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Soprano Octave Problem

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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Glad you found the book, it's great.

On the setup side, there's the aspect of key regulation, pads sealing, neck fit... But there's also mouthpiece and reed selection. Generally these have to match you and the sax, and it's why there are so many threads here with so many conflicting recommendations. we naturally tend to think that's what works for us must work for others. But it's not always the case.

I've spent quite some time tweaking my straight sop to get it to play better (I'm an inveterate fiddler, comes from my motorcycling days). All the pads seal well, regaultion's good and it plays nicely. I recently decided to try the straight neck. The straight neck sounded much better, played better... A big difference, which I hadn't expected. I also noticed it fitted better. The tenon on the cruved neck was about 1/10th of a millimeter out of round. A little work later (which I'd intended to do, but hadn't found time for) and the curved neck fitted as well as the straight one. And the tonal/playing improvement was there as well.... Must have been a small leak from the slightly loose neck joint. But techs have to balance time/price to customer against the value of the sax and what the customer will pay.

If your JP is playing well, I'd leave it and concentrate on playing it. Too easy to get wrapped up into blaming the gear.
 

Jane M L

Member
Messages
265
Location
Newcastle Emlyn, Ceredigion
Re: What sax for beginner?-JP043 straight soprano might be the answer

Thanks for the tip about the straight neck. I've just put a bit of plumbers tape round the tenon to stop the wobble, but will try swapping necks too.
Otherwise all is well but just 10 minutes ago I found that the octave key rod that pushes the arm from the crook to pivot the hole open - i.e.. the little rod that sticks up and is protected with plastic bung when the crook is removed for packing away- is semi loose at the point where it, having made a right angle to drop onto the pivoting rod directly moved by the left thumb, slips over a sleeve to connect to the aforementioned pivoting rod. Its as if where one rod is inside a little sleeve it has broken off, 3mm at the most. It's difficult to see how it could have happened. The seller was adamant that the sax needed no adjustments and I need to go over it with a fine tooth comb in the next week or so just in case there is anything very wrong that should be sorted by him. [ But I haven't got the patience to send it back for little minor things - too busy playing it.]
Absolutely no need to bother just yet but eventually it should be fixed to make things a little more immediate and tight.
I could mend myself if I had the right replacement bit. I did a bit of silversmithing at one time at art school and could even solder on a little piece of brass rod to fix it, after dismantling the little assembly links.
Sorry - I'm just joking - although that is what's happening and a photo would show what I mean. I'll see if I can find a parts shop and get the replacement piece. maybe I'll email John Parkers.
 

Jane M L

Member
Messages
265
Location
Newcastle Emlyn, Ceredigion
Re: What sax for beginner?-JP043 straight soprano might be the answer

I'm trying to get photos from camera but having trouble with Picasa, my usual choice. But i will post pics of the JP043 + the same key from Elkhart - this latter works very smoothly and precisely with no extra play in its joints. Also ropey old James and Young is much better designed than the JP. But having got the Elkhart out from its case again, I've played it a little and still find that the JP is more subtle, but flimsier in some places and stronger in others.
I'll get back when I've sorted computer problems later in the day.
 

Jane M L

Member
Messages
265
Location
Newcastle Emlyn, Ceredigion
Re: What sax for beginner?-JP043 straight soprano might be the answer

octave key movement 2.jpg octave key movement 1.jpg You can see the play where the sleeve drops onto the rod and more visible in the photos is a split that I did not see on the sax itself. The play is about 1mm and the rod is about 2mm inside the sleeve, so not much beef to stand up to longterm wear and tear.
I will take it to a technician know I've seen this, but have you people on the forum any ideas about this sloppy rod? [ It's equally loose at the bottom end, but does not move in quite the same way so probably ok.]
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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Just north of Munich
Re: What sax for beginner?-JP043 straight soprano might be the answer

Looks intentional to me. There's usually some play in the neck octave mechanism, stops the neck pip lifting when it's not supposed to (as happens when things are too tight). However a tech should be able to reduce this to a minimum and it'll play better afterwards.
 

jbtsax

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Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
Re: What sax for beginner?-JP043 straight soprano might be the answer

Kev is correct. If too much of the play is removed then the parts lose the full range of movement required to open and close the octave key(s). My goal as a tech working on these is to reduce or eliminate any key noise without adding friction or taking away from the range of motion. I have used plumber's teflon, "fish skin" (the covering of clarinet pads), and a plastic spray coating called "Chem Guard" to good effect depending on the design. The teflon wears the fastest and needs to be replaced from time to time. Melting paraffin wax onto the male connection is another short term quieting material that is fast and easy to apply.
 

Jane M L

Member
Messages
265
Location
Newcastle Emlyn, Ceredigion
Re: What sax for beginner?-JP043 straight soprano might be the answer

Thank you all so very much! It plays ok too so I can carry on. When the time comes it will be interesting to see what a tech will say.
 

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