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What’s the largest tip opening you have seen or know of on an Otto Link Florida no USA Slant Tenor Mouthpiece.
I think I read on the Theo Wanne site that they were available up to a standard 9 tip.
But I’m also sure I’ve seen photos of pieces from this period with a 10 stamped on the side.
Is it fair then to say that although they were available in sizes up to 9, larger sizes were also available on special order?
Or am I mistaken in thinking that I have seen them in a 10 tip.
Thanks
 

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I believe you could always get a special order in a bigger facing. I always thought the Level Air stopped at 9* but I've seen a 10 or two in those also. Berg players have gone up to .160" that I know of and maybe more.
 

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I own Ben Harrods personal facing notebook. He was the President of Otto Link in the 60’s. It was the only one he had and I got it from his wife a dozen years ago. She said this was his prized possession. It is written by hand by Ben, it’s laminated, and has all his ALL the intended facing curves at the different stations for every tip size. It lists all the tip size options for all of the different pieces. I can tell you for sure what they went up to including the special tip openings.

For tenor, they actually had special orders available up to a 14.
I will not give out the specific facing curve info, (as I will sell the book one day), but offhand I believe that’s the tip size they went up to for tenor. I can certainly let people know what the tip sizes went from and to with the different types, if they want.
I can check the book when I get home later.
 

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Here are pictures of the top of the pages.
Underneath that are all of the facing stations and facing information, but I’m not going to post that.
One of the coolest things I have is a piece of paper that Ben wrote on that has two sets of facing curves for two Slants he did for Stan Getz. A .087 and .089. It lists both sets of curves which are different from one another, and Stans name below it. Ben did refacing work for pretty much everybody famous in the 60s.
Once I sell the book, I would like to make the facings public.


Hope this is good information below for you guys.


Tenor: size 3-14 tips




Bari: size 3-10* tips



Soprano: size 4-10* tips



Alto: 3-11 tips
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Great information there, thanks for sharing.
Also good to know that I wasn’t seeing things when I saw that 10 tip.
I can’t imagine blowing on a 14 tip though.
 

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I own Ben Harrods personal facing notebook.
Wow, that's something special Mark!

Would be nice to know all those facing details, but I understand that the commercial value of that holds you to publish more details.

I can’t imagine blowing on a 14 tip though.
Nick, I once did blow a 15 tip Otto Link (a modern Babbitt STM) that was bought by Candy Dulfer in a New York shop as a gift for her father Hans (a Dutch tenor player who loves big tips, like me). You know I can handle tips up to about 12* without big issues, but this 15 was insane. Could get some sound out of it when taking in a lot of mouthpiece, but the sound is nothing more than a honking low Bb (but every note I could get out of it sounded like that!).
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Wow, that's something special Mark!

Would be nice to know all those facing details, but I understand that the commercial value of that holds you to publish more details.



Nick, I once did blow a 15 tip Otto Link (a modern Babbitt STM) that was bought by Candy Dulfer in a New York shop as a gift for her father Hans (a Dutch tenor player who loves big tips, like me). You know I can handle tips up to about 12* without big issues, but this 15 was insane. Could get some sound out of it when taking in a lot of mouthpiece, but the sound is nothing more than a honking low Bb (but every note I could get out of it sounded like that!).
I’ve got some old size 1 reeds here that I found in the case of a horn I bought.
Maybe that’s what’s called for on a 14-15 tip opening?
 

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The Ben Harrod note books from the 60s are a precious relic, it would be great if a museum bought them.
As for the op's question, the no usa slants were first made in the 50s I think, so a further piece of trivia to consider is what were the original target facing curves of the large tipped tenor Links made in the 50s. I gather Mr Harrod worked the bench with Mr Link for a while in the 50s.
The biggest original no usa slant I've had is a 9, and it measured .106, I've also had a 9* DR which measured .106 and a 10* which measured .119. I have played a few other original Links from the 50s which were stamped with big tips too, and they were all much smaller than modern tip charts. It would be interesting to know what the big dealers and collectors, who have measured many examples of these large tipped Links from the 50s have discovered.
 

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I have a Slant 4 that I’ve thought about having opened but they play well in smaller tips I think I’ll just leave it alone. I’ll never sound like Getz but who does.
As compared to other Links I have it looks like it’s around 0.80. Lots of color and surprisingly edgy.
A 10 Link for me would probably mean a 1 reed, but you do notice sometimes the baffles become more pronounced as the tips get larger. These were made back in the day when it was “hands on”. That’s probably why I’d rather just leave mine original.
 

