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clarinet parts, clarinet mouthpiece, contrabass clarinet
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Clarinet Parts

While the members of the clarinet family can look very different, the number of clarinet parts is the same – 5 or 7, depending on if you count the reed and ligature as separate parts or part of the clarinet mouthpiece. The parts from top to bottom are

The Mouthpiece

The Barrel

The Upper Joint

The Lower Joint

The Bell Section

Larger clarinets, from the basset horn to the contrabass clarinet, have a metal neck rather than the barrel.

Clarinets are now made of many different materials, usually wood or a plastic polymer. Therefore the parts are either molded (for plastic) or turned (for wood). The dimensions of every part of the clarinet are carefully calibrated, to make sure that the clarinet plays in tune, and all the keywork fits correctly to the various parts of the clarinet, covering the holes properly to prevent any air leaks.

Learning to put the parts of the clarinet together properly is very important, as it is easy to bend keys or do other damage if everything is not put in place properly. The cork tenons should be greased lightly before putting the separate parts together. Make sure that no keys are in the way when fitting the different parts to each other. When you are finished, the brand logos should be aligned. This is important so that the bore (the long column of empty space inside) is properly aligned.

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About the Author:

written by Natalia Forrest


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