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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone ever heard of or have a template for dissassembly of a sax? Something you could use that is marked for each piece so as you take apart you can keep them in order? I bought the Haynes Saxophone Manual but it doesn't have anything like that in it...
Fester
 

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My repair manual has templates and instructions for making screw boards to keep all of the screw organized, but I've never heard of anything for keys (assuming that's what your talking about). Keeping track of the screws is important because the pivot screws tend to wear in a way that matches their keys. The short rod screws also can get mixed up easily otherwise because they are often close to the same length, but not exactly. If you are worried about keeping track of the order in which you've removed keys, I'd just find a decent sized work area that you can lay the keys out on from left to right as you remove them and then go in reverse order to put them back on.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yeah.... I'm visual so I was imagining something like a two dimensional exploded diagram....I realize that there are differences in C-Mel brands & models over the years they were made (mine is a 1923 Buescher True Tone SN# 139xxx)...
Thanks!
Fester
 

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Really, the best thing to do is take plenty of pictures for future reference before pulling the sax apart (with an emphasis on the upper and lower stack). To the best of my knowledge, there isn't such an exploded diagram for a TT c-mel. But once you get enough experience pulling apart saxes and putting them back together, it becomes second nature.

Another option with rods is just to reinsert them into the key(s) in which they belong. It's an easy way to keep track of rods, and you can also reassemble the upper and lower stack on their respective rods to keep the keys in order if you're worried about remembering what goes where when it comes time to put it back together.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
These are very good suggestions! If no one else comes up with a diagram these may be the way for me to go! So in that case I'd need spring & screw boards to keep them straight, & then plot take down order of the keys for reassembly...I know the photos are a good idea & the replacing the rods I didn’t think of either...only thing is I wanted to be able to clean it without all its appendages so not sure how that would work?
Hey... this is such a great forum....very user friendly!
Thanks
Fester
 

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I'm guessing that instrument techs down thru history were probably self-selected for good visual-spatial memory. If you couldn't put a horn back together just from taking it apart, you were in the wrong line of work and weren't encouraged to continue.

Then again, we didn't used to hire the handicapped, no matter what they were good at. We ought to be more intelligent about such things today.
 

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U ues a one inch thick board, not too large. I draw an outline of a sax,, drill holes half way through the board at the approx. spot the screw or shaft goes on the beast. Then I mrk the name of the key from which the screw or shaft goes to at the area by the hole. As I disassemble each key, I insert the part into the hole so as not to end up trying the wrong shaft on a key. Main stack sections have those long rods but they are pretty obvious as to where they go. You can always take a small square of paper, label the shaft (like RH, LH, low C#,etc) and jab the shaft through the paper to make it easier to find. Places where you can easily get screws/shafts mixed up are with the LH palm/front F parts as they are similar but not always the same. BEFORE you take the horn apart, look at these keys and if one key has the slot sticking too far out or the thread sticking out of the inside end, it may be for another key and mixed up years ago. Same for keys that have the shaft too far into the post.
Taking the horn apart is not a big job....putting it back is harder. There are places on the octave key section that need to be put on in a certain order. One place you need to watch out for on Bueschers is the high E key. On some, you need to have the E on the horn before the LH stack as it goes underneath. My way of padding and assembling a sax is, in order:
RH stack, rear Eb
LH stack
RH side keys, fork F#
Octave section
LH pinky keys (G# first on most)
Low Eb and C
Palm keys (last because the shafts for the Pinky low keys need to have th palm off to have room to slide on).
You will find that you goof up and need to remove some keys you already put on but even after 48 years of doing it, I still slip up as all brands have some differences.
I find the hardest adjustment is the octave set-up as it is also controlled by the G key.
On the Buescher, don't lose that little square pivot that slides with the body octave!!!
Good pads, some cork assortment (get the small one from MusicMedic), hot glue if you are not using snap in pads, contact cement (tube of Elmers' easy to use) and off you go!!!!!
 

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On the Buescher, don't lose that little square pivot that slides with the body octave!!!
I would go further...."Don't lose anything".
Most of this is common sense & has been covered, but I always ensure that all the small swivel screws are replaced in their appropriate locations. I used to thread all the top & lower stack keys onto their rods but now I do not bother.
You will make assembly mistakes on your first attempt but remember that there is only one way in which it all goes together....DO NOT FORCE ANYTHING.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Wow...never too hard to tell the snobs from the regular Joes eh? :)
Thanks for those positive "rules of thumb" replies!... They will come in handy. I am glad I asked the question & appreciate the advice of the experts! Please keep them coming!
Fester
 

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Always remember that your horn has probably not been apart in decades....if ever.
Sometimes the worst & most time consuming job is taking it apart....again, patience, WD 40 & a little heat helps.
 

