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I just got a used wood clarinet. It is stamped "The Woodwind Co New York" and the back of each piece is stamped "France". It came with a Steel Ebonite mouthpiece stamped G8 and has what looks like a Conn logo (trumpet in front of a lyre) and the letters NEMC underneath. Serial number is 154xx.

I was able to find some info on the mouthpiece. Most sources stated that the G8 was a more open mouthpiece for dance band playing, and I know that a lot of people really like the vintage Woodwind & Co mouthpieces. The mouthpiece plays pretty great- and doesn't have the stuffy index finger A and Bb thing. It is very similar to my The Wanne Gaia 5 (B45 lyre type opening).

The upper joint seals really well and sounds great. Nice open tone very similar to my vintage Centered Tone, but maybe a bit sweeter. The lower joint needs a couple pads (alt B/F#) and maybe another.

I am curious if anyone has any info on these instruments? It seems that maybe a French manufacturer stenciled these for Woodwind & Co? I am considering doing/getting an overhaul based on what I have heard from the instrument so far, but want to get some more info if it's available. I've been all over The Clarinet Board, SOTW and the like. I can find tons of info on the mouthpieces, but not much on the instruments. There are a few being sold on eBay and Reverb in the $200-$500 range, but it seems to play better than I'd expect for that price range.

I am wondering:
1. Who made it?
2. When was it made?
3. Does anyone have any input on the general quality of these instruments? Do they play in tune, etc....

Thanks in advance for your help!
 

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NEMC stands for "National Education Music Company," but it's most unlikely that they made the mouthpiece themselves.

For info on these mouthpieces see, among others, the following discussion from 19 years ago:
http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=30142&t=30100

As for the clarinet itself, photographs of any markings might help determine its origin.
 

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Pics would help for sure. I'm thinking SML (or Couesnon) stencil for now though . . . .
 

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With the shape of the pinky keys, pad cups and thickness of the rings, I believe it's a Thibouville.
 

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Thibouville made their living by turning out stencils for anyone who wanted them, both Albert and Boehm systems. When I was living in France, I found that if I asked a technician about the provenance of an unmarked clarinet, the usual reply was "Thibouville, peut-être…"

I've a couple of Thibouvilles among my old clarinets and yes, this might well be a Thibouville instrument - although the serial number on the last photograph doesn't look quite right to me.

Hell, why not go the whole hog and say it could be a Selmer stencil ?
 

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Of course "France" does not necessarily mean "Made in France".
In fact having just "France" on an instrument probably more often than not means it is not made in France.
It could be Mexican, or Chinese, or any other source.

The side key touch pieces all being in a straight line suggests decidedly dodgy parentage - a maker who has never played a clarinet.
 
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