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Discussion Starter #1
Is it me ... or is it my sax strap ? ... or is it a common problem with CMels ?

I have a Martin C Mel and I use the a soprano sax strap - pull it up until I am almost choking, and the mouthpiece fits properly in the mouth. The problem then is that I am fighting with the sax, pushing it away from my body to play.

How do you do it ? Any solutions out there ? I have heard of other putting other strap holders on - higher or lower ?

I am trusting that this is one of the problems that Aquilasax will be solving with their new C-tenor.

W.
 
C

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Exact problem I had with my Alto neckstrap (Neotech) with my Martin C-Mel.
I have pondered putting another loop with a J hook to redistribute the balance
of the sax, but I have yet to try this. Let me know if you find something that works.
 

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Codera

I do not play a C melody sax but.....you may want to look into a codera and possibly lower the sax ring as well.


www.codera.com
Click on Wind Instruments and Tools then Products and ADDjust Balancer.

You can rig a substitue with thin rope between the ring on the sax and a key guard using thick knots along the rope and use a closed hook neckstrap or the sax can fall.

I use a codera on my Buffet Dynaction tenor with a funny neck angle and it makes all the difference.
 

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My method was to solder on another ring about 1.5 inches lower...no longer smashed in the teeth by a rearing metal mouthpiece.
 

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My main horn is a 1926 Conn alto (as seen in my picture). I had my repairman re-solder the neck strap ring 1.5 - 2 inches lower so I wasn't choking myself with the neckstrap. The strap ring height seems to be a common problem with 19teens - twenties era horns.
 

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Make you own neckstrap!

I have noticed that modern neckstraps are too long for many vintage Saxes. I have this problem on my 1926 Buescher True-Tone Bari as well as my True-Tone C-Melody Saxes. I simply made a neckstrap from leather that allows adjustment.

For my bass sax, I used a strap that went over my shoulders and around my chest (no weight on the neck). I made this from a couple of dollars worth of 1 inch nylon web strapping!

Also, the leather and nylon webbing do not stretch, so no constant adjustment of the strap is required!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Saxland said:
I
www.codera.com
Click on Wind Instruments and Tools then Products and ADDjust Balancer.
.
Any other ideas ? the USA phone number states that it is no longer in business and sending an email to the German email link did not solicit any response ! Great idea ... teh ADDJust Balancer .... but poor business practices ...


W.
 

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Modern Straps and Vintage Saxes

I have yet to find a modern neckstrap that works well with C-Melody saxophones, or any of my vintage saxes.

At least for the Buescher True-Tones, I think the problem is that vintage saxes have their neckstrap rings a bit higher than modern saxes so you have to pull the modern strap to strangler position. This is why I started making my own neckstraps from nylon webbing or leather.

I used a Neotech on my True-tone bari sax and had to tie a knot between the adjuster and the clip just to make it fit. Unfortunately, after a bit of playing the Neotech would "relax" and the sax was then too low to play easily. So, I ditched the modern straps and went to the homemade strap. That resolved the problem!

Interestingly, I was looking at beginning Alto and Tenor books at the local Barnes & Noble this weekend and noticed that the pictures used to illustrate the proper position for holding the saxophones showed the neckstraps pulled to the strangle position. Yet, the saxophones were obviously too low for the players as the mouthpieces would be hitting them in the chin rather than the mouth. Thus, with the neckstrap in this position, the players had to have a head down position to reach the mouthpiece. Not a good thing to teach a beginner!
 

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I wonder if your problem might be alleviated by using one of our "Junior" size straps. The Neotech Soft Sax, Classic and Wick-It Sax straps are available in JR sizes. The pad is the same, but the strap section itself is shorter by 1 1/2" at the short end of adjustment and 3" shorter at the long end. (i.e. a regular Soft Sax has an adjustablilty range of 16 1/2" - 21" and the JR is 15" - 18".)

Just a thought.
 

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Saxland said:
I do not play a C melody sax but.....you may want to look into a codera and possibly lower the sax ring as well. www.codera.com
Click on Wind Instruments and Tools then Products and ADDjust Balancer.
I use a codera on my Buffet Dynaction tenor with a funny neck angle and it makes all the difference.
I just got a Codera Addjust and it works really well on a Buescher C-mel. In effect, it lowers the strap ring. This C-mel is much more comfortable to play now. There are something like 9 positions on the product. I use the second to the lowest setting. Eventually, it would be better to add a new ring, but this is a quick fix and will fit more than one horn. My only concern is that the original strap button on the Buescher is so thick that it was hard to put on the Addust. In fact, it made the sides bend out a little, so i wonder if this will stress the plastic and make it weak. I'm going to email the company to ask.
 

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I'm currently experimenting with a couple of short lengths of old metal Meccano, screw-clamped either side of the ring and pointing down with the bottom also clamped together.. Because of the regularly spaced holes, it gives several options, like the old King 'knuckle-duster' multi-ring. Using two strips seems to make it quite sturdy.

Just happened to have a box of old Mecanno around. May just have to put a discrete 'cable tie' at the bottom, around the body, to keep the arrangement parallel to the body - for complete security. I don't find the original playing position a problem, and I seem to have some old slings (I'm an old player..) that work without strangling me - I just don't like getting clouted in the teeth or risk a split lip because of the way the sax swings back, unlike other saxes which hang at more of an angle.
 

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Please explain a little more about Meccano. I've never heard of that product. perhaps it's only in the UK? How are you using it?
 

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Soybean - I can't believe that any boy didn't have a Meccano set, to build mechanical models with, in his developing years. This is Wikipedias description - the mod is off the sax at the moment, but I'll put something back on over the weekend and take some pics.

Mecanno is based around perforated metal strips about 3/8" wide, of varying lengths, and drilled with 3/16" holes at 1/2" intervals.... So there are two positions per inch, and the strips can be doubled/trebled up for strength. I'm sure the dimensions were bigger on the original kits :?

Imagine a bolt thro' the end of the strips and the strap ring, and then the strips running parallel with the back of the sax, offering hook-holes every half-inch ( probably be easier if I take some pics... ;) )
 

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OK, i think i know exactly what you are talking about. We had something similar over here although I haven't seen those sets in years.
 

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Yes, I just read the Wikipedia article, and they DID change the sizes in the 80's - it all went mini-micro when production changed to the Orient. Just a Heath Robinson approach on my part, to the King multi-ring... But it works.

Rowka - yes, I just checked Wikipedia and it seems that maybe Meccano had the patent this side of the Atlantic, and Erector Set had the patent on your side... Guess it all hinged on flanges ;) All down to American over-engineering, but I'm totally eternally grateful to that concept for my indestructible Martin C-Mel with the soldered toneholes !!
 

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I have a Martin cmel also - using a shorter neckstrap is no problem - but yeah - the mpc angle sure is funny.

I had a martin Bb tenor from the same era - same problem - it just feels akward. I play the Cmel resting across my Right knee. Not the best form - but convenient and they only way the mpc angle feels right.
 
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