Topic: Bassoon guards

Occasionally when I'm down in the low register I get a note that won't play properly; then when I look down it seems I've been inadvertently pressing some key or other, probably the Bb key,  with my leg.  (I wanted to title this thread "Fat Thighs" but figured too much attention would be generated).

Has anyone tried any of the guards out there and do they work?  I've tried moving my bocal around so that my horn is facing more "out" and that has perhaps helped a bit.  Any other suggestions?  Moving the horn more forward on the seat (I use a seat strap), changing to a neck strap, making the Bb key harder to press, etc.etc.?


Re: Bassoon guards

Check to see if there is a foot on your Bb key. (a small appendage that sticks out from the back side of the pad cup) This is a holdover from the days when  cork was put on the underside of this to regulate the opening of the pad and this is probably what you're hitting if its there. If you have this on your Bb key have somebody grind it off as it is unnecessary. Next, have a Bb guard put on. There are any number of styles and sizes. Just make sure it is placed correctly so it doesn't interfere with the positioning of the bassoon against your leg.
Jim Kirker