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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I love snaps. I can't understand why in hell people don't like them. As a matter of fact, a horn that comes in for a complete overhaul and has snaps, I take off 25% of my regular price.

Now one thing that kind of pisses me about them snaps is that you cannot choose resonator sizes. I've turned custom snaps in the lathe, using different materials and experimenting with different shapes and sizes. It's a major pain in the butt.

Not to mention, I don't know if given the relative undersize of the snap on resonators, (very undersize in larger horns) or what, the keycup centering over the tone holes starts to get all over the place on tenors and baris. Altos are kind of still fine. This also reduces the size of the resonator that you can concentrically turn on a lathe.

So what do you do when you want to choose larger resonators? Just chucked a set of snaps in my lathe and reduced the thickness of the domed part to almost paper thin. Then coated the resonator side in leadfree trieutectic solder. Then removed the rivets on Pisoni seamless domed resonators (they're nickel plated brass and they have more or less the same shape as a snap on reso) and soldered the snap stump behind the pisoni deflector.

I could enlargen every resonator, even the E and low C# key wich were really off centre.

Playtested a little and man... WOW! my TH&C tenor feels even thicker than before, not so much of a change in tone, but the response is amazing. And I find the intonation has kind of improved. I'll play more tomorrow, but I'm really happy. Got to keep snaps and use the size of resonator I wanted, plus the increased weight on the keys feels really nice to me.
 

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That sounds promising...but you're going to leave us hanging without pictures? :mrgreen:

I'm partial to snaps as well, so it would be interesting to have other resonator options while still utilizing the original snaps (more or less).
 

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Indistinguishable Resident Buescher Bigot and Foru
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FWIW, my Sax.Info calendar tells me that Monday is 90th anniversary of the patent for the Buescher Snap-In pad.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
OK, it's really something else. I have playtested the horn extensively now and it's amazing. Sorry about the pictures, it was a thing that I thought of doing like in the last 30 minutes of shop time yesterday and I didn't have my camera with me. It ended up being a little more than 30 minutes, more like 45 min / 1 hour. I replaced palm F 10mm palm Eb 12mm palm D 12mm palm E 9mm B2 with 22mm side C 20mm A 20mm side Bb 16mm G 24mm aux F# 20mm F 28mm E 24mm D 32mm Eb 24mm C 32mm C# 28mm B and Bb 32 mm.

gained dynamic range and response, intonation is even more locked on than before, gained no brilliance, but "punch", as in core (not resigning the nicer spread bueschers have) and the lower end, wich is killer on bueschers, is even sultrier than before. I'm so happy! can't wait to play today's rehearsals and the gig I have this evening.

The nice part about using the pisoni domed is that they "dig in" the pad better, leaving a nicer flatter look to the pad and while I haven't measured this effectively, just the visual of the pad makes you realize the horn has gained volume inside (the pad being flatter and the reso lying even more into the pad surface)

Horn was sealing 100% before the modification so I can relate the changes to just resonators and not a single seal/seating issue. It feels really nice now. And I got to keep my beloved snaps!
 

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The snap nipple is soft soldered to the pad cup. On the off-centered pad cups, you can move it to the optimal position in order to use a larger resonator, and re-punch the pad. The centering on the Buescher soprano (curved) is atrocious I found. I had to cut 4 pad cup arms to make them center acceptably.
 

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Forum Contributor 2012, SOTW Saxophone Whisperer,
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The snap nipple is soft soldered to the pad cup.
That is only true on some of the earlier Bueschers. Later ones are silver soldered.

Charlie
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
+1 Charlie. soft soldered snaps are either retrofit old horns or pre series III True Tones.
 

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A before and after recording would be nice to see if others besides the player can tell the difference. The great thing about snap in resos is that they can be quickly changed without removing and reinstalling the pads.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I don't think that there's a huge difference to be noticed. I mean, it sure makes a difference for the player, but for the audience, I believe that a reed can have more incidence as far as tonal changes appreciation goes.
 

