US2832249A - Clarinet system - Google Patents

Clarinet system Download PDF

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US2832249A
US2832249A US368864A US36886453A US2832249A US 2832249 A US2832249 A US 2832249A US 368864 A US368864 A US 368864A US 36886453 A US36886453 A US 36886453A US 2832249 A US2832249 A US 2832249A
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key
clarinet
lever
finger
tone hole
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US368864A
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Walter J Lehmann
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Walter J Lehmann
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    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10DSTRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; WIND MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACCORDIONS OR CONCERTINAS; PERCUSSION MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; AEOLIAN HARPS; SINGING-FLAME MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • G10D7/00General design of wind musical instruments
    • G10D7/06Beating-reed wind instruments, e.g. single or double reed wind instruments
    • G10D7/066Clarinets

Description

April 29, 1958 w. LEHMANN 2,832,249
CLARINET SYSTEM Filed July 20, 1953 Z331: fa
My r52 IAEH/VAA/A/ INVENTOR.
United States Patent O 2,832,249 CLARINET SYSTEM Walter J. Lehmann, Williamstown, Mass.
Application July 20, 1953, Serial No. 368,864 1 Claim, oi. Sit- 382) This invention relates to musical instruments and more particularly refers to an improved fingering system for clarinets.
The Boehm clarinet was developed over a hundred years ago. Since that time, it has become the most popular style of clarinet in use. Nevertheless, despite the period of time which has elapsed since its introduction, substantially no basic improvements or changes have been made, particularly for the difficult and awkward shift which occurs in the key of C, between the notes A and B in the staff.
Reference is made to The Clarinet and Clarinet Playing by Robert Willaman (published by Willaman, Salt Point, New York, 1949). In this general description and review of clarinet technique it is pointed out that complications result from the uneven movement of the fingers-passing from one note to another may involve moving one finger, or it may involve moving all nine. It is pointed out that the clumsiest finger shift on the instrument occurs in the key of C, between notes A and B in the staiI-here all nine fingers must change. This shift must be practiced many thousands of times before it is at all smoothly operated, and even the best players have trouble covering it up in a really fast run.
While the Boehm system is recognized as the best available, it suffers from the one serious disadvantage reported above. Physically, this disadvantage is in the left hand fingering system located at the upper joint of the clarinet. The A key is located just above the first tone hole of the left hand. In order to effect a rapid change of note from A to B or, to a lesser extent, from B to A, it is necessary to remove eight fingers and the left thumb from their respective positions followed of depression of the A key, or vice versa. This is a most ditficult operation even for skilled musicians.
It is an object of the present invention to overcome the foregoing and related disadvantages. A further object is to produce an improved Boehm type clarinet system wherein the A key operation may be conducted with ease and speed. Additional objects will become apparent from the following description and claims.
After an extended period of study, I have discovered a novel mechanism for securing heretofore unattainable ease of operation involving the A key. I have found that by a relatively simple but basic modification of the upper joint construction of a Boehm clarinet, it is possible to play the A key in sequence with neighboring finger combinations with great ease.
In its preferred embodiment my modified Boehm system has an added finger ring on the third tone hole of the three finger or upper joint of the clarinet. Depression of this finger ring is translated to a depression of a hold bar under the A key lever, controlling opening of the A key tone hole through the spring action incorporated in the A key. Also on the conventional finger ring of the second tone hole, I have added a lever whereby depression of the second ring will maintain the ice 2 A key in the normal positionQthat is, with the tone hole closed.
Thus, as I depress the third finger ring, leaving the second finger ring open, the A key tone hole will open.
If, however, Idepress the second finger ring, irrespective of the position of the third finger ring, the A key will remain in its normal closed position.
The invention can be better understood by reference to the appended drawing, inwhich the figure shows a simplified picture of .my rnodification and invention as applied to the conventional Boehm system clarinet. The drawing is restricted to the three finger joint, or as it is sometimes known as the upper barrel section, which contains all the modification of the conventional clarinet that is required by my invention.
Referring more particularly to the figure, barrel 10 is provided with tone holes 11, 12 and 13 for the first, second and third fingers of the left hand. Finger ring 14 on tone hole 12 depresses key 15 by the action through control rod 16. A key 17 is normally in a closed position because of a spring built into the lever mechanism. Under the usual Boehm system, for the tone hole to be opened, key 17 would be manually depressed by the first finger of the left hand.
According to my invention, the same essential features are present with the following additions. Finger ring 18 is provided at tone hole 13, being connected to a new control rod 19 which extends up the barrel to a position beyond the finger area of A key 17. Lever arm 20 is connected from control rod 19 to the underside of A key 17. A spring action 23, stronger than the spring normally incorporated in key mechanism 17, is incorporated in control rod 19 to hold finger ring 18 and lever 20 in an up position, thus effectively holding the A key in its normal closed position. The spring action 24 in the A key is reversed so that when lever bar 20 is depressed by depression of'finger ring 18, the A key lever will drop down, opening the A tone hole.
The second major change is the addition of a lever mechanism between tone hole key 15 and the A key 17. This lever is shown as 21 and is pivoted on fulcrum 22. By depression of the second or middle-finger ring 14, the lever arm 21 is depressed, maintaining the A key in its normal raised position with the A key tone hole being closed. Lever 21 is arched over the arm extension of finger ring 11.
It will be apparent that in the specific embodiment shown in the figure, it is possible to achieve the new control of the A key while employing my invention by use of other rod and fulcrum systems. For example, spring 23 may be made an integral part of rod 19, being inserted therein. Also lever 21 may be operated from finger ring 11 or finger ring 14, as well as'from key 15 through linkages similar to those depicted in the drawing as illustrative of the claimed preferred embodiment of my invention.
According to one of the limited embodiments of my invention, the so-called B fiat lever 25 is extended more or less parallel to the axis of the barrel towards and upon the lower barrel area. This permits more versatile fingering due to the freedom resulting from the A key control system of my invention.
In addition to the use of my invention on the Boehm clarinet system, it is to be understood that the principles herein disclosed may be applied to other woodwind instruments, where similar problems exist.
As my widely different embodiments will be made without departing from the spirit and scope hereof, it is to be understood that the invention is limited only by the appended claim.
What I claim is:
A modified Boehmclarinet system comprising a portion of a Boehm clarinet having an A tone hole and three tone holes adapted to be fingered by the indexfinger, -midd1efinger, and ring-finger respectively of the left hand of a player, a depressable ring on the ringfinger tone hole biased tothe raised position, a rockable A key adapted to open and close the A" tone hole, adepressable; finger ring on the'middle-finger tone hole biased to the raised position, a first lever connected to said middle'finger ring and so related to said A key as to maintain the A'tone hole closed when said middlefinger'ring is depressed, asecond lever operatively associated with said A key, and a rocker rod so operatively 4 associated with said second lever and said ring-finger ring as to cause the A" tone hole to be open when said ringfinger is depressed in absence of depression of said middlefinger ring.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,317,219 Price Sept. 30, 1919 1,546,153 Upton July 14, 1925 1,611,382 Schindler Dec. 21, 1926 1,926,489 Leblanc Sept. 12, 1933 2,107,583 Platz Feb. 8, 1938 2,182,198 Christensen Dec. 5, 1939
US368864A 1953-07-20 1953-07-20 Clarinet system Expired - Lifetime US2832249A (en)

