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Discussion Starter #1
When I press the G sharp key on my VR alto the low B pad on the bell flops closed. When I press the low B key, the pad on the bell closes and opens correctly. Doesn't happen on my Big Bell alto and I Just noticed it today. Looked for a spring knocked loose but everything "seems" to be in place. Anything I can look for or should I take it to my sax repair guy? Any help will be greatly appreciated. I hope I verbalized this enough to make sense. :)
 

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It sounds like the low B return spring is not working. It should be on the B rod, a little below the table. Maybe it has flipped to the wrong side of the hook and you cannot tell that it is not in the right place?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply. When I press the low B key, by itself, the pad opens and closes and it feels like it has spring tension on it. I noticed when I press the low B key, it also activates the G sharp pad. Is it possible that's the tension I feel? What has me stumped is it does not flop closed when I use the low B key. Perplexing. The spring looks to be in the right place. Thanks again.
 

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Hold it up real close to the computer screen so we can diagnose the problem for you. (Sorry, old joke.)

It sounds to me as if the G# touch has been bent and is rubbing against the low B key. If that is the case, pressing the G# could move the B key down with it and if you hold the G# down keep the B key from coming back up. When you press the B key it also lowers the G# key, but when you release it, they both come up together.

How to fix if this is the problem: Examine the key action closely to see where the friction (rubbing) is taking place. Then, using your fingers in the gentlest way possible see if you can pull the G# touch out to where it is supposed to be. You might go a bit too far and leave too big a gap between the G# and the B/C#. If so, carefully push it back a bit.

Occasionally one of the rods holding a roller backs out and touches an adjacent key. Not being able to see the position of the rollers makes it hard to tell if this is the case. Good luck. Hope this helps. BTW that is one of my favorite Cannonball models. The one I like even better is the new "Key Series". :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The G touch is definely not rubbing against the low B key. It moves independently and I can see air between them. I can't tell if a rod has backed out but everything "looks" in place. I laughed out loud when I read your old joke. I worked at a motorcycle dealership and when a customer called about a strange engine noise, we would tell them to rev it up next to the phone. Thanks for your help.
 

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Now we're getting serious. If the B key "flops closed" when pressing the G# key and there is no friction the logical conclusion is the it is the G# spring that is holding the B key open, not its own spring.

1. Make sure the sax is upright.
2. Disengage the spring to the G# key
3. Check the spring on the low B key again. Springs that hold keys open are bent toward the tonehole, springs that hold keys open are bent away from the tonehole.
4. Disengage the low B spring, bend it slightly toward the tonehole and then pull it back to catch the spring cradle. Check to see if it holds the B key open---adjust if needed.
5. Put the G# spring back in place.

To set the correct spring tension, lay the sax on its side and set the spring tension to just barely hold the key open against gravity pulling the key down. More than this will make the pinky keys hard to push. Less than this will allow the key to bounce at the end of its upward movement.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU saxoclese. The low B spring was on the wrong side of the spring cradle. I moved it to the other side and WALLA it's working again. I wonder if I did that when cleaning the sax. Thanks again
 

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And that, boys and girls, is one of the reasons I don't clean my horns unless there's a real solid reason to.
 

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Just couldn't resist. I have been following Saxoclese on SOTW for awhile, and his advice always seems spot on.
 

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Yes, Saxoclese was the 2nd responder to mention that. :=)
I concede. You nailed it first. My problem is I look for the most complicated answer when I should start with the simplest as you did.

P.S. Don't tell my friends at Cannonball I said this but their saxes have a tendency for the bell key springs to come off the cradles. I work on a lot of Cannonballs in my area and I see this a lot. Perhaps the groove needs to be a bit wider or deeper for that diameter of spring. I don't know.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I'm just so thankful to have the collective wisdom of this forum. I don't have a clue what I'm doing (big shock, right?) and with both of you guys chiming in, I was able to muddle through and fix it. Which proves even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now & then.
 

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I'm just so thankful to have the collective wisdom of this forum. I don't have a clue what I'm doing (big shock, right?) and with both of you guys chiming in, I was able to muddle through and fix it. Which proves even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now & then.
I called that "the wisdom of the hive" one time, and my friend thought for a moment and said, "Maybe that's why there are so many son's of B's on the internet". :) Good answer.
 
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