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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
here's a freak accident. I'd been using this new strap with a comfortable leather band, cord, and a simple open metal hook. I assembled the horn, warmed up to make sure everything worked, and left the strap draped over the neck rather than walk around with it on like a geek. later, putting on the horn for the first tune, I hooked a spring on the pad just above right hand F (the pad linked to F#), and busted the spring clean off the hole! basically, every G became F#, which I'm sure someone will joke is fine for a rock gig, but maybe I like my 9ths flat. anyway, since I was close to home I scooted and grabbed another horn. I've since switched to the Jacques Strap, which also doubles as unique neckwear.
 

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If you hadn't been close enough to home to grab a different horn, you could have wedged that key shut with something (maybe a matchbook from the bar, broken reed bits, etc...).

In my student teaching days, I became a bit of an on-the-fly, make-it-work-for-this-period kinda repeair tech - I once "fixed" a missing pivot screw from a bari with a longish splinter of a broken bari reed...

This kind of "repair" has saved my butt a few times on gigs, too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm somewhat resourceful in a pinch, and have used tape, bandaids, paperclips, and rubberbands to make a horn work. thanks for the tip, but as you'll read, the problem wasn't closing the pad, but having it open except when needed, in other words, it had to function!

the spring is meant to hold the key open, and it was already closing against my wishes, which is why it was sounding F# when I'd key G. I found the spring on the floor next to the horn. having broken clean off, the remainder was still in the hole, but I couldn't get the piece out. even if I could, what was left of the spring wouldn't have reached anyway.

if I hadn't been so close to home and a backup, I might have tried a rubber band to keep it open. the episode will likely cause me to take the backup with me!
 

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When I was in 6th grade the spring on my Bb bis key broke. Being "mechanically inclined" as I have always liked to call myself, I cut a piece of wire of a spiral notebook and wedged it between the pearl and the main body. When something else went wrong and it had to go to the shop, the technician was not impressed. That same horn now has a screw that's been replaced by a paperclip. Amazingly, it's the same paperclip I bent and shoved in there 5 or 6 years ago. I can't find screws for a 195X Vito so I did the next best thing, and it still works like a charm. It also has bent posts all over and the pads are turning dark brown, but I haven't noticed any leaks. I used to use a gig bag and my sister decided to jump on it when she was young; luckily I have a metal guard for the top of the body, not one of those "newfangled plastic ones", and it's only bent a little. One of the mounts for the keyguard on the bell keys (which are on the left side I might add) ripped clean off and another screw is missing and another is the wrong size. Also the soldered peice that holds the bell in place lost its hold on the body so the bell wiggles a little. I can't think of any other problems off the top of my head, but this is the horn I play with now. God I love rigging things.
 
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