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I wouldn’t be happy with a kissing noise either. I’ve been subbing with the community band the past 5-6 weeks and the guy I sit six feet away from on my left at practice is constantly dealing with a sticky G# and bis Bb (folded bills) and he has this “kissing” noise you speak of. He also swabs and uses a pad saver at the end. The other three sax players don’t seem to have much issue with theirs, at least not at rehearsal.
The deal with pad savers is getting one that doesn’t shed fibers. The fibers that come loose can stick to the pads or tone holes/ rims and cause slight leaks. If the sponge isn’t the right thing for you, maybe kitchen paper (paper towel?) as JimD mentioned would be more useful. Again just make sure to grab a brand that doesn’t shed fibers...you’d actually be leaving excess moisture behind if you used a brand that leaves particles behind. I clean airbnb properties since gigs went away and there’s some brands of paper towels that leave a lot of fibers behind...I hate having to wash windows and mirrors twice 🤣
It is my personal experience that "a kissing sound" always means romance is in the air. History bears this out. That kissing noise many decades ago resulted in heated passions on a young saxophone, and TA DA, the result after 9 months of this noise was the birth of the high F sharp key. This has also occurred on the soprano sax with the birth of the high G key. Left untreated, these hormones will rage throughout your instrument, and soon we will be having the birth of new keys on the neck of the saxophone. As the wise deputy sheriff, Barney Fife said: "Andy, we gotta nip this in the bud." Of course Barney was correct, so be alert of these romantic goings on, and kissing noises, especially when your saxophone is in a dark case, and left to its own devices.
 

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I'm surprised to hear of using naphtha to dry something, I would think that would just displace water, whereas something like methylated spirits or another alcohol based fluid will bond with the water molecules and they'll evaporate with it, leaving no residue.
I don't know much about saxophones, but I know alcohol is what makes water evaporate quickly as each alcohol molecule bonds with two water molecules. Not saying using a petroleum based product is wrong, but it doesn't make much sense to me if a drying action is the goal, so I'm puzzled.
 

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I'm surprised to hear of using naphtha to dry something, I would think that would just displace water, whereas something like methylated spirits or another alcohol based fluid will bond with the water molecules and they'll evaporate with it, leaving no residue.
I don't know much about saxophones, but I know alcohol is what makes water evaporate quickly as each alcohol molecule bonds with two water molecules. Not saying using a petroleum based product is wrong, but it doesn't make much sense to me if a drying action is the goal, so I'm puzzled.
I prefer using Guzzler's Gin. Smoooooooooooth.
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I'm surprised to hear of using naphtha to dry something, I would think that would just displace water, whereas something like methylated spirits or another alcohol based fluid will bond with the water molecules and they'll evaporate with it, leaving no residue.
I don't know much about saxophones, but I know alcohol is what makes water evaporate quickly as each alcohol molecule bonds with two water molecules. Not saying using a petroleum based product is wrong, but it doesn't make much sense to me if a drying action is the goal, so I'm puzzled.
That's just it: drying is not the goal. The goal of the naptha is to dissolve and remove the residue that makes the pads sticky. The procedures described above are done at the start of a playing session, before the pads get wet.

Alcohol tends to dry the pads and destroy the leather.

You're confusing two different procedures being discussed in this thread:
  1. Drying the pads after playing to keep "sprung shut" pads from potentially getting sticky over time as they dry against the tonehole
  2. Applying naptha or otherwise treating dry but sticky pads to remove existing stickiness
 

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Drying is not the goal. The goal of the naptha is to dissolve and remove the residue that makes the pads sticky. The procedures described above are done at the start of a playing session, before the pads get wet.

Alcohol tends to dry the pads and destroy the leather.
Thanks for clearing that up, most of the post deals with cleaning and drying after playing, so I was puzzled about the use of lighter fluid.
 

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Next time my G key sticks, I'll try @mmichel suggestion of naptha on a dollar bill, maybe some printer paper.
I'd suggest sticking to the dollar bill. I'm not sure that using printer paper is a good idea, unless you've got some fancy cotton resume paper or something. The reason dollar bills work so well is that they are very tough (to withstand repeated handling). They are made from a mix of cotton and linen fibers. Regular (wood pulp) paper tends to fall apart when used in this way, especially if you first saturate it with a solvent.
 

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It is my personal experience that "a kissing sound" always means romance is in the air. History bears this out. That kissing noise many decades ago resulted in heated passions on a young saxophone, and TA DA, the result after 9 months of this noise was the birth of the high F sharp key. This has also occurred on the soprano sax with the birth of the high G key. Left untreated, these hormones will rage throughout your instrument, and soon we will be having the birth of new keys on the neck of the saxophone. As the wise deputy sheriff, Barney Fife said: "Andy, we gotta nip this in the bud." Of course Barney was correct, so be alert of these romantic goings on, and kissing noises, especially when your saxophone is in a dark case, and left to its own devices.
I keep my saxophones separate and this has never happened to me. I assume my actions will protect me from this unfortunate occurrence or are you suggesting parthenogenesis? I do need to know.
 

