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I'd like to take a shot at replacing the pads on my Tenor.

rokstar5000

New Member
Messages
6
Hi everybody. this is my first forum post so forgive me if I'm on the wrong page or anything. I'm looking for advice. I recently got my hands on an old King Cleveland 615 tenor.The pads are actually dry rotted from age and I'd like to take a shot at replacing them myself. First of all, I really don't know what this sax is truely worth so if anyone thinks I'm at risk of destroying a classic, please let me know but I'm under the impression it's worth about $400 to $600 in good condition and this one isn't. That being said, I'd like to replace the pads and am looking for somewhere that I can purchase a set of pads and the glue to do it. I have no way to precisely measure the size of the pads so I'm hoping for a company that can just look at the Make, Model and maybe serial number and package a full set of pads. Thank you in advance for any advice you can give me.
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
ok, first of all, get yourself at the very least a good book like the one by Stephen Howard.

http://www.shwoodwind.co.uk/Haynes/Haynes_sax_manual.htm

You will definitely need it.


Anyway, replacing pads is not as straightforward as buying them and gluing them in which is the reason why it is rather expensive to have it done. It requires experience and talent. I hope you have at least the second in order to hope to gain some of the first.

Buying a “ set” is hardly ever a good way to start because chances are that the pads won’t fit properly, so you have to measure them and then buy them. When you receive them double check that they are the size that you have ordered because that is also a problem caused by some pad sellers.

Next to the pads and the glue (which in most cases is shellac) you will need to have an array of specific tools and some general purpose ones.

Don’t forget that you need felt and cork in different thicknesses and shapes.

Buying the whole kit and things you need will probably equal or exceed the cost of on overhaul. If you are really motivated to learn this craft maybe you should pursue this otherwise much better to find a good tech who would do this for you.

Yes your horn is not worth much more than the price of an overhaul and that is if it is overhauled that is why, unless you really want to do this to learn something I would rather look for another one in playing state (there are many out there) sold by a tech who has overhauled it.
 

jonf

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,680
I have no way to precisely measure the size of the pads .
You need to be able to measure the pads, otherwise you can't do the job, it's a simple as that. In the UK you can buy a servicable vernier caliper for £15, presumably you can do the same where you are.

Milandro's advice is spot on.
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,807
These saxes are nice. Big sound (loud and diffent voice from the average saxes of today) and fun to work on as well. Sturdy saxes and quite easy to work on. Locking nuts instead of ordinary screws and some of these Clevlands had soldered tonholes.

Yes, you need a book like the one milandro suggest. As it goes for the pads you must mesure every keycup with a sliding vernier caiper so you must dismantle the keys and remove the old pads bofore you can mesure the keycups in mm because it's easier. I don't recommend to buy a set of pads. On student or second line saxes (Cleveland was H.N. White second line saxbrand) the keycups can vary. These saxes are constructed in 32nd. And mesure the thickness of the old pads as well. Maybe the sax is already repadded, and the the pads that put into the keycups were thicker or thinner than the originals.

A standard pad like Ferree's B44 (thickness 180") is ok. Or if it's your first sax you repad I think they are perfect. You will perhaps damage some pads! Shellac is also a good "glue". Easy to adjust the pads with shellac. I use an alcohol lamp and a blowpipe. There are very good small portable touches but I prefer the alcohol lamp because it produce less heat. The real challange when you repad (maybe new corks and felts as well) is to adjust and set the keyheights. It can take a long time but it's fun to do.

My first saxes saxes that I repadded was a Cleveland alto and a King student tenor from the 70's. I might have some pads over that I can send to you for free. You've to do a donation to PT foundation as payment. My career as saxophone repairman is over!!

Thomas
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
21,947
I agree with the other comments. I've done a couple of repads and am in the middle of a couple of others. If you're keen to do it yourself, do. But be prepared to take the whole thing to a repairer and say help if it goes wrong.

