Saxophone Forum


by JazzGal
(41 posts)
9 years ago

Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

I've been playing a Conn shooting star for about a year now. I recently got a Meyer 5 mouthpiece from my band teacher, and I usually use 2 1/2 Rico Royal reeds, but I've recently tried a 2 1/2 Vandoreon French cut reed. Do you have any sudegestions on a different mouthpiece set up or reeds i should try? I was also thinking of getting my sax stripped so that it has no finish, or laquear. What do you people think?

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  1. by JazzGal
    (41 posts)

    9 years ago

    Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

    anyone? I guess you could say I've just started, since ive been playing alto for 2 years, but I feel like i've been playing forever, and i want to make some changes in my sound.

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  2. by jamterry
    (573 posts)

    9 years ago

    Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

    A shooting star is a good horn. Don't strip it; it is fine the way it is. Stay away from Rico reeds, as they have a tinny sound. I use a Vandoren 2 1/2 traditional cut or a La Voz Medium. La Voz has good quality control, but I do not think Vandoren does. A good Vandoren is a great reed, but a bad Vandoren is junk. Try the LaVoz medium for a while. I use a Meyer 5 on my alto along with a Meyer metal 6, and a Selmer C* for legit stuff. The Selmer C* sounds good on a shooting star. Can you pick your reeds at the store? If so, I can tell you what to look for. Don't mess with the lacquer on your horn!!!! Best of luck to you :)

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    1. by JazzGal
      (41 posts)

      9 years ago

      Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

      Well, theres a music store near by that was Rico Royal reeds, Vandoren french cut (i hope im saying that right)_ and java. Theres a bigger store in the city that ive never been t, but i could check it out if you give me a few reeds to look for. as for the laquer, should i get it re-finished then? because the laquer is worn off in a lot of places.

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      1. by jamterry
        (573 posts)

        9 years ago

        Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

        I think you should try the Vandoren trsditional 2 1/2 and the La Voz medium. If you are able to pick the reeds by hand, grab the darkest ones and look at the back end to make sure the height of the sides are equal. you are aare looking at the curve that the ligature tightened around. Look at the reeds from the sides. Make the slopes of the sides from back to tip are even. An even cut light reed is better than a lop sided dark one. You will find good light reeds too. The slope and curve is important. Don't worry about the laquer yet. Get the sound first!!! Let me know how you are doing. Best of luck to you :)

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        1. by connsaxman_jim
          (2336 posts)

          9 years ago

          Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

          Hi sax gal. Terry here is giving you some good advice. Personally, I'm not a big fan of Vandoren. I have used their reeds in the past, and while I like the traditional uncut reeds the best, I think the LaVoz reeds are much better. The Rico Royal Jazz Select reeds are pretty good, but the typical orange box cheapo's are not that good. I used to play a Conn shooting star alto. That was my first alto saxophone. Great horn, and it played so easily, but after I bought my Conn 6M, I sold it on ebay to help pay to have a couple other horns overhauled. Depending on the type of sound that you are looking for, I can make a few suggestions. I'm not a big fan of Selmer mouthpieces, and I had intonation problems with a Selmer S 80 C* on my Conn 6M, so I would be leary of an S 80 on any Conn. The best piece I have found for a Conn alto is an Otto Link Tone Edge. It's a good tone for rock, blues, and jazz. For a good legit sound, I would try a Brilhart Ebolin mouthpiece. Another good mouthpiece for less than $20 is the Rico Royal Graftonite mouthpiece. They are very easy to play and have a very full, robust sound. I use them on tenor, alto and baritone, and for the price, they are really hard to beat. For an outstanding jazz sound, Jody Jazz mouthpieces are absolutely fantastic, and every bit as fantastic as their mouthpieces is their customer service! Jody answers the emails himself! I just ordered an ESP from him, and I can't wait to try it out on my tenor.