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I don't think that there's a huge difference to be noticed. I mean, it sure makes a difference for the player, but for the audience, I believe that a reed can have more incidence as far as tonal changes appreciation goes.
If you could A/B the same horn, with/without, instantly, the listening audience would certainly notice a difference, beyond their perception of the player's reaction to the improvement itself. In the end however, the player's perception is sufficient justification, without doubt, but once again, only the developed player will really be able to fully appreciate the difference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
my point precisely. so +1. My wife told me "you did something to the horn" when I played the first song on this eves gig. She's certainly my outside of my head reference for this kind of matters.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
BTW before the slightly domed resonators I tried the thin oversize discs. I found them way more brilliant than I desire, all of the other changes being almost the same. The only thing different was the flat discs felt as if the sound were about to break at any dynamic range, kind of like a "glassy" tone.
 

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BTW before the slightly domed resonators I tried the thin oversize discs. I found them way more brilliant than I desire, all of the other changes being almost the same. The only thing different was the flat discs felt as if the sound were about to break at any dynamic range, kind of like a "glassy" tone.
I'd be inclined to describe the "glassy" character as an indicator of too much resonator surface. Are you sure the 2 sets of resonators were identically sized?
 

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If you could A/B the same horn, with/without, instantly, the listening audience would certainly notice a difference, beyond their perception of the player's reaction to the improvement itself. In the end however, the player's perception is sufficient justification, without doubt, but once again, only the developed player will really be able to fully appreciate the difference.
This is my point. The "A" recording could be made and then 30 - 45 minutes later with the resonators swapped out the "B" recording could be made of the identical musical content recorded under the same controlled conditions. Skilled listeners to a quality recording could then A/B the same horn through the medium of the recordings and verify or discount these claims as the case may be. It would not be that difficult to do. The listeners would not be told what changes if any were made to the saxophone. The recordings could be then played in a mixed sequence such as A/B, B/B, B/A, A/A and the listeners then asked to compare the first and second recordings of each pair and describe the difference, if any, that they heard.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
This is my point. The "A" recording could be made and then 30 - 45 minutes later with the resonators swapped out the "B" recording could be made of the identical musical content recorded under the same controlled conditions. Skilled listeners to a quality recording could then A/B the same horn through the medium of the recordings and verify or discount these claims as the case may be. It would not be that difficult to do. The listeners would not be told what changes if any were made to the saxophone. The recordings could be then played in a mixed sequence such as A/B, B/B, B/A, A/A and the listeners then asked to compare the first and second recordings of each pair and describe the difference, if any, that they heard.
JBT yes it could be done easy, and I may bite the bullet and do that sometime. In the moment I was doing this is was just for my horn, not for a customer, and I'm not really interested on posing as an authority on anything so I thought I'd just share. I turned them snaps flat and reinstalled.Tried the horn. Removed the snaps, soldered the flat brass discs, replaced them, tried the horn. Removed the flat snaps and desoldered the flat brass discs, soldered the domed brass resonators, replaced snaps and retried.

The "tone" is more or less the same. The response is nowhere near what it used to be. I liked the flattened snaps in OEM sizes, and the domed resonators in oversize. What I note is that I don't have to overbite when I want the tone to get cutting, meaning, I can rely more on airstream and how I "put the air thru the horn" to get different coloratures out of it.

I doubt that an audience that's not familiar with my playing will note any difference at all, since my sheddin on the horn takes place over any setup difference anyways. A while back I posted soundclips of me playing a bunch of different soprano pieces and they were radically different and the tone I got was surprisingly similar on all of them. No one could guess or educately estimate what kind of chamber shape or other nuances I was playing on 2 random set of short clips.

Interesting. Any theories? How it disperses the sound at the open tone hole? Try a concave dome reso?
Never tried a concaved reso... food for thought! I think that the difference has to do with.... shape? you know, like the ribbin' inside good acoustic boxes? I radiused the edge of the flat resos so no edge would be there.
 
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