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sax.co.uk

Accessories Tenor Harness Advice Please

Messages
60
#1
Well,a very successful lesson one completed.What I need is advice on your favourite tenor harness.My choices are,Neotech Softsax,BG harness or Vandoren Universal.
At the moment I am using a neckstrap that is just plain uncomfortable to use.
What are your experiences and recommendations?.
 

Moz

Senior Member
Messages
823
Location
North of Liskeard, Cornwall
#3
I've used a Neotech all my playing life. They are soft, comfortable and unlike webbing style ones, they have a 'bounce' to them which takes a lot of strain off the neck.

Many folk use a harness but unless you are standing playing gigs every day I think they may be a bit of overkill for the amateur player who spends a lot of time sitting down.
 

ellinas

Senior Member
Messages
705
Location
Athens, Greece
#4
I cant play with ordinary straps.
I feel strange with typical harnesses....

An issue at the back of my neck has almost forced me to quit playing saxophone.
Neotech straps are the better straps. The alto feels like a feather. I still use neotech with my alto.
For tenor and bari the jazzlabs saxholder is revelation!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It balances the weight to your shoulders! I can play bari standing for as long as I want....

For someone like me 10 minutes of bari playing meant 3 days dizzy on my bed.

If you're perfectly healthy get a lesson from my issues. The weight of saxophone is a strain on your neck. A pressure that is applied everytime you practice.
Try something comfortable(neotech, cebulla etc) or even better get a sax holder. It looks weird but it definately works!!!!!!!!!
 

Moz

Senior Member
Messages
823
Location
North of Liskeard, Cornwall
#5
Just looked at the Jazzlab on Youtube and I have to admit it looks like an interesting piece of kit But that's quite a price -- forty three quid on Amazon -- and while it looks the part, something about it looks fragile; I think it's the way it clicks and doesn't actually join behind the neck either.

Wouldn't mind trying one out though.
 

Jeanette

Organizress
Cafe Moderator
Messages
20,493
Location
Cheshire UK
#6
I have a jazzlab saxholder, it doesn't strike me as fragile. When sat or stood playing it takes all the weight. The only time I have a problem is if I bend, sometimes one of the arms will slip off my shoulder. I suspect part of the problem is I haven't quite bent it to suit me properly.....

Jx
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Cafe Moderator
Messages
20,550
Location
Just north of Munich
#7
Just looked at the Jazzlab on Youtube and I have to admit it looks like an interesting piece of kit But that's quite a price -- forty three quid on Amazon -- and while it looks the part, something about it looks fragile; I think it's the way it clicks and doesn't actually join behind the neck either.

Wouldn't mind trying one out though.
These are really good and worth every penny. I've had one for a couple of years. All my neck problems are gone. I only use a normal strap on alto and sop now. Tenor and bari are on the sax holder. It hangs a little funny when you play sitting, but it's worth it for the comfort.

What's important, and means just trying someone's isn't going to work, is that you need to adjust them to fit, if you don't it won't be comfortable.
 

Jazzaferri

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,883
Location
Victoria BC Canada
#8
I practice Tenor and Bari on Jazzlab saxholder, Gig with saxholder on Bari and with Just Joe's Gelstrap for Tenor and Alto. Hands only for sop.

Saxholder is by far the most comfortable system I have used and Just Joes neckstrap the second most comfortable. Takes the pressure of the spine.
 

brianr

Senior Member
Messages
850
#9
After a long time trying to deal with sore necks etc, I changed to the BG harness a few years ago. It works great, and my neck problems are no more.

But Ive always felt a little constrained with it. It is too close to my body and not very flexible.

So yesterday I was round at a friends and he has one of the Jazzlab saxholders. I tried it and it felt good. Sax felt very light and I was able to get it away from my body a bit. ( this is tenor). He has let me borrow it for a few days to try for extended period

I practiced for about an hour last night , and it felt good. No neck pain and I enjoyed it.
But the tops of both shoulders were a little sore.
He is a little bigger than I am but I didnt want to bend the part that comes in to contact with my shoulder, as it felt comfortable enough.

So, today, Im going to try again. And see if the soreness is there again.

it did make me think though about trying another type,

A bit of research did suggest the Vandoren harness, which looks a bit industrial, but gets good reviews.

expensive, but in the grand scheme of things and given the hours of comfortable use I would get, it seems ok.
ie how much would I be happy to pay for pain free sax playing? A lot more than the cost of this.

I would also be interested to hear from folks who have tried the Jazzlab and the Vandoren
 

Jeanette

Organizress
Cafe Moderator
Messages
20,493
Location
Cheshire UK
#10
I haven't used my Jazzlab for a while as I don't play alto often but I don't recall sore shoulders, you do need to bend it to suit you which obviously when borrowing one it isn't as easy to do.....

