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Beginner When I play C it comes out as sharp....

SopranoSimon

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Darlington
when i play normal C it plays as a sharp.... i think its not sealing properly when pushed down.. any help please
 

Chris

Well Known
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Hi Simon, which 'C' are you talking about first of all. Next are the notes
around it in tune and is the sax in tune with itself??
 

kernewegor

Bon vivant, raconteur and twit
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when i play normal C it plays as a sharp.... i think its not sealing properly when pushed down.. any help please
Are you talking about:

Bottom C (all fingers down plus right hand little finger on bottom C touchpiece)

Middle C (only second finger from thumb on left hand)

Top C (as middle C but also with octave key)

Do you mean it is giving C#, or that it is a bit sharp?

How are you measuring its pitch, by ear or against a keyboard or something else? Be aware that saxophones need to be humoured to play in tune, and the smaller the sax the more this is true...

If a pad is not sealing, rather than giving a sharp note it tends to give a muffled tone and it affects the quality and playability of notes lower down the instrument.

Even if it isn't a leak this time, some sort of small light which you can slide down inside the instrument is very useful indeed. A bright little led torch on a bit of string will do - slide it around to give the maximum light where you want it, you can check the whole instrument in a matter of minutes. Choose a shape which won't get stuck...
 

SopranoSimon

Member
Messages
166
Locality
Darlington
Are you talking about:

Bottom C (all fingers down plus right hand little finger on bottom C touchpiece)

Middle C (only second finger from thumb on left hand)

Top C (as middle C but also with octave key)

Do you mean it is giving C#, or that it is a bit sharp?

How are you measuring its pitch, by ear or against a keyboard or something else? Be aware that saxophones need to be humoured to play in tune, and the smaller the sax the more this is true...

If a pad is not sealing, rather than giving a sharp note it tends to give a muffled tone and it affects the quality and playability of notes lower down the instrument.

Even if it isn't a leak this time, some sort of small light which you can slide down inside the instrument is very useful indeed. A bright little led torch on a bit of string will do - slide it around to give the maximum light where you want it, you can check the whole instrument in a matter of minutes. Choose a shape which won't get stuck...
Ive discovered its a leak... its to do with middle C 2nd finger left hand , when i press that down the little pad nearer the top dosnt seal down properly, there is a gap for air to come out still even by pressing down c
 

kernewegor

Bon vivant, raconteur and twit
Messages
1,736
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cocks hill perranporth KERNOW
Jbtsax will probably look in later with considerably more expert views...

However, here's what I would do for a get-you-playing-again fix.

A caution with any attempts at adjustment - don't force anything, and try things one step at a time or you won't know which bit has made it better or worse...

Use a light to see if the leak is even all round the pad. Another good way is to use very thin paper as feeler gauges to find out if the pad is evenly seated (or unseated) all round. Put a slip of paper in, press the C button and see how much resistance there is when you try to pull the paper out. If it is fairly even, try the next bit -

If you press the pad that isn't sealing properly without touching the C button, and then gently press the C button you will be able to see how the linkage works and which bit moves which.

I am guessing that the cork at the C end of the linkage is missing, damaged or not thick enough.

You can experiment by putting a thickness of something (a couple of thicknesses of paper, thin cardboard, etc) in between the bits where the cork is (or should be) and see if that improves it.Go gently. If you press hard you will bend things. Brass can be bent quite easily.

If it is the cork it is possible to bodge it with selotape cunningly folded to the right thickness, retaining a bit of sticky tape to fasten it in without fouling other bits of the mechanism. You need scissors and a pair of tweezers to hold it, position it and make the sticky bit stick to the right bit.

Temporary repairs like this can last for months or years, even...

If it is not the cork but the pad being badly seated it may be best to see a technician. It is more tricky than it looks.

In any case, get yourself a copy of this http://www.shwoodwind.co.uk/Haynes/manuals.htm

Also make the rest of that site a regular browsing area. There is a lot of information about all sorts of stuff to do with saxophones - and some humour.

