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Hi all,

I have just upgraded my Otto link tone edge (ebonite) - it was a 6-STAR tip opening (95) and I have just purchased a Lebayle metal jazz tenor mpc (7-STAR = 105 tip opening). My problem is I have gone from no squeaking at all to chirping and squeaking like I remember doing when I first began playing - actually I might be squeaking even worse than this. Needless to say I am really really frustrated and annoyed at my new found sound - I want to get rid of it immediately (the squeaking and chirping - not the mouthpeice as when I get the note right it is great). I am using Rico Jazz select 2H on both mpc's - I know that a bigger tip opening = softer reed, smaller tip opening = harder reed. What could be my problem here? Am I too hard for this tip opening and on a metal mpc or am I in-fact too soft??

Am looking for some advice to try an remedy this problem asap. I am assuming that the problem is all down to the reed with this mpc not working well. Any experience and/or advice would be great.

Thanks

Franky
 

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Even though I can't see what you're doing with your embouchure:

I don't think reed strength is the issue. Have you tried more than one reed? An unbalanced reed can cause this; and it could actually be the mouthpiece, even though you state "not the mouthpeice as when I get the note right it is great." Try several reeds and give yourself some time to adjust to the bigger tip.
 

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The Lebayle likely has more baffle than your Link did and probably a better (easier to blow) facing as well. Try a harder reed and relax your embouchure a little. This is fairly common issue with guys going from Links to pieces with more baffle- you can't blow them the same way so it's going to take some time to get used to.
 

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Also try new reeds on your Lebayle, if you aren't already doing. If your reeds are used to other mouthpiece it may not respond well on the Lebayle as expected. I think RJS 2H is about right on a 7*. I use 3S.

All of the 4-5 Lebayles I tried, soprano to alto to tenor, squeaked when I put used reeds on.
 

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Also try new reeds on your Lebayle, if you aren't already doing. If your reeds are used to other mouthpiece it may not respond well on the Lebayle as expected. I think RJS 2H is about right on a 7*. I use 3S.

All of the 4-5 Lebayles I tried, soprano to alto to tenor, squeaked when I put used reeds on.
+1

get a new box a RJS 2H (or just a few, whatever). the used reeds have broken in to the facing of the otto link. the lebayle has a different facing so you need a fresh reed to break in.
 

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Jumping tip openings like that can cause chirping. Why did you go up? I would bet a lot of money that if you played a LeBayle 6* you wouldn't get 1 chirp. Contact Fred and talk with him. He is a super nice guy and will help you out.

BTW - LeBayle Jazz MPC and Links are not that different. The chamber size is slightly different, but I own a Lebayle Metal Jazz 8 and a Lebayle HR Jazz 8 as well as pretty much every Otto Link ever made and they aren't radically different.

Also, why the switch from HR to Metal? Do you have any experience w/ Metal pieces for extended periods of time. That could be a culprit as the embouchure used to play HR is different than Metal although I still expect tip size is the issue. I would get a Jazz HR 6* to start and go from there. Good Luck!
 

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One word: Reface
It is not you don't worry, it is the mouthpiece. I have seen quite a few Lebayle pieces with very liberal facing. I don't apply for the job and I can't take it though.
Sakshama
 

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Discussion Starter #8
+1

get a new box a RJS 2H (or just a few, whatever). the used reeds have broken in to the facing of the otto link. the lebayle has a different facing so you need a fresh reed to break in.
ok thank you, great advice. I did just reach for my better reed used on the otto link - adding to my disappointment was that this much loved reed is useless. I do have another fresh box of RJS 2H in my bag so I will discard the others and blow on these for a few hours today and see how that goes.
 

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Jumping tip openings like that can cause chirping. Why did you go up? I would bet a lot of money that if you played a LeBayle 6* you wouldn't get 1 chirp. Contact Fred and talk with him. He is a super nice guy and will help you out.

BTW - LeBayle Jazz MPC and Links are not that different. The chamber size is slightly different, but I own a Lebayle Metal Jazz 8 and a Lebayle HR Jazz 8 as well as pretty much every Otto Link ever made and they aren't radically different.

Also, why the switch from HR to Metal? Do you have any experience w/ Metal pieces for extended periods of time. That could be a culprit as the embouchure used to play HR is different than Metal although I still expect tip size is the issue. I would get a Jazz HR 6* to start and go from there. Good Luck!
I went up just because I thought I could - not a great reason however my limited understanding is that a larger tip opening gives more depth to your sound - I thought my chops were ready for it, perhaps my mistake. Basically I have been playing for 9 months now and have started to develop an idea of the sound I want to make, to my ear the otto link I had was a little soft and too dark for me, when I listened to the Lebayle it seemed a little brighter and as though it had a little more punch - also I love a little bit of that gritty sound you get from metal so I was eager to begin my journey with metal. This is my first metal mpc so I am sure I have a lot I need to do differently now.
 

