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 Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Brenda Siewert 
Date:   2001-07-11 01:42

Ok, for all you who have owned or played one of these--what's your opinion?

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 RE: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Robert Small 
Date:   2001-07-11 05:21

The Leblanc/Vito catalogue describes it as an intermediate instrument with undercut tone holes. Sounds like it might be a good back-up or cold weather horn. My WW/BW catalogue doesn't list it so I don't know what it costs. I too would like to hear from anyone who has played one.

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 RE: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Brenda Siewert 
Date:   2001-07-11 13:21

They're not sold through discount cataloges. Only upper-level Leblanc dealers have them (supposedly). My local dealer has carried them for a number of years and they have been the required instrument of our school district for middle school kids. The band directors chose them over some of the lesser priced wood clarinets because they really liked the way they played. A bit better than your average plastic.

Phil Smallwood started a thread about second clarinets and that started me thinking about trying a V40 as a potential backup for outdoor concerts in the over 100 degree F. heat here in Texas.

I know they're not as easy to get as regular Vitos and other plastics, that's why I'm looking for some input on how they hold up, what they sound like, how people like them. Especially people who use another instrument as their main instrument--like the professional wood models--and use the V40 as a backup for bad weather, etc.

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 RE: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Corey 
Date:   2001-07-12 01:51

they sell them at International musical suppliers. it's in my catalog no price listed though

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 RE: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Brenda Siewert 
Date:   2001-07-12 02:26

Just called them. They are out and have to order some, but I was quoted $559.00 today. That's a good price for a new one. Right now I want to play one before recommending or buying one.

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 RE: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Fred 
Date:   2001-07-12 13:10

I played my V40 at rehearsal last night. The pads had more problems (needs a repad) than I remembered, but I really enjoyed the horn. It FEELS good in the hands and the keywork was sure and properly responsive. I am not going to address intonation because of the pad conditions. The tone was very nice for a non-pro horn. I think I'm really going to enjoy this horn once I get it repadded.

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Ken Mills 
Date:   2005-12-14 00:00

Dear Brenda; I bought the last of the V40 clarinets in early 2003. I think that it has all the same borings and dimensions as the Pete Fountain. I measured it at exactly 15mm bore. Every note seems to have the same projection, quite even. I had to shorten the barrel quite a bit, 6mm and so had to shorten the middle joint too, but I made everything in tune. I am one who plays with a soft reed, you see. Shouldn't clarinets in that catagory be higher pitched than say a so called professional model? It is the best instrument for my style, and I have tried them all. Shouldn't clarinets be made in higher pitched models too? say a quarter step? I was just a real shopper for the best sound. Now I have it in the V40. You can fax me in San Francisco at 415.673.1027 if you live in the area to hear it. Thanks for your interest in this instrument, Ken Mills

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: GBK 
Date:   2005-12-14 00:09

I always wanted to get a V40 to have in my collection of clarinets, mostly to see if all their praise was justified.

So, last year on eBay, I was in the right place at the right time, and picked one up for $22. After a few tenon corks and 2 pads it was good to go. In addition, adding a Power Barrel to it transformed it into a very respectable instrument with nice projection and surprisingly good intonation.

Just for my own amusement I recently used the V40 with my big band to see if anyone in the sax section could tell any difference. It blended fine and the sound carried nicely.

Other than the Forte clarinet (which is in a class by itself), the V40 was definitely one of (if not the best) plastic clarinet manufactured over the past few decades...GBK

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: susieray 
Date:   2005-12-14 01:06


I have one too! I got mine on ebay for under $50, and it is very nice for a plastic clarinet. Mine did not even need any work done on it, and it plays well the way it is. I like it!

Sue

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Ray 
Date:   2005-12-14 04:00

I have played a V40 for outdoor concerts for a few years now. I repadded it with all cork on top and skin on the bottom. It is very responsive, with an even scale, very good intonation and a nice sound. It is a joy to play. The light weight is a plus.

The only thing I have trouble with is the short top joint. I have to pull out the barrel 2mm and the mouthpiece another 1mm to get in tune. This doesn't happen with any of the other seven clarinets I play. If I pull the barrel 3mm the responsiveness and easy blowing characteristics disappear and the whole horn feels stuffy and dull. Tom Ridenour mentions this phenomenon in his great book, The Educator's Guide to the Clarinet, but I don't understand it. I fill the gap with tuning rings.

I have a second V40. I have sanded off the ugly logos and made a better simulated wood finish. Next step is to pad it completely with Valentino Greenbacks. Then it will be truly a combat clarinet, to steal another member's description.

I think both Forest Aten and Tom Ridenour had their talented hands in its development.



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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Brenda Siewert 
Date:   2005-12-14 13:46

Wow! Talk about pulling a thread out of the past. You know that the V40 isn't made anymore, so if you're looking for one you need to look for a good used one. Now I would recommend The Doctor's Forte before I would recommend a V40.



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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: BobD 
Date:   2005-12-14 16:20

Twas the night before the Holidays and in every room
All we could hear was Granny changing her tune....
She once played a Vito she praised to the sky
But switched to a Forte that had caught her eye...