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I always find that, no matter how well I organise the bits, they seem to move around when I'm not there :dontknow: - so...

The pivot screws go back into the respective pillars immediately after each key is removed, and the rods either get screwed back into place on the body, or put into the bit of tube they've just come out of on the disassembled key.

With the exception of the long upper and lower stack rods, which have the upper and lower stacks threaded back onto them in the correct order (but off the sax) again for safe storage. I have a small collection of wooden trays, each of which then holds all the bits (and neck) for one sax.

That way, if I conveniently forget about a project for a few months (or years [rolleyes]) I can just blow the dust off the tray and start in again...:bluewink:

And, as Bruce mentions above, might be worth a quick list of the sequence it was dis-assembled in, so you can 'reverse engineer' when rebuilding. Nothing worse than jiggling a complete stack into place, then finding it all has to come off again just to get one pesky key under it all. Grrr...
With the advent of digital camera's - or cellphone camera's - it's quite easy (and free !) to document progress, so, if necessary, you can see which bit goes where, as those little grey cells become overloaded :(.

<edit> Having just read all the previous comments (I tend to do that after commenting, naturally...) I note that VintageSaxGuy said most of that already, just proves that 'great minds think alike', eh ?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
All suggestions are welcome & equally appreciated...I'm learning a little bit more from each reply! You folks are great...Thanks
Fester
 

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Nothing worse than jiggling a complete stack into place, then finding it all has to come off again just to get one pesky key under it all. Grrr...


<
It's good to know that I am not the only one who has made this mistake.
And I bet that I will do it again. :evil:
 

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If you need a visual of a Buescher C-melody re-pad being done, Hornfixer did a nice DVD when he repadded mine. He sells his DVDs on e-bay, but he is also a member here and you could PM him to get one.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks! Actually i started to do that and sent him an email, but he replied that
"They are not instructional" so I thought they might not be worth it? .....it be nice to find some instructional ones!
Fester...
 

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Thanks! Actually i started to do that and sent him an email, but he replied that
"They are not instructional" so I thought they might not be worth it? .....it be nice to find some instructional ones!
Fester...
That's a bit wierd, all of Hornfixer's (many !) short saxontheweb posts have a link to his website - I assume to point readers to it - and on this page, [B]http://bandrepair.net/saxophone[/B] there is, amongst other DVD's (quote) -

" Birds Eye View With Narration of a C-Melody Saxophone
This is a 2 hour DVD of Paul Rebuilding a C-Melody Saxophone from tear down to blow testing WITH NARRATION. It includes removing the keys, removing the bell from the body, removing dents, soldering, buffing, lacquering, re-padding, corking, seating the pads and final adjustment. $29.95 "


Why else would you want to spend hours watching this video, if not to pick up 'how to do it' tips ? [rolleyes] Might even pick up a few "how NOT to do it's..." :tsk:

Maybe you should invite Hornfixer to post here and explain exactly what the videos are for ? I can partially understand that they don't teach in detail each specific "how to", so a basic level of skills is assumed, but I think there's a bit of hair-splitting going on somewhere...
 

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I always have a sheet of notepaper handy when I dismantle a saxophone & note the order in which parts are removed. Reassembly is then a matter of reversal.
On the other side of the paper I note the pad sizes....then file the paper for the next time.
 

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Thanks! Actually i started to do that and sent him an email, but he replied that
"They are not instructional" so I thought they might not be worth it? .....it be nice to find some instructional ones!
Fester...
I have a copy of the DVD without the narration, and it shows step-by-step the disassembly, re-padding and re-corking and reassembly of the sax. Although there is no tone hole leveling or key height adjustment in it, it could help with the "pull-it-appart and get-it-together-again without missing or leftover pieces" issue.
As it is a snap-in pad horn, there is no hot glue padding involved either.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Guys...I thought the same thing...why buy and watch it if not for instructional purposes? Perhaps either way, it wouldnt hurt to get it & try it.....Thanks!
Fester
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Is yours the 4 hour one?
I just went to his site and there is both a 2 hr one on C-Melody with narration ($29) and a 4 hour Buescher C-Melody one without narration ($14)
...I am thinking even without narration, its on the actual sax I have and is twice as long (as well was cheaper!)
Fester
 
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