Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
443 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
There is no question that shellac is a standard adhesive for glueing saxophone pads in.
What about an alternative such as hot melt glue? I searched the titles in this forum section and apparently this hasn't been discussed much.

Holt melt glues normally come in two large varieties:
- EVA, ethylene-vinyl acetate which melts at around 80 deg. Celcius
- Polyamide which melts at a higher temperature, at around 150 deg. Celsius

Any thoughts on using hot melt glues for saxophone repads and please share your experience with different types of glues?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,498 Posts
Some swear by it, others swear at it.

Personally I wouldn't go there, even though I have gone there in the past.

Let the flames begin!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,324 Posts
You can use it for quick fixes without problems but depending on where you live (e.g. humidity etc.) Hot Glue will shrink pretty dramatically and your pads may follow ... I found out the hard way
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru
Joined
·
38,888 Posts
I don’t know where you searched but this is a question almost as old as this forum

There is a VERY large body of threads and even some polls.



https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?72142-shellac-vs-hot-melt-glue
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?104664-The-Official-Shellac-vs-Hot-Glue-Comparison
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?163158-What-techniques-are-used-to-glue-in-sax-pads
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?19165-Hot-glue-used-on-a-pad-replacement
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?5909-Repadding-Is-Hot-Glue-or-Shellac-the-better-choice
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?238569-Hot-glue-application-techniques
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?121317-Repad-hot-glue
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?223082-going-from-hot-glue-back-to-shellac-problems
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?63159-Yamaha-pro-hot-glue-or-shellac
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?214254-Shellac-or-glue-sticks-What-do-you-think-is-best
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?115027-glue-to-fix-pads
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?81483-What-kind-of-glue-to-use
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?1245-Pad-Adhesive

And many many more.

Please search, when you do have a question, on this page to top in the middle where it says Google Custom Search.

https://www.saxontheweb.net

Search NOT just on any page on the top right box (that is not as good as the Google custom search box in the indicated page ).

Don’t feel rebuffed.

Continuing older threads offers very real advantages as opposed to start a new thread.

We have the archives precisely for this reason.

All the people who have participated to old threads will receive an alert and your thread will be published on the last active threads anyway.

Watch these videos



this is a very unorthodox technique meant for the special goldpads by Jim Schmidt but could be used for other pads too.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,027 Posts
There are good techs who use hot melt and good techs who prefer shellac. It all depends on what an individual is used to working with. My person preference (unfortunately) is the $129.60 per dozen Ferree's amber stick shellac. It is what I learned on, and the material I have become familiar with how it handles. I have found that there is better adhesion to the inside of the keycup if it is scored using a scraper as opposed to a slick smooth surface.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
397 Posts
I use shellac so I don’t have to worry about uneven application. Every hot melt I have ever used has been a challenge to get a thin, even application.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru
Joined
·
38,888 Posts
I use shellac so I don’t have to worry about uneven application. Every hot melt I have ever used has been a challenge to get a thin, even application.
then you should read this (from one of the older threads, knowledge is all here in the archives and has been for years)

there are glue pellets which don’t need a gun and distribute as evenly as shellac

I use Shellac sticks and hot glue pellets and like both, but prefer the hot glue slightly because pellets are a bit more comfortable but both don't need a gun or anyting like that (which to me is less comfortable). For everything other than saxophones I use the glue and for saxophones I use both without a real reason for using one and not the other.

ChuBerry47 I understand liquid shellac is mixed with alcohol and you need to wait for it to evaporate or something, basically sounds like a hassle. You should try the sticks and the pellets of glue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,027 Posts
then you should read this (from one of the older threads, knowledge is all here in the archives and has been for years)

there are glue pellets which don’t need a gun and distribute as evenly as shellac
Well yes and no. In my experience, the pellets do a good job in small key cups like those on clarinet and the trill keys on flute. On the larger keys as found on saxophones, not so much. I do play conditions on lots of student saxes with the pads installed using hot glue. In cases where the key cup is heated to try to "manipulate" the pad into seating properly, the hot glue is not very cooperative---certainly not like the proper thickness of a bed of shellac.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
566 Posts
Please search, when you do have a question, on this page to top in the middle where it says Google Custom Search.https://www.saxontheweb.net
thanks for that.
i have read you saying you use the search engine on sotw all the time,and whenever i look on the search area at the top of "this" page,it usually gives me nothing i want.
this one you have identified today works well.
thanks.
 

·
Distinguished Technician & SOTW Columnist. RIP, Yo
Joined
·
17,204 Posts
Important with non-shellac hot-melt: The glue needs to have a high enough "softening" temperature that the pads do not move when in warm environment, eg a car in summer.
(Note that the softening temperature may well be quite a lot lower than the melt temperature. Craft activity glues and guns do not cut the mustard!

Shellacs are not all the same. Some people reckon it does not stick well. I find it does if the metal surface is heated, rather than the glue being heated direct. However in very cold climates shellac may well be unreliably brittle.
Some shellacs are a lot more brittle than others. (AFAIK MusicMedic's "shellac" is not shellac at all)

I use Ferrees' amber shellac for saxophones, because it has not let me down and I like the way it behaves when I use it the way I do.

If I used a different hot-melt, it would be the 3M Scotch-weld 3792Q mentioned above, with the higher temperature gun mentioned, which does meet the higher temperature requirements. I currently use that for case work and re-attaching the bung to "Pad Savers".