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Parthenogensis usually occurs among lower plants and invertebrate animals, and the saxophone belongs to neither family. Very often these new born keys occur in the spring when saxophones are in heat, and left along in a dark room. There was once a deformed entity known as the C melody sax that was the offspring of the E flat alto sax, and a tenor saxophone, but those offspring did not last long. It was a horrible sight to behold.

Keeping your saxophones separate is a good idea, but always have the top of the instruments facing due north. This helps align the pads in a proper direction, and inhibit any kissing noises late at night in the throes of saxophone passion.
 

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Thank you. Both of my saxes are female so even if kissing occurs there should still be no reproductive events taking place.
 

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actually snakes are very good at this, female snakes produce female offspring with no male intervention.
This is one of the main forms of reproduction used in the US by the invading python species



103010
 

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That is one scary picture.
 

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actually snakes are very good at this, female snakes produce female offspring with no male intervention.
This is one of the main forms of reproduction used in the US by the invading python species



View attachment 103010
There did occur a situation in the 1960's for a Selmer alto making kissing noises with another alto, and the end result of this display of hot passion and hormones was 500 alto exophones being born with a deformed, low A bell. Somehow that breed died out of natural causes, but then a tenor sax and a bass sax had an affair that resulted in mutant baritone saxophones with a longer bell, and a low A key. This offspring is believed to be related to the alto with a low A key, and somehow this new breed has survived and thrived. Beware of kissing noises in the dark.
 

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I'd suggest sticking to the dollar bill.<...snip...>
To me that's the simplest, cheapest, and quickest method. I don't play with the sax much, I play the sax.

I've heard that a $50 bill works even better, but as I gig for a living, I've obviously never seen a $50 bill so I can't verify that ;)

The only downfall about the dollar bill is that you have to remember to take it out. So I made a habit of playing one particular run when I assemble the sax that includes/tests high notes and the G#. If the G# fails or sounds muddy, I take out the dollar bill (or pass the buck).

Insights and incites by Notes
 

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the man or woman who has everything has one of these ( one of the most useless and expensive gadgets), but hey, if you have $39 lying around doing nothing and you want a conversation piece....


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of course don’t forget to buy this (much more expensive) to sanitize you horn with UV ( you can buy other devices at a fraction of the cost!) A LOT BIGGER conversation piece! when was available it was around $125 so a lot to converse about

103048
 

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After many years of happy use my Bis B started to stick down sometimes due to moisture and gunk build up. Some of the palm keys were also getting a bit cruddy and making noise as they opened and unstuck. Here's what fixed it for me:

Q tip and naptha/ lighter fluid to clean the mating surfaces of the pad and tone hole. Generally I crush the end of the Q tip to make it as thin as possible to fit easily under the pad. Lots of delightful green and black residue to be seen at first. Repeat this until Q tip clean, then cut strips from no woven clean room type wipe, wet with naptha, place under pad and gently pull out while applying pressure/friction a couple of times. The results in a clean grease free surface both sides, but due to the nature of the clean room wipe does not leave any fibres behind.

Then the secret ingredient that prevents it happening again soon after is a light dusting of the pad with PTFE powder, applied by brushing a little onto a fresh strip of clean room wipe (which can be reused for many pads), or just applied to the pad directly with a fine brush (which is a bit messier). PFTE is of course non stick, inert and moisture impervious and has made all that "schtick" kissy noise go away, apparently for good. Any that misses the pad is not going to harm anything, and a little goes a long way.


Happily for me G# is never a problem due to the no stick seesaw helper mechanism found on certain German horns.
 

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of curse Jim Schmidt tried never wet

 

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of curse Jim Schmidt tried never wet

I had some gold JS pads installed on one of my flutes years ago, and I love them. He included a small bottle of a black powder to brush on if any keys ever stick. Works great on flute. I will stick with more conventional leather pads on sax. I have the original Shove It that goes inside the sax. Mine is made of wool, and wool wicks water away. The newer ones like the sell now are polyester, and repairmen say not to leave them in the horn. I have no problemo with the wool one I have.

Being old school, and old, I still open my G sharp and E flat keys a few times before playing to make sure they work. I got caught in that trap on shows years ago, and even though I played a G sharp, I got a G, and the conductor thought I was messing up. Lesson learned. No perfect solution. I just look at sticking pads as a feature that we pay extra for.
 

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Nearly all those sporty/ outdoorsy related "wicking" clothes are made of polyester, it wicks just fine and dries faster than wool. I dont think its capable of absorbing very much, so it needs to be given the opportunity to dry out with some airflow around it once its done its job of drawing moisture away from the damp surfaces. I dont know how much contact "stuffits" or pullthrus actually make with the pads up inside the tone hole chimneys. There must be some, but its far from comprehensive I suspect. Better than nothing. The important thing is probably to get a decent one that doesn't leave fibers behind. My usual practice is to try and leave the horn out with the stuffit removed to let it dry when I get home after playing.
 
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