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Bass clarinet case layout

I have been gifted a split base clarinet that was found in a pawn shop in Windsor, Ontario. It plays nicely and I had it serviced by our local repair shop. My daughter will be taking this instrument back and forth on the bus for school. My issue is I have no case. I'm thinking about modifying a case but trying to figure out the layout for the case. Does anyone have any suggestions or advice? Has anyone modified a case before and have any suggestions? I have access to a wood shop and metal shop.
 

Carl H.

Distinguished Member
Distinguished Member
By the time you finish making the case you will have spent more than the cost of an entry level case. I'd save time and money and buy a case as the entry level case will be much lighter and easier for a student to manage not to mention probably more durable as well.

I have a non standard vintage bass that doesn't fit any modern case, so I know how expensive and time consuming it is to make a custom case. This is why I advise buying a new case - I have a full repair shop and owned all the tools needed before making my case. Don't do it unless you are forced.
 
Custom fitting the foam with nicely fitting pockets and covering it with a lining is definitly a labor of love . If you do do it ,get an appropriate density ,quality foam and in thinknesses that help you make the cutouts i.e. by sandwiching not gouging out a thick piece of foam .Above all the instrument parts need to be held snugly when the case is closed . This is really paramount to the ascetics . If you end up buying a new case , likewise see the instrument isn't slopping around inside . Personally I would glue in a few pieces of appropriate density and quality foam, in strategic places inside a case ,to secure the body sections against movement, even if it looks a bit ugly .

Bass clarinets are very ' shmicky' in their fine adjustments ,so care in transport and the assembly of the body sections is very important .

If you were given this bass clarinet then that's a wonderful thing .
Do you know what make / model it is ?
 
Ps.
A lot of people with the two-piece body section basses ( which includes all the 'pro' ones actually ! ) prefer a long case that can fit the body in one piece and so avoid repeated assembly/ disassembly of this joint . I don't see that as being very handy for your daughter on the bus ,but I thought I'd just mention it for its significance anyway .
 
My old Pedler BC doesn't fit in a generic case.
I keep the 2 body sections assembled in a gig bag, and use this lubricant to prevent cork compression.
It's cheaper than buying synthetic cork grease and is probably the same product.

s-l500.jpg
 
My old Pedler BC doesn't fit in a generic case.
I keep the 2 body sections assembled in a gig bag, and use this lubricant to prevent cork compression.
It's cheaper than buying synthetic cork grease and is probably the same product.

Hey Bari Sax Guy!
What a terrific idea. I like to keep my Bb clarinets assembled by my work desk but I have discovered that the cork grease that I now use won't allow it as the joint tends to get very difficult to undo.
 
Ajulia .

I don't think that any of us have actually answered your question !

Typically the longer- lower body section goes at the top ( hinge side of the case ) , with the upper body shorter section below it displaced towards the right hand side , so leaving space for the bell in the left-hand lower corner . Below the shorter body section and to the right of the bell should be room for the neck and the other bits and bobs in compartments . Making somewhere snug for the mouthpiece with its fragile reed is a good idea .
 

Carl H.

Distinguished Member
Distinguished Member
Ajulia .

I don't think that any of us have actually answered your question !

Typically the longer- lower body section goes at the top ( hinge side of the case ) , with the upper body shorter section below it displaced towards the right hand side , so leaving space for the bell in the left-hand lower corner . Below the shorter body section and to the right of the bell should be room for the neck and the other bits and bobs in compartments . Making somewhere snug for the mouthpiece with its fragile reed is a good idea .
I believe I answered pretty directly most aspects of his question, and indirectly answered the layout question with my advice to purchase and not build. Cases are fairly simple concepts, but execution rarely turns out well on first try. In addition, students should be focused on learning the instrument, not dealing with their case either being heavy, bulky or damaging to their instrument. Bass clarinets in particular can quickly go out of adjustment if not properly supported in their cases. Unless the case turns out rather spectacularly good, it is also likely to be something other students will ridicule, as they can be arrogant little pricks about gear at that age (and older). Who needs that?
 
My Pedler BC will not fit any After Market cases that I have found - Protec and Deg and possibly others - it's too long (the keys extend too far)
from memory I believe that it's 37 in. v.s. 34 or 35 in. for the stock cases. It is a 5 piece BC so I suppose a Low C case would fit, but the Low C cases I have found are ~$500.00, more than I want to spend for a BC that probably has a value of maybe $500.00 on a good day.

It lives on the stand, or in a gig bag, that I found on Bay.
 
just out of curiosity-what are you using as a gig bag? i some times use a low a bari sax gig bag for mine . another possibility is a rifle /tactical bag . they dont cost much either
 
I just ordered a BAM case for my bass clarinet.
A fellow bass clarinetist (friend of mine) highly recommended it. She has one for her Selmer BC (same model as mine) and loves it.
 
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