Heckel Bocal Markings:
a Basic Summary of What the Markings Mean.
We've done our best to compile charts from the original specifications published in German by Heckel
These are the factors that influence the sound and pitch characteristics of Heckel bassoon bocals. The numbers and letters are stamped on the bocal both near the makers name on the central area, and/or at the butt, just above the cork on the inner side.
The almost foolproof way to determine if your bocal is "Pre-War" is by examining the makers mark. If it is imprinted with a slightly spiral twist, it is not Pre-War. If it appears to be straight in a line and runs along the bocal without twisting, it is most likely a Pre-War bocal. The Heckel factory was physically affected by WWII. Despite all our research, we still can not determine the details on what actually happened during that period. The bocals they produced before that war are prized for their sound and rarity.
These letters indicate the internal dimensions and tip openings
These letters are modifiers for the letters listed above
(ie. CCV or BBE will describe two aspects of the same bocal)
The length measured from tip to butt along the spine.
The numbers are representations of relative length.
The alloy or type of metal used in plating the body
The bocal may also be left unplated for a lustrous brass finish. If it looks like gold but has no "G" marking, it's probably unplated brass.
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