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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For Christmas, I received the Key Leaves (as pictured below) as gifts from family (by my request), one each for my soprano saxophones (Conn NW I and Yana SC991, both curvies).

Well, I don't like to be negative, but these items needs some improvement:
  • First, it is hard to place the plastic pieces between the tone hole and pad/key. As I read the instructions, one is directed to "sand down" the green plastic nipple that goes against the pad or resonator on the pad, if the fit is too tight. This is a non starter for me...I don't want to spend my time sanding plastic down....just want it to work without mods.
  • Second, and maybe this is because I have curved sopranos, but it is hard to fit the G# and the Eb with the length of string that ties the two plastic pieces together. Now, this could easily be fixed, I could cut the provided string, add new string and make it longer (or use for individual tone holes). But again, I don't want to spend that much time with this...I mean, I could just stick some small pieces of printer paper between the pad and chimneys on my G#, low C# and Eb and be done.
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So, you're assuming that with all the different brands and vintages of soprano saxophones out there this product should fit all of them? Not gonna happen. I could literally do the modifications you've mentioned in about 15 minutes, and then once it's done, it's done.
 

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Agree with Reet. I use these on my soprano and it helped preventing sticky pads. The step of sanding down to fit took seconds to set it up. After that they slide in and out easily.

If you want to use paper, I'd recommend cigarette paper rather than printer paper. They are thiner and more malleable while being also more slippery, not going to stick. That's what I used before I switched to the KeyLeaves on my more problematic soprano pads.
 

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I didn’t like how these fit my Yanagisawa S992 (and Rulon even sent me the new version to try, as I’d gotten one of the last of the first design). Too hard to get them into place with my cup and pad clearances. I really like the other design and use it on all of my other horns, and went back to using one of those on the soprano as well; it’s also a bit awkward but doesn’t impinge on pads in any way.
 

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I didn’t like how these fit my Yanagisawa S992 (and Rulon even sent me the new version to try, as I’d gotten one of the last of the first design). Too hard to get them into place with my cup and pad clearances. I really like the other design and use it on all of my other horns, and went back to using one of those on the soprano as well; it’s also a bit awkward but doesn’t impinge on pads in any way.
I didn't know there were an old and a new designs? What's the difference please?
 

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I use the sop. Key leaves on my Yany S901 and S880 with no issues. I don’t believe I made any adjustments other than swap out the plastic piece to better fit my tone holes.
 

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Why can't one use the "regular" Key Leaves on a soprano? The one with the two little bean-shaped things that go under the Eb and C# key arms. I don't like the idea of something pushing on the resonator of the pad like that... If the pad is installed correctly (i.e. with enough shellac or glue behind it) it would probably be OK, but factory pad jobs are notorious for using minimal amounts of adhesive behind the pad. And some techs are just as bad. I'm afraid it would distort the pad enough to destroy the seat.

Maybe I'm wrong, this is really just a question rather than a statement, but I'm curious.
 

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I think I agree with the OP.

These are $20, for something really simple (i.e., you can easily make your own key leaves-style "shims" if you're willing to put in a little work). To pay that (for the convenience) and then have to take a file to them? No thanks.
 

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Emilio told me 40 years ago to just put a business card under the low C sharp to keep it open after I’m done playing, and I’ve never had to worry about a sticky G#.
It keeps the G sharp key open. 40 years of doing it and it works like a charm.
 

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I didn't know there were an old and a new designs? What's the difference please?
I’ll take a side-by-side picture when I have a spare moment (possibly tomorrow). Again, love the concept and use the other kind on my other saxes; the two soprano designs just didn’t work for my specific setup. (And, yeah, a business card or cork wedges or probably lots of other things accomplish the same goal…)
 

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I think I agree with the OP.

These are $20, for something really simple (i.e., you can easily make your own key leaves-style "shims" if you're willing to put in a little work). To pay that (for the convenience) and then have to take a file to them? No thanks.
true, it's simple but also clever with the dimple that pushes against the resonator, not touching the pad rim, plus the adhesive pad on the bottom (not seen in the picture) that keeps it in place. many 'convenient' products can be easily hand made. it's a question of how much you value your time making them vs just paying for it.
 

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I do not want anything touching the pad or resonator. I thought that you shim the arms and not the pads, You can buy silicon blocks and then just cut them to shape. $9 - for stacking blocks for kids (would make enough shims for 20 saxophones) or just steal an ice cube or popsicle molds from the kitchen and blame the dog. It is DYI though and may not work for everyone
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So, you're assuming that with all the different brands and vintages of soprano saxophones out there this product should fit all of them? Not gonna happen. I could literally do the modifications you've mentioned in about 15 minutes, and then once it's done, it's done.
Well, I would assume a Yanagisawa at least. I do get your point, and that I could mod it to make it work. But for $20 I would expect it to just work.
 

