Amazing what you find…

Conscious of the fact that my review of the Aquilasax C has somewhat ‘stalled’, due to various other committments and distractions, I decided it was time to make the effort.

So, where were all the bits and pieces ?  ‘Scattered around the house’ was the answer, but it wasn’t until I started collecting them on one of my infamous ‘curry trays’ that I realised just HOW MUCH was scattered !

Includes a Lawton, several Links, even more Coufs, a Saxscape, couple of Bergs, various others – and I’ll swear that the Metalites have been breeding…  This tray is full, so I’ve started on another !

Now then, where did I put the sax ?

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7 Responses to Amazing what you find…

  1. Gandalfe says:

    We all need houses like that!  8)

  2. Mal-2 says:

    I should be so lucky. Whenever I find that some household object has started breeding, it’s always something mundane like golf balls or pencils.

  3. lewis Pelham says:

    Alan. Being single, it is relatively easy for you. Clearly you do not suffer the guilt complex which comes with marriage.
    I have so many mouthpieces that I tend to secrete them in various boxes around the house…if my wife saw them all together, & realised how many I own, there would be words.
    Your Metalites must indeed be breeding; remember that I bought two from you!

  4. alan says:

    You did indeed Lewis, but I replaced them, and acquired a couple of extra alto ones, when an ebay music store recently found a box full during a stock check. 😉 All nines and elevens, of course !

    JonF bought a few as well, I understand…

  5. lewis Pelham says:

    Amongst the bag of mouthpieces which belonged to Sam, there are some beauties…today I tried some of the no-name examples; clearly pieces which Sam found in the cases of horns that he bought.
    Without exception they are profoundly, unequivocally diabolical. Absolutely disgraceful.
    If these are the pieces supplied with student saxophones then it amazes me that anyone struggles to learn the instrument. Surely students and tyros need all the help they can get & it would make financial sense for the manufactures to provide top flight mouthpieces…those students would wish, in time, to upgrade their saxophones; instead, the horn lies unused in an attic…all because of a duff mouthpiece.  👿

  6. AlanU says:

    I absolutely agree.
    It must cost about the same in materials, labour etc to make a good mouthpiece as a bad one.
    The PR involved though is priceless. Think of the ‘word of mouth’ value when someone says it played beautifully straight out of the case.
    When young and even more callow than I am now I plucked up courage to ask Peter King what mouthpiece he used, he told me and asked what I used. I said a Yamaha, he said Yamaha don’t really make mouthpieces. A week later I bought a metal Otto Link 5*, which I still love.  

    Before buying some great bass guitars I’ve had to imagine what they will be like once I’ve sorted them out at home. Before you start to trick up the action and intonation you throw away the strings and put on something decent. I know some of this is subjective, but some is purely about letting down your product with cheap components.

    Who buys a new car, with the acceptance that the tyres will be thrown out just as soon as I get home?  

  7. Mal-2 says:

    A string instrument is a little bit different, as the strings are relatively disposable. It’s like including a crap reed with a sax, it isn’t intended to see a lot of use. I think most string instruments ship with strings on them mainly so they can stay under tension while shipping and while on display. This can be especially important if they are shipped in containers that are not climate-controlled, as thermal expansion can do horrible things to string instruments (not as much for solid-body, but acoustic guitars and orchestral strings certainly suffer from hot-cold cycles). A sax will not suffer damage if it ships without a mouthpiece, though it may be harder to sell since it is not complete enough for play testing “straight out of the box”.

    I think the reason the mouthpiece is invariably cheap is that since there is no “one size fits all” setup, it’s hardly worth trying to please everyone. Yamaha ships playable mouthpieces with their horns, and Selmer still might (I know they used to), but even then they’re close-facing, middle-of-the-road mouthpieces. They’re still a far sight better than the trash that ships with most horns, and I have given away several Yamaha 4C mouthpieces because they were a marked improvement over what some poor kid had to fight with. I can even get a reasonably good tone and altissimo response out of them, though volume suffers badly from the small opening. I have been to shops where every new horn comes with either the Yamaha 4C or a Rico Royal, at the player’s choice. (If they have no idea what they want, they get the Yamaha.) This is a wise move on the shopkeeper’s part, as neither one is very expensive (especially in bulk), and it creates both goodwill and the illusion that the perfectly average student horns coming from the store are actually better than most.

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