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Hi all,

I'm quite panic with the sticky pad of my Ref 54. Despite I've brought my horn to dearler and he had used some oil to clean the pads, the problems re-appeared after a week of playing. :(

Do you have any recommendation to resolve this problem (other than changing the pad)? Thanks in advance.
 

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Take a Q-tip and put a very tiny amount of lighter fluid(naphtha) on it and clean the pad. Helps if you take the keys off the horn and do this.

Then apply Runyon pad dope to the pad. Let it dry over night or two nights if necessary and put the horn back together.

I've treated three horns this way and the sticky pad problem never reappeared. My series II alto had horrible problems with sticky pads.
 

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Ok - this one will probably cop a bit of flack but will put it out there anyways, could also be quite a known fix...I was shown this one by one of Australia's leading "old school" sax players as a fix for the old sticky G# key, but he added it also works for other sticky keys. I do this on my saxes about once a year and VERY rarely have the G# stick, the effect seems to last about 12 months.

Get yourself a hold of a paper note ($$) - here in Aus now we only have plastic/polymer notes so you have to go a bit further afield...I carry a Kiwi $5 note in my wallet at the moment in case of emergencies! Put the note in the key and close the pad - contact all around the tone holes. Pull the note out GENTLY. The theory goes - at least as told to me, that the oils/waxes on the money lubricate things, and the slight abrasiveness of the paper takes off any rough sticky bits...

The guy did actually tell me that $100 notes worked the best, dunno if he was winding me up or not...have used other notes without too much difference noticed...

Cheers
Rod
 

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I have a similar problem with a sticking g# key...

And it does seem to be a problem a lot of folks have.

On gigs I always carry a little bottle of "pad life" and some Q-tips...This is some kind of oil my repair tech highly recommended...you just swab the sticking pad with the oil...and this does work every time...

According to my tech...some pads, like g# are prone to sticking because that's where the saliva collects. He also said to avoid sugary and greasy foods well before playing...and not to eat or drink anything but water during the gig either...

Well...that works for practice...but on long gigs, sometimes you have to eat and drink...and that's why I carry the pad life...

A lot of players use "gig dust" on sticking pads...and that probably works too...but I haven't gotten around to trying it yet...

Good luck :D
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks heath, Rod and SaxxMan!
Just hope this problem could be resolved after using your methods.
 

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I took a quick look on the link posted by gary but I didn't see this there (sorry if it has already been said). What my tech suggested to me, which has worked very well when I've done it, is to put lighter fluid on rizla paper. You then put the paper under the pad and press down on the key. I find it much easier to use rizla than a Q-tip. Although, if you're on a gig a Q-tip wouldn't be as messy.
 

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Sticky pads are a real pain in the backside! I've tried several of the suggestions I've researched here on SOTW and my Bb is still sticking. The nuisance on the JK is that you cannot bend the Bb spring in the right direction so you end up with the plane of movement of the pad not being massively affected by making the spring springier. I'm going to get my tech to have one last go at adjusting it and if it doesn't work I'll get a Roo pad for it I suppose.

Good luck with your Reference 54, Reference!
 

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Rodders said:
Ok - this one will probably cop a bit of flack but will put it out there anyways, could also be quite a known fix...I was shown this one by one of Australia's leading "old school" sax players as a fix for the old sticky G# key, but he added it also works for other sticky keys. I do this on my saxes about once a year and VERY rarely have the G# stick, the effect seems to last about 12 months.

Get yourself a hold of a paper note ($$) - here in Aus now we only have plastic/polymer notes so you have to go a bit further afield...I carry a Kiwi $5 note in my wallet at the moment in case of emergencies! Put the note in the key and close the pad - contact all around the tone holes. Pull the note out GENTLY. The theory goes - at least as told to me, that the oils/waxes on the money lubricate things, and the slight abrasiveness of the paper takes off any rough sticky bits...

The guy did actually tell me that $100 notes worked the best, dunno if he was winding me up or not...have used other notes without too much difference noticed...

