Topic: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

after much contemplation, i decided that i really want to add an Ab-Bb trill key. in your experience, how much does this usually cost?
also, has anyone had any problems adding a D-Eb trill key, since i am thinking about having that added as well.
also, would there be any complications with adding a left hand whisper lock, since I have a right hand one.
i know nothing about repairs or additions so any advice is appreciated smile

Last edited by Bassoon24 (2015-05-31 07:12:22)

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

You own a Fox Renard, right? (I read that in your posting about the balance hanger.)

Contact Fox. They will tell you the cost for having the Ab-Bb trill key and other mechanisms installed -- assuming you have the factory install it, of course. If you have a current Fox price list, the information may be on it. (I don't have one in front of me as I type this.) The information may also be on the Fox web site. It's worth some exploring.

In the case of the Ab-Bb trill, you also need to choose which one you want, assuming that they are all compatible with your instrument. There are several versions, each with its advantages and disadvantages. (I have the articulated Ab-Bb trill with clutch on my instrument.)

Here is another thought. You may be better off finding a new to you instrument already equipped with the keywork that you want, or ordering a professional instrument with such keywork, rather than adding it to your current instrument. If you think that your current instrument is going to be your instrument for life, or at least for a long time, these upgrades may be worth it. If you envision making a change in the next couple years, the upgrades may not be worth it.

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

If you own a Renard bassoon Fox will not install either key.  That is their policy and it is one of the main differences between the Renard and the Fox line of instruments.  You would have to contact a qualified repairman to have the work done.  I have the articulated Ab/Bb key on my bassoons and I think you can read about it somewhere on this forum.  Keith Bowen installed a clutch mechanism on the first bassoon I ordered with this key and Fox has modified this clutch to work very well.  I have the right hand Eb trill as well on my bassoons and like all the trills you can use it on.

Bob Williams

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

Hello



      All the keys you've asked about can be added to a bassoon by an experienced tech. If this is going on a Renard instrument, then the Fox factory will not accommodate installing these keys unfortunately. To install an Ab-Bb's trill, I generally $80/he for my shop rate so to do either of the trill keys you asked about, your looking at about $720-960. A left hand whisper key lock is about $240-400.

      I do somewhat agree with the Fox philosophy about adding these keys to a Renard in that it's kind of cost prohibitive to do this to a Renard instrument. However, if you are happy with your bassoon and don't see yourself upgrading to a professional instrument, then go for it.

      If you have any other questions, or would like to consult with me on other matters regarding repairs and customizations of your bassoon, I would be happy to consult with you privately via email, or phone.

Cordially,
Chad

Taylor Bassoon Services
723 Steamboat Ct
Ottawa, IL 61350
PH-815-343-2492

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

Since these are fairly standard keys, any qualified bassoon repairman should be able to do this. I would talk to your lessons teacher and see who they recommend.

I have had the D-Eb RH trill key added to my Bell and Walter (both were not ordered with it from the factory). I agree with Bob Williams, this key really opens up many trill possibilities, especially when it's in the RH. I've had this on most of my bassoons and wouldn't purchase a bassoon without it or adding it.

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

Thanks for correcting me, Bob. I had forgotten that Fox won't install that keywork on a Renard. I should have remembered.

Sorry for the misleading info, Bassoon24. As others have said, a qualified bassoon repairman can do the work.

I agree with the others that the Eb trill key is useful. I also have the right hand version, which does open up a bunch of good trills, such as the high Ab/Bb trill.

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

Love the right hand Eb trill.

I wouldn't bother with any of these things on a 220. I also think that there are only a handful of repair people that really understand the tone hole structure well enough, so be very careful. Remember that the Ab/Bb thumb trill requires several completely new keys to be built as the mechanism is so integrated.

William Safford, I haven't tried the right hand Eb trill as high Ab-Bb. Is it that simple? I like it for C4-D4, and having the off-set C# key means that there's a really nice G-Ab trill now available too.

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: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

Hi Trent.

