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New Neck on YTS-23

Tenorgold

New Member
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14
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Midlands, UK
Hi All,
new member on here. Hoping for a bit of tec advise please.
I have only been playing for less than a year.
I'm quite good with all things DIY / enginnering, so I am also into the tec side of the saxophone as well as learning to play it.
The Yamaha YTS-23 that I have came as a rather beaten up example that I have done a number of repairs on, including all new pads.
However, the neck had obviously suffered a rather bad pull-down, and although a previous owner had obviously tried to straighten it, it is still looking quite shabby.
I was tempted to buy a new neck, but instead took a punt on one of the cheap necks from China. It needed a bit of fettling to get the neck to fit the tenon receiver on the sax, and a bit of adjustment to the octave key to make it work with the flush octave pin of the 23, but that seems to all work fine, and the gold lacquer finish does match the rest of the sax rather well.
The problem is the overall sax seems to be much more "unstable" when the octave key is pressed for high G (worst) and high A (slightly less), where it warbles between low G and high G, or low A and high A (I think!). It is possible to make this happen less by tightening my emboucheur, but with the original neck it just doesn't seem to do this at all.
I'm fairly sure both octave pads are sealing as required, and that the lower one is opening, and the upper closing correctly when blowing high G.
Looking more closely at the new neck, it does seem that the octave pip is a little bit further away from the body of the sax, i.e. nearer the mouthpiece, compared to the original Yamaha neck. Not much, but I wondered if this had something to do with it? The problem is, I can understand that affecting the high A, where the neck octave pip is open, but not the high G, where it is the body pip open.
I do have to push the mouthpiece on a long way to get it in tune, compared to the original neck, so maybe it is just that the new neck is a bit long, which also takes the neck octave pip further away from the body?
I'm still learning about the acoustics of the sax, but I get that the octave pips are a bit of a compromise, so this theory about the geometry seems plausible to me.

For what it cost, I am quite happy to play about with the neck geometry (for fun as much as anything!), including moving the neck octave pip if that would solve the problem.

Any advice gratefully received!
 

DavidUK

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Near Lutterworth, Leics.
In what way did you fettle the tenon joint?
Just wondering if you have a leak here.
A tech would pressure test the joint with a nifty bit of kit we mere mortals don't have.
 

Tenorgold

New Member
Messages
14
Locality
Midlands, UK
In what way did you fettle the tenon joint?
Just wondering if you have a leak here.
A tech would pressure test the joint with a nifty bit of kit we mere mortals don't have.
That is something I didn't elaborate on. The new neck is quite a bit heavier than the original (overall thicker gauge brass). The tenon on the neck had a surprisingly thick wall, and was about 0.5 mm oversized. I've made myself a neck expander which worked well on another alto sax I have, so to try and shrink this tenon I made a collet out of a piece of thick steel that I had, bored out to just slide over the new neck, and then slit it to make a tool to shrink the tenon, with a slit that was wide enough to close the diameter enough, but the material was just too thick and it would only reduce about 0.1 mm. In the end I just had to resort to emery cloth to carefully bring the diameter down. I used a precision digital caliper (0.01 mm) to check the diameter as I was doing it, and after polishing it up it now slides in very smooth and snug. I followed that with lapping it in using a homemade lapping paste, and checked the fit with some permanent marker inside the tenon joint, and it seems to be pretty good.
It is still possible there is a leak I guess. I'll have to have a go at making one of the neck leak testers I suppose (expanding rubber plug that fits in just below the neck tenon joint). Another challenge!
I can probably use the expander I have to carefully expand just the end of the tenon to get a better seal if there is a leak.
 

JayeNM

Formerly JayePDX
Messages
2,348
Locality
New Mexico, US
FWIW, repairing even BAD pulldown and bad dents on a neck...is pretty basic tech stuff. It wouldn't cost much to pay a tech to get the original neck back into good (playing) shape, really.

Just a thought.
 

jbtsax

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Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
A new YTS-23 neck might be available for about $100 from the Yamaha 24x7 website. It has "contact me" next to the part rather than "in stock".
 

Tenorgold

New Member
Messages
14
Locality
Midlands, UK
FWIW, repairing even BAD pulldown and bad dents on a neck...is pretty basic tech stuff. It wouldn't cost much to pay a tech to get the original neck back into good (playing) shape, really.

Just a thought.
Yeah thanks. I'm so new to the sax that I've not looked up the nearest tec yet. I might send it off for a quote. I'm not really good enough to know if it is affecting the tone / playability or not. It just looks a bit ugly next to the shiny new Chinese one :)
 

Tenorgold

New Member
Messages
14
Locality
Midlands, UK
A new YTS-23 neck might be available for about $100 from the Yamaha 24x7 website. It has "contact me" next to the part rather than "in stock".
Thanks. I checked with Dawkes in the UK here, and they said it is likely to be 6 months plus, ordered from Japan.
 

dreadnet

Member
Messages
159
Locality
London
I ordered a few parts from Dawkes coming from Yamaha Japan. Took 13 weeks and the guard I ordered for Yas-25 came in nickel and my one is brass lacquer. Had to pay return for refund.
 

