage is that a lighter/brighter setup is often more responsive ... now your sound is back into beautiful balance, but gaining some agility. Good sound, Bob! I love this piece!

Tom

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: DaveT 
Date:   2018-12-29 21:14

Thank you donald. My articles were entitled "The Chicago Mouthpiece Legacy" and appeared in four parts in the ICA magazine. After years of research and communicating with customers, friends, and colleagues of both Kaspars, I was able to put together a history these two artists and craftsmen, starting from their arrival in this country in the early 1900's to their final years. Without starting a battle, I must correct Bernado on several counts. 1. Frank Kaspar did not move to Cicero until 1964, therefore there can be no 1940's Cicero mouthpieces. 2. There is no "secret hidden" source of blanks. Rick Sayre, the ONLY person Frank Kaspar trained to make/reface mouthpieces, was working with Kaspar when blanks were purchased from Glotin, Riffault, Sumner, Babbit, etc. etc. It is true that at some point reliable blanks became harder to obtain. I had the great fortune to be entrusted with many of Frank Kaspar's tools and unused blanks. These were given to me by Ray Kaspar, Frank's son. 3. Frank Kaspar did in fact use commercial blanks from time to time. In my articles there are pictures of Selmer, Yamaha, Woodwind, and other makes that Kaspar experimented with and sometimes used after filing the trademarks off. Good Kaspar mouthpieces still remain some of the finest ever made. There were no secrets or magic to their work, just decades of hard work and craftsmanship.

Finally, Frank Kaspar and his cousin Frank L. (Louis) Kaspar, both worked in Chicago till 1950. that year Frank L. moved to Ann Arbor, and Frank stayed in the city until 1964. Sorry to take up so much space. Have a great day!

David Tuttle

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Arnoldstang 
Date:   2018-12-30 22:36

In the spirit of the season I appreciate all the contributors here. Bob Bernardo has perhaps overcompensated for legal restrictions on the use of Kaspar’s name in his products. He avoids even using the name in his posts and that might be causing confusion here. Bob shares his experiences of a lifetime, unravelling the complicated mysteries of the clarinet. Obviously he loves to share.
David Tuttle’s article in the clarinet is wonderful. It’s a fascinating glimpse back in time.
Thanks Bob and David et al.

Freelance woodwind performer

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2018-12-31 03:18

Arnoldstand,

Concerning your comments about Bob Bernardo, when Omar L. Henderson, (The Doctor), gained full ownership rights to the trademarked names Kasper and Chedeville, many legal "Cease and Desist" letters were sent out to anyone who used those names in their advertisements.

Almost all mouthpiece craftsmen immediately deleted those two names entirely. Grabner simply changed his Kasper line to his "K" line of mouthpieces.

I was privy to learn of the verbal content of these letters and I must admit, the language used was quite scary to me.

I leave it to others to determine if what Mr. Henderson did was truly useful or not.



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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Bob Bernardo 
Date:   2018-12-31 12:54

He's dangerous. Not just because of the trade name but his bore oils can spoil. I won't use his products as they could be spoiled. I wouldn't want to play a horn with soiled oil on it.

Yes Omar sent me a letter too and responded saying I have enough money to fight him in court, so the only people that win are the attorneys. So far he hasn't done anything. It's been about 2 years now. I'm not afraid of him because I have a ton of money to fight a lawsuit for 50 years. Appeals and more appeals. It won't be over in a few weeks, nor a few decades.

Protest supporting this kind of behavior.


Designer of - Vintage 1940 Cicero Mouthpieces and the La Vecchia mouthpieces


Yamaha Artist 2015




Post Edited (2018-12-31 13:15)

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: J. J. 
Date:   2018-12-31 22:27

It's worth noting that although I have heard similar stories regarding the Chedeville and Kaspar brand names, the company has since been sold and the brand will relaunch in 2019 under JodyJazz. I can't say if the same overzealous legal protectionism will continue, but it won't be at the direction of Dr. Henderson.



Post Edited (2018-12-31 22:28)

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Ken. 
Date:   2019-01-01 09:49

Thanks for the replies.

I actually haven't received the mouthpiece yet, as it is comes with a clarinet that I just bought and is currently being shipped.

I will see how it plays, then decide what to do with it.

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: DaveT 
Date:   2019-01-18 18:31

I feel that one important point still needs to be made about Kaspar mouthpieces. Numbers such as 11, 13, 14, 16,etc., NEVER referred to the bore size. This is incorrect and misleading. While it is true that some Kaspars may have had slightly different tips then marked, the numbers stamped on the mouthpieces ALWAYS indicated the tip opening. What can be said is that EVERY part of a Kaspar mouthpiece had equal importance. Tip, baffle, chamber, bore, were all treated with the same degree of care. Once again, I reference Rick Sayre, the only person Frank Kaspar trained to make and reface mouthpieces.

David Tuttle

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Vytas 
Date:   2019-01-24 19:33

The original Kaspar Cicero mouthpieces ALWAYS indicated the tip opening in MILLIMETERS.

11 = 1.11 mm = (.0435") tip opening
13 = 1.13 mm = (.0445") tip opening
14 = 1.14 mm = (.0450") tip opening
16 = 1.16 mm = (.0455") tip opening
etc.

