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Discussion Starter #1
HEllo folks,

I figured this might be a good place to post this, as I am guessing a lot of the techs on SOTW check in here! Ok, I have had a mark VI tenor 183,xxx since 1995--I bought it from a local tech who had saved the horn from a local school and overhauled it at that time. Anyhow, I still have all pads from that overhaul remaining. At the 10 year mark I started to think about having an overhaul done, but when the tech took a look he felt there was still life left in the pads and things were still looking and sealing quite well. I have played this horn most of my college and professional career since, it has been played a lot but is holding up remarkably well due to what I feel was my tech's great work on it in the first place. Anyhow, I have grown somewhat disillusioned with the sound of this particular horn over the last few years as my concept has grown and changed, but I have been reluctant to sell this horn for sentimental reasons I suppose. It is an aggressive, somewhat spread sounding horn and I would really like to get more clarity and centered-ness to the sound. I have investigated other necks, and I have a Boesken bare brass neck that I have been playing, but what I have found is it helps in some areas and subtracts in others. The original neck, while it has had some work done to it, still resonates with the horn the best albeit the newer neck adds some depth and complexity but is a little too dense. I am thinking now of perhaps having an overhaul done now; currently the horn has the nylon resonators and I am wondering if it is worthwhile to check out a different pad/resonator option. While I do not believe this will ultimately change the sound of the horn, I am hoping for a more direct response and resonance that maybe something like a metal resonator can give. Would this be a wise option, or should I bite the bullet and consider looking for a different horn entirely? I thought the new neck would solve my issues, but of course it only led to other issues in terms of what I hear and like/dislike. I wonder if messing with pads and resonators at this point would do the same, and at the end of the process I would be out $800 and potentially still not like the horn. Any thoughts would be appreciated...
 

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Forum Contributor 2007-2012, Distinguished SOTW Te
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You could probably sell a VI with a "fresh overhaul" for more than one with an overhaul that is 10 years old, so you might be able to recoup a lot if not all of your overhaul costs, and therefore not be out any cash to give your horn another go-round. I say go for it.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Columnist TSGT(Ret)USAF
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ECM Jazz ...A Musical trip...

There is nothing wrong with your horn or neck or resonators.
You have become used to your horns personal characteristics.
If it was me, I would save the money, and tryout different mouthpiece's or tip opening/reed combinations. To a certain extent,
your horn only relays the sound that comes from your personal embouchure and the mouthpiece/ reed/ tip opening /setup. No matter what you do, it still will be you...but that being said...
The sax has to be air tight.
Replace any leaking pads, use Old English oil (Yellow Oil) on a q-tip on each pad to revitalize the leather pads and increase compression.Your horn is the bee knee's, don't sell it.
Try out different mouthpieces with different materials,(Brass, Bronze, Copper, stainless steel, Rubber, Wood, acrylic, plastic, glass) for new timbre and response.
Experiment with different reed strengths, different brands, and different cuts,
(Javas, Blue box, ZZ's, Lavoz, Alexander, v-16's, rico royals,...
Listen to new and exciting music from people whom you've not checked out before...Chris Potter, Hank Mobley, Charlie Mariano, Ernie Henry, Jan Garbarek, ETC...
Realize that we all get somewhat used to how we sound, and to how our horn plays,
but to the listener it's always new!

Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the heads up, actually King I have been trying out a bunch of stuff in terms of mouthpieces; I am trying to get away from that, actually. What I have found lacking is evident on many different set-ups, thus the focus for me led to neck and now the horn set-up. I don't want to be always trying to tweak things as I know I could always find fault witht whatever it is, but being that its been over 10 years on these pads I figured that might be an interesting way to go and could use it anyhow. Part of me just wants to go back to the stock neck and forget about it, its not the most freeblowing but I played it like that for 11 years so I know how to play it...
 
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