It will help you to understand how your sax works (there is much more to it that there seems to be) and how to do repairs and adjustments. It will pay for itself if it saves you one unneccessary trip to a repair shop...
 
Last edited:

SopranoSimon

Member
Messages
166
Locality
Darlington
Jbtsax will probably look in later with considerably more expert views...

However, here's what I would do for a get-you-playing-again fix.

A caution with any attempts at adjustment - don't force anything, and try things one step at a time or you won't know which bit has made it better or worse...

Use a light to see if the leak is even all round the pad. Another good way is to use very thin paper as feeler gauges to find out if the pad is evenly seated (or unseated) all round. Put a slip of paper in, press the C button and see how much resistance there is when you try to pull the paper out. If it is fairly even, try the next bit -

If you press the pad that isn't sealing properly without touching the C button, and then gently press the C button you will be able to see how the linkage works and which bit moves which.

I am guessing that the cork at the C end of the linkage is missing, damaged or not thick enough.

You can experiment by putting a thickness of something (a couple of thicknesses of paper, thin cardboard, etc) in between the bits where the cork is (or should be) and see if that improves it.Go gently. If you press hard you will bend things. Brass can be bent quite easily.

If it is the cork it is possible to bodge it with selotape cunningly folded to the right thickness, retaining a bit of sticky tape to fasten it in without fouling other bits of the mechanism. You need scissors and a pair of tweezers to hold it, position it and make the sticky bit stick to the right bit.

Temporary repairs like this can last for months or years, even...

If it is not the cork but the pad being badly seated it may be best to see a technician. It is more tricky than it looks.

In any case, get yourself a copy of this http://www.shwoodwind.co.uk/Haynes/manuals.htm

It will help you to understand how your sax works (there is much more to it that there seems to be) and how to do repairs and adjustments. It will pay for itself if it saves you one unneccessary trip to a repair shop...
Jbtsax will probably look in later with considerably more expert views...

However, here's what I would do for a get-you-playing-again fix.

A caution with any attempts at adjustment - don't force anything, and try things one step at a time or you won't know which bit has made it better or worse...

Use a light to see if the leak is even all round the pad. Another good way is to use very thin paper as feeler gauges to find out if the pad is evenly seated (or unseated) all round. Put a slip of paper in, press the C button and see how much resistance there is when you try to pull the paper out. If it is fairly even, try the next bit -

If you press the pad that isn't sealing properly without touching the C button, and then gently press the C button you will be able to see how the linkage works and which bit moves which.

I am guessing that the cork at the C end of the linkage is missing, damaged or not thick enough.

You can experiment by putting a thickness of something (a couple of thicknesses of paper, thin cardboard, etc) in between the bits where the cork is (or should be) and see if that improves it.Go gently. If you press hard you will bend things. Brass can be bent quite easily.

If it is the cork it is possible to bodge it with selotape cunningly folded to the right thickness, retaining a bit of sticky tape to fasten it in without fouling other bits of the mechanism. You need scissors and a pair of tweezers to hold it, position it and make the sticky bit stick to the right bit.

Temporary repairs like this can last for months or years, even...

If it is not the cork but the pad being badly seated it may be best to see a technician. It is more tricky than it looks.

In any case, get yourself a copy of this http://www.shwoodwind.co.uk/Haynes/manuals.htm

It will help you to understand how your sax works (there is much more to it that there seems to be) and how to do repairs and adjustments. It will pay for itself if it saves you one unneccessary trip to a repair shop...
 

BigMartin

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,958
Locality
Manchester, UK
In any case, get yourself a copy of this http://www.shwoodwind.co.uk/Haynes/manuals.htm

It will help you to understand how your sax works (there is much more to it that there seems to be) and how to do repairs and adjustments. It will pay for itself if it saves you one uneccessary trip to a repair shop...
...and even more so if it means you go to a repair shop instead of trying something too difficult.
 