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        2. by jamterry
          (573 posts)

          9 years ago

          Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

          traditional 2 1/2. sorry about the typo

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        3. by JazzGal
          (41 posts)

          9 years ago

          Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

          Okay, i went to the store and got a la voz medium size. I think it sounds pretty good, and its easier to play than the VanDoren i got. I'll get a friend over who plays tenor sax to tell me if it sounds good or not. lol, i know this may sound annoying, but why shouldnt i do anything with the lacquer? Thank you

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      2. by jamterry
        (573 posts)

        9 years ago

        Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

        Coollllllllllllllllllll La Voz medium works for you :) I'm ok with the lacquer job, but I want to know who will do this re-lacquer!!!! There are some really unqualified people doing re-laquer jobs. Let me know what your options are in this regard. Get your reed in in your mouth before you open your sax case. Get that reed nice and wet before you put it on your mouthpiece. Mess with your ligature position and how much mouthpiece you take into your mouth. Let me know how you are doing. Best of luck to you :)

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        1. by JazzGal
          (41 posts)

          9 years ago

          Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

          yeah, i did a test, and i think i really like the la voz, and the vandoren. well, i was on this site, and it was saying about how you can tell if a sax has already been relacquered, or if you should, and i checked the signs, and i realized my sax has already been relquered once before, because when it says "mexico" its really hard to read. i realized that with relquering, i could loose more of the strong metal of the sax, and details of the engravement. have you ever heard of Music Stop? its the music store closet to me, so i would et it re-finished through there. but what do you think of plating? ike, plating it in gold or silver. can you do that? will i lose details of the engravement? i donno, why the first time i said if i should just strip it, is because i dont really want the lacquer to thin the sound, and steal the round ring, or to cover up my engravements...what do you think?

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          1. by blackfrancis
            (396 posts)

            9 years ago

            Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

            Good work getting your reed situation in order. That's something that you'll be working with the rest of your career so thumbs up for important knowledge gained! If your horn has been relacquered once already (and probably buffed by a gorilla if the engraving is going south) you should be extra careful to find somebody really good to do it or maybe just leave it be. I find a certain charm in old horns with a less than complete coat of lacquer. And yes, a too-heavy spray job will affect your tone.

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            1. by connsaxman_jim
              (2336 posts)

              9 years ago

              Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

              If it's one of the later Mexican made Conns, I wouldn't spend the money to have it relacquered. Just play it and enjoy it. They're not worth the cost of a good relacquer. The earlier shooting stars are better, and the 6M's are fantastic! The later Conns are still pretty good horns, but they're not worth much.

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            2. by JazzGal
              (41 posts)

              9 years ago

              Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

              yeah, my sax is 34 years old. I'll leave it the way it is, since so many people are sudgesting it. A friend sudgested that i got a rovner ligature, i dont think i have enough money to get a new mouthpiece yet, but its funny because i really want to try a Conn 6m, so many good things have been said about them!

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            3. by jamterry
              (573 posts)

              9 years ago

              Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

              If you really get hot on your sound, someday you might want a 6m. The money that you would spend on lacquer jobs, mouthpieces, and ligatures can be put away towards your 6m. I put my horns on layaway until i could comvince my Dad to finance the balance on them. I was paying for them when i was in the army. For two years I didn't even see them. I bought my first used horn a few months ago and i am paying that off. My point is that you can have a 6m, but i will not come cheap. Right now stay focused on your playing and you will fine. Best of luck to you :) Let me know how you are doing.

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            4. by jamterry
              (573 posts)

              9 years ago

              Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

              it will not come cheap* sorry for the typo

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            5. by rob07
              (38 posts)

              9 years ago

              Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

              are these horns a pro level horn or more of a student.

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            6. by jamterry
              (573 posts)

              9 years ago

              Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

              I consider Mark VI's pro level horns

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            7. by JazzGal
              (41 posts)

              9 years ago

              Re: Mouthpiece set up on a Conn

              well thanks everyone! you've really helped. i'm going to go into trying out a dark/light rovnerligature. ill let you know if i decide on it or not

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