Cheers
Rod
I keep a ratty, old $1.00 bill (US) folded up in my case and routinely follow Rodders procedure nearly every time I finish a rehearsal or practicie session. I always make sure the G# key isn't stuck before I play, and I've never had a problem with the key sticking while I'm playing. Rodders, I have no idea whether or not the denomimation (or nationality) of the bill matters or not---I was told by the person who advised this that the oldest, nastiest bill I could find would be the best. Easier than messing about with chemicals and Qtips.
Ruth
 

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I'm telling you if you don't want to screw around with having to run a dollar bill under you pads over and over, or cleaning your pads with lighter fluid over and over which is actually bad for the pad as it sucks the oils out of the pad.

Use that Runyon Pad dope, it water proofs the pad. I personally guarantee your pad(s) won't stick any more. I remember seeing a video of David Liebman almost cussing because his G# key kept sticking, he looked like he wanted to throw the horn across the stage. Don't let that happen to you....get the dope.
 

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heath said:
I'm telling you if you don't want to screw around with having to run a dollar bill under you pads over and over, or cleaning your pads with lighter fluid over and over which is actually bad for the pad as it sucks the oils out of the pad.

Use that Runyon Pad dope, it water proofs the pad. I personally guarantee your pad(s) won't stick any more. I remember seeing a video of David Liebman almost cussing because his G# key kept sticking, he looked like he wanted to throw the horn across the stage. Don't let that happen to you....get the dope.
Thanks, Heath. I'm glad to know about that product and I'll keep it in mind, should I develop a problem. I don't have and never have had that difficulty and don't mind periodically wiping the pads (takes all of 10 seconds or so) so the old dollar bill thing works fine for me. And I'm not about to remove the keys---at my skill level, that would surely be courting major disaster!:shock:

Regards, Ruth
 

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A clean linen or hard woven cotton handkerchief works better than bills and doesn't leave more gunk from the bill on the tone hole or pad.
 

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I get good results with an old Italian 1000 lira note. Which has the additional benefit of confering a very mediterranean tone on the sax.
 

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heath said:
...Use that Runyon Pad dope, it water proofs the pad. I personally guarantee your pad(s) won't stick any more. I remember seeing a video of David Liebman almost cussing because his G# key kept sticking, he looked like he wanted to throw the horn across the stage. Don't let that happen to you....get the dope.
Thanks Heath...
you've convinced me too...

I'll get some this weekend and give it a try...
Because even though the "pad life" oil works...I still have to use it every couple of weeks...

But like AltoRuth....I'm not so sure about taking off all the keys...


Actually, I'm 100% certain in my ability to take apart the whole horn...
it's putting it back together again that concerns me...;)

So, will it still be effective without taking off all the keys?...
 

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potiphar said:
I get good results with an old Italian 1000 lira note. Which has the additional benefit of confering a very mediterranean tone on the sax.
Good Idea!! Yet another approach to improving one's tone.:D
 

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Rick Adams said:
Sticky pads are a real pain in the backside! I've tried several of the suggestions I've researched here on SOTW and my Bb is still sticking.
Rick - I was having the same problem when I first got my SX Alto (Tenor doesn't seem to suffer the same) - the paper note thing again worked for me...

Ruth - my Kiwi fiver is starting to get pretty ratty...that would perhaps back up the idea that it's abrasiveness takes the "gunk" that is sticking the pad off...ie older bill, more crinkles rougher texture maybe??

Saintsday - I have a friend that swears by pure silk...doing the same as with the note, but with a small square of pure silk - again all I can guess is that it takes off whatever "gunk" that is making the pad stick.

Cheers
Rod
 

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SaxxMan said:
So, will it still be effective without taking off all the keys?...
I hope so because I a complete idiot with mechnical stuff...

...it looks like you can apply it like you'd apply lighter fluid with a cotton bud.

Rodders, thanks for the thought, but I've already tried paper, lightly sanding the tone hole, lighter fluid and shouting at it. :(
 

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If you don't feel like taking your horn apart and treating all the pads then you can use that pipe cleaner to apply it, but you should leave the keys proped open to let the pad dry for a few days after treatment.

That way you don't end up gunking up the tone holes. The reason I remove all the keys is that it's easier to clean the pads and the tone holes. That way your starting with a clean horn when you give this method a try.
 

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I guess I should also warn people against taking their instrument apart as well. It's easy to lose and strip screws if you don't know what your doing. Also one slip with a little screw driver and you can get a nasty gash or a dinged tone hole or other such problems.
 
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