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Saxophones Double Key bars on low Bb and Low C key - Does it matter?

Lazz

Member
Messages
36
Locality
Calgary, AB
Would anyone care to chime in on whether a double bar on the low Bb and C keys provides any real benefit to playability or reliability? I see it as an advertising point frequently.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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21,912
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Just north of Munich
The idea is that it stops them from twisting and so creating leaks as the pads don't sit square once this happens. Nice to have, but plenty of good saxes don't have them, especially older ones.
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Messages
14,777
Locality
Burnley bb9 9dn
Yanigasawa use the twin arms on the low pads as do Bauhaus and other chinese copies. My chinese alto and tenor copies have them. They play well with little trouble up to now. I have a 30 year old Lafleur that doesn't have them and it plays fine and gives little trouble. If you're buying on the internet without trying the instrument first it can be an indicator of the layout of the keys and how it will fit your hands. Similar being similar. I assume they will add a little more stability to the pad cups.
 

Lazz

Member
Messages
36
Locality
Calgary, AB
It's really brutally difficult to find any info at all on the majority of the chinese brands.. there seems to be a million copies and stencils of every popular style of sax. It's quite bewildering! Many Yani copies seem to use the same double key bars, but who knows where they're made or what the quality is like.
 

MandyH

Sax-Mad fiend!
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3,582
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The Malverns, Worcs
My Yani Alto doesn't have them, neither does my Yamaha tenor nor my Yamaha Bari, except for the C pad on the Bari.
 

jbtsax

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Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
Anything that adds stability to keys with long hinge tubes or hinge rods is a plus. On most saxes I would prefer a post with a saddle near the center of the long rod to keep the bending to a minimum. It is a great idea, and a simple concept, but in many cases there is no space available to put one.

I have wondered if solid brass rods that hold keys that turn on pivot screws could be replaced by hinge tubes with an extremely rigid steel rod inside to deter the bending that occurs.
 

stefank

Member
Messages
366
Locality
Hobart, Tasmania
My T880 has them, my T500 doesn't. Nice, but by no means essential.
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,432
Locality
Sweden
If it matters? I don't know. You have to play, if possible, the same sax model without double arms on the low tones. I think it was H.N. White company, King Super 20, that introduced the double arms on low C. In a sales broschure for King Super 20 they say; " The double arm on the low C key and special locking arm on the C# and B prevents fluttering and loss of power when playing the lower notes". Most of the details on saxes were proteced by patents. So maybe it was more business than playability?
 

Lazz

Member
Messages
36
Locality
Calgary, AB
If it matters? I don't know. You have to play, if possible, the same sax model without double arms on the low tones. I think it was H.N. White company, King Super 20, that introduced the double arms on low C. In a sales broschure for King Super 20 they say; " The double arm on the low C key and special locking arm on the C# and B prevents fluttering and loss of power when playing the lower notes". Most of the details on saxes were proteced by patents. So maybe it was more business than playability?

That's very interesting, Thomsax! The King Super 20 late models (from the '80s?) seem to use a double arm mechanism in which both arms contact the key at the same place in the centre, as opposed to other designs (Bauhaus-Walstein) where one arm meets the key in the centre and the second arm meets the key at the edge.

I do wonder from a design standpoint if either of these actually makes a difference if the pads are well aligned and the tone holes are flat and even. They do add a nice visual flair, at least!
 

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