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Discussion Starter #1
I would think that these items would work together like a hand in a glove, but the lig is barely large enough to fit on the mouthpiece when there is a reed in place. It is difficult to adjust the reed, because even when loosened as much as possible, the ligature is fairly tight. I attribute the problem to the mouthpiece, as no other lig that I have (admittedly not a wide selection) will even fit on the SL3. What is puzzling is that Vandoren's matching lig is such a poor fit. Is it just me, or has anyone else had this experience? For those with SL3 pieces, what lig do you use?
 

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I have that exact set-up, although admittedly I don't play it anymore after obtaining a Selmer Concept. But I keep the SL3 assembled with the Optimum ligature and a synthetic reed - for what reason I can't explain.

To the point, though . . . mine fits perfectly. DAVE
 

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I think the "matching" Vandoren ligature for the SL3 is really the M|O. I've used that combo a lot, and the lig fits perfectly.
 

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I keep the SL3 assembled with the Optimum ligature and a synthetic reed . . . mine fits perfectly.
This could be consistent with the OP's experience, if he's using a cane reed. Synth reeds tend to be thinner than cane reeds. That might explain why your Optimum fits well but his is too tight.
 

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No, the synthetic was a Fibracell - very close to a cane reed (as are Legeres). But just to be thorough, I just put on a cane reed (an Alexander Superial #2 to be precise) and the Optimum lig fit perfectly on the SL3. DAVE
 

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Discussion Starter #6
No, the synthetic was a Fibracell - very close to a cane reed (as are Legeres). But just to be thorough, I just put on a cane reed (an Alexander Superial #2 to be precise) and the Optimum lig fit perfectly on the SL3. DAVE
I am using Superial #2.5, but it’s the same story with Legeres. It’s not that I can’t get it to work, but it is more effort and fiddling around to just put a reed on than I have experienced in 55 years of playing. I’m glad to hear that it works for you. Perhaps there is some reason that my lig is not opening fully. I’ll have to examine it more closely.
 

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You may want to lubricate the screw so you get full extension. Another thing would be to ensure that the plate is securely and fully attached to the fastening device.

My Optimum opens much wider than I need it to open to slip it over the SL3 and the reed. Then, I can tighten it and there is still more to go if the reed were slimmer. It fits the SL3 better than my favored Selmer two-screw/two-band ligs.

Maybe your Optimum is sized for metal soprano mouthpieces? Just a guess, though . . . DAVE
 

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I've used optimum ligs and mouthpieces for years on soprano and they always fit like a glove. But they never fit well on Selmer style pieces for me. Maybe Vandoren is shrinking them a tad to fit other pieces? (Wild guess).
 

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I think the "matching" Vandoren ligature for the SL3 is really the M|O. I've used that combo a lot, and the lig fits perfectly.
Agreed - The M/O is a perfect fit for my SL3. That said, on my alto I use a Vandoran Optimum Lig with my AL5 and that also fits perfectly...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
You may want to lubricate the screw so you get full extension. Another thing would be to ensure that the plate is securely and fully attached to the fastening device.

My Optimum opens much wider than I need it to open to slip it over the SL3 and the reed. Then, I can tighten it and there is still more to go if the reed were slimmer. It fits the SL3 better than my favored Selmer two-screw/two-band ligs.

Maybe your Optimum is sized for metal soprano mouthpieces? Just a guess, though . . . DAVE
Thanks, Dave. I have not had time to get the sop out to look at it, but perhaps this evening. I thought about the possibility that it was a lig meant for metal mouthpieces, but I believe that those come with a metal cap, and mine is plastic. However, the lig does not fit well in the cap unless I open it all the way, and then the mouthpiece is loose in the cap. They may have sold me a lig for metal pieces with a cap for HR pieces!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I have checked the mp and lig, and the ligature is clearly not intended for a metal mouthpiece. The only metal soprano piece I have owned is an Otto Link, and this Optimum lig would be far too large for anything like that. I see no way to open the ligature any more than I have been opening it. The plate is snapped fully in place...

I purchased the Optimum ligature because the Rovner lig that I use on an S80-D is too small to fit onto the SL3. Literally. I figured that an Optimum ligature would be a good bet for an Optimum mouthpiece. It is a better fit (I can make it work), but I can't believe that it was designed to work like this, and Dave Dolson's experience with exactly the same setup indicates that there is something funny with my copies.

The most puzzling thing, IMO, is that if I put the lig on the MP without a reed, and tighten it down a little so the lig stays on the MP, then the MP/lig combination is too small for the plastic cap. It would just fall out if you picked the cap up. If I open the lig so that it stays put in the cap, the MP is loose, and would fall out if you picked up the cap. I have never seen anything like this, and I met my first sax mouthpiece in 1964.
 

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Maybe there is something wrong with MY Optimum. I only have one for soprano. I have one for alto and it too fits perfectly on an AL3. Who knows?

Can you see any recourse from whom you bought it . . . store? Internet source? Vandoren? I agree that with what you describe, something is amiss.

Another soprano ligature I'm using now is the Rico H - came with my Concept mouthpiece. I realize that some don't like them, but I do.

And, if you like the SL3, maybe you'll LOVE the Concept . . . I do. DAVE
 
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