Mouthpiece size

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by MHunt, Feb 7, 2007.

  1. MHunt

    MHunt New Member


    I'm currently playing my Eb with a dennis wick 3l. What do any other bass players use, and what do you find the differences to be for playing, sound etc?
  2. jamieow

    jamieow Member

    Hi, I used a 3L from when I started playing till around 5 yrs ago. Great for most things.
    I still have 1, also a couple of 24AW's - pretty std for bass players, certainly the EEb ones at least. They're kind of midway between a 3L and a 2L.
    Used a 2L more recently and on BBb (tried a 1L for a while - like a bucket)
    I now use a 24AW. Iam thinking of trying something new - any ideas??
  3. on_castors

    on_castors Member

    Having just gone back to playing E flat bass after about 4 years on other stuff (and I still AM playing Baritone in my main band) I seem to have lost my Wick 2L which I had mainly used for years before that so I am using a 3L which is surprising me as being no problem. The Sovereign I am playing is fairly well in tune (although might get a bit better when I spend some more time on it) with all slides rammed firmly home, whereas in the past I used to play a little sharper on the 2L and needed the main slide out a touch. Although the size differnce isn't much,I find that a larger mouthpiece lets me blow a little sharper on baritone too, where a standard Bari m/p is VERY sharp for me, so a small shank large trombone mouthpiece means I can play with the tuning slide in a more normal position.

    The Perantucci range of mouthpieces seems to be flavour of the century with some players I know locally, although one sticks with his Bach 24AW which of course is as near as makes no difference to a Wick 3 anyway! Whether it is worth 130 quid for the difference, well I can't hear any difference, although I haven't spent any time getting used to one. I get the feeling the subtleties of a very small differences in bore/size/backbore etc. when you change to the next nearest siize get less the bigger the instrument (and so the mouthpiece), perhaps as you would expect when you look a the difference in size as a PERCENTAGE of the overall dimensions!

    Having used a Kelly plastic mouthpiece a fair amount of the time when playing cornet, and being a big fan (especially of the extra safety afforded to my already slightly cracked front teeth), I am tempted to get one for Tuba too, although there is less benefit once the Christmas outdoor carol playing is over! They do give a cheap way of trying out different sizes though, not that there is much selection in the Tuba range.
  4. AndyCat

    AndyCat Active Member

    Mike Finn? Peruntucci? Kelly? Giddings and Webster? Doug Elliot?

    The world's your oyster.

    If you want ideas of relative sizes, take a look at my mouthpiece chart. All the common ones are on there and you can sort by Rim diameter, thickness, throat size etc to see which you might like based on your experiences.
  5. bassmittens

    bassmittens Member

    Hi there,

    don't know if this'll help:

    I used to play on a 3L too but found for me the sound was a bit to thin (i know - maybe not the mouthpieces fault!). About 10 yrs ago i changed to a 24aw which gave a much fuller and richer sound. I stuck with this for some time but found i was struggling with upper registers and found articulation really hard work.

    I have settled on a Yamaha which the only way i can describe it is the rim of the 3L with the cup of the 24aw. Means i get the warmth and depth in tone but also the detail in articulation and the higher register comes a bit better too (not quite as easy as the 3L). Edited- should have said i think it's the Yamaha 66B i have now.

    I wouldn't swap this at the moment. It only cost £30-40 so not an expensive experiment but i recommmend this.

    A lot of people sing the praises of the peruntucci-vercutii-zidane-totti-gti-se-16v-what-do-ya-m'call-it-ma-thingys. I would love to try them but don't really want to spend quite a bit of money on something that might not suit me.

    Anyone got any tips on where might let me try one would be good?!?!?
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2007
  6. bassmittens

    bassmittens Member



    Try a mike finn: was just what I was looking for. I play BBb and EEb depending on the whim of the conductor and found the MF2 perfect for both (though needs some work for EEb High register).he sent me 3 differend models to try (2, 3 and 5) and was more than helpful.

    I must admit that the sound that I get on the BBb now is so much better that I used to get on my 24aw or blessing 18.

    I would not knock any of the other mouthpieces, just try different ones till you find the right one.

