New Orleans Jazz

G. L. Penzel & Müller full Boehm system clarinet

The Penzel Mueller company was established in New York in 1899 as a partnership between the German immigrants Gustav Ludwig Penzel (1855–1920) and Edward Georg Müller (1869–1956).

Penzel & Müller were said to make the best clarinets i America, equivalent to Buffet or Selmer in Europe.

This one has been refurbished and is ready to play.

The clarinet is made of grenadil wood. No cracks at all. The body is made in one piece, which was popular between 1900 and 1930. The bell had 5 hairline cracks. They have been secured with the best grenadil glue.

This Penzel Mueller clarinet is a “Full Boehm”, meaning it goes down to low Eb-flat. It has got the articulated G#/C# mechanism, rollers on the low F-Ab and a “swan neck” register key, more common on the Albert system clarinet.

The clarinet is in Bb-flat, pitches perfectly in A=440. It has got the usual issues of the time, meaning some notes are a little bit flat, others a bit sharp. This can easily be adjusted by the lips, though!
I have tested with a Vandoren B45 mouthpiece.
But it’s a very rare instrument with a big tone. The bore is 14,7mm.

There is no serial number to determine the year of manufactory, but the design of the instrument places it between 1900 and 1930.

Unfortunately the original case is missing, and I wasn’t able to find a replacement for a clarinet with these specifications. For now it lives in a cardboard packing tube, sorry…

The instrument is 63,5 cm long from top of barrel to bottom of bell and the total weight is 749 grams. All new Pisoni leather pads and new corks throughout the clarinet, including tenons.
All the keys have been cleaned and bent back in positions. Springs, rods and screws cleaned from rust and subsequently lubricated and adjusted.


I suspect this Penzel Mueller clarinet hasn’t been played for many years.
I will ask You to “warm it up” gently. Play it for about half an hour every day for at least a month. Not more. The wood needs to be reminded it’s actually a clarinet, getting used to changes in humidity again.

This has become a very fine clarinet. It plays beautifully without any trouble.

The price is DKK 4.500,- (EUR 613,-) plus shipping.
Don’t hesitate to contact me if You are interested or have any questions.
– And please remember I’m not a professional repairman. If there are issues I can’t handle, I take it to a professional.
The Penzel-Müller is sold as it is, very old, no guarantee or money back.

A big thank you to Rorik for sharing knowledge of this type of instrument.

Penzel Mueller clarinet for sale

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