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M/Pieces - Ligs Leaving mouthpiece on the neck cork

Halfers

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Out of interest, what is the issue with leaving the mouthpiece on the crook? Not that I don't accept that it is the result of a bone idle brain and body and I probably should take it off a bit more often.

If it's a case of the cork might deteriorate a bit quicker then I can probably live with that. Compared to some of the horrendous, coal black and mouse chewed looking corks I've seen on older saxes, mine is positively fresh looking.
 

Ivan

Undecided
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Out of interest, what is the issue with leaving the mouthpiece on the crook?
I allow myself to think the cork will expand a tad when the mouthpiece is removed, thus other mouthpieces may fit snuggly when they otherwise main't

Proof I have none

Randomised controlled trials there are not
 
OP
Halfers

Halfers

Finger Flapper
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Hampshire
I allow myself to think the cork will expand a tad when the mouthpiece is removed, thus other mouthpieces may fit snuggly when they otherwise main't

Proof I have none

Randomised controlled trials there are not
Ahh, OK. Yes, I can see how that might be a thing if more than one mouthpiece is being used. I'm strictly wed to the one piece at the moment and can't see that changing for the foreseeable.
 

Wade Cornell

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New Zealand and Australia
A bit off topic, but... it's not a great idea to leave the mouthpiece fully on. I do understand when you're just having a quick break, but leaving the mouthpiece fully on for long periods means that the cork remains compressed. If you're doing this all the time you're going to build a ridge at the point above where you leave it. To play in tune when you come back and the sax is cold you'll need to push the mouthpiece on a bit further, which stresses that ridge you've built. Check your cork and you'll see that ridge. If you've been doing this for a long time you may also see the wear from when you push above the ridge. Obviously best to remove the mouthpiece and swab the horn (especially the neck) and you can also clean the mouthpiece (once in a while). Failing that pull the mouthpiece out until there is less compression by it being further out on the taper. You're going to have to adjust it when you start playing a cold sax anyway. Another obvious reason to remove the mouthpiece sooner rather than later (for cane reed players) is that you'll probably want to wet the reed and put it back on the mouthpiece. Not too difficult on a straight sop or sopranino, but definitely not easy on any of the larger horns with the mouthpiece still on the horn. Why make it difficult for yourselves?
 

jbtsax

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Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
Out of interest, what is the issue with leaving the mouthpiece on the crook? Not that I don't accept that it is the result of a bone idle brain and body and I probably should take it off a bit more often.
I agree with Wade Cornell. The advantage of cork for this purpose is that it can be compressed and then partially return to its original state when the pressure is released. If a cork remains compressed for a long period of time the cells lose their "ability" to return to their original state, and the cork stays "compressed". Then the mouthpiece that used to fit snugly now is too loose.

I have seen mouthpieces left on the neck for so long that the mouthpiece sticks to it and is difficult to remove. I shouldn't complain because player's poor habits bring a lot of business to my repair shop.
 
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Halfers

Halfers

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I agree with Wade Cornell. The advantage of cork for this purpose is that it can be compressed and then partially return to its original state when the pressure is released. If a cork remains compressed for a long period of time the cells lose their "ability" to return to their original state, and the cork stays "compressed". Then the mouthpiece that used to fit snugly now is too loose.

I have seen mouthpieces left on the neck for so long that the mouthpiece sticks to it and is difficult to remove. I shouldn't complain because player's poor habits bring a lot of business to my repair shop.
I've given my crook cork a night off by removing the mouthpiece. I've seen (and tried, in the past) the 'trick' of briefly placing the cork in hot water to encourage the cork to expand. I have to say it worked, but I understand it might have some negative consequences on the glue holding the cork to the crook (and possibly other things that would keep your profession in Business!)
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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Just north of Munich
At one stage I left my sax on the stand, ready to go. After a couple of months I needed to put it away in the case. Mouthpiece wouldn't budge. Hell of a job to remove it. Same for reeds, and they have the habit of going mouldy while white gunge builds up in the mouthpiece. Haven't done it since.
 

davidk

Paints With Notes
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335
Location
Earth
If you leave a damp reed on a plated mouthpiece overnight the table is very likely to loose its plating. I've had this happen. JodyJazz also advise against it:
What if the plating wears off a metal mouthpiece
...
Very important:

The plating first starts to wear off on the table of the mouthpiece. To preserve the Gold plating do not leave moist reeds on the mouthpiece overnight.
 

