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I've been wanting to pick up a new Dukoff D7 or D8, so I gave the company a call about tip sizes. Spoke to Nick. I learned exciting things.

Apparently, he is going back to the old molds from the mid 80s. He also acknowledged a lot of the manufacturing problems that the brand had, and the Chinese copycats. I don't wanna get all that he said, but in the end, he has been working to correct those with some great success of late.

This is awesome news to me, because the piece I had was from 1990, which was those molds. I also told him about the burr that was on the baffle when I got it. He said, yes, they have had definite quality control issues in the past, and he has been working hard in the years since Bobby's passing to iron those out.

I can say with all honesty this guy friggin loves and respected Bobby Dukoff. He respects the sound, and he respects the mouthpiece. I got the impression from Nick that a new day is dawning at Dukoff. I can't wait!
 

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They really are unique. When Boots Randolph retired his Brilhart 'Velvet Brass' 7* on which he recorded all his great stuff, he went to the Dukoff D series. He would order a bunch of them at a time and pick one out. I heard him playing it live and it was, not surprisingly, a little edgier, but Boots was still Boots. Clarence Clemmons' early stuff with Springsteen is a good example of the Dukoff sound in rock.
 

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Really they can do it all, you can get a great subtone on tenor with them or play to an extreme edge. They should get some A list players to help them zero in on what makes them totally special and make the best Dukoffs they can.
 

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That's pretty exciting. I would be very interested in trying a good Dukoff, I never have. One reason I never have is because I heard the material used to make them in the last couple decades is soft and easy to bend, dent, etc. If they're making them out of solid stuff again... and addressing the pretty serious alleged QC issues... sounds fun!
 

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That's pretty exciting. I would be very interested in trying a good Dukoff, I never have. One reason I never have is because I heard the material used to make them in the last couple decades is soft and easy to bend, dent, etc. If they're making them out of solid stuff again... and addressing the pretty serious alleged QC issues... sounds fun!
Silverite dates back to the early ‘70s.

https://theowanne.com/knowledge/mouthpiece-museum/dukoff-mouthpieces/

Here’s hoping that they choose another material.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
There was discussion of that very topic of materials used. He said that he was looking at stainless steel in the future, but that will affect the pricing.
 

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There was discussion of that very topic of materials used. He said that he was looking at stainless steel in the future, but that will affect the pricing.
Thanks. I am curious to learn their criteria in the selection of materials. Stainless doesn't seem a friendly material to cast, machine, and finish to final dimension, but it does have the bonus of not requiring plating.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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There was discussion of that very topic of materials used. He said that he was looking at stainless steel in the future, but that will affect the pricing.
It will also affect the desirability. Very difficult to modify, either to enhance or correct issues. :(
 

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It will also affect the desirability. Very difficult to modify, either to enhance or correct issues. :(
It does seem a knee-jerk reaction to Silverite - replace an easily deformed material with one on the opposite end of the spectrum. Brass and bronze are really good materials for casting, shaping, and durability.

I have to wonder how the proposed materials compare to Silverite for shrinkage? If it is considerably different, using the old molds will NOT render the same geometrical outcome.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
As long as the internal shape is consistent, the material doesnt really matter insofar as the sound. From what I can gather, silverite was great to work with by hand because it was so soft compared to other metals. But it has its bend problem if its dropped and such. Take that same shape, c and c it in something like stainless steel, and you have the same sound properties with a stronger metal.

And the doing everything by hand on high demand is what leads to the inconsistency. Thats in everything. It's one thing with jewelry or art. It's even desirable. But in something so highly technical as we have discovered in things like mouthpieces, uniformity of design is desirable.

It's like the wing of an airplane. It's not what the wing is made of, it's the shape that gives it lift. You could make it out of paper and balsa wood, and it will still fly.

I know, someone might say no one would ever make a jumbo jet out of paper and balsa wood. True, the high winds would shred that set up. But unless your earth parents found you swaddled in your cape in a crater outside their farm, blowing that hard is probably never going to be an issue.
 

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I suppose the issues you referred to like with shrinkage are why he is working with the old molds and it's taken some time. Nick knows his stuff. And I'm gonna give him some trust. Frankly, any owner of a company that says hold up a month before a purchase has my confidence.

