So do you prefer the white ring, or German bell on your bassoon? Also what did you have on your first bassoon? Personally I prefer the white ring and that is what I have always had... actually my first bassoon didn't even have the white, it was just a ring...
To clarify, do you prefer the German bell (white ring) or French bell (metal ring)
Just to clarify things further, the true French bell is a completely diiferent shape to the German one.Both types have been made with either white plastic (ivory) or metal ring.A friend of mine had a Heckel with a French shape bell with ivory ring. Personally I play on a Puchner with German shape bell and metal ring which I really like.
That sounds pretty cool. Could you clarify what the difference in shape is? From what I've seen, the German one looks like a disk whereas the French bell is more like quarter? circle with the rounded edge facing up and out?
What you are seeing on the outside is cosmetic. We talk about French/German bells, but in most cases there is no significant difference to the interior bore dimensions, unless you are talking about an actual French bassoon. The white ring is traditional on German bassoon, originally made of ivory, but now generally plastic, which doesn't look so nice. The french style is the metal ring. The function of both is simply to protect the end of the instrument when you hit something. I've never seen a bell cracked at the top in all my years of teaching, so I think either work fine, it's simply a matter of which you like. As far as I know, Fox is the only company that has been working on redesigning the bore of the bell, and some people are really excited about how it can improve the student/artist model instruments.
you've never seen a cracked ring? Or have you never seen a cracked bell?
I've seen many bassoons with thier nice ivory rings cracked by the bassoon getting hit, and then replaced with cheapo plastic ones.
It's sad, my bassoon is used and 40 years old, and before buying it, somebody cracked the ring, and the crack went into the bell for a few inches. They thenreplaced it with a plastic ring...a bad plastic ring. The ring is a dirty yellowish clear color, and you could tell it was cheapo from 5o feet away. It's immensly embarrasing when playing in a semi-local orchestra.
As I said, I've never seen a cracked bell, as in the wood. The rings crack and break all the time, that's the point, they protect the wood. It does not seem to matter whether the bell is protected by a metal band, or larger plastic ring. Obviously a metal ring will withstand more abuse than the traditional white ring, but leaves more wood exposed to dings and dents. It's worth making sure the plastic ring is on properly, I've seen a number of them just pop off when hit just right. I'm fortunate to have my original 83 years old ivory ring intact. Knock on wood...
I've seen lots of old bassoons with the old yellow rings, and usually you just think - well, an old bassoon. Often these old bassoons have a great mellow tone and so I'm usually predisposed in their favor, even though I'm playing on a new bassoon these days. If only those old plastic rings didn't turn such a bilious yellow I think nobody would mind! :p
Actually,the ring on my bassoon is brand new. Its' disgusting dingy yellow color came applied new, and you can actually see through it.
You probably could paint an old plastic ring with paint (i'm guessing) It shouldn't affect the sound right? I mean, the sound doesn't change with the process of putting a plastic ring on a bassoon instead of an ivory or metal one...
Did that make sense?