David Dorning

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Chichester, UK
I've given my crook cork a night off by removing the mouthpiece. I've seen (and tried, in the past) the 'trick' of briefly placing the cork in hot water to encourage the cork to expand. I have to say it worked, but I understand it might have some negative consequences on the glue holding the cork to the crook (and possibly other things that would keep your profession in Business!)
I’ve tried steaming the cork and it has an instantaneous effect, swelling the cork nicely. It’s a quick fix but after a while I found the mp was loose again. So I tried replacing the cork following instructions in @stephenhoward ‘s book. It’s dead easy to do and a proper fix. However it may deprive Stephen and @jbtsax of some work!

Going back to the OP I think the risk with leaving the mp on the sax is wet cork under the mp. Think of any sax on a stand and the mp beak points upwards. So after playing, residual moisture in the chamber will trickle down to the cork and be absorbed. It gets horribly smelly because the cork (and possibly the glue) can’t dry out so stay wet for a long time. When it eventually does dry it might all stick together as @kevgermany found. Removing the mp can then damage the cork. Wrapping plumbers’ PTFE tape around a too-thin cork works nicely but it causes the same problem. I found taking the tape off is an unpleasant job because the cork smells so awful. I imagine it may even pose some health risks.
 

Stephen Howard

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1,669
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UK
The main issue is that it will eventually knacker the cork - but that's an easy enough fix.

The other issue is that goo will build up around the face of the tip of the crook - and this soon gets rather smelly.
It eventually traps moisture, which starts to form hard deposits (calcium carbonate) - and if left even longer it can start to damage the metal.
And all that gunk will knock off some of the horn's brilliance.
 

MandyH

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The Malverns, Worcs
I assume you’re not taking the sax anywhere else to play it? Most sax cases have separate compartments for crook and mouthpiece, therefore the 2 must be separated to take the sax in the move.

I used to leave my mouthpiece on the sax when the sax is at home. All my saxes are set up all the time. But my mouthpiece started to change colour - to that slightly green oxidised plastic look with the funky taste! So I now remove all my mouthpieces and put them in a drawer, even when the saxes are left out on the stands.

I put the reed on the mouthpiece AFTER I have put the mouthpiece in the crook. I take the crook and mouthpiece combo off the sax to put the reed on. That way I can get the mouthpiece in the right position before the reed is on, then I don’t have to disturb the reed while adjusting the mouthpiece.
 

DavidUK

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4,368
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Near Lutterworth, Leics.
I've always pulled through the neck to dry it after use, same as with the body. Can't do that with the MP in place.
I also pull through the MP with a thin cloth.
Leave all to dry thoroughly before closing the case against dust.
 

Rikki

Member
Messages
192
Location
Sydney, Australia
Since sticking to legere reeds only I thoroughly clean and disinfect the mouthpiece, reed and and crook, then dry and put everthing together and replace on the saxophone. This stops the legere reed from splitting and means the sax is always ready to play. Replacing the cork eventually is not a big deal.
 
OP
Halfers

Halfers

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We are all lining up to tell @Halfers off

Reminds me of
View: https://youtu.be/d1Cpc8Vw-2A
The Universe delivered the Airplane style slap in the face I deserved this evening, when a previously entirely safely placed mirror tipped over (don't ask) and knocked my Saxophone off its stand, causing some tear inducing and swear provoking damage. I have learned my lesson and will repent all Saxophone based laziness sins! Consoling myself with hard liquor!
 
Last edited:

Ivan

Undecided
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6,783
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Peeblesshire
The Universe delivered the Airplane style slap in the face I deserved this evening, when a previously entirely safely placed mirror tipped over (don't ask) and knocked my Saxophone off its stand, causing some tear inducing and swear provoking damage. I have learned my lesson and will repent all Saxophone based laziness sins! Consoling myself with hard liquor!
Sorry to hear of sax damage

I leave my saxes on stands too
 
OP
Halfers

Halfers

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Location
Hampshire
Sorry to hear of sax damage

I leave my saxes on stands too
Ta. I'm sure it will be fine. The Sax has spent enough time sitting precariously on the stand in Busy Pubs and stages and never had any knocks. It makes it more annoying that the incident happened in my Living Room! However, it will be in the expert hands of Mr Howard on Monday!
 
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