Topic: Bocal recommendations for Amati 41 bassoon?

Hello all.  I just got a used Amati ABN41JS bassoon. (Yes, I know about them, but frankly, it's a huge upgrade from my plastic "student" bassoon.)  It came with an unbranded bocal with a "1" stamped on it.  I'm no expert, but it seems to play fine - maybe a little sharp overall - but my biggest complaint is that it's bent down too far, so I'd like to replace it with something a little more horizontal. 

Does anyone have experience matching a better bocal to an Amati bassoon? I'm hoping to keep this under $400, and I'm willing to buy used.

Re: Bocal recommendations for Amati 41 bassoon?

See if you can find a Fox #3 length double star bocal from before the R2 series was introduced. Used for under $400 should be fairly easy for a fine upgrade.

I say a #3 because you have what is likely equal to a Fox #2 length bocal already with that Amati 1.

Not sure what new Yamaha bocals are running for these days. They could also fit your bill. Used certainly would be within your budget. Go with a #2 length if you go that route.

I can't say what specific types to try from those brands, as I don't know what your bassoon is designed like. Just try as many as you can.

M.M.A., D.M.A. University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign: B.Mus. Lawrence University
Bassoon professor at University of Wisconsin Eau-Claire
Maker of the Little-Jake electric bassoon pickup and Weasel bassoon reeds

Re: Bocal recommendations for Amati 41 bassoon?

Thanks Trent.  That all sounds great.  I see that you're at MMI.  Have you tried the Wolf Grundmann bocals?  I've been doing a little research on those, and it sounds like I might enjoy one - I tend to hold the bassoon a little more vertically than most.

Re: Bocal recommendations for Amati 41 bassoon?

They would certainly help you hold the bassoon more vertically!

Brand new they're a bit over your $400 budget. If you want to talk more in depth about them give me a call during the business day and we can discuss them in more detail. I don't want to get too "work" on the forum.

M.M.A., D.M.A. University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign: B.Mus. Lawrence University
Bassoon professor at University of Wisconsin Eau-Claire
Maker of the Little-Jake electric bassoon pickup and Weasel bassoon reeds

Re: Bocal recommendations for Amati 41 bassoon?

Hmmm...  This may be a case of a conflict of interest, but Trent has a secondhand Wolf bocal (mine) for sale.  I thought of it because it is a very free blowing bocal that may help you.  In addition, the bend on it forces you to play in a more vertical position, which may also help.  However, it is a number one, so it may also be too short.  Check out the Midwest site for a look.

Dean.

Bassoonist Ordinaire, all around nice guy.
If anyone needs a damn fool, I'm your man!

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Re: Bocal recommendations for Amati 41 bassoon?

Dean, your bocal is on its way to me as we speak, along with 3 of the "Grundmann" types.  Should be picking them up tomorrow evening.  Looking forward to playing them all!

Re: Bocal recommendations for Amati 41 bassoon?

Far be it from me to beg, but, pllleeeeaaassse buy mine!!!

Seriously though, it really is a nice bocal and it is an excellent match for my Takeda bassoon.  Unfortunately, it has been  impossible for me to find a reed that allows me to play in tune without a lot of work, too much work to make it (the bocal) worth playing.  But it had a very nice sound.  Oddly enough, I used it on a number of occasions to find bad bocal matches on other bassoons.  A friend of mine who is is a tech had a few problematic bassoons.  We tried that bocal on them, and if we saw that there was an instant improvement, the old bocal was the problem.  If the bassoon was basically the same, it went back into the shop.
When you try it MAKE SURE you use a tuner.  It sounds in tune even when it is sharp.  (it gives a lot of harmonics)
Have fun with them, and with the new bassoon.

Dean

Last edited by Dean (2013-05-10 11:08:42)

Bassoonist Ordinaire, all around nice guy.
If anyone needs a damn fool, I'm your man!

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Re: Bocal recommendations for Amati 41 bassoon?

Dean, I really liked your bocal.  It had a big full sound for me, as did the other forged bocal, which was a Grundmann curve.  I preferred the tone of those two bocals when playing - it was more pleasing to me - but then my studio mates and my teacher told me the sound was too covered, and did not project well to the audience.  And I really prefer the Grundmann shape; I can hold the bassoon in a more comfortable position, and I can play standing with a lot less pressure on my left hand, and I also like that water doesn't collect in the bocal.  I sent them all back for now, as I won't be able to play bassoon for about 4-6 weeks.  Ultimately I'm planning to get one of the nickel plated Grundmann bocals, once I get back to bassoon playing later this summer.  I'm pretty new to bassoon, so maybe I'll change my mind after I've played several more years, but bassoon is the fifth of five woodwinds for me, so having a bocal that makes bassoon easier for me is really the biggest consideration.