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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I have a '62 buescher aristocrat and planning to take it in to a tech soon for general maintenance. The neck that came with it suspiciously may not be the original neck, and the notes above D2 are sharp. I've since stuck on a bundy neck (late '80's vintage) which corrected the intonation.
I actually prefer the tone from the first neck over the bundy. Can techs adjust the neck to correct intonation? If so how do they do it? Also, are there other types of neck that are compatible with a '62 buescher? Thanks!
 

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A tech can indeed modify a neck, but to do so successfully in order to take care of intonation issues would take a more than competent tech. A neck can be lengthened or shortened. The position of the octave pip can be changed. It would be extremely difficult to alter the bore as it is fixed at either end by needing to fit the tenon receiver at one end and the mouthpiece at the other.

It is possible to insert some kind of filler to reduce the bore dimensions, but very hard to do "scientifically", it's more of a trial and error process and if (by some miracle) it sorts out the intonation, there's no guarantee the sound won't be compromised.
 

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Sure. See here:
The intonations issues are due to a wrong octave hole position on the neck... it's quite easy to modify the neck and change the hole position, if you have a really good technician.
This is probably the easiest thing to fix, i should have mentioned that above.

First though, try playing from D2 and upwards without the octave key: if the intonation is OK like that, that's a very good indication that here is your problem.
 

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I've since stuck on a bundy neck (late '80's vintage) which corrected the intonation... I actually prefer the tone from the first neck over the bundy.
There isn't some sort of stigma in using a "Bundy" neck which might have you suspect you prefer the tone of the original neck, is there? Have you tried recording yourself using both necks? Bundy saxophones are basically Aristocrats and that's why you're getting better results with intonation with the Bundy neck. I'd suggest trying a different mouthpiece to see if you can get a more preferred response using the Bundy neck. Adjusting necks for better intonation is a specialty, and there aren't really a lot of folks known for it. There are also a lot of variables involved; least of which is how the particular player blows and what mouthpiece they're using. Now techs messing necks up... well, there are a few of those known.
 

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There isn't some sort of stigma in using a "Bundy" neck which might have you suspect you prefer the tone of the original neck, is there? Have you tried recording yourself using both necks? Bundy saxophones are basically Aristocrats and that's why you're getting better results with intonation with the Bundy neck. I'd suggest trying a different mouthpiece to see if you can get a more preferred response using the Bundy neck. Adjusting necks for better intonation is a specialty, and there aren't really a lot of folks known for it. There are also a lot of variables involved; least of which is how the particular player blows and what mouthpiece they're using. Now techs messing necks up... well, there are a few of those known.
Great advice.

I agree withy Grumps, without any preconceived notions of it being a Bundy you may well like it. See if you can somehow engineer a blindfold test, ie get a buddy to swap necks and just play a few notes in the lower register so you don't notice any intonation issues and see what you really prefer.
 

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I have a 50's Buescher 140 that had some dings in the neck. It played OK. I took it to my tech and he rolled some balls in it and worked it over. It seemed to be slightly larger in the middle after that. Whatever happened it played and sounded way better with better intonation and altissimo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi, thanks a lot for your help and insight! It sounds like adjusting a neck for intonation is more work that it's worth for this neck, I might as well just buy a new neck in that case. But I think I'll stick with the Bundy neck and ask if he can work out some kinks (pull down, a couple of dings). Maybe that'll help it sound its best. I'll try the playing about D2 without the octave key too.

The neck in question is not the original Buescher, it came with the horn from lord know where. It may be crappier than the Bundy but I like the tone out of it.

Again, thanks so much I appreciate your help!
 

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"The neck in question is not the original Buescher, it came with the horn from lord know where."

The original is probably being used as a bong.
Keep your necks with you during gig breaks. :)
 

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There's a guy that specializes in modifying Buescher necks. I've seen the threads on this before. He can make the "bad" True Tone necks into "good" ones. A "bad" True Tone neck may be what you have. Look in the Buescher subsection.
 

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Ferrees sells a row of graduated dent balls mounted on a flexible rod, to shove up a neck to "improve" its bore. Goodson inspired, if I recall correctly. One size fits all???!
 

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If the OP will contact Jicaino. He can probably tell the OP who the guy is that specializes in the True Tone necks.
 

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I think the guy you're thinking of is Mark Aronson, but he'll require that you ship him the horn with the neck. But as the neck that came with the horn may not even be a Buescher neck, I'm not so sure he could make it work any better. If a picture can be posted of the neck that came with the horn, I'm sure someone could identify it.
 

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If the only problem with the intonation on the horn is that D2 and above are sharp, you can modify the neck yourself. Stick some tape about 1/2" wide and 1" long in the end of the neck. Make sure the neck is dry when you do so the tape (use painters tape) will stick. You will need to use about 3-5 layers to lower the pitch of those notes about 20 cents.

That said, although this will lower your sharp notes, I bet the neck taper is not the problem and there is another issue that is causing the problem; such as key heights. If your low B and Bb are also sharp, key heights are most likely the problem.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
If the only problem with the intonation on the horn is that D2 and above are sharp, you can modify the neck yourself. Stick some tape about 1/2" wide and 1" long in the end of the neck. Make sure the neck is dry when you do so the tape (use painters tape) will stick. You will need to use about 3-5 layers to lower the pitch of those notes about 20 cents.

That said, although this will lower your sharp notes, I bet the neck taper is not the problem and there is another issue that is causing the problem; such as key heights. If your low B and Bb are also sharp, key heights are most likely the problem.

Good luck!
Thank you. On the tuner it's 20-30 cent sharper above d2, and pretty even below. I just dropped off the sax and 2 necks for maintenance and will get them back later this week. I'll let you know of the results!
 

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Madhag, if your tone production's good, most likely the older neck is not original or has been significantly damaged. I think if you post pictures, someone can likely tell you for sure.

You have a number of options, as far as trying to get a deeper and more complex tone than the Bundy neck will yield, but the best one is to try and find an original, pre-Selmer takeover Aristocrat neck; Big B era or earlier is probably wisest. You can also play around with TT necks, but you will find quite a bit of variance between TT necks intonationally, most likely, depending on neck model.
 

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If the only problem with the intonation on the horn is that D2 and above are sharp, you can modify the neck yourself. Stick some tape about 1/2" wide and 1" long in the end of the neck. Make sure the neck is dry when you do so the tape (use painters tape) will stick. You will need to use about 3-5 layers to lower the pitch of those notes about 20 cents.

That said, although this will lower your sharp notes, I bet the neck taper is not the problem and there is another issue that is causing the problem; such as key heights. If your low B and Bb are also sharp, key heights are most likely the problem.

Good luck!
Curt, in the tenon end of the neck?
 

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The liner usually goes in the small end. Don't know why I said 1" long it would need to be longer for that many notes. The liner I described above would work best for A2 and above. Again, I doubt the neck is the problem. Especially for the sharpness around D-G.
 
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