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Well, I would assume a Yanagisawa at least. I do get your point, and that I could mod it to make it work. But for $20 I would expect it to just work.
These are made to be universally adjustable to all sizes of horns, as well as different key heights. By design the dimple is oversized to the larger horns and will likely require a bit of shaving down, which again takes 10 seconds to do with the sandpaper supplied in the package.

I guess this must indeed not be a product for you then.
 

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I didn't know there were an old and a new designs? What's the difference please?
Here's a picture of the three designs with my S992. The ones made for the bigger horns are wedged into the C# and Eb key cups here, while on the carpet you can see the original soprano design on left and the new design on the right (the smaller one of each pair shows the side with the bump that touches the resonator, the larger one is flipped over showing the side that fits into the tonehole and has a raised area to keep it from sliding around). The new soprano design has harder, thinner plastic, plus additional inserts you can swap out to get the best fit for your toneholes.

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For me, even after filing down the bump almost flat, it was still too easy to drag the bump across the leather of the pad while inserting or removing the key leaf, especially on that horn's Eb. They fit slightly better in an old Woodwind Co. soprano I have as a backup. The big chunky ones work fine and I use them on all of my horns, as they have completely eliminated any sticking of those pads.
 

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For Christmas, I received the Key Leaves (as pictured below) as gifts from family (by my request), one each for my soprano saxophones (Conn NW I and Yana SC991, both curvies).

Well, I don't like to be negative, but these items needs some improvement:
  • First, it is hard to place the plastic pieces between the tone hole and pad/key. As I read the instructions, one is directed to "sand down" the green plastic nipple that goes against the pad or resonator on the pad, if the fit is too tight. This is a non starter for me...I don't want to spend my time sanding plastic down....just want it to work without mods.
  • Second, and maybe this is because I have curved sopranos, but it is hard to fit the G# and the Eb with the length of string that ties the two plastic pieces together. Now, this could easily be fixed, I could cut the provided string, add new string and make it longer (or use for individual tone holes). But again, I don't want to spend that much time with this...I mean, I could just stick some small pieces of printer paper between the pad and chimneys on my G#, low C# and Eb and be done.
View attachment 117685
For Christmas, I received the Key Leaves (as pictured below) as gifts from family (by my request), one each for my soprano saxophones (Conn NW I and Yana SC991, both curvies).

Well, I don't like to be negative, but these items needs some improvement:
  • First, it is hard to place the plastic pieces between the tone hole and pad/key. As I read the instructions, one is directed to "sand down" the green plastic nipple that goes against the pad or resonator on the pad, if the fit is too tight. This is a non starter for me...I don't want to spend my time sanding plastic down....just want it to work without mods.
  • Second, and maybe this is because I have curved sopranos, but it is hard to fit the G# and the Eb with the length of string that ties the two plastic pieces together. Now, this could easily be fixed, I could cut the provided string, add new string and make it longer (or use for individual tone holes). But again, I don't want to spend that much time with this...I mean, I could just stick some small pieces of printer paper between the pad and chimneys on my G#, low C# and Eb and be done.
View attachment 117685
For Christmas, I received the Key Leaves (as pictured below) as gifts from family (by my request), one each for my soprano saxophones (Conn NW I and Yana SC991, both curvies).

Well, I don't like to be negative, but these items needs some improvement:
  • First, it is hard to place the plastic pieces between the tone hole and pad/key. As I read the instructions, one is directed to "sand down" the green plastic nipple that goes against the pad or resonator on the pad, if the fit is too tight. This is a non starter for me...I don't want to spend my time sanding plastic down....just want it to work without mods.
  • Second, and maybe this is because I have curved sopranos, but it is hard to fit the G# and the Eb with the length of string that ties the two plastic pieces together. Now, this could easily be fixed, I could cut the provided string, add new string and make it longer (or use for individual tone holes). But again, I don't want to spend that much time with this...I mean, I could just stick some small pieces of printer paper between the pad and chimneys on my G#, low C# and Eb and be done.
View attachment 117685
If you haven't figured it out, there is already enough useless plastic crap in this world. Why encourage more production? Look around you. There must be a myriad of pencil erasers and goofy little kids toys that can be chopped up, sliced and diced into a useful shapes to meet your needs. String them all together with... gee... I don't know. String? Rubber bands?
 

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You sexy saxophonist are full of high tech ingenuity.
I cut/shaped a plastic reed holder and wraped electrical tape around it.
 

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Emilio told me 40 years ago to just put a business card under the low C sharp to keep it open after I’m done playing, and I’ve never had to worry about a sticky G#.
It keeps the G sharp key open. 40 years of doing it and it works like a charm.
How much for the vintage business card? I tried a modern one, but the tone was way too bright.
 
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