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Discussion Starter #1
I'm playing on a Selmer Reference 54, and for the first time I've run across a problem: I can't get low Bb to come out at all. Everything responds great, all the way down to B natural, and then Bb comes out at least an octave up. (This isn't user error, considering I can play the whole range on my other horns..)

Looking at the pads they aren't as "flumptuous", as the ones on my Conn, which makes me wonder if theres a leak in my lower register. Is there any way I could diagnose this without having to make a trip to the Tech and run the leak light through it?

[Edit: I've also checked all the screws I can find.]

Thanks,
-Bubba-
 

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My first guess is that the adjustment screw holding the low C# shut has backed off and rolling to the Bb from B is causing the low C# to flub open. But its just a guess. You'd probably be best served to put a leak light in it.
 

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You might also check this. Holding the low Bb key closed press the low B natural key and see if it travels further down. If it does, the linkage that closes the low B when the Bb key is pushed is out of adjustment. You may be able to build up the cork between the keys with a few layers of blue masking tape cut to size until a tech can look at it if that is the problem.
 

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Bell key leaks are generally quite easy to spot by simply looking down the bell.
Sit yourself down and position the horn so that you can look down the bell. With your left hand, finger a low Bb. Place your right hand on top of the bell (with your little finger laid on the bell and your thumb pointing upwards) and use it to help block out any light, bring your head down to your hand and have a peek at the pads.
For best results do this in an unlit room with a window and turn the bell so that the light from the window shines in through the pads.
Don't press the Bb key too hard - keep the pressure light.

While this test won't show up all the varieties of leaks it'll at least highlight the most common ones - leaks to the front or the rear of the pads and leaks due to poor regulation between the B and Bb keys.

For a more thorough test you could use a cigarette paper as a feeler:

http://www.shwoodwind.co.uk/HandyHints/LeakyPads.htm

Regards,
 

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When you close all the keys you should get a nice thunk from everything closing at the right time, Im guessing it could be C# opening a fraction or F# adjustment screw over G# being too loose
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Wow! While looking at the Low Bb/B from the bottom, I've now learned that the low B is sealing when I'm fingering B natural, and then when switching to Bb, the B natural is actually a good 3mm or more off the seal, with the Bb sealing fine.

-Bubba-
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Bubba....you may have lost a felt/cork bumper that is (supposed to be) attached to the little metal tab underneath the low Bb pinky key. Or, it may be bent down a bit. Still, if you don't know what you are doing, (not an accusation, just a possible fact), you should take it to your tech. He/she should be able to do it in no time.....sounds like a simple fix.
Hmm. This could be the case, I don't see any felt or cork underneath the key. Though there is one under the B nat. key. And your exactly right, I'm not a tech at all. I just didn't want to make a long haul to my tech without some kind of idea what I was going to be getting into.

Would anyone venture a guess as to replacing a simple cork or felt in that spot? (or dealing with it being bent if that's the case?)
Trust me, I know throwing prices on things can get a little hairy, and I totally understand prices can fluctuate due to the person working, the area where you are and many other factors.

Thanks a lot,
-Bubba-
 

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Hmm. This could be the case, I don't see any felt or cork underneath the key. Though there is one under the B nat. key.
I imagine by 'key' you mean the part you press with your finger? It is more often called 'touchpiece' ('key' referring to the part with pad on it). In that case, the cork under the B touchpiece is the linakge between B and G# touchpiece, which seems to be there. There should be a cork (or some other material) in the connection between Bb touchpiece and B touchpiece, which sounds like is missing.

Would anyone venture a guess as to replacing a simple cork or felt in that spot? (or dealing with it being bent if that's the case?)
Trust me, I know throwing prices on things can get a little hairy, and I totally understand prices can fluctuate due to the person working, the area where you are and many other factors.
Either gluing a new cork (or other material) or straightening the linkage if it's bend would probably take no more than a few minutes, if not less. If this is really all that is necessary it most likely won't cost much at all. Though I understand some repairers have a minimum price even for something like this. I would probably charge between $0 and $5. Maybe call whoever you are going to and ask approx how much it will cost to repair if this is actually all that is needed. I wouldn't mind giving an estimate for something like this over the phone (explaining that it is an estimate if really only this is needed).

Good luck.
 
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