SYOS

What should a beginner buy? I know nothing

John Robinson

New Member
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3
Hi, I've always fancied having a go at the Saxophone. I know I like the sound of the tenor but other than that I haven't much experience. I am a little apprehensive that I might srruggle to play as I have a cleft lip and palate. I can speak and sing ok and I'm sure I'd be able to overcome any short comings. Looking at the beginner sax recommendations here and it seems that Yamaha seems to be the way to go. Would something like this do or do you think it may be too much for a beginner, as in needing work done etc: Yamaha Yts23 Saxophone | eBay
Obviously like any new comer budgets are limited. Would I be better off with a brand new one with a budget of 600 pounds. Thanks, John
 

nigeld

I don't need another mouthpiece; but . . .
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That seems me like a good price for a Yamaha tenor, but the issue I can see with that saxophone is that the seller doesn't actually say that it is playable.
This might mean that it will need a lot of work done on it.

It's not a disaster if it does need work, but it could potentially cost you quite a lot extra.

My advice would be to ask the seller whether it is fully playable in it's current condition, when it was last serviced/repaired, and whether it needs any work.

In any case, if you buy a used saxophone you should budget to have it serviced. The chances are that it hasn't received much tlc lately, and playing a leaky saxophone is no fun.
 

saxyjt

I have saxophone withdrawal symptoms
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The seller appears to be honest, showing the spots where the lacquer is gone or damaged. I can't see any obvious trouble with that sax, but until you have it in hands and blow it, it's impossible to say if it's a good deal or not.

If the horn had been recently serviced, the seller would mention it.

As Nigel said, it's always good to have your horn serviced before you start. That ensures you are not fighting unnecessary issues.
 
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John Robinson

New Member
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3
Thanks for the replies. I have messaged the seller asking about it's service condition. What sort of costs are involved with 'servicing'. I know it depends on what needs to be done but are we talking hundreds of pounds as that would suggest buying new instead. Thanks
 

Hammie 1982

Member
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46
John,

Welcome to the Cafe. Stick around and read the forum! Some serious knowledge on here!
Very friendly forum and easy to navigate to find your information

Neil
 

nigeld

I don't need another mouthpiece; but . . .
Subscriber
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5,616
Thanks for the replies. I have messaged the seller asking about it's service condition. What sort of costs are involved with 'servicing'. I know it depends on what needs to be done but are we talking hundreds of pounds as that would suggest buying new instead. Thanks
If what you are looking at is oiling, regulation, replacing some bits of cork or felt, maybe replacing a pad or two and maybe a minor dent or two (i.e. not damage repair, just normal wear and tear) then I would expect to pay up to £100.

@Stephen Howard can give a better answer.
 

JayeNM

Formerly JayePDX
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1,552
That seems me like a good price for a Yamaha tenor, but the issue I can see with that saxophone is that the seller doesn't actually say that it is playable.
This might mean that it will need a lot of work done on it.
THIS.
I would actually be very surprised if it doesn't need work. By virtue of the fact the seller gives such a brief, ambiguous description, they either know little about saxes or they are trying to skirt the playing condition issue.
Thanks for the replies. I have messaged the seller asking about it's service condition.
Good.
If what you are looking at is oiling, regulation, replacing some bits of cork or felt, maybe replacing a pad or two and maybe a minor dent or two (i.e. not damage repair, just normal wear and tear) then I would expect to pay up to £100.
As a guy who buys a lot of saxes on eFlay described as 'condition is used' or 'I know little about saxophones, but it LOOKS to be in good shape', sort of descriptions, etc...IF the seller comes back and says something like this, you should expect the tech work needed to bring the horn to good playing shape will exceed £100. It might not, but making that number an assumption on the budgetary side of things would be an pretty optimistic assumption.
Again, maybe seller will give a specific answer and hopefully he/she knows the play condition. Looking at seller's items previously sold, he sells a lot of musical instrument stuff but not necessarily woodwinds...nevertheless, it doesn't appear to be someone who is selling their kid's old horn or someone who found it in an attic - it's someone who sells musical equipment - so one would expect the playing condition to have been described with more detail, IMHO.
 
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Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
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12,781
I'm not sure how a cleft lip and palate will affect your embouchure. You need a good airtight seal around the mouthpiece and the ability to adapt and change the oral cavity while playing. Teeth also play a part in tone production. Saxophone is all about the mouth.

Maybe you should seek the advice of a saxophone teacher and possibly try before you buy.
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
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4,533
I'd ask the eBay seller to take a few photos of the pads as from what few fuzzy ones there are I'm a little suspicious. Ask for photos of the two bell pads (they're easy to take) and some others too. My tech told me Yamaha pads aren't waterproofed and so suffer more than others @JayeNM will advise if this is the case.
If it need new pads it'll need other bits but of the dozen or so Yamahas I've had I've only ever had to replace maybe five or six pads and a few corks/felts. Oh... and don't forget to make an offer, but wait for the photos first.
 

georgesax

Member
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75
Welcome to the cafe. Would you consider a hire-purchase? It may be a good option have a look at the uksaxhire, if you are near Leeds area, give a call to Stuart at woodwindexchange. He may have more options, same apply to Hanson music
 

MMM

Senior Member
Messages
854
If you have never tried one before, I would suggest you hire a basic one (doesn't have to be fancy, as long as they can guarantee it is in full working condition) and get some lessons (I know not easy at the moment!) as they will fast track you and make the experience more enjoyable.
That way if it's not for you, you can just hand it back without a big outlay.

When I first started I couldn't play at all and I didn't know anyone who played, bought and alto and nearly gave up thinking it wasn't for me only to find out a few months later (from a player/teacher) that the octave key on the neck was cracked and it was not closing the octave pad therefore making the thing impossible to play. After a bit of silver soldering on the key, it was fine! But just to say that such a seemingly small detail (even after it was pointed out to me, I found it difficult to see the problem) can really put you off particularly if you have no idea where to start.

Thinking about this, if I'd given up I would've saved myself soooo much money over the years!!!! :)
 

Stephen Howard

Well-Known Member
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1,821
I'd steer clear.
There are signs that this horn has been worked hard - and some of the pads have been replaced.

Given that there's no shortage of Yamaha tenors (23,23,275, 280 etc) I'd wait for something a bit tidier...or at least one that doesn't have obvious signs that it's had a hard life.
 

swhnld

Member
Messages
48
I would rent something from the local shop, they can also help with other advice or even finding a teacher. If it works out you can buy it knowing what you have, if not and you want to switch to trombone, you can return the sax and end the contract. (I actually bought one of my saxes from someone that made this choice to play trombone selling a six months old Selmer)
 

jbtsax

Well-Known Member
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7,778
I checked the conversion rate and that tenor is priced about the same as used YTS-23's in the states---$700. If you could talk the seller down to £450 and use the difference to get a thorough "play condition" I think it would be a pretty good deal, but I'm not familiar with how often they come up for sale where you live.
 

Zugzwang

Member
Messages
545
Hi John, like @Colin the Bear, don't want to be a downer, but it might depend on how severe your cleft palate is - got to prevent air escaping while maintaining a cavity within the mouth: can you blow a balloon up okay? If yes, then probably not a problem, but do make sure you're buying with the possibility of returning... best of luck, and do tell us how things progress.
 
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John Robinson

New Member
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3
Cheers thanks for the help guys. I can blow up a balloon these days, used to struggle as a kid. I'll keep my options open and maybe speak to a teacher. Thanks.
 
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