Now, I'm not saying that there is a material change coming in a month. No where in the conversation with nick did I ever get either than impression or implication. I cannot stress this enough.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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I have to wonder how the proposed materials compare to Silverite for shrinkage? If it is considerably different, using the old molds will NOT render the same geometrical outcome.
As long as the internal shape is consistent, the material doesnt really matter insofar as the sound. From what I can gather, silverite was great to work with by hand because it was so soft compared to other metals. But it has its bend problem if its dropped and such. Take that same shape, c and c it in something like stainless steel, and you have the same sound properties with a stronger metal.
So I am bit confused now as to whether we are talking about a molded (or cast) product or a machined product.

If older models were moulded or cast, and the moulds exist then it's very easy to scan those for modern CNC machined production. Or else carry on molding. Either is probably best with some hand finishing anyway.


Frankly, any owner of a company that says hold up a month before a purchase has my confidence.
For me it may mean the exact opposite, or at least raise a red flag. Unless they explain exactly why they say that.
 

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As long as the internal shape is consistent, the material doesnt really matter insofar as the sound. From what I can gather, silverite was great to work with by hand because it was so soft compared to other metals. But it has its bend problem if its dropped and such. Take that same shape, c and c it in something like stainless steel, and you have the same sound properties with a stronger metal.
And I'll wager that a significant component of the material selection was due to a low melting point for a casting material.

It's like the wing of an airplane...
No, it's really not.
 

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If older models were moulded or cast, and the moulds exist then it's very easy to scan those for modern CNC machined production. Or else carry on molding. Either is probably best with some hand finishing anyway.
If you scan a mold for a cast material, then go direct to CNC, you will have the reverse problem of making a direct mold of a mouthpiece, and making a casting from it. There will exist a difference in final dimension due to shrinkage, or lack thereof when the original product included shrinkage in its design. Better to CNC the parts from a prototype part of final working dimensions (and consider leaving a little extra material in the baffle, for instance, for final hand tweaking).


Take that same shape, c and c it in something like stainless steel, and you have the same sound properties with a stronger metal...
P.S. The correct term in this context is CNC, which is an acronym for Computer Numerical Control - not "c and c", that stands for cookies and cream. :twisted: :bluewink:
 

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If you scan a mold for a cast material, then go direct to CNC, you will have the reverse problem of making a direct mold of a mouthpiece, and making a casting from it. There will exist a difference in final dimension due to shrinkage, or lack thereof when the original product included shrinkage in its design. Better to CNC the parts from a prototype part of final working dimensions (and consider leaving a little extra material in the baffle, for instance, for final hand tweaking).




P.S. The correct term in this context is CNC, which is an acronym for Computer Numerical Control - not "c and c", that stands for cookies and cream. :twisted: :bluewink:
Any competent foundryman or patternmaker, knowing the material originally used, and knowing the new material, will be able to adjust the mold/pattern dimensions to ensure that the different shrinkage rates are taken account of and the final part has the same dimensions. This falls under "Casting 101".

That said, stainless steel is about the last material I would choose for casting, unless I really really really had to use it. There are any number of brass and bronze alloys that cast like a dream and offer far better hardness and yield strength than "Silverite" whatever that is.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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If you scan a mold for a cast material, then go direct to CNC, you will have the reverse problem of making a direct mold of a mouthpiece, and making a casting from it. There will exist a difference in final dimension due to shrinkage, or lack thereof when the original product included shrinkage in its design. Better to CNC the parts from a prototype part of final working dimensions (and consider leaving a little extra material in the baffle, for instance, for final hand tweaking).
This makes total sense and is exactly what I am in the process of doing at the moment with a new generation of PPT mouthpieces. We scan the internal dimensions of one mouthpiece that has the perfect acoustic properties, and the external dimension of another that is the ideal aesthetic design and branding.
 

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Any competent foundryman or patternmaker, knowing the material originally used, and knowing the new material, will be able to adjust the mold/pattern dimensions to ensure that the different shrinkage rates are taken account of and the final part has the same dimensions. This falls under "Casting 101".
Exactly - and that is why I question using the same molds with a different material.

That said, stainless steel is about the last material I would choose for casting, unless I really really really had to use it. There are any number of brass and bronze alloys that cast like a dream and offer far better hardness and yield strength than "Silverite" whatever that is.
Yepper and Amen. The only "advantage" of SS vs brass is the issue of final finish (plating). There is such an "issue" regarding the question of lead in mouthpieces, that I can imagine that may be a driver for using SS. Of course, a clever marketeer might generate a campaign of "No Lead", similar to the manufacturers that label candy as fat-free, or gasoline as gluten-free.
 
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