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Saxophones Bought duff sax on eBay - what to do?

Steve John B

Ok so I bought a Hanson alto off eBay (£160), and apart from not including a ligature etc (I bought a cheap Rico in the end) the blinking thing is damaged!

The octave pad is a few mm clear of the hole when in the closed position. I took it down the local shop who said it would be up to £54 to fix this, depending on what else is wrong.

So... should I just get rid, or should I get it fixed (I should be able to get the seller to pay for the repair). I'm keen to start playing and would struggle to afford £400 for a basic student sax at the moment.

Any advice gratefully received!
Hanson saxes are supposed to be quite good so I'd suggest hanging on to it and either get it serviced by your local shop, or you're not that far away from Hanson's own place in W. Yorks where they also do repairs so it might be worth giving them a call anyway. Stephen Howards Haynes Sax Manual is also a worthwhile investment.
Happy Blowing!
Hi steve

I'm no mech but if I'm not mistaken and you mean the octave pad that sits on the neck and not the one on the body it should be quite easy to bend the arm back to where it should be.When you get the pad seated on the hole the ring on the other end should be just missing the actuating pin by about 1mm and it is just a case of carefully bending to suit. unless the whole mechanism has had the crap knocked out of it and is totally askew.I'm sure there will be plenty of other advice saying I'm talking crap but don't panic it may not be as bad as you think...john
The advice to get the "Sax Manual" is probably the best way to go.
The adjustment of the neck pad mechanism is clearly shown, as are all other adjustments to keep your sax working.
So you should be able to decide if you are capable of doing the job yourself.

Get Stephen Howard's Haynes guide. The octave key is the one key that it is possible to bend yourself and there are instructions how to do it in the book. £12 from Amazon.

There may be other issues, of course, and the book will help you identify any, but it could well be a one-off knock to the horn.
Hi Steve
Check when the sax was bought because Hanson have a 5 year warranty which is transferable when sold.
From all accounts Hanson are very reasonable people to deal with and aren't very far away (Marsden West Yorks I think) as pyrografix said.
Give Alistair a buzz and see what he suggests.
At 160 quid it sounds a bargain anyway, I would just repair the thing, you can do it yourself as already suggested, get Steve's manual if it helps but the octave key isn't exactly complicated.
The factory warranty won't cover damage and this is almost certainly down to "heavy handling" but a simple "tweak" of the key wont cost more that £20 IMO
Sounds to me that it's the local music shop which is trying to rip you of, not the eBayer. Almost certainly just a bent octave key - you wilol probably be able to mend it yourself, or just a few quid to get a local shop to do it for you. You'll still end up with a good sax for well under a couple of hundred, which is pretty good value.
If it's any consolation, I wouldn't but a saxophone from ebay and expect not to have to spend at least £54 on it.

However that does sound excessive if it's just a bent octave key.

But if the whole octave mechanism needs resetting then that could be a fair enough charge
If it's any consolation, I wouldn't but a saxophone from ebay and expect not to have to spend at least £54 on it.
I can pretty much back that up. I bought my Thomann sop very cheaply via their website. It's basically a decent instrument for what it cost, but it needed the ligature screw replacing and needed regulating too. Basically, what it needed was the setting up that most horns get before they leave a decent music shop. I have to say here, they did this little job for me 'on the spot' for under £10.

I've recently had the alto, a YAS475 'serviced'. I say that, but again, the pads and springs were all good and it really only needed regulating, for which the shop charged me £23. Again, I reckon I got a good deal - well worth the good relationship I've built up with the shop.
Thanks all.

The cost was up to £54, would be less if it's just the octave key. I'll give Hanson a call tomorrow and see what they say.

Whether I use local shop or Hanson themselves I'm going to keep it. My neighbours will be pleased...!
If I bought a horn for £160, I would be amazed if it only cost another £54 to make it playable. You're getting off super cheap.

I paid £54 for the repairs in the end. There were at least 2 keys lower down you could see daylight through, possibly more. The previous owner had it hanging on their wall rather than playing it...

Got a 1 year guarantee on the repair work. I phoned Hanson but was told they no longer repair 2nd hand instruments for free.

I also had to buy a strap, ligature, pull-through etc. But the mouthpiece it came with (Optimum AL-4) is worth, to quote the local shop, "as much as the instrument". Think I got a bit of a bargain.

Unfortunately my teacher let me have a go on his Yanagisawa yesterday. So easy to play, just felt 'right'. Can anyone lend me £4,000?!?
Unfortunately my teacher let me have a go on his Yanagisawa yesterday. So easy to play, just felt 'right'. Can anyone lend me £4,000?!?

I must admit, when I was looking to upgrade my Jupiter 500, I tried a Yamaha, a Selmer (USA? not France) and a Yani. All 3 were lovely instruments, but the Yani bowled me over. I love it almost more than my husband and children.... :)))

Similar threads... or are they? Maybe not but they could be worth reading anyway 😀

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