Then what with a clatter we heard he exclaim...
I've dropped my mouthpiece and I can't get up...

Bob Draznik

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Brenda Siewert 
Date:   2005-12-14 19:51

Bob, if you read the thread again I was only asking about them. I did recommend them, but only owned one used one for a short time before selling it to Mark C. for a student. They are good instruments. Fortes weren't even made then.

Why such a tacky sarcastic poem? Have I done something to insult you in the past?

I don't keep back up instruments. I buy them, restore them and resell them to students (or whomever). I'm always looking for something I think is worth recommending to parents.



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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: BobD 
Date:   2005-12-14 20:10

Sorry you interpreted my attempt at humour that way. Merry Christmas.

Bob Draznik

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Brenda Siewert 
Date:   2005-12-14 22:58

I guess it was the "dropped my mouthpiece and can't get up" part. That's still a painful experience. You're forgiven.



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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: BobD 
Date:   2005-12-14 23:13

Sorry,grammy, but I did feel your pain. Sometimes my impression of humour doesn't coincide with others'. I could, however, visualize you attempting to catch the mp before it hit the floor and failing. Thanks for the forgiveness. bob

Bob Draznik

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: kfeder@hotmail.com 
Date:   2005-12-15 00:44

I have a Vito 7216 (pete fountain) which I understand is the same as the V-40 and it seems fine for a plastic horn (I haven't tried a forte yet)



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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: BobD 
Date:   2005-12-15 10:23

I have a PF plastic too and like it very much. As with most clarinets all V40s don't "play" or sound the same, depends on many variables.

Bob Draznik

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Brenda Siewert 
Date:   2005-12-15 13:53

It's actually hard to keep up with Leblanc's changes in models. The V40 served them well as their "flagship" model for non-wood instruments for a long time and was THE recommended one for all the band directors here in this part of Texas. It really is a good instrument, if you get one that isn't trashed out by being a rental. An overhaul will fix most problems.



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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Tom W 
Date:   2005-12-22 14:45

I was looking for a V40 for my son...Leblanc now makes a L7250 which has a smaller? 0.575 polycylindrical bore, undercut tone holes and is listed as an intermediate model.

Price on www is $600 but we have not been able to find one locally to test play.

Tom W.

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Brenda Siewert 
Date:   2005-12-22 15:43

Tom, I do highly recommend the Forte' clarinet (as mentioned above). Dr. Henderson is a sponsor of this board and is great to work with. So, that's another choice for you to consider.

However, if you want the Leblanc L7250, it is a good instrument. It's far better than the cheaper ones out there and would be an encouragement for your son. And, Woodwind and Brasswind will let you return it if you don't like it. You could have them send out a couple for you to try and return the one you don't want.



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 Does the V40 correlate at all to the Noblet model 40?
Author: azuka 
Date:   2014-04-14 03:56

Truthfully, before today, I had never heard of a V40 clarinet or a Forte for that matter. But this has my curiosity.

I grew up playing a Noblet model 40, and found it to be a very fine instrument.

Since Noblet, Vito, and LeBlanc are all under the same umbrella is there a correlation between the V40 and the Noblet 40?

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Ursa 
Date:   2014-04-14 18:28

The main correlation between the Noblet 40 and Vito V40 is the key work layout--they are very much alike.

Some V40s have a polycylindrical bore configuration which is not found on the Noblet 40.

The closest Vito cousin to the Noblet 40 is the Vito 7214. It was derived from the Normandy 14, which was derived from the Normandy 11, which was a plastic derivative of the Noblet 40. All four models have the same .584" cylindrical bore configuration, with the Vito 7214 and Normandy 14s having key work much like the Noblet 40.

Before the introduction of the V40, the 7214 was Vito's flagship model.

Play a 7214 and Noblet 40 back to back and you will note many similarities, especially in terms of blowing resistance and tuning.

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: derek_b 
Date:   2014-04-15 02:27

You realise guys that you are responding to thread which is almost nine years old, right?

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 RE: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: shmuelyosef 
Date:   2018-08-07 04:48

The thread was 11 years (since OP) when you posted last...

Now 17 years out, other than the Forte (which doesn't exist as far as obtaining one), are their any non-wood clarinets out there that compete? I've been buying some plastic clarinets and giving them professional quality overhaul this summer as an experiment (except the Alpha, which looked new, got some thin cork pads to help open the A/A# and replacements to fix leaks), and play-testing them against my older Selmers (CT and Series 9). Here's the list with year of birth, comments (in order of my 'approval' of them ...i.e. are they keepers)

Vito V40 (1995) - GP springs, metal spring seats on side keys, no alignment pin, totally rocks
Vito V40 (1999) - GP springs, spring grooves cut into body, alignment pin which was misplaced as received (I opened up the receiving notch to allow the joint to fully close)
Vito 7214 (1984) - Lyre logo, nice build quality, many pro features (spring seats, tapered bridge)
Vito 7214 (1995) - Painted V logo, required some keywork changes to play well
Boosey & Hawkes 1-10 (1964 X2) - Have two identical horns, they play well, but the key positions are awkward for me. Good intonation (after adjustments)
Backun Alpha (??) - Came to me used; throat tones flat, very resistive. Worked hard to open the throat a little, but overall disappointed with the response and intonation.