Vytas Krass
Custom clarinet mouthpiece maker
Professional clarinet technician
Former professional clarinet player




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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Ken. 
Date:   2019-04-22 10:39

Well, I finally played the Kaspar after getting it back from a tech who worked on the Centered Tone clarinet that it came with. The mouthpiece needed recorking.

My first impressions are that it has a sweet and mellow sound and is not too bright. I felt I was finally getting a sound I like on clarinet. It has more resistance than my current piece, a Theo Wanne which is free blowing which I like, but is somewhat brighter which I don't like so much.

How much are these worth these days? I read an article here from around 2004 by Clark Fobes on Kaspars and he mentioned they go for between $350 to $600. Does that sound about right in today's market?

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Ed 
Date:   2019-04-23 01:38

I have seen them go for more and less than those prices. The best way to know what they might be worth is to browse woodwind forums, eBay, sites that deal with used/vintage equipment, etc and others and see what they have sold for. The reason I say "might be worth" is that it can be all over the place. The condition, era, facing, etc can all have some effect. It also depends on the particular buyer(s). Sometimes the right person is interested and is willing to pay a premium. On the auction listings sometimes a couple people start a bidding war and the price is driven up.

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Ken. 
Date:   2019-04-23 08:48

Thanks.

Also, looking at the post above showing the tip openings, does anyone know what the facing lengths are?

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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: Bob Bernardo 
Date:   2019-04-23 13:49

Hi Ken,

I have the facings but the people here seem to think I don't have my facts straight :).

But I have the facings, the bores, and even the chamber depths, as well as the tip openings.

So the only way to probably prove all of this is send you samples to try! The people here won't back down even if I removed the name Kaspar and Chedeville with a file and secretly added marks to them. They will surely say the are not Kaspars's nor Chedeville's! It's just the way people are. They always want to see the proof and answers to what I write. Here's everyone's chance.

I know by writing this so players may get angry. I don't care aso don't waste your time getting angry.

For those that do believe this send $35 to PayPay at savagesax@aol.com and I will be happy to send you the blueprints of the Frank Kaspar, mouthpiece designs from Cicero, and Chicago, plus the Ann Arbor blueprints. I'll ship the prints within 2 weeks. At this time maybe the mysteries will be removed and realize the mouthpieces sold now called Ch Chedeville are juste trademarks of Chedeville's name only and the mouthpieces are not very good. The measurements are way off and don't play like Chedevills's or Kaspar's, compared to these early mouthpieces I have blueprints of. He messed up and only Trademarks. Sadly the trademark name Ch Chedeville ans Frank Kaspar's and don't play well at all. By the Selmer's or the Yamaha Custom and have them worked on a bit. Too bad the trademarks don't require patents to support those great mouthpieces and names. If any of you want to well go trademark Benny Goodman. Then the record companies might have to change his name to the King of jazz???

So if I send out 7 mouthpieces and they aren't marked, I'm the only person that knows, My guess is 92 percent of the players will pick the wrong one. They just don't have the ear and knowledge to hear what they sound like in a performance hall, so they will pick the mellow dead sound that doesn't project and these up close are not what Chedeville's and Kaspar's sound like. This is kind of like Buffet clarinets. Since the early 1970's they went to a large bore. But for some very stupid reason players still but out of tune horns that leak and accept this. WHY?

Every player from a beginner to a symphony pro of 40 years should be open to change. Thankfully a lot of these player do change.


Designer of - Vintage 1940 Cicero Mouthpieces and the La Vecchia mouthpieces


Yamaha Artist 2015




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 Re: Seeking info on a Frank Kaspar Mouthpiece
Author: The Doctor 2017
Date:   2019-04-25 01:21

(Disclaimer - I sell a plant oil derived Bore oil, I no longer own the Chedeville, Kaspar, or Selecta trademarks and they have been sold to Jody Jazz Inc.)
I beg to differ with Bob about my bore oil. It does not turn rancid under normal conditions of heat and light.

I have been making standards and quality control materials for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the last 40 years. Part of the production of a product's stability is doing accelerated stability studies which are designed to access the stability of a product with heat and time as an indicator of stability. This is a standard procedure for drug companies and is accepted by the FDA for stability properties of a drug for human consumption My product - Bore Doctor - indicates a stability of many years with this standard testing.

On my own testing protocol I keep samples of each production lot of bore oil and monthly test older samples, old to new and recent batches for chemical indicators of autoxidation (rancid production). These samples are stored here in my garage in Georgia with temperature variations between freezing and over 100 degrees F during 20 years. i started production in 1999 and samples from those batches as well as current batches have shown no rancidity. I now have near 5000 customers and have never received complaints of rancid bore oil. So, again, I beg to differ with claims of rancidity and offer scientific evidence of stability.

As far as enforcing trade mark usage, it was incumbent on me to leave a clear playing field for a new owner for trademark usage prior to selling my company. The company is now sold and I have no further interest in the Chedeville, Kaspar, and Selecta trademarks. This is up to the new owner to handle which they are now doing with litigation. No longer my issues.

I have no current issues with Bob and we have not corresponded in a couple years and no legal action is pending or planned. I always wish other vendors well in this difficult music industry.

I will enjoy other observations from customers and bulk users of my bore oil of samples that have turned rancid and, as with my other products, there is a 100% guarantee on all of my products for usage and stability.
L. Omar Henderson
www.doctorsprod.com

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