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I'm playing clarinet with a Brillhart Tonalin 5* and really love it, better than anything else I've tried. Problem is I'm loving it to death. When I got it it was brand new in package, a time capsule found in a pawn shop. But from using it so heavily it already has chips in the front and a cracked shank, thinking it might not last much longer with as much as I busk and bang my gear around town. Can anyone tell me what mouthpieces are similar? I thought a Rico Graftonite would be similar, but though it has a nice sound it's very different, more of a "woody" tone than the bright, loud tone of the Brilhart. Any suggestions for mouthpieces that are similar, and hopefully brand new so I don't have to hunt anything down and pay vintage prices?
 

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You might try getting a Runyon product --- the Gigliotti, or Model 22 and use it as a blank.

I did that with good results on alto using a white Gigliotti.

Sent it off to Mojo here with heroic outcome.

I chose the white for the look.

Perhaps the chambers and shapes are similar for your instrument, also.

Sax players in your position probably already know about this article:

http://stuffsax.blogspot.com/2014/01/lester-youngs-mouthpiece-ive-got-one.html

It may be that there are similar stencils for clarinet.

See also:

https://www.ellismusic.com/p-9214-brilhart-special-ebolin-bb-clarinet-mouthpiece.aspx

https://www.junkdude.com/products/brilhart-ebolin-4-1-12mm-bb-clarinet-mouthpiece
 

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Tonalin mouthpieces have a reputation for cracking, so it's nothing you did to it with your busy schedule. I've never played a clarinet Tonalin, only sax, but if Graftonite is too tame, I thnk you'll do better to try out the jazz models various makers offer.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Tonalin mouthpieces have a reputation for cracking, so it's nothing you did to it with your busy schedule. I've never played a clarinet Tonalin, only sax, but if Graftonite is too tame, I thnk you'll do better to try out the jazz models various makers offer.
Apparently I didn't do my research on the graftonite and bought the ones with the smaller chambers designed for classical. I just ordered a C table 5 which is supposed to have more of a jazz sound. I will follow up and tell you what I figure out. Thanks for your suggestions. Any other bright jazz clarinet mouthpieces anyone can recommend is appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Tonalin mouthpieces have a reputation for cracking, so it's nothing you did to it with your busy schedule. I've never played a clarinet Tonalin, only sax, but if Graftonite is too tame, I thnk you'll do better to try out the jazz models various makers offer.
Yeah must be weak plastic. Seems to chip easily too. But wow what a sound! Arnold Brilhart was truly a genius.
 

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The plastic becomes brittle over time-these pieces are 50/60 years old in some cases so it's inevitable. Plastics have developed to an awesome degree thro' the years.
 

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Sax Bum, look into Claude Lakey Original or Studio clarinet mouthpieces. I would describe them as Ebolin custom.
 

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I'm not one to buy into the concept that if I play a certain mouthpiece, someone else WILL have the same results. So how can anyone tell you about another mouthpiece with the same characteristics YOU may like?

Having asked that, I will agree with Lambros about Lakey's mouthpieces, but only because that's what I play on clarinet. As I've posted several times, I knew Claude. I even sat there while he finished one of my Lakey clarinet pieces (a Studio 5* with an added "D" stamp, so it is a "5*D", meaning Dave).

Besides the results I get from his pieces (I have three), I like the fact that they were (don't know if they still ARE) tuned to A-443 (they are visibly shorter than my other clarinet pieces) and that helps my pitch-issues on clarinet. My results are a strong sound, good intonation, and good projection - playing trad jazz on a Boehm clarinet. DAVE
 

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Thanks for your story about Claude, Dave. Do you know what plastic composite the studio pieces were molded in? I found a NOS 3* last year wrapped in thin styrofoam sheet, in its original box, no bar code.
 

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I don't know about the material - sorry. I knew Claude in the late 1970's (or maybe it was the early 1980's?) when he and his wife lived in Arleta, CA (a neighborhood in the San Fernando Valley - an L.A. City suburb) and his shop was at his home on Woodman Ave. I was assigned to that geographic policing area known as Foothill Area and it was easy for me to stop by regularly to chat him up and buy mouthpieces from him. Besides three of his clarinet pieces, I have three soprano saxophone pieces and my oldest daughter plays his alto sax piece.

Those were the days before SOTW (was there EVER such a time?) and all of the detail that we post about on SOTW now was unknown to many of us then. I sure wish I could re-visit Claude today! He later moved to Texas and I lost contact with him. DAVE
 

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You certainly got to know Claude back in the day Dave. I look at the studio piece and marvel at the attention to detail that it was given. It’s got that interesting slightly bulbous profile, the longer beak, etc. Not the typical plastic piece for sure.
 
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