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One word: Reface
It is not you don't worry, it is the mouthpiece. I have seen quite a few Lebayle pieces with very liberal facing. I don't apply for the job and I can't take it though.
Sakshama
I agree with mister Sakshama here, I've had an alto Lebayle Jazz for about 3 or 4 years now I think, and last year (had to correct that) I saw there was some were on the facing curve.. and it wasn't equally spread and this also applied for the tiprail. Which was also very thin, and made the mpc a bit nervous sounding.

here some pics of the wear:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/6qecdwcs8uzckgn/lebayle 1.JPG
https://www.dropbox.com/s/7q7cd0cyijfj0lh/lebyale 2.JPG
https://www.dropbox.com/s/k71bhff8unhpaj6/slijtage lebayle3.jpg
 

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I went up just because I thought I could - not a great reason however my limited understanding is that a larger tip opening gives more depth to your sound - I thought my chops were ready for it, perhaps my mistake. Basically I have been playing for 9 months now and have started to develop an idea of the sound I want to make, to my ear the otto link I had was a little soft and too dark for me, when I listened to the Lebayle it seemed a little brighter and as though it had a little more punch - also I love a little bit of that gritty sound you get from metal so I was eager to begin my journey with metal. This is my first metal mpc so I am sure I have a lot I need to do differently now.
Other guys are saying reface and different reeds and all this stuff, which all may be true, but you need to get a private lesson from a really really good teacher so he can help you sort this out. While Sakshama is right about the possibility of a reface I maintain that if you are sqeaking that bad that it is the tip opening. I personally don't believe that if you have only been playing 9 months that you should be on a leBayle 7*. That is a whole lotta pro mouthpiece that I don't think you are ready for. It is also a misconception that a bigger tip opening gives you a bigger / brighter sound. Can it? Yes, but there are many many pro players that play a smaller tip than 7* and get a huge sound. Look at Eric Alexander. He plays on a 5* just like Coltrane. Their sounds are HUGE! Also, did you try a stiffer reed before you went up in tip size. Often times you are just ready to move up a reed strength as your embouchure has gotten stronger!

Ok. I'm not trying to be mean or rag on you I'm just concerned that you have bitten off more than you can chew and are going down a bad road leading only to frustration. As a 9 month beginner I strongly suggest finding a teacher to help sort all this out as I think you need to be on a different mouthpiece all together (not even a 6* link is a good piece for a beginner IMHO). You should be on a MPC that makes it easy play so you can focus on playing the sax right and not worrying about pro jazz pieces (and you especially don't need a metal piece yet!). I wish you the best luck. If you want to tell me what area you are in I'd be glad to help you find a teacher if I can.

P.S. people will tell you all sorts of crazy stuff on this forum. Some good, some bad. I have said some of both since I've been here, but what I said above I feel is the truth and I'm very serious about. This is a turning point that can really help you down your sax path or can lead you to quitting from frustration.
 

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Other guys are saying reface and different reeds and all this stuff, which all may be true, but you need to get a private lesson from a really really good teacher so he can help you sort this out. While Sakshama is right about the possibility of a reface I maintain that if you are sqeaking that bad that it is the tip opening. I personally don't believe that if you have only been playing 9 months that you should be on a leBayle 7*. That is a whole lotta pro mouthpiece that I don't think you are ready for. It is also a misconception that a bigger tip opening gives you a bigger / brighter sound. Can it? Yes, but there are many many pro players that play a smaller tip than 7* and get a huge sound. Look at Eric Alexander. He plays on a 5* just like Coltrane. Their sounds are HUGE! Also, did you try a stiffer reed before you went up in tip size. Often times you are just ready to move up a reed strength as your embouchure has gotten stronger!

Ok. I'm not trying to be mean or rag on you I'm just concerned that you have bitten off more than you can chew and are going down a bad road leading only to frustration. As a 9 month beginner I strongly suggest finding a teacher to help sort all this out as I think you need to be on a different mouthpiece all together (not even a 6* link is a good piece for a beginner IMHO). You should be on a MPC that makes it easy play so you can focus on playing the sax right and not worrying about pro jazz pieces (and you especially don't need a metal piece yet!). I wish you the best luck. If you want to tell me what area you are in I'd be glad to help you find a teacher if I can.