JayeNM

Formerly JayePDX
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2,348
Locality
New Mexico, US
Thanks. I checked with Dawkes in the UK here, and they said it is likely to be 6 months plus, ordered from Japan.
Probably using a shop as middle-man is a bad idea in this case.

Quite honestly, I can have one shipped to me in 4 days and even if I shipped it on to UK via Priority Mail International, it wouldn't take more than 2 weeks to be in a Brit's hands.

Or just buy one on eBayUK (it'd be coming from US)

Screen Shot 2022-01-09 at 9.32.39 AM.png

Probab
 

MMM

Senior Member
Messages
1,065
Locality
SW of London Town
The problem with aftermarket necks is that the overall geometry of the neck "could" be wrong. You have rightly spotted the octave pip being in a different place, but it could be the internal volume or the curve of the neck which is showing the effects you are experiencing.
I'd rather play on a grotty looking neck that works, rather than a shiny one that doesn't, the hassle and frustration in playing just wouldn't be worth it.
Bottom line: get the original repaired or get a new Yamaha neck (or check out secondhandsaxes.com.au , I believe he is a user here, he usually has used Yamaha necks, I have purchased from him and he is honest).
 

Tenorgold

New Member
Messages
14
Locality
Midlands, UK
Thanks for that reply @MMM I've done a bit more swapping things around and found that the problem seems to occur most with one mouthpiece, and nowhere near as much with the other three I have, although the issue is worse with the new neck. Emboucheur with that MP does also make a big difference, where tightening for high A and G can make the problem almost go away completely. Being relatively new to the sax it is quite probably down to me as much as it is the equipment.
 

Stephen Howard

Well-Known Member
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3,160
Locality
UK
Any advice gratefully received!
Yep, bin it.

Bauhaus Walstein had a similar problem with a batch of tenors - the crooks looked identical but there was clearly something wrong with the internal geometry. They had to replace all the crooks.
Interestingly enough, the crook volume was identical to the original version...which means that the taper must have been different.
Classic symptom was instability around octave G/A.

There's no fixing it, it's a straightforward crook mismatch.
 

Dr G

Member
Messages
575
Locality
Northern California
Emboucheur with that MP does also make a big difference, where tightening for high A and G can make the problem almost go away completely.
You don't want a horn that requires a different embouchure for various notes. Think about it - what do you do when switching between adjacent notes?
 

Tenorgold

New Member
Messages
14
Locality
Midlands, UK
Yep, bin it.

Bauhaus Walstein had a similar problem with a batch of tenors - the crooks looked identical but there was clearly something wrong with the internal geometry. They had to replace all the crooks.
Interestingly enough, the crook volume was identical to the original version...which means that the taper must have been different.
Classic symptom was instability around octave G/A.

There's no fixing it, it's a straightforward crook mismatch.
I might try and work out a bit more accurately what is different, just out of interest. I did also notice that when i first start playing the new neck, it sends to be ok, or at least better. It's almost like after it has warmed up a bit, just a few minutes, it goes wrong.
 

Tenorgold

New Member
Messages
14
Locality
Midlands, UK
You don't want a horn that requires a different embouchure for various notes. Think about it - what do you do when switching between adjacent notes?
Yeah, totally agree. I wasn't suggesting it as a solution, just an observation. I am very aware though that I am still quite new to the sax, so I may be missing something.
 

Tenorgold

New Member
Messages
14
Locality
Midlands, UK
The original neck had obviously suffered quite a knock (probably the one event that caused damage on other parts of the horn) that resulted in a severe pull down, to the point that the diameter just above the tenon has gone oval. A previous owner looks to have pulled it back up again, but the bulge at the sides is quite obvious. I'm not experienced enough to know if that affects the tone or playability much.
 

Stephen Howard

Well-Known Member
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3,160
Locality
UK
I might try and work out a bit more accurately what is different, just out of interest. I did also notice that when i first start playing the new neck, it sends to be ok, or at least better. It's almost like after it has warmed up a bit, just a few minutes, it goes wrong.
The mismatch can be very variable. Some crooks will break up over G/A no matter what you do - others will appear to be fine...and then fall into instability after a few minutes' playing. You might also notice some tuning anomalies.
 

MMM

Senior Member
Messages
1,065
Locality
SW of London Town
Yep, bin it.

Bauhaus Walstein had a similar problem with a batch of tenors - the crooks looked identical but there was clearly something wrong with the internal geometry. They had to replace all the crooks.
Interestingly enough, the crook volume was identical to the original version...which means that the taper must have been different.
Classic symptom was instability around octave G/A.

There's no fixing it, it's a straightforward crook mismatch.
OT: @Stephen Howard do you know if these "imperfect" necks were sold by BW separately online or if they were returned to the manufacturer?
 

Stephen Howard

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,160
Locality
UK
They were all returned - or at the very least replaced. I nabbed a bunch of them to do some weight-drop tests on with various crook brace designs, but never got around to it.
 
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