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Vito (Yamaha) altos... someone remind me please...

DavidUK

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I have a cunning plan... but... I need to know something.

Yamaha Vito altos, as far as I recall, are either YAS-21 or YAS-23 clones.
If I order a complete set of pads for one will it fit the other?
In other words, are the key cups for each (or for the Yamaha models) all the same sizes as each other?

I think @JayeNM or @jbtsax may have the answer?

Many thanks for any help.
 

DavidUK

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PS. My Vito has a static metal thumb rest and soldered bell if that helps identify it?

:thumb:
 

jbtsax

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I can't verify whether the 23 and 21 have the same size keycups, but I strongly suspect they do. I can say for a fact that the Vito made in Japan and the YAS-23 are the same except for the lacquer color and name on the bell.
 

saxyjt

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I can't verify whether the 23 and 21 have the same size keycups, but I strongly suspect they do. I can say for a fact that the Vito made in Japan and the YAS-23 are the same except for the lacquer color and name on the bell.
You better be careful as Music medic has two separate choices for 21-22s and 23s... So there must be a difference.

I have 23s, I can perhaps retrieve the measurements I took. I also have a set ready but that's from a Chinese supplier if I recall. Not sure how accurate it is.

If I have time, I'm kind of under a wave of work right now, and I remember, I'll send you what I have measured. I'm quite sure I took notes...
 

saxyjt

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Her is what I found:

YAS – 23 alto

Size Qty

9.0 2
16.5 1
18.5 4
24.5 5
30.5 4
34.0 1
36.5 1
38.5 1
40.5 2
42.5 1
48.5 2


But you better check that matches yours!
 

jbtsax

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You better be careful as Music medic has two separate choices for 21-22s and 23s... So there must be a difference.

Not necessarily. There is no way to tell for sure since they don't give the sizes included in each set. JayeNM might know for certain. In any event, in my experience it is better to measure the key cups and order those sizes rather than order a "set"
 

DavidUK

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It's dismantled so no big deal to measure the cups, however my plan has to be modified...
 

DavidUK

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...I was thinking of ordering a full set of Jim Schmidt's self-levelling pads ( Sax Pad Installation - JS Engineering ) for the Vito but he still advises one or two as a test, so out of the five I need to replace I'm going to go for just the 40mm Eb key as this is the one which will have far more use than the others...

20180817_132907-3.jpg


I already have all five new pads so I'll use four of the others and see how the Eb feels. It'll be a few weeks before Jim's pad arrives so I'll do an update then.

@Jeanette - you might wish to move this thread to "Repairs" rather than here? :)
 

JayeNM

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Well... David, you have the horn, right ?

I never suggest anyone buy 'pad sets', even on contemporary models, IF they have the horn in their hands already and can just take calipers to 'em.

The Schmidts will be interesting...you are talking about the metal fabric pads, right ?

(BTW...just visually - 21's have the screw-tension bow ferrules and the plastic 'nib' connectors on the side Bb and C...while the 23's have ferrules which LOOK like they are solder-connected but in fact are just epoxied, and standard 'fork' type side key connectors.....)
 

JayeNM

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Ah ok, he also had been experimenting with self-leveling pads with springs behind 'em...looks like these have ball joints, which IMHO is more user-friendly maybe ???
I haven't tried those yet, those will be very interesting to install....I'd like to know how it goes....!!!
 

jbtsax

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I would think that a better test of how the self-leveling pads "feel" would be to install them in one or more of the stack keys.
 

DavidUK

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The one pad was sent from the USA yesterday via $7 snail mail rather than $38 priority... I'm in no rush!

@jbtsax - I take your point but the stack pads are OK so I'll see how I go when flicking between the new Eb and low C keys and hopefully my pinky will feel any difference or advantage/disadvantage.

If it's good I may order another self-levelling pad each Christmas as an ongoing project... :old:
 

DavidUK

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Snail mail took 5 days to reach me, the self-levelling pad has arrived!

I'm not going to rush installing it. I have the whole sax to re-assemble along with my first attempt at replacing four other pads. I'll aim at doing it on the 17th, my birthday, as it's the only day I can guarantee to do what I want rather than prioritising the house renovation (nearly finished - only took two years!).

More to follow, hopefully with some photos of how I get on...
 

DavidUK

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Installed the new self-leveller yesterday...



With no pad setting to do it was a doddle. Had to dry fit to check height first.

Not so sure how easy it would be to do upper or lower stack, having to insert shims under each pad to check heights means the stack would have to be disassembled then test assembled and so on. Once they're in, they're in. No easy adjustment after gluing.

Whereas with shellac/hot glue you can adjust in situ to more of a degree by re-heating and shifting the pad with the right tools.
 

DavidUK

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I fear I'm going to order up all the stack keys next, per @jbtsax suggestion.

Just one question for all of you... not of great importance but nevertheless... would a Yamaha Vito, or any other sax, totally repadded with self levelling Schmidt pads be more or less attractive to you, as a buyer?

I suspect you'd run a mile currently as there is little reference, no long-term testing, no pro player's review.

To me, IF a sax needed a full re-pad it would be perhaps cheaper to install SL pads myself for, say, £250. So really I should have started on a scrappier guinea pig. But then again, how often do scrappy Yamahas with nice level tone holes come up for grabs?

So, whereas I always look for a bargain this one is going to cost me money as no doubt I'll spend more on Jim's pads, scrapping the currently OK ones, than the Vito is worth once fully decked out with his pads. BUT... I do like the idea, and progress, and the thought of being able to do it again in future when faced with a sax which needs a total re-pad. And who knows, by then a few of you may have tried out the Schmidt Vito or "Schmito" and found it compelling enough to do your own MkVI.

I'll keep you posted...
 

jbtsax

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I fear I'm going to order up all the stack keys next, per @jbtsax suggestion.

Just one question for all of you... not of great importance but nevertheless... would a Yamaha Vito, or any other sax, totally repadded with self levelling Schmidt pads be more or less attractive to you, as a buyer?
Not attractive. "Self levelling pads" might seem like a panacea, but there are so many other variables to consider such as perfectly flat toneholes, key fitting, regulation, materials that compress, etc. There are no "shortcuts" to good pad work on saxophones in my opinion.

I greatly admire Jim Schmidt and his ability to "think outside the box". I have even joked "you can't even see the box from where he thinks". If anyone is set on repadding a saxophone using the expensive, and as yet untested pads I say go for it, but I wouldn't buy one because of that, nor would I jump to try it myself.

I have used "self levelling" regular pads" for years. I start with a perfectly flat tonehole, add a high quality firm pad with a flat surface and install it in a straightened and aligned key cup on an ample bed of shellac. Then I carefully heat the keycup till the shellac begins to leave its plastic state, and firmly tap, tap, tap, tap the key on the tonehole till the pad finds its level place. I'm not saying this produces a perfectly leveled pad every time, but it almost always gets it very close from where it can be "coaxed" to perfection.
 
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