  8. AndyCat

    AndyCat Active Member in Preston Stock Mike Finn mouthpieces. They may lend you some to try.
  9. chizzum

    chizzum Member

    If your thinking of buying a 24AW Bach then dont!!!
    75 quid is alot, whereas Faxx '24AW' is 23 quid, and an identical copy.
    Made sense to me
  10. ISBBBb2

    ISBBBb2 Member

    Remember that you need to give these things time. You wont devolop the golden tone just because you have a new mouthpiece. The dreaded P word (for practice if you were unsure) is the only way to develop your sound. Iv had a 24AW since i was 18 and if im honest id have chucked it after a few weeks as it was like trying to inflate a hot air balloon manually! but now id never change it. Tried Mark Carter aka Mr Tuba?
  11. 24aw

    24aw Member

    The trouble with mouthpieces is its a very subjective subject. Generally wick 3's are a good steady band mouthpiece (given that the e flat bass doesn't use a quarter of its god given range in banding.) so it gives you a comfortable mid range and a secure top range it was the favored mouthpiece of Sandy Blair during his Dyke days and these days its the preferred "iron" of Les Neish. The Wick 2 is often used by bander's and used to be recommended by one or two Top Orchestral players as a good all rounder, when using it i found i had to be in practice top get a comfy top range all though that was never my bag to be honest. I like many other players liked the 24Aw i found it gave me a decent enough sound, a good bottom range, not bad up stairs (when i went above a middle G!!) and importantly for me it was a good preserver of the lip band blowing loud for a while. I tried many new mouth pieces like shilkes and Perantucci etc, I often found that they either started off feeling unbelievable then in a week went downhill dramatically or were good enough but had a sound like nails. But like i said, its a very subjective subject. I would find one that suites you. and stick to it. Don't meddle for meddling sake.
  12. ronnie_the_lizard

    ronnie_the_lizard Active Member

    Exactly - as we've said on many "which is the best......" threads before - what suits me may not suit you - you have to go out and try things for yourself.

    3L or 24AW are a good starting point for anyone - mid sized so they fit most peoples embouchures reasonably well - few people would say these are BAD mouthpieces (the 24AW craze started when Fletch used one as it was the biggest cup around for an Eb bass at the time - he later moved onto other mouthpieces but the "24AW is best" myth had taken hold).

    From there though you need to work towards finding what suits your own embouchure, repertoire and style of playing.

    I used to use a 3L for band for control and higher register stuff, and used a VB22 for Orchestral work for a fatter sound and, for me, more power especially below the stave.

    After taking a decade off I restarted playing and went straight to the 22 and found that with practice I could get all the high register stuff and the control anyway so didn't need 3L. More recently I forgot my mouthpiece and used one of the bands DW-1XL's which are similar in design to the 22 but with a smoother rim. I loved it immediately and bought one of the new design ones and don't foresee any future changes....... but who knows......
  13. MHunt

    MHunt New Member

    Thanks for all the advice so far. I know i need to build my embouchure up before i start changing anything, give it a couple of months though and i might want to achieve different things with the tuba, but at the moment i'm just getting myself back in the swing of things.

    Thanks again!
  14. on_castors

    on_castors Member

    I had forgotten about the Yamaha ones.
    I played a Yamaha Maestro 632 & used a 64 for a couple of years, but went back to the 2L when I found it (whilst clearing out my house in the North East when I was selling it)! You know, I can't say I actually HAVE any opinion on it! Seemed OK at the time.

    Never used the 66, isn't that the one that comes with the Yamaha Maestro 631 BBb?
  15. bassmittens

    bassmittens Member

    I don't know what Bass it comes with. I used the below comparison charts to find what looked about right for what i needed in terms of tone depth and rim size (no jokes please!). My first tuba was a Yamaha 4 valves in line thing which i remember it had a great sound and was dead easy to play (smelt a bit - but that's another story).

    It just seemed to be the one that looked like it would do what i wnated it to and it has. took a bit of a gamble but only a £30 gamble. FYI the 66 has a slighlty bigger rim size than the 64, might come with the BBb but i use it on an EEb. Charts.pdf
  16. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    I used a DW 2L for many years playing EEb Bass both Professionally (33 years) and in Brass Bands, (25 years) and found it very good over the mainly used 3 octave range.
    I would highly recommend it.
    I've been using a "Customised" version of an old 1960's BBb mouthpiece for the past 4 years and it suits me just a bit better than the DW 2L, but for commercially available mouth pieces, I'd go for the 2L.
    - Wilky
  17. Aussie Tuba

    Aussie Tuba Member

    I've been using a Perrantucci PT 84 and like the DW 2L it playes a little sharp because being a deep cup it puts the throat closer to the lead pipe and the tuning slide needs pulling out a little. but it gives a little more edge to the sound than playing on a 3L and has a great range, Wouldn't go back to 3L for quids
  18. jmh3412

    jmh3412 Member

    hhaving played on a Denis Wick 2L for years I was finally persuaded by Andy Cat to experiment and am currently using a Mike Finn MF4 for Brass band as well as a Conn Helleberg for Larger Orchestral playing. The MF4 was specifically designed for EEb and F Tuba work and seems to blend well with the rest of the section (also all playing on various different Mike Finns).
  19. Laserbeam bass

    Laserbeam bass Active Member

    I use a wick 1L for everything.
  20. steve butler

    steve butler Active Member

    I'm one of the rare breed (no comments thankyou) that uses a wick 5L.