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Forum Contributor 2012, SOTW Saxophone Whisperer,
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Discussion Starter #1
So - I have always hated measuring tip openings. I have tried several ways of the "Old School" and never felt good about it.

So - I REALLY like the Theo Wanne Tip Measuring Tool - but $150 is a bit much.

So while surfing the web the other night I came across a photo buried in some mouthpiece maker's website (Couldn't find it again or I would reference it) and said - hey I have all the parts to make that!!!

Piece of Plate glass, 4 dowels (approx 7 inches each - however all 4 HAVE to be EXACTLY the same length) 5 Min Epoxy - Use all of that to make a Table.

Now go to http://www.grizzly.com/products/Magnetic-Base-Dial-Indicator-Combo-President-s-Special/G9849 and spend $22.75. All the parts are there however you have to re arrange them a bit and fiddle with some parts and cut the main shaft down - but you get in the end an accurate measurer.

There is some time involved with the set-up - however once carefully aligned, you got your self a great tool.

I will say I used a piece of perfectly FLAT granite to set this all up.

Enjoy the pics!

Charlie



 

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Forum Contributor 2012, SOTW Saxophone Whisperer,
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Discussion Starter #2

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Forum Contributor 2012, SOTW Saxophone Whisperer,
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Discussion Starter #4
More or less - I use my one hand to hold the MPC in place which gives the stability to the table as I measure. I would like to just reiterate that the 4 legs have to be EXACTLY the same length or the table will wobble. A wobbling table means inconstant readings.

I shimmed one of my legs that was just a smidgen off. Having the Flat piece of granite to build on was VERY helpful.

Keep in mind that this is just for tip openings and not facing work. The base I can move to wherever I want as well as the table. Doing that however I would be constantly re-calibrating it.

But... thanks for the compliment Mojo!

Charlie
 

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Forum Contributor 2012, SOTW Saxophone Whisperer,
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Discussion Starter #6
On the base of the dial indicator is a metal shaft which the indicator is mounted to. That mount has a wing nut so I can adjust up and down the whole indicator. Basically I used a Mouthpiece backwards hanging of the edge to find my starting point to raise the indicator to meet the facing.

Admittedly, it does take some time to initially set it up - but it is, it is dead on.

Hope that answers your question avan. If it doesn't, let me know and I will try better to explain.

Charlie
 

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I just stack 2 to 4 feeler gauges till they slide up to the inner side of the tip rail and then measure the combined gauge thickness with a digital caliper. Simple, cheap and effective.
 

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Forum Contributor 2012, SOTW Saxophone Whisperer,
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Discussion Starter #8
A digital caliper is not much less then the dial indicator I listed above.

I use to do it that way, but I never felt great about how my results. I also use to shave down a broken reed's width and slide that under the tip and draw a line on the reed with a pencil at the tip then measure that with the digital calipers. Again, it just never seemed accurate enough to me.

The dowels cost maybe $2. The Glass if you go anywhere they do custom glass work, you can get a scrap pretty much free - or they will cut it to size and smooth the edges for maybe $5 at most. Add another $5 for epoxy. Lets assume you already have a hack saw to cut the main shaft on the base of the dial indicator. Then the $23 for the indicator and base. $35 (roughly) and some time to set it up really isn't that much for something that is more simple and more accurate.

Charlie
 

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How did you get the tip of the dial indicator to come to such a point? Are there alternate tips that come with it? Or did you spin it down on a lathe?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The one that came with the dial indicator could of worked - however, that is one that I aquired a few years ago that I just prefer. I could of made one like it in my lathe was well I guess.
 

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Many years ago I've made a very complex machine to measure tip opening. It was accurate but too expensive and difficult to manage. At this time I use Theo measuring tool, it works great and fast. Also I perfectly see the point where I make the measurement. All the best,

Stan
 

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Hmmm, a very good tool, but what's wrong with a 5/8" thick glass plate with a known uncertainty of 0.2thou and a set of feeler gauges. Or I too much of an old school engineer?
 

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If you compare your measurements of a tip openings by using feeler gauges and a glass plate to measurements by other tip opening gauges, and they compare well, then there is nothing wrong with using them. I find using feelers for tip measurements cumbersome and prone to errors.
 

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If you compare your measurements of a tip openings by using feeler gauges and a glass plate to measurements by other tip opening gauges, and they compare well, then there is nothing wrong with using them. I find using feelers for tip measurements cumbersome and prone to errors.
I very much agree!

For whatever it's worth, PM Woodwind sells a great gauge that's a dial indicator tip type (very much similar to the dial tip indicator gauge at the Wanne site, except a little cheaper), and it works great. Granted, if you're just trying to put something together as cheaply as possible and it's just for measuring tip openings (not for refacing work), the gauge outlined in this thread sounds like a great option (and cheaper than the PM gauge). However, I've found that a small hand held dial tip indicator gauge, such as the PM Woodwind or Theo gauge, is both easy to use and yields consistent results. It's a little tricky to see where the depth indicator is hitting the tip rail with the PM Woodwind gauge, but if you hold it up to the light and look from the side it's easy to line up the depth indicator with the back edge of the tip rail for measurement.
 

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This is all interesting!

I've made a tip gauge from a piece of grenadilla wood shaped like a small tapered wedge with two flat edges. I carefully painted tiny lines of the side of the wedge and measured the thickness of the wedge at each line with a caliper. With a piece of plate glass, the wedge is inserted in the mouthpiece tip and the painted line noted, giving the dimension from the caliper measurements. This is probably less precise than the equipment described here, but it is adequate for my needs.
 

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Hmmm, a very good tool, but what's wrong with a 5/8" thick glass plate with a known uncertainty of 0.2thou and a set of feeler gauges. Or I too much of an old school engineer?
You can't measure a tip opening with a glass gauge, you can only estimate it which is ridiculous. How guys claim to measure openings with a glass gauge is beyond me.

Phil Barone
 

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I just stack 2 to 4 feeler gauges till they slide up to the inner side of the tip rail and then measure the combined gauge thickness with a digital caliper. Simple, cheap and effective.
I do that in the same way and got good results.
Pat
 

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So - I have always hated measuring tip openings. I have tried several ways of the "Old School" and never felt good about it.

So - I REALLY like the Theo Wanne Tip Measuring Tool - but $150 is a bit much.

So while surfing the web the other night I came across a photo buried in some mouthpiece maker's website (Couldn't find it again or I would reference it) and said - hey I have all the parts to make that!!!

Piece of Plate glass, 4 dowels (approx 7 inches each - however all 4 HAVE to be EXACTLY the same length) 5 Min Epoxy - Use all of that to make a Table.

Now go to http://www.grizzly.com/products/Magnetic-Base-Dial-Indicator-Combo-President-s-Special/G9849 and spend $22.75. All the parts are there however you have to re arrange them a bit and fiddle with some parts and cut the main shaft down - but you get in the end an accurate measurer.

There is some time involved with the set-up - however once carefully aligned, you got your self a great tool.

I will say I used a piece of perfectly FLAT granite to set this all up.

Enjoy the pics!

Charlie



This is excellent and so is the Wanne but where do you measure on the tip rail? If you measure on the outside of the rail you get a more open number but if you measure on the inside you get a more closed number depending on if the rail is curved. I measure on the middle but the chances are that the reed hits on the middle anyway, right? Phil Barone
 
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