UMI 1216 "Mello 6"
The UMI1216 mellophone mouthpiece
(aka the Benge Mello 6) is the veritable war-horse of mellophone mouthpieces.
Anyone who has picked up a mellophone with any seriousness over the last
twenty-five or so years has probably at least tried one of these mouthpieces.
While extremely popular, there is both good news and bad news for middle
hornists regarding this mouthpiece.
Now for the bad
news. One reason for the historic popularity of this mouthpiece is the equally
historic dearth of mouthpiece choices for the mellophone. At one time, the
choice was seemingly between the Mello 6 or a trumpet mouthpiece (which, by and
large, is a bad choice for any mellophone in the opinion of this reviewer).
Hence, the Mello 6 became the standard almost by default. The Mello 6 is a
small mouthpiece, both in inner rim diameter and bore, which many mellophonists
(especially those converted from trumpet players) will find too constrictive.
The shank is neither trumpet-sized nor cornet-sized, but somewhere in between;
this mouthpiece will work in mellophones that are designed for trumpet-shank
mouthpiece, but the receiver will take almost the entire shank of the Mello 6.
One wonders whether increased turbulence in the leadpipe might result. The tone
is nice, but neither as full nor as dark as some other (larger, heavier)
mouthpiece offerings might afford the experienced player.
-Jeff Freelin (email)
Where to Buy
Sadly, this mouthpiece is no longer in production. It has been replaced with a revised model (UMI 1736).