Schilke knows the importance of possessing the best mouthpiece for the instrument and the player. The Schilke Mouthpiece Numbering Systems are designed to aid students, amateurs, and professionals alike in determining the best mouthpiece for their style, comfort, and performance needs. Initially important is the fit of the mouthpiece. It is necessary for the shank of each brass mouthpiece to touch the end of the mouthpiece once inside the instrument. This creates an even taper from the backbore of the mouthpiece to the inside. Keeping a mouthpiece clean with a mouthpiece brush is incredibly important as dirt can greatly affect intonation.
The numbering system for trumpets is divided into four components delineating cup diameter, cup volume, rim contour, and backbore. The cup diameter is the first upper-case number in the system. Most cap diameters of trumpets and cornets fall between .600” and .725.” The number 1-25 in the Schilke system represent .005” increments between .600” and .725.”
The cup volume is indicated by the upper-case letter. Mouthpieces with a deeper cup create the darkest sounds while shallower cups generate bright sounds and are intended for playing in high registers. Within this numbering system A is small, B is medium-small, C is standard (medium), D is medium-large, and E is large. The rim contour is the second number in the system. 1 stands for rounded, 2 for semi-rounded, 3 is standard, 4 is semi-flat, and 5 is only slightly rounded.