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Discussion Starter #1
I recently tried a Claude Lakey Alto 6*3 (.085") (brand new @ $65), I was really amazed !!!

It Sounds even like good expensive HR vintage mpc (my opinion of course), it plays great from bottom to top including easy altissimo and it is very punchy and has a very reasonant HR (I like that)

For the price it is the best mpc I ever tried :) (much much better than a current Meyer for example), do you have the same feedback regarding this mouthpiece ?

for info : I vote in second for the Jody Jazz HR* but it is over $100...

Last point : what about vintage Claude Lakey are they better or simply identical ?

Of course I used the "search" buttom but I was surprised that they aren't a lot of topics... I also checked the mouthpiecemuseum.com and they say :
"These hard rubber mouthpieces feature a round chamber and are hand-faced. They were hand made by Claude Lakey between 1950 and 1980"

Does it mean that they are only new old stock on the current market ? it is not really clear for me...

I thought that Claude Lakey is an ongoing current production (maybe simply not hand made at the moment)... Also, my new Claude Lakey has an horse shoe chamber and it is absolutely not a round one as mentionned in mouthpiecemuseum site...

I'm a bit surprised about these info on mouthpiecemusuem ; is it really a reliable source (I mean for Claude Lakey only) ?

If someone knows well these mpc's, please do not hesitate to clarify me a little bit . :bluewink: THANKS !
 

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I THINK someone else took over the Lakey line after Claude's death. And I no longer recall exactly when Claude passed away. He used to live in the area where I worked (Arleta, CA, a community in the northeast San Fernando Valley) and I visited him and his wife regularly - his shop was at his home. That was in the late 1970's/early 1980's. He moved to Texas after that.

I have several of his soprano and clarinet mouthpieces, one he marked for me personally (a 5*D, D for Dave). My daughter plays his alto piece and still loves it. I have not seen any current Lakey pieces so I don't know if the new manufacturer changed anything from then to now. My Lakey soprano pieces have a round chamber opening, my Lakey clarinet pieces are almost rectangular. Sorry I don't have more info, but if you like what you bought, I guess it doesn't matter. DAVE
 

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I've played a Lakey 5*3 for over 30 years. Love it. It takes some control, as the intonation can be a bit squirrely. Once you learn the mouthpiece, you'll realize you can do anything you want with it. Recently I bought a Morgan jazz and played it for a couple of years, but I still find my self gravitating to the Lakey. The tone and power are unmatched. When my son was playing in high school I bought him a 4*4 that has the power but a slightly darker tone.

The new ones don't have the white ring at the end of the shank, but they play the same. I've heard of some quality control issues, but haven't seen that personally. If it works for you, don't ask to many questions---you'll get GAS, forcing you to change mouthpieces in search of something that you already have.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I've played a Lakey 5*3 for over 30 years. Love it. It takes some control, as the intonation can be a bit squirrely. Once you learn the mouthpiece, you'll realize you can do anything you want with it. Recently I bought a Morgan jazz and played it for a couple of years, but I still find my self gravitating to the Lakey. The tone and power are unmatched. When my son was playing in high school I bought him a 4*4 that has the power but a slightly darker tone.

The new ones don't have the white ring at the end of the shank, but they play the same. I've heard of some quality control issues, but haven't seen that personally. If it works for you, don't ask to many questions---you'll get GAS, forcing you to change mouthpieces in search of something that you already have.
Yeah the 5*3 should be fantastic for me, the 6*3 is very very nice as I said but maybe a bit too open for me..I need to try a 5*3 I think it is easy to get one at a low cost
 

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I recently purchased a 6*3 for alto from wwbw and ..wow..easy playing, nice intonation, lot of volume and really easy low notes. Altissimo is amazingly clean. White ring at the shank.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
So, I have tested a 5*3 thinking that it will be the right opening tip for me but, unfortunately, it is a bit too small ; it is .080". Then, it is not a close one but I prefer the .085" of my 6*3 then for those who like the 0,080" tip I sell it on the market place (the 5*3) , it is brand new and played only 10 minutes with a tooth patch !

I've immediatly seen that it is too small for me. Then, when I said that the 6*3 seems a bit open (in a post above) I was a bit wrong, in fact I need to work it more... to master it.

Anyway, both are fantastic regarding the relative small price !!!!
 