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The Ben Harrod note books from the 60s are a precious relic, it would be great if a museum bought them.
As for the op's question, the no usa slants were first made in the 50s I think, so a further piece of trivia to consider is what were the original target facing curves of the large tipped tenor Links made in the 50s. I gather Mr Harrod worked the bench with Mr Link for a while in the 50s.
The biggest original no usa slant I've had is a 9, and it measured .106, I've also had a 9* DR which measured .106 and a 10* which measured .119. I have played a few other original Links from the 50s which were stamped with big tips too, and they were all much smaller than modern tip charts. It would be interesting to know what the big dealers and collectors, who have measured many examples of these large tipped Links from the 50s have discovered.
I used to have a florida 10* stm. I never measured it but it seemed easy to play. I have an original Slant no USA 5 that is at .074

I wonder in real life production, how close Link pieces actually came to Herrod's targets? General opinion seems to be that there is much variation. Still it would be interesting to see the numbers, but where there is money and profit involved, I
am not holding my breath. At least it is not the cure for cancer!
 

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Maybe that’s what’s called for on a 14-15 tip opening?
That will work indeed. I recently got some Plasticover 1.5 reeds and they play very well on my Florida no USA 10*. Didn't like them on my 150/2 Berg.

I have played a few other original Links from the 50s which were stamped with big tips too, and they were all much smaller than modern tip charts. It would be interesting to know what the big dealers and collectors, who have measured many examples of these large tipped Links from the 50s have discovered.
My experience is different. I play a Florida no USA 10* for about 10 years and recently had it measured at a Dutch sax shop. It measured 0.137 inch, a bit bigger than it should be. My other Florida no USA 9 measures 0.120 inch (as indicated). My original Early Babbitt STM 11 measures 0.155 inch, which is much bigger than what it should be (0.140 inch). They also measured by Berg 150/2, which measured smaller (0.145 inch), which is common for Berg's.
 

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My experience is different. I play a Florida no USA 10* for about 10 years and recently had it measured at a Dutch SAP shop. It measured 0.137 inch, a bit bigger than it should be. My other Florida no USA 9 measures 0.120 inch (as indicated). My original Early Babbitt STM 11 measures 0.155 inch, which is much bigger than what it should be (0.140 inch). They also measured by Berg 150/2, which measured smaller (0.145 inch), which is common for Berg's.
Mrpeebee I believe all of the pieces that you refer to above were made in the 1960s and 70s, these pieces one assumes would have been faced with the numbers on Ben Harrod's chart above. It would be interesting to know if this chart in Mr Harrod's notebook is entered with a date, one would guess it was written in the 60s or early 70s?
However I was referring to the OPs question about a large tipped no USA slant 10, these pieces were first made in the 1950s. All of the stamps and tip sizes I offered referred to 1950s Links, which were in my experience stamped with higher numbers than they measured in relation to modern charts, or perhaps the Harrod chart from the 60s or 70s above??
Does anybody have an original 9 or 10 from the 50s, an early slant or a DR that measures .120 or .130?
 

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Mrpeebee I believe all of the pieces that you refer to above were made in the 1960s and 70s, these pieces one assumes would have been faced with the numbers on Ben Harrod's chart above. It would be interesting to know if this chart in Mr Harrod's notebook is entered with a date, one would guess it was written in the 60s or early 70s?
However I was referring to the OPs question about a large tipped no USA slant 10, these pieces were first made in the 1950s. All of the stamps and tip sizes I offered referred to 1950s Links, which were in my experience stamped with higher numbers than they measured in relation to modern charts, or perhaps the Harrod chart from the 60s or 70s above??
Does anybody have an original 9 or 10 from the 50s, an early slant or a DR that measures .120 or .130?
Ilikejam, I think my Florida no USA STM's are 50's pieces (the 9 tip is for sure, it has the short shank, which is the first no USA batch right after the ones with a serial number). I also have some 40's metal Links (Tone Masters and a 4* NY Double Ring), but I don't have exact measured tip sized from those (and they are small tips).

You could be right about older big tip Links (40's and 50's models) measuring smaller as intended, because I know that the 9* NY DR of a friend also measures around 0.110 (instead of 0.125). But I also have some friends owning no USA's that are exact or even a bit bigger. I don't have vintage HR Link's, metal guy over here!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The no USA STM 9* I had was right on .125, it was also the batch just after the serial numbered ones.
My USA STM 9, 9* and 10 all measure pretty much spot on target for their sizes.
My EB STM 9* and 10* pieces also measure pretty close to target.
The 9* no USA was probably the best piece I’d ever had but I had so much trouble getting a reed to seal on it due to its concave table, that I let it go.
 

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Maybe let Babbitt look at that book so they can fix what they’re missing.
In spite of all the facing curves and tip openings, we rarely talk about why these play great, smaller chambers and higher chamber floors.
 

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I've got a #10 Tone Edge but the "straight signature". Supposedly they weren't made but I have one. It's way too big for me, but it does sound good.
 
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