SopranoSimon

Member
Messages
166
Locality
Darlington
Jbtsax will probably look in later with considerably more expert views...

However, here's what I would do for a get-you-playing-again fix.

A caution with any attempts at adjustment - don't force anything, and try things one step at a time or you won't know which bit has made it better or worse...

Use a light to see if the leak is even all round the pad. Another good way is to use very thin paper as feeler gauges to find out if the pad is evenly seated (or unseated) all round. Put a slip of paper in, press the C button and see how much resistance there is when you try to pull the paper out. If it is fairly even, try the next bit -

If you press the pad that isn't sealing properly without touching the C button, and then gently press the C button you will be able to see how the linkage works and which bit moves which.

I am guessing that the cork at the C end of the linkage is missing, damaged or not thick enough.

You can experiment by putting a thickness of something (a couple of thicknesses of paper, thin cardboard, etc) in between the bits where the cork is (or should be) and see if that improves it.Go gently. If you press hard you will bend things. Brass can be bent quite easily.

If it is the cork it is possible to bodge it with selotape cunningly folded to the right thickness, retaining a bit of sticky tape to fasten it in without fouling other bits of the mechanism. You need scissors and a pair of tweezers to hold it, position it and make the sticky bit stick to the right bit.

Temporary repairs like this can last for months or years, even...

If it is not the cork but the pad being badly seated it may be best to see a technician. It is more tricky than it looks.

In any case, get yourself a copy of this http://www.shwoodwind.co.uk/Haynes/manuals.htm

It will help you to understand how your sax works (there is much more to it that there seems to be) and how to do repairs and adjustments. It will pay for itself if it saves you one unneccessary trip to a repair shop...
hi, i press 2nd finger down on C the main c is closed tightly its just the little pad that goes down at the same time as main c dosnt fully shut... and paper slides out very easily no resistence
 

kernewegor

Bon vivant, raconteur and twit
Messages
1,736
Locality
cocks hill perranporth KERNOW
...and even more so if it means you go to a repair shop instead of trying something too difficult.
Absolutely.

Stephen does advise caution. Like any DIY activity, go cautiously and if there is any chance of causing damage seek expert advice.
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Messages
14,948
Locality
Burnley bb9 9dn
If you don't understand the answer to your question, the simple solution is to take it to a tech. The saxophone is quite a complicated instrument. The soprano mechanism is tiny and hard to fathom even for an experienced player.
 

kernewegor

Bon vivant, raconteur and twit
Messages
1,736
Locality
cocks hill perranporth KERNOW
hi, i press 2nd finger down on C the main c is closed tightly its just the little pad that goes down at the same time as main c dosnt fully shut... and paper slides out very easily no resistence
Try the paper all round the pad.

If it is fairly even, then it is probably the cork, so experiment (gently and carefully) as I described and you may be able to fix it with a temporary (selotape can last years!) repair. Do it under a good light and if you don't have tweezers it is a struggle.

Just don't force anything and bend things.

Be aware that it is possible to bend things by squeezing keys too hard when playing to compensate for leaks, which can end up creating other problems. Some people have very strong fingers....
 

aldevis

Surrealist Contributor.
Cafe Moderator
Messages
12,331
Locality
London
hi, i press 2nd finger down on C the main c is closed tightly its just the little pad that goes down at the same time as main c dosnt fully shut... and paper slides out very easily no resistence

I am sure you can identify the point where the 2nd finger key closes the incriminated pad (I had the same problem on tenor yesterday). A thin piece of cork could temporarily improve it, but it is not the easiest pad to setup.
 

jbtsax

Well-Known Member
Café Supporter
Messages
8,783
Locality
Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
You guys have it covered nicely. I'm going to sit this one out.
 

kernewegor

Bon vivant, raconteur and twit
Messages
1,736
Locality
cocks hill perranporth KERNOW
One final tip: the better the light, the more dazzle from shiny saxophone bits. It can be difficult to see what's wrong, and to see what you are doing when you are fixing it.

Polaroid sunglasses.
 

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