Earlier this year I was fortunate enough to come across a large stock of 1970’s Riffault clarinet mouthpiece blanks – Bb, Eb and bass. I followed up a lead and made a trip to see the owner – from their description it sounded like these were worth looking at. Once I arrived and examined them I knew straight away that these were the very same blanks that James Kanter and James Pyne used in the mid to late 1970s. Needless to say I purchased the entire lot.
Not many people these days are aware of the Riffault mouthpiece company’s existence. They made mouthpieces from the 1950’s through the late 1980’s – very fine French made pieces. Riffault made their own branded mouthpieces which were of varied quality, but their real forte in my opinion was making rough blanks.
Riffault milled their mouthpieces out of rod rubber and crafted the internal dimensions beautifully – the sound and resonance of these mouthpieces, when worked on properly, can rival that of any mouthpiece ever made.
I personally love these blanks as there is a lot of material in them to be taken out – consequently allowing me to create most any style of mouthpiece from them.
I am offering these mouthpieces in 4 facings to start with, although I will happily make custom designs. The four facings are:
1. Chedeville style, close tip – medium length
2. Kaspar style, medium tip – medium length
3. Medium open facing – for those who prefer a B40 style mpc
4. Open facing – for those who like a more open and long facing, similar to a Portnoy 3 or Kanter D
Disclaimer – I do not attempt to copy any particular makers designs – rather create my own models which are inspired in part by those mouthpieces.