Reply To: Best plastic Bass Recorder???

Dick Mattson

Hi Bill– First, congrats on being able to sell your Mollenhauer wood alto. Now, after having read and reread your comments and comparisons of the two bassets, I have the following thoughts. 1) I have a Yamaha plastic Fbass (basset). But since I don’t own an Aulos, I can’t do a direct comparison between the spacing of the 5-6 finger holes. I assume that you have measured the distance on both instruments and found that the Autos is bigger. Without any alterations like keys (which would involve expense), I am led to consider the following: 2) When you play each, is your right hand (in particular) the same distance from the floor? Or do you have to reach down lower to reach the keys and holes of the Aulos? If that is the case, then most likely the angle of your hand to the 4-7 keys and holes is tilted in such a way as to make the stretch more difficult. Some players of tenor recorders find right hand hand/wrist angle to be problematic and opt for a knick (bent) neck in order to raise the recorder to a more comfortable height. This appears to be Yamaha’s solution for the Fbass. Supposing the 4-7 keys and holes are farther away from your mouth, one solution (again incurring cost) would be to have a longer local constructed that would enable you to lift the entire recorder up higher. 3) As to the difficulty in getting the high F to speak without sneaking into it, it strikes me that one problem might be the air flow through the bocal. That might be difficult to test by removing the local and blowing through the top hole directly–because of the reach to 4 and 5. However, if you tape them down/closed, you can experiment more easily. If the experiment proves successful, then the problem might indeed be inside the bocal or the design of the bocal itself. I’ll let you decide because I don’t have an Aulos myself and not too many others have weighed in on this of any of your previous posts. 4) If the high F problem is caused by the bocal, then having a longer bocal made would possibly solve both the reach and the high F problems. 5) Alternately, you might just resign yourself to the timbre of the Yamaha and either sell or return the Aulos. All the best. –Dick–