I use high temp hot-melt pellets (same from several sources, including MusicMedic) for clarinets. That is because some high quality clarinet pads have a backing that does not stick well to shellac.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru
Joined
·
38,888 Posts
thanks for that.
i have read you saying you use the search engine on sotw all the time,and whenever i look on the search area at the top of "this" page,it usually gives me nothing i want.
this one you have identified today works well.
thanks.
Nice to hear. I have mentioned this link many times before but maybe you have noticed this just now.

( found with the same search engine btw these are just a couple of examples...)

when using the resident search engine don’t use the box on the side but the one at the top center of this page where it says Google custom search.

It gives very different result!

https://www.saxontheweb.net
it VERY much depend where you search.

if you do this on this page (please follow the link) https://www.saxontheweb.net

don’t search on each page on the top right side that search box is not good.

Search where I told you:bluewink:
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,814 Posts
I use the MusicMedic hot melt glue (https://www.bizpacreview.com/2018/1...sletter&utm_medium=BPR Email&utm_campaign=DMS) for all pad applications.......saxophone, clarinet and flute and have ZERO problems or complaints. Regarding application, I heat and apply the glue exactly the way one would apply shellac to a pad. I heat the glue, apply it to the back of the pad and then "flatten" it by sitting it on my bench anvil and slightly compressing it for even distribution. I make sure there are no bubbles and then heat the pad cup while the pad is in to install/seat.
It's all about what you're used to and no matter if it's hot glue or shellac, a poor installation/seating can happen with either vehicle. To each his own....
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
566 Posts
Shellacs are not all the same. Some people reckon it does not stick well.
Some shellacs are a lot more brittle than others. (AFAIK MusicMedic's "shellac" is not shellac at all)
i was taught to make my own shellac sticks from shellac flakes,and have been doing that ever since for the last 25years.
need to make some now!
they do take time to make and as i have a bunch of flakes,will never run out of it.
 

·
Distinguished Technician & SOTW Columnist. RIP, Yo
Joined
·
17,204 Posts
I tried that and found it:
1. very time consuming as you say.
2. More brittle than Ferrees sticks.

I make the sticks a more convenient shape by sawing them in half lengthwise on my bandsaw, and playing a flame on the rough surface to smooth it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,027 Posts
I had much the same experience as Gordon having made shellac sticks from flakes purchased from Ferree's. It is a terribly messy process, and the sticks made this way don't behave the same as the pre-made shellac sticks. The only advantage I can see is the sticks made this way are much less expensive. The regular Ferree's amber shellac sticks cost $129.60 per dozen or $12.20 each. A pound of flakes on the other hand costs $22.50 a pound. The photos below show the method I came up with to "mold" the sticks. The silicone tray is for making ice "sticks" that can fit into the mouth of bottled water.

View attachment 218024 View attachment 218026 View attachment 218028 View attachment 218030
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
TENOR, soprano, alto, baritone
Joined
·
7,452 Posts
I tend toward the traditional in all things saxophone; real cork and felt, etc. but I have had only hot glue for pads for many years. I have never had a properly hot-glued pad pop out on me or cause any other problem no matter how old the pad job got to be. Plus, if a pad did fall out, with the hot glue in the cup it will be easier to put back in on the gig with just a lighter or match. Hot glue is much less prone to de-bond from the pad cup when a wet sax is left in a freezing car for hours. Now, I don't do that kind of thing anymore having learned my lesson many years ago but I'm sure it happens every night somewhere.
I have an overhaul coming up on my MK VI tenor sometime in the next year. I have saved up enough of the original tone boosters with brass screws to have the pads restored to completely original with shellac instead of hot glue, and I think I'm going to do this since it'll probably be the last overhaul I do on it. I've had two brand new MK VI tenors and believe me, once you start changing things they're never like that again. Can shellac make a tangible difference since its hard when cool compared to hot glue which is rubbery? can restoring to original pads/tone boosters with shellac make a difference? I'm willing to bet it can. Whatever, I'm going to try it.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2014
Joined
·
2,600 Posts
I've used both shellac (several kinds) and hot glue (several kinds). I now use low temp hot glue and have had no problems. My oldest repad is now >10 years old and I have had no issues. Are there bubbles behind the pads? Of course, as does every pad with shellac. If that keeps you up at night, then you don't have enough problems in your life.

I've done a bunch of experiments with using just three "dots" of hot glue around the edge of a pad. Sort of like a three legged stool. Three legs can't rock. Did it matter that there wasn't a big gob of glue under the center of the pad? Not acoustically. Not from a performance point of view. The pad and cup was lighter, not having to move a big gob of shellac (which is denser, i.e., heavier than hot glue). Of course, if you can tell which pad is glued with shellac because it is heavier, then you are probably sufficiently clairvoyant to detect bubbles in the shellac.

About once a year I check to see if my pads are still level. If I can see a sliver of light somewhere, I can heat the cup in that area, pull the pad out just in that area using a pin in the side of the pad, let the hot glue cool just the right amount (all an acquired talent, but one that you can obtain in an evening), and gently put the pad back on the tone hole. Sort of a "partial float" and a perfect seal again. The "open time" (between liquid and solid) for shellac seems shorter and more difficult to predict. The longer open time, and the convenience, is why I like hot glue.

Shellac has some advantages. It isn't usually as messy as replacing pads that were attached with hot glue. Shellac is brittle enough to clean out the cups easier (but it is also why pads installed with shellac sometimes just fall out). And hot shellac smells better.

Mark
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top