Apart from Stephen's book, there's a lot of good stuff on Musicmedic.com and cybersax.com. Some other sites as well.

Check the tools you'll need... adds to the cost.
 

rokstar5000

New Member
Messages
6
Thank you for your kind offer but I've decided to take everyone's advice and have it done by a qualified tech.
Thanks Rokstar :)
 

jbtsax

Well-Known Member
Subscriber
Messages
8,011
A bit late for this particular thread, but these Articles by Curt Altarac of Music Medic on saxophone repair and adjustment are excellent. They contain very specific information written in a clear and easy to understand format, even for the novice at repair. Curt travels the world giving saxophone repair clinics to professional repair techs, so he knows what he is talking about. His site Music Medic.com is very user friendly and serves both professional techs and do-it-yourself players.
 

rokstar5000

New Member
Messages
6
Hi again. Thank you to all that posted your wonderful advice. I took it all to heart. To give you a little update and share what I've found, I was tinkering with the sax today. Keeping in mind to "Do No Harm", I saw that the pads were hard and dry with some discoloration but relatively intact. I figured I had nothing to lose since they most likely need replaced anyways so i took some cotton swabs and a can of Mink Oil, (A paste that comes in a can similar to shoe polish or car wax) that I originally bought to condition my daughter's Softball glove. Gently wiping the pads. It instantly soaked in and brought them back to life. Making sure to clean off the excess with a new swab I noticed it cleaned some crud off of them as well. After doing the entire sax, It played beautifully! :) If anyone knows of and damage I may cause to the sax by doing this, please let me know and I'll try to remove it but for now, they seem to be loving it. Thanks again to all the wonderful people on this site. You are a wealth of knowledge.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
21,947
Nothing to lose. Glad it worked. Usual worry about using something like this is that it may get into the felt behind the leather and build up there. However there are commercial pad dressings available, which some swear by and others say don't touch/waste of time.

About all it can do is wreck the pads. But I don't think it will, and if it does, you're no worse off than you were before. Might not be the case with newer pads and the newer leather treatment, who knows.
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
there has been much talk among players and technicians on several discussion's fora about using various chemicals or oils to protect new pads and possibly rejuvenate old ones most techs seem to be of the opinion that once a pad needs replacing it needs replacing on account of the fact that it is not only the leather itself but also the backing , generally felt, which hardens with time and absorbing moisture .

On the other hand many users have experimented with product such as the one that you describe and reported good results.

In the end there is nothing to loose in trying to rescue pads which otherwise would have been condemned.

Let’s see how they hold up in future, good luck, report back please.
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,807
Hi again. Thank you to all that posted your wonderful advice. I took it all to heart. To give you a little update and share what I've found, I was tinkering with the sax today. Keeping in mind to "Do No Harm", I saw that the pads were hard and dry with some discoloration but relatively intact. I figured I had nothing to lose since they most likely need replaced anyways so i took some cotton swabs and a can of Mink Oil, (A paste that comes in a can similar to shoe polish or car wax) that I originally bought to condition my daughter's Softball glove. Gently wiping the pads. It instantly soaked in and brought them back to life. Making sure to clean off the excess with a new swab I noticed it cleaned some crud off of them as well. After doing the entire sax, It played beautifully! :) If anyone knows of and damage I may cause to the sax by doing this, please let me know and I'll try to remove it but for now, they seem to be loving it. Thanks again to all the wonderful people on this site. You are a wealth of knowledge.
I've been told to use a powder, that makes the baseball glowe soft, on my saxpads as well. To prevent sticking keys. So there is also a paste?! My friend is a big Boston Red Sox fan and saxplayer. I thought he was joking when he told me about the powder.

Thomas
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
many pad “ powders” are used to prevent sticking but as much as they momentarily might help you with that problem they might themselves be the cause of the sticking, after all a saxophone has a quite unique situation where moisture would mix with this powder and form crud.

Yamaha sells a powder paper but it is a momentary fix
 
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