Chedeville Mouthpieces

Here is interesting information from Omar Henderson's e-mail to me on his Chedeville mouthpieces. See chedevillemp.com for more.

The Chedeville Prime mouthpiece is CNC machined (Computer Numeric Controlled) out of hard rubber with a formulation of the rubber that I experimentally determined from some of the finest old 1920’s – 1930’s Charles Chedeville mouthpieces. As you know, all mouthpieces today are molded and not machined out of rod stock as they were by Chedeville (Brad Behn does a similar thing for his $650.00 mouthpieces) and molding requires a different formulation of latex and other components than used in the traditional manufacture of rod rubber. CNC machining is also more precise and reproducible because in the cooling process for molded mouthpieces the areas that are thicker cool more slowly than thin portions and a warping effect is unavoidable. Some experts say that the hard rubber formulation found in the old Chedeville mouthpieces gives a better and entirely different sound than all of the molded mouthpieces, even custom mouthpieces made from molded blanks. Of course the Kaspars, and Charles Bay used Chedeville blanks to make their mouthpieces through the 1960’s. If EBay prices are any indication of rarity or quality then the old Chedevilles and mouthpieces made from Chedeville blanks are at the top of the heap.

The Chedeville Prime mouthpiece is nothing like a classic Vandoren B-45. The B-45 is nothing more than an “old wife’s tale” given to every non-woodwind music teacher in music education throughout the years and political and kickback pressure from music stores.  The chamber and bore of Chedeville Prime are different and the tip opening is a little closer.  In my humble opinion the B-45 is one of the worst mouthpieces for advancing students because it usually uses softer reeds, has a more open tip, and does not let the student develop a firm embouchure and tonal variation. Anyway, the Chedeville prime has a moderately close tip opening, is reed friendly, and helps develop a good embouchure, but plays easily and will take a student into college level playing.

The interesting story of old Chedeville mouthpieces can be found on my website – www.chedevillemp.com  We now hold the name mark and trademark for Chedeville in the US, Canada, most of South America, some of Asia, and most recently the EU.


Of course there are many factors and variables that go into making a mouthpiece play and all of them have to be tweaked so that they work together. The Chedeville Prime mouthpiece does have a slightly longer lay but all the Chedeville mouthpieces have some similarity in their measurements (the standard set used by most mouthpiece makers of 0.0015 mm, 0.01 mm, 0.024 mm, and 0.035 mm spacer gauges and glass etched slide in 0.001 mm increments) the Chedeville Prime has a nominal tip opening of 1.03 plus or minus 0.002 mm. The other measurements are 34, 22,12,and 6.


The Chedeville barrels are also CNC machined from rod stock with 2 tapers designed by Allan Segal after much trial and error. They are presently made primarily for Buffet R-13 clarinets.  Taper 1 is for newer (1970’s up) and Taper 2 for 1960’s. They come in 65, 66, and 67mm.
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