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Cited By (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
DE3936599A1 (en) * 1989-11-03 1990-03-08 Weber Bleyle Manuel Key mechanism for clarinet - has two positions only for each finger
EP2138995A1 (en) * 2008-06-27 2009-12-30 Ernst Reißner Fingering mechanism for woodwind instruments

Citations (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1317219A (en) * 1919-09-30 Planooraph co
US1546153A (en) * 1922-08-31 1925-07-14 Will O Upton Clarinet
US1611382A (en) * 1925-12-23 1926-12-21 Schindler Herman Clarinet
US1926489A (en) * 1932-06-01 1933-09-12 Leblanc Leon Key mechanism for wood wind instruments
US2107583A (en) * 1936-05-02 1938-02-08 Conn Ltd C G Key mechanism for woodwind instruments
US2182198A (en) * 1939-02-09 1939-12-05 Oscar E Christensen Boehm system clarinet

Patent Citations (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1317219A (en) * 1919-09-30 Planooraph co
US1546153A (en) * 1922-08-31 1925-07-14 Will O Upton Clarinet
US1611382A (en) * 1925-12-23 1926-12-21 Schindler Herman Clarinet
US1926489A (en) * 1932-06-01 1933-09-12 Leblanc Leon Key mechanism for wood wind instruments
US2107583A (en) * 1936-05-02 1938-02-08 Conn Ltd C G Key mechanism for woodwind instruments
US2182198A (en) * 1939-02-09 1939-12-05 Oscar E Christensen Boehm system clarinet

Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
DE3936599A1 (en) * 1989-11-03 1990-03-08 Weber Bleyle Manuel Key mechanism for clarinet - has two positions only for each finger
EP2138995A1 (en) * 2008-06-27 2009-12-30 Ernst Reißner Fingering mechanism for woodwind instruments
US20090320667A1 (en) * 2008-06-27 2009-12-31 Reisner Ernst Fingering mechanism for woodwind instruments
US7851685B2 (en) * 2008-06-27 2010-12-14 Ernst Reiβner Fingering mechanism for woodwind instruments

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