Jx
 

davidk

Paints With Notes
Messages
307
Location
Earth
#12
After a long time trying to deal with sore necks etc, I changed to the BG harness a few years ago. It works great, and my neck problems are no more.

But Ive always felt a little constrained with it. It is too close to my body and not very flexible.

So yesterday I was round at a friends and he has one of the Jazzlab saxholders. I tried it and it felt good. Sax felt very light and I was able to get it away from my body a bit. ( this is tenor). He has let me borrow it for a few days to try for extended period

I practiced for about an hour last night , and it felt good. No neck pain and I enjoyed it.
But the tops of both shoulders were a little sore.
He is a little bigger than I am but I didnt want to bend the part that comes in to contact with my shoulder, as it felt comfortable enough.

So, today, Im going to try again. And see if the soreness is there again.

it did make me think though about trying another type,

A bit of research did suggest the Vandoren harness, which looks a bit industrial, but gets good reviews.

expensive, but in the grand scheme of things and given the hours of comfortable use I would get, it seems ok.
ie how much would I be happy to pay for pain free sax playing? A lot more than the cost of this.

I would also be interested to hear from folks who have tried the Jazzlab and the Vandoren
I have both. The Jazzlab is easier and quicker to put on than the Vandoren, and seems to balance the saxophone better. However for tenor plus mute (the weight of a bass or a heavy bari) it digs into the shoulders and the Vandoren is better.

I have seen leather covers for the Jazzlab on sale. There's a post about it somewhere on the café.

Best regards
 
Messages
60
#13
Thanks everyone,I think I am gonna go for the Neotech Sax Practice Harness.My tutor is watching my stance and body closely.It looks like this harness will give me freedom of movement and can be hidden under a jacket.I think I will be practicing my tenor many long hours.I've no doubt I will be buying a second harness/strap as time goes on.I started my first lesson with a number 1 1/2 reed,I now have number3 reeds to be getting on with.With 1 1/2 I was loud...with 3 i sound more sublime(is that the right word?)...the great thing is that I have tomorrow off work and I will practice the basics that you guys have been there....EMBOUCHURE....and my neighbours are away...
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,014
Location
Sweden
#15
I use BG harness and an unbrand UK made bari harness. No wide/thick shoulder pads. Must be easy to wash up and to wear under a jacket, shirt or waist(coat) ... My next harness is going to be a BG for both tenor and bari with a closed metal hook. I've tried to make a good harness myself but it's not easy to find metal details instead of plastic. But I think the plastic details are durable/strong. Just me that's nervous that I'm going to drop my saxes.
 

MandyH

Sax-Mad fiend!
Subscriber
Messages
2,970
Location
The Malverns, Worcs
#16
I have a FreeNeck 4.0, which I use for my Bari and Tenor.
If I was male and didn't have certain ...ummm...appendages, I could use it for my alto too, but I haven't yet found a comfortable set up that covers all 3 saxes.
I use a cebulla neck strap for alto and sop, made specially to a shorter length for me.
The FreeNeck means I can play for hours with no pressure on my neck or back and no discomfort at all.

Maybe I should mention that I'm not sure where the weight is transferred to, as nothing feels uncomfortable! I think it goes into the hips - the hip strap needs to be tight then the "spare spine" slots into the hip strap.
You can put the hip strap on underneath your shirt/ top / dress and slot the back rods down inside your clothing. Then it just looks like a normal neck strap, except that it doesn't really touch your neck at all.
It can be used equally easily standing or sitting.
 
Last edited:

2toneblew

C'mon Genie, third wish - to sound warm and fuzzy
Subscriber
Messages
61
Location
Terrace , BC
#18
IMG_1224.PNG IMG_1225.PNG A company in the US makes a leather strap that looks like a Vandoren ( without the V) and costs 1/4 of Vandorens. Anyone tried one?
Sax straps – Walker & Williams

Also I notice Jazzlab has a XL model, I'm a big guy so I might need this, but-- the distance from mouthpiece to loop is the same for big or small people, so why? The XL doesn't appear to have larger shoulder pads.
 

Tiberius

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,027
#20
-- the distance from mouthpiece to loop is the same for big or small people, so why? The XL doesn't appear to have larger shoulder pads.
I'm only 5'6, being small I use hardly any adjustment from the diaphragm pad, you could get another 6" of adjustment out of it quite easy (yes, I just measured it). My legs are short, not my body, I bet it would be ok for most people less than 6'6".

The loop, well that's really the distance between your shoulders and mouth, I doubt that changes much. Again I use little adjustment here.