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Sore Left Hand Thumb!!!

Jobylou

Member
Messages
322
Hi
I wonder if any one else has ever had this problem? I have a Yamaha 62 Tenor, which I bought second hand about 4 months ago. I absolutely love it, but the black plastic circle thumb rest by the octave key is really hurting my thumb. It isn't damaged in any way that I can see but my thumb has developed a corn which is really sore where it obviously rubs on the edge of the thumb rest.
I have a Selmer Series 2 Alto and a Maxtone alto and have no problem with either of them.
If anyone has any suggestions I would be so grateful :)
Thank you so much
Jo
 

jbtsax

Well-Known Member
Subscriber
Messages
8,000
My suggestion would be to examine the movement of the thumb when pressing the octave key. Finger C to D back and forth and focus on where the thumb touches and how it moves. Ideally the pad of the thumb should rest on the thumb pad and the only movement should be the thumb bending at the joint causing it to "rock" forward and press the octave key. If a different movement such as sliding or pushing the thumb is discovered, that may be the cause of the problem. A temporary fix would be to put a bandaid over the sore spot when you play tenor. The long term solution would be to find a way to press the octave key without a motion that rubs the sore spot.
 

ArtyLady

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,030
Just don't ignore any thumb pain (or finger for that matter!) - I did for years - started around the tip, and it gradually got worse until a couple of months ago my left thumb started clicking and clunking when ever I bent or straightened it and then it got completely stuck straight - I got to the point where I was in so much pain I couldn't play at all :( It was Trigger Thumb where the tendon swells up and can't go through the sheath.

One cortisone injection later, (and strapping it up and splinting it so I can still play! - probably not a good idea but at least I have still been playing my Sax albeit quite uncomfortable!) and it is well on the mend now - I'm still using Ibuprofen gel and have to go back to see the consultant in a couple of weeks - hoping i can get away without an operation to free the tendon :shocked: :thumb:
 

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,365
That sort of thing is miserable when it occurs. I have had it on a couple of saxophones, although I'm surprised it is happening on a modern Yamaha.

On my Buffet S2 it seemed to be the angle of the thumb button that was the problem and the edge of it cut/pressed into my thumb. Griff (one of the Caff's tame repairmen) replaced that button and smoothed off the edge a bit.

On my Conn 12M, the thumb rest is a very small pearl button, ideally sized to dig into the player's thumb. I recently had some keywork modifications done on the horn by Steve Crow and he replaced the pearl with a modern, large black disc. The angle is just right and all the discomfort has gone.

Another way of doing it is to prise off the existing button and then mould a new one out of Sugru or two-part epoxy. With those materials you can form the shape exactly as you want it for maximum comfort, but be careful that the octave level will still operate properly.

Good luck.

Rhys
 

Jobylou

Member
Messages
322
Thank you so much for your replies.
jbtsax, I think that I am only rocking the thumb, played tonight with a plaster on and is definately a good short term fix!
artylady, thank you, I will bear that in mind, sounds painful, I hope you don't need an op and make a full recovery :)
Rhys, that is exactly it, the edge of the button is rubbing on my thumb, will try and get to a repair shop and see what they suggest, do you know what the charge for that may be (roughly) is it a big job?
 

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,365
Rhys, that is exactly it, the edge of the button is rubbing on my thumb, will try and get to a repair shop and see what they suggest, do you know what the charge for that may be (roughly) is it a big job?
I wouldn't expect to pay more than £20 for a job like that, from a friendly repair person. Via a shop it might be more. They might be able to just take the existing button off, round the edge and replace it. It is usually easy to prise it off without breaking the button, because of the sort of glue they use.

Rhys
 

Jobylou

Member
Messages
322
Thanks Rhys, at least I have a rough idea how much to expect, the nearest place I know of is 45 minutes from here so I'm hoping they can do it while I wait (couldn't bare to be without my tenor!),I will give them a call :)
 

zannad

Member
Messages
410
Thanks Kev, but I'm not too confident with DIY lol ;}
DIY? Have you ever played with plasticine?


The Sugru Thumb rest is above the original one - so, I've found not only a better position for my thumb but the grip is also more comfy too (ok, it's a bit ugly...but my Martin is battered too).
btw: the black bob you see above is the end of the string of the cleaning cloth - again Sugru does a great job in that as well...
 
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