The high Ab/Bb trill: finger a standard Ab: 1/2 x x Eb / o o x

trill both the Eb and C# trill keys.

In addition, the relocation of the C# trill key makes the high G/A trill lie better under the fingers (at least for me).

I'll have to try that G/Ab trill. I have the G#/A ring key, so I can trill with just R1. But I'll give yours a try.

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

William Safford wrote:

Hi Trent.

The high Ab/Bb trill: finger a standard Ab: 1/2 x x Eb / o o x

trill both the Eb and C# trill keys.

In addition, the relocation of the C# trill key makes the high G/A trill lie better under the fingers (at least for me).

I'll have to try that G/Ab trill. I have the G#/A ring key, so I can trill with just R1. But I'll give yours a try.

Yes, the "claw" trill is easier with the offset C#. Totally agree.

I find that in most instance the A ring key produces a flatter high Ab on the G-Ab trill than trilling the C# key, so even on a bassoon with the ring key I like the other option better. I'm not a fan of the A ring key in general (although I understand the appeal).

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: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

I like the A ring key. It opens up even more trills. It makes certain passages much less awkward to finger, and sometimes smoother acoustically. Plus there are times when I want to voice the A or Ab low. The only liability I've experienced (other than when I want an Ab or A to be high, and of course the added cost) is the one time the mechanism went out of adjustment, on my previous instrument.

But you're right, using it for the G-Ab trill can yield a low Ab (or a high G, if lipped up), which is not necessarily desirable.

Nobody has discussed the left hand whisper key lock, unless I missed it. How easy or hard would it be to retrofit Bassoon24's instrument that way? Does it also fall into the realm of not worth the effort for a Renard?

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

Left hand lock requires wood routed out of the wing, two posts installed, a tab soldered to the whisper key. It's not simple work really, although plenty of techs can do it.

My general opinion is to forget adding a left hand lock, as what a tech will have to charge to install it isn't probably worth it.

I've had extensive time on bassoons with either a left or a right hand lock (working at any given time) and currently have both functional on my bassoon. While it's common for German setups to have the left hand lock and I usually agree with German keywork choices (like alt low C for instance) I think Americans get this one right with the more common use of the right hand lock. I can say that I use my right hand lock about 99% of the time I use a lock.

A better choice for bassoon24 is to upgrade the right hand lock from the silly plunger style lock that is the default option on the 220 to the Fox rotary style lock. It's easier to engage, disengage, and get to in a hurry compared to the plunger style one. It also doesn't require likely any additional modification to her bassoon - just swap out one lock for the other - the screw holes are even the same I think.

I hope I'm not overly dominating this conversation. I just think about these things a lot (like it's my job or something) and have come to a lot of hopefully well rationalized opinions on these matters.

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: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

Trent thanks for the suggestion about the rotary style lock - i think thats a perfect solution (or another type of lock) since the left hand lock seems like too much work. the plunger lock is silly to me since its out of reach for me (speed wise). i totally forgot about different types of locks
Thanks!
just curious, do you have a photo of the rotary style lock?

Last edited by Bassoon24 (2015-06-03 15:20:42)

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

Hi Bassoon24, here's an image:

http://foxproducts.com/images/Documents … atalog.pdf

Type 3, page 13.

I have had that kind of lock on my last two bassoons, and like it a lot.

My first bassoon had a left thumb whisper key lock. My next one had a right hand one (the rotary one). It took me years to get used to using the right thumb, but now it's second nature.

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

I have to agree with Trent regarding the left/right hand lock. Although I personally haven't had as much experience with the left hand lock as Trent has, I've always felt a bit more comfortable using the right hand lock. I currently have a rotary style lock on my bassoon and I like it. It's easy to get to, out of the way, and I don't accidentally engage it, which is the issue I see with plunger-style locks.

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Re: adding an Ab-Bb trill key

thanks Trent and SSeguin
- I'll definitely go with a rotor lock - it really does seem like the perfect option for me
Thanks for helping me out/clear things up! I really do appreciate the help

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