P.S. people will tell you all sorts of crazy stuff on this forum. Some good, some bad. I have said some of both since I've been here, but what I said above I feel is the truth and I'm very serious about. This is a turning point that can really help you down your sax path or can lead you to quitting from frustration.
Hi SimonJazzSax,

thanks for your advice - I agree I definitely made a giant leap and I made it without consulting my teacher so I am probably in for a good "talking-to" next lesson. I did however manage to almost get rid of the squeaks as per the other suggestions of new reeds and not the ones that were previously on the Otto Link - this worked well and I found that the mouthpiece is exceptionally sensitive to ligature placement - too far forward and all it does is squeak, placing it further back helped a lot. I don't like the lig that came with the mouthpiece so I think I will buy a new Francois Luis lig and see if that helps, I was using this type for my link but it is too big for a metal mpc but I like them a lot.

I am definitely guilty of over enthusiasm at times, and am prone to the odd impulsive buy - I put this one down to Branford Marsalis and watching his clip "In the crease" one too many times.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ot6pHC4N93E

I had to run out and sound like that - needless to say, I dont - but I will see how I get on over the next few weeks. I will talk with my teacher and if it seems to be getting in the way of playing I am more than happy to step back.
 

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I also agree with Mr Sakshama
Probably a bad facing or some issue with your mpc!
Regards
Saxobari
 

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I went up just because I thought I could - not a great reason however my limited understanding is that a larger tip opening gives more depth to your sound - I thought my chops were ready for it, perhaps my mistake.

..when I listened to the Lebayle it seemed a little brighter and as though it had a little more punch - also I love a little bit of that gritty sound you get from metal so I was eager to begin my journey with metal. This is my first metal mpc so I am sure I have a lot I need to do differently now.
Just a couple of comments on what you say here. First, and most important, when you change mpcs, especially if you are changing the tip size, or the baffle, or other design parameters, there will be an adjustment period. Especially if you've only been playing for 9 months! You'll need a few weeks at least to make that adjustment, and probably longer. I tend to agree with Simonjazzsax that a lot of your problem has to do with the difference in tip opening, but I wouldn't go quite so far as to say you shouldn't be playing the larger tip (a 6* isn't huge). Just that you have introduced a different feel/concept at a time when you are still learning the very basics. Stick with the mpc for a while and see what happens. If you can't adjust, put it aside and go back to the Link. Then later return to the LeBayle.

You don't get a 'gritty sound' from the metal mpc. You get a gritty sound mostly from how you play it, and possibly from some design factor (like a higher baffle). This is slightly different topic, but don't be fooled into thinking that metal (or any other material) is a factor in the tone quality. The main factor, aside from how you play it, is the design.

Finally, it could very well be that the mpc needs a reface. Some mpcs do tend to chirp if the facing is off.

p.s. The size reed you are using is probably fine. For sure you don't want to go to a harder reed at this point.
 

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Guessing someones problems over the internet is hit and miss at best.

First up is to try to eliminate or lessen variables.

The reed is a big variable.

Every player should know how to try to level the back of reeds and it's easy to do http://tamingthesaxophone.com/saxophone-reeds.html

An uneven back of the reed can cause multiple problems including squeaking and the feeling of air escaping and the reed not responding etc.

If your Lebayle mouthpiece is the same as this, then it's got a higher baffle.

http://www.sax.co.uk/acatalog/Lebayle-metal-mouthpiece-for-tenor.html

The baffle can encourage squeaking depending on how the players playing and what control they have.

Higher baffles tend to accentuate the higher overtones and it can become easier to unexpectingly enter the Altissimo overtone region for a fraction of a second which will sound like a squeak.

Once you have levelled the back of the reed, try playing medium soft with a looser embouchure and see if any squeaks happen.

If no squeaks happen or they reduce a lot, then it's probably the way you are playing and controlling the higher baffle mouthpiece.

If it still squeaks a lot after say 2 weeks trying to adjust to it, then maybe it might need a reface.

So eliminate or lessen the variables to try to work it out.

1: Reed first

2: Player second

3: Mouthpiece Fault last
 

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According to Lebayle tenor chart the 7* are a .100" not a 105, the 2H should be Ok if not a bit soft.
I don't know where you saw that the 7* is a .100, but that is wrong. I just ordered a Lebayle and it didn't work out so I have been talking with him about it and I'm positive that 7* is a .105.

He has a Tip opening chart on his FAQ
 

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I don't know where you saw that the 7* is a .100, but that is wrong. I just ordered a Lebayle and it didn't work out so I have been talking with him about it and I'm positive that 7* is a .105.

He has a Tip opening chart on his FAQ
I take the info on Lebayle own site!
 
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