The older of the two V40s is a serious keeper as is the older of 7214s. The newer ones are good, too, but have some annoyances (not least of which is the alignment pins). I really want to like the B&H, as I get a great tone with reasonable intonation...maybe will keep trying to get used to the key positions, but my hands are large and that might be some of the difficulty.



Post Edited (2018-08-07 04:51)

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: alanporter 
Date:   2018-08-07 05:35

Nobody has mentioned the Vito 7212. I have one that I bought dirt cheap years ago. and I love it. It plays perfectly in tune, and I have used it (anonymously) in concert band and no one has said anything bad about it.

tiaroa@shaw.ca

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2018-08-07 06:47

Of course if your PRIMARY horn is a Buffet Greenline, you can use that just like a plastic horn in virtually any kind of weather.



That said, I haven't played one old plastic Vito or Bundy that wasn't actually a really good sounding horn with great intonation. I can't say the same for the plastic Selmers......yuch.




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



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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: shmuelyosef 
Date:   2018-08-13 00:07

Alan
Totally agree with the comments about the 7212 clarinets...when I have some spare time, I will buy a few of these from online surplus stores, tighten them up, new corks and greenback pads and sell them to middle schoolers. I try to buy the newer ones with the Lyre logo (which can be re-gilded to satisfy middle schoolers ego), and give them a light brushed finish (1200 wet/dry) that disappears the scratches. Since they require no oiling, cleaning can be quickly done in the sink, headless point screws simplify keywork snugging, this can all be done in a short day.
The 7214 horns have slightly different tonehole diameters, but I can't say that I really notice any difference.

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Matt74 
Date:   2018-08-14 05:15

How do you gild them?

I used to restore picture frames, and worked as professional gilder. I couldn’t figure out how to restore/gild plastic stamped logos. Nothing I tried worked, but I didn’t have a lot of materials.

- Matthew Simington


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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: shmuelyosef 
Date:   2018-09-02 01:50

RE: Gilding
I use Liberon gilding cream, mineral spirits based. It is easy to do logos that have narrow lines...and that works for the old Resotone logos well. The Lyre and 'V' logos are more difficult as they have wide lines. My approach:

I thin the Liberon to paintable consistency and paint it into the lines very carefully. I do a couple of coats, letting it dry for a few hours in between each coat. Then when it is 'built up' to the clarinet surface level, I take a piece of 400 wet-dry sandpaper, stick some stiff, closed-cell foam adhesive backed tape to the back, and very gently sand the excess, just enough to make the edges of the embossed logo sharp. After this, I put on a coat of automotive was and (again, very gently) buff it out. I have also tried mixing shellac/alcohol with gilding powder and painting it in...again, several coats dried in between. This is probably a little more robust, but a much bigger production.

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2018-09-02 02:24

I recently bought and returned a V40. I did notice that the chalumeau was indeed "thin" which surprised me.

I now have a Vito Classic 7242 and the sound is much more "robust".

Just my observations...

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 RE: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: shmuelyosef 
Date:   2019-01-03 04:42

I have noticed that the 7214s and V40s have the throat keys set way too close as I have received them. Using either thin pads, or bending the keys ever so slightly, the throat tones are opened up. My personal V40 has very robust throat tones, and I have been able to do the same with 7214s. I have never played a 7242, but my understanding is that it has a different bore, like the VSP (which I have played).

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: Kalashnikirby 
Date:   2019-01-03 10:32

I recently acquired a Selmer Bundy and that got interested in those plastic band horns. They can be fine instruments.
But I suppose the Leblanc 7214/V40 don't exactly tune to a=442hz?
How do these horns compare to current production instruments like the Buffet prodige or the Backing Alpha?

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 Re: Experience on Leblanc Vito V40
Author: shmuelyosef 
Date:   2019-01-07 04:57

IME, the 7214s play a little sharp with the stock barrels. The V40s are a little closer to perfect with stock barrels. If there is a weak spot with the Vitos, it is the final reaming of the barrels...there is some variability. These respond very well to modern Moennig tapers in barrels. I use a Buffet 'Moennig' 65 on my V40 and it tunes well and responds nicely.

I have tried a few Backun (sp) Alphas and have been summarily unimpressed. The ones I tried play with high resistance, much like the Buffets. I bought a used one a while back to see what could be done about resistance, and found that intonation suffered when I opened up the venting and played with a free-blowing mouthpiece. If you like stock Buffets, they might be considered, but if you play Selmers, Leblancs or other more free-blowing clarinets they will be difficult. I also A/B'ed it with a Yamaha 25 that I was doing some work on and found the Yamaha to be superior in every way...that said, I prefer the modern Vitos to the Yamahas, which is why the V40 is my 'go to' for outdoors and backup.

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