How to keep orchestral mute from buzzing when playing without it?

Edited: December 6, 2017, 5:09 AM · Hey there,

This is my first time posting here, although I've been 'lurking' for a while.

So, I play in Tunisian Symphonic Orchestra, and I always keep my orchestral mute (tourte) on, resting on the La and Ré strings (like everyone does). Yet when I play a forte or louder the mute starts jumping back and forth, being visually and audibly annoying. Does anyone have a solution for that?

Thank you!
Ahmed

Replies (15)

December 6, 2017, 5:39 AM · Take it off? Not trying to be funny, but I only have my mute on when I'm using it, otherwise it's in my case.
December 6, 2017, 6:09 AM · Buy a different mute. The Alpine mute (a clone of the old Menuhin Shield) works well.

December 6, 2017, 6:15 AM · I've got this mute with a magnet attached to the tailpiece. So during sensa sord, it sticks to the tailpiece without buzzing.

Bech Magnetic Mute

December 6, 2017, 6:35 AM · hi Ahmed, I try to place it firmly between the strings, next to the tailpiece, but I must admit it still comes loose occasionally. but I can live with it.
December 6, 2017, 6:44 AM · Thank you all, I'll have to try what Jean suggested since there aren't a lot of violin accessories here in Tunisia. Or maybe I could install a magnet in mine ;).

Ahmed

December 6, 2017, 9:23 AM · The magnet idea would only work with a metal (steel) tailpiece, wouldn't it?

Again, if the violin is held with the scroll pointing slightly downwards the mute will tend to migrate towards the bridge, and this will be enhanced by ff playing.

December 6, 2017, 9:59 AM · I second the magnetic mute. Trevor, there's a piece that clips onto the tailpiece that has a magnet. The mute attaches to that magnetically. No buzzing here.
December 6, 2017, 12:10 PM · I bought an Alpine mute on Lydia's recommendation, and I have to say it's pretty great. I liked it so much I got both kinds, and they do sound quite different, but both pleasant.
December 6, 2017, 1:24 PM · Katie, thanks, yes I'm sure it would work, but I'm personally loathe to adding weight to the tailpiece, which those magnets would do.
December 6, 2017, 10:39 PM · I have a Bech magnetic mute (I got it when I lost my Menuhin Shield), which is basically like a two-hole Tourte with a magnet, requiring a piece to be installed on the tailpiece (preferably done by a luthier). I didn't like it, and went back to the Shield when I found where I'd stashed it.
December 7, 2017, 10:18 AM · I like the spector or finissima (whoever knocked off whom) for ease, nice sound, no vibration. I’ve found that the sound of the Spector varies greatly by instrument and I sometimes prefer it to Finissima.
December 16, 2017, 11:32 AM · I use Roth Sihon ( metal), rock solid.
December 16, 2017, 11:56 AM · So did Oistrakh. personally, I don’t like the way it dampens my violin and viola.
December 26, 2017, 10:36 PM · Most of the time, I just use the smallesr 2-hole tourte I can find on both violin and viola and take it off when not needed. I really prefer my instruments to be as unencumbered as possible-save for a chinrest.
December 27, 2017, 12:34 AM · Many of my orchestral friends and myself use the Bech magnetic mute, it's the best solution to rattling mutes and I had never need to run to my case to fetch a mute during rehearsal in the past decade because of it.

Re. Lydia's comment on "requiring a piece to be installed on the tailpiece (preferably done by a luthier)"...no idea why clipping on the piece of magnet requires a luthier. You just clip the thing on...

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