Tenor vs Alto mp - Quick Question!

losaavedra

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392
Location
Rojales, Spain
Could someone who has experience of both Alto and Tenor saxes please tell me, given a Yamaha 4C tenor mp on the one hand and a Yamaha Alto 4C mp on the other ...

... what would be the physical difference enabling one to tell which was which?

For example, would the tenor version be wider (is the reed wider on a tenor?) or how else could one tell?

The 'mystery' Yamaha 4C mouthpiece I have in front of me now, when I put an alto reed on it, has about 1.5mm of the table showing either side of the reed, whereas the same reed on my known-to-be a Yamaha alto 6C mp has barely any of the table showing either side of the reed.

Unfortunately I know nothing about tenors myself!

Gracias ...

Supplementary question after 'sleeping on it'! ...

The neck fitting diameter is the same for this mystery mp as for my alto mp. Does that mean the mystery mp must be for an alto, or do altos and tenors share the same diameter in that respect?
 
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Linky Lee

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Salisbury, UK
A tenor sax reed is about 11mm longer, only 1 mm wider and therefore has a slighly flatter curve to the tip of the reed (well my ZZ reeds are according to the ruler)

To tell if the mouthpiece is alto or tenor then, the table will be much longer.
But, different mouthpieces have different table lengths. I've seen mouthpieces with lots of the table left pointing towards the crook and others where the reed is flush with the end of the table.
 
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losaavedra

losaavedra

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Messages
392
Location
Rojales, Spain
A tenor sax reed is about 11mm longer, only 1 mm wider and therefore has a slighly flatter curve to the tip of the reed (well my ZZ reeds are according to the ruler)

To tell if the mouthpiece is alto or tenor then, the table will be much longer.
But, different mouthpieces have different table lengths. I've seen mouthpieces with lots of the table left pointing towards the crook and others where the reed is flush with the end of the table.
Thanks Linky, although the table is (or was I think!) the same length as an alto mp table, the slot itself is of a width that is only just (sometimes not at all) covered by an alto reed's width. Some idiot took a file to it and I'm attempting to do a 'repair' job for another BR member. When I received it the thing was leaking air all over the place and squeeking like crazy, mainly because the table was curving down in two directions front and back. After a fair amount of adjustment I've now at least got it playing all the notes but I'm wondering if what I started with was originally intended for a tenor and not an alto at all!!!

Since your reply I've added an afterthought question to the above post as that too might be a clue ... whatever it is it fits on an alto neck ... so if tenor mps fit different diameter necks then I suppose what I have here must be for an alto, although I've not seen anything like it before ...
 

Linky Lee

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182
Location
Salisbury, UK
So the mouthpiece seems as if it's for a tenor reed, but the bore size fits the alto nicely?

Altos and Tenors don't generally share the same size crook diameter (I've never come across two the same) - at either end.

My tenor pieces are all too large to fit the alto sax and vice versa.

What alto is it and how thick is the layer of cork around the crook?

Could you possibly have a C melody mouthpiece? I don't know about C melodies apart from they're inbetween the tenor and alto so could maybe cause this discrepancy?
 

Justin Chune

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I have a C melody sax and it takes alto and tenor mouthpieces. It was set up for a C mel mouthpiece and that one is the best fit. C melody saxes use regular tenor reeds and in my case the tenor reed is far too long for the table. Do Yamaha make C melody mouthpieces?

Jim.
 
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losaavedra

losaavedra

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392
Location
Rojales, Spain
Well, although I've done all the tinkering necessary to get the thing to play, and sent it back to its owner, I'm really none the wiser as to what this particular Yamaha 4C might be for. The sax itself, that I'm told it came with is, like mine, an eBay sourced instrument so has a vague manufacture/history although I get the impression it was 'new' at the time of purchase. Another oddity is that, in order to fix a reed onto the mp I had to resort to a rubber band because the body diameter is smaller than will allow the only ligature I have here (two-screw brass item) to be sufficiently well tightened down to stop air leaking out where it shouldn't. I have the same problem with my own Yamaha 6C using that lig but at least my mp takes a normal alto reed without the table protruding either side. I'm not too mean to buy a lig that fits my 6C by the way ... its just that I live in the sticks here in Spain without a conveniently located music store that sells wind instrument accessories ... and in the meantime a wound-on elastic band does an adequate reed-fixing job!

Anyway, the 'repair' is now in the mail winging its way back to Blighty. Unfortunately it wasn't possible to put back mp material that someone else had already hacked off so getting a playable tip gap on the thing resulted in this particular 'bird', although now capable of flight, having the shortest beak in Saxodom!!!
 
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losaavedra

losaavedra

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392
Location
Rojales, Spain
Hi Roger, I didn't know you had a 4C. My own interest now is in just looking at a 'complete' (!) one to see if what came over has (or once had) some resemblance. The chap who mailed it here fortunately has a working mp donated by another BR member, so his playing could continue uninterrupted. I offered to try to fix the non-working/damaged mp as there was nothing to lose ... either what I did would somehow get the thing playing ... or the wreck could continue on its way into the 'basura'!!! I'm still very curious about the pedigree of the mp I fixed ... found your number etc. and will give you a ring a bit later. Hasta luego.
 
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