Every once in awhile I hear people asking about beeswax mouthpiece, sometimes it’s asking if I have some wax for them and some ask what is better to buy, a didgeridoo with or without a wax mouthpiece, I hope this little post can shed some light on the topic.
So, Why put wax as/on the mouthpiece, it’s either because the didgeridoo is too wide at the start so it can’t be played without reducing the diameter or it can also be very badly finished (sanded) so it can be harmful to play on it without the wax, from my experience it’s usually a combination of both in most cases so let me tell you this – If the mouthpiece of a didgeridoo is in a good size and nicely sanded it doesn’t need any wax.
In some aboriginal tribes in Australia if a piece of wood that was hollowed by termites doesn’t naturally have a good size for a mouthpiece (28-30mm approximately) they will not make a Yidaki (didgeridoo) from that piece of wood.
I remember when I had a bamboo didg with a beeswax mouthpiece and it was naturally very sticky so every visit to the beach I used to get sand on it, and when it was very hot it would lose its form and I had to shape it again, after a long playing session the feeling around the mouth is not very pleasant, so I’m done with wax. ☺
With the progress didg makers have made and the tools available, it’s pretty simple to make a mouth piece and glue it to your didg. For professional didg players it’s really important to have the same size and shape of a mouthpiece and each player has his/hers preferences to produce the desired sounds and play the techniques they use in their music.
Some didgeridoos have specifically designed shape to produce a range of sounds that is impossible to achieve with a standard mouthpiece like “wet didgeridoos” for example.
In the video below you can see how I take a termite hollowed Didgeridoo from Australia that has a beeswax mouthpiece and make a wooden one instead, The size of the hole of the mouth piece in this case is 29mm, but you can see what work best for you.
Please don’t try making it yourself if you do not have any experience with wood working, the tools demonstrated in the video are dangerous if you don’t know how to use them, If you want one a wooden mouthpiece for your didgeridoo, ask a friend or go to professional. Or learn woodworking 😉
Let us know what you think and if you have any other thoughts or ideas about mouthpieces. Which one do you prefer? was this video helpful for you?