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So, I have tested a 5*3 thinking that it will be the right opening tip for me but, unfortunately, it is a bit too small ; it is .080". Then, it is not a close one but I prefer the .085" of my 6*3 then for those who like the 0,080" tip I sell it on the market place (the 5*3) , it is brand new and played only 10 minutes with a tooth patch !

I've immediatly seen that it is too small for me. The when I said that the 6*3 seems a bit open (in a post above) I was a bit wrong, in fact I need to work it more... to master it.

Anyway, both are fantastic regarding the relative small price !!!!
Yes it is a nice mpc, I have played a lot of mpcs (Jumbo Java, Runyon, Brilhart ebolin, Level Air, Meyer, Bundy, Berg, etc) and this is the best I have ever tried, at least for loud gigs and playing with electric keyboards, electric guitar and bass. For small acoustic gig I prefer the Meyer 6M and Ebolin 5
 

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Woohoo! I thread where I can gloat about Lakeys! Hahaha. Jk. The Claude lakey pieces were the first jazz mouthpieces I ever tried way back in maybe 1995 or so. I was in 5th grade then. My dad is a sax player and so I used his mouthpieces. Although he has his alto piece I still use his tenor piece which is a 5*3 and or 6*3....forgot...but I love that piece on my tenor. He bought his pieces I think in the 70s or so. On tenor, I find that I get a lot of huskiness with a Vandoren Java 3.5 reed but still retaining that Lakey projection. It's an awesome piece and although I tend to use other pieces here and there I favor the Lakey the most. I also have an alto piece too that I got from a fellow member in a trade. It's a 7*3 and I totally love it. My first alto lakey was I think a 6*3 and it wasnt too bad but compared to the 7*3, I think I prefer the latter. I also use a vandoren java 3.5 reed on my alto set up and again I get a pretty husky and bright alto sound from that set up. All in all, I love lakeys but the thing about them, for me at least, is that you really want the older ones that Claude made. I think those are the truest representations of what a Lakey mouthpiece is about.
 

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Count me in, got a Lakey 6*3 back in the early 80's for my alto, still happy with it. When I bought it I tried every mpc they had, some much more expensive, and that's the one I liked the best.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Count me in, got a Lakey 6*3 back in the early 80's for my alto, still happy with it. When I bought it I tried every mpc they had, some much more expensive, and that's the one I liked the best.
Yeah I'm like you, I've even played very expensive mpc's (Like Meyer NY USA , etc...) but the Claude Lakey is definetly THE Hard Rubber Mouthpiece for me !

If I have to rate the Claude Lakey it will be 9.5 on a 10 scale !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :cheers:

I need to precise again that if I sell currently the 5*3 (in the market place), don't be surprised, it is just because it is a little too closed for me but it is really PERFECT from top to bottom.

Anyway, I keep the 6*3 which is better for my taste. I will even maybe buy a second one
(--> 6*3) as a spare part... (due to the low price of these ones)
 

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Good to hear! I've got an Alto 6*3 FS in the mouthpiece post. It's got the white rim, nice shape. $40. PM if interested.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yeah I will lower the price of my 5*3 and if I sell it I will certainly go back to your auction to buy a spare part, wait and see...
 

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I played a Lakey 4*3 for 35 years before finally settling on a Jody Jazz DV 7. I bought the 4*3 and a 5*3 from Claude when he had his shop in San Fernando Valley. Although it's only a .75 facing, the fullness, richness, smoothness of sound, and yet power is amazing, then again, this was one Claude kept in a drawer for some of the heavy weights that would come through his shop. The 5*3 was a bit too bright and not as full and rich sounding. I still have the 4*3 and it's still my second favorite piece for alto. For the money, they are great when you find the right one.
 

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I've got a 6*3 alto from the early 80's, don't know if it's an original or not. I was doubling on alto in a rock/country band. Went down to the best music store in town and tried out every piece they had, came away with the Lakey. Still use it. I bought a tenor version for my Martin Comm III, eh, not so great on that but loud as hell. I seem to remember it costing around $90 which was a lot of money to me back then.

How could you tell if it's a Claude or not? Don't matter to me really, I still dig it.
 

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I get very bad intonation with Lakey 6*3. Nice tone, but unuseable.
There's plenty of Meyer type pieces about that can be got cheaply. Also Otto Links are cheaper than most. Failing that you can try buying a more expensive brand second-hand so it's comes in your price range.
 

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good one mojo. i actually repect his desighns as he wasnt afraid to go against the grain so to speak. very unconventional on the inside at least
 
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