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Hi all. I am a full time repairman with 40 years experience and this one really has me stumped. Hoping someone can help, because it's driving me nuts.

This horn plays like the octave pad is missing--high end fine, but can't get below G in the lower register without a lot of work. The octave mechanism is fine, there are no leaks around the octave vents, every pad on the horn is seating perfectly, it is not a weird adjustment where hitting a lower key opens a higher one that it shouldn't, there are no cracks in the neck, no leaks in the solder around the neck socket, it has a new neck cork. I have run a light through the horn and the neck in a totally darkened room and can't find a leak anywhere. The mouthpiece is the same one I've used to test play 100's and 100's of horns over the years. It seems to be the right neck for the horn and it fits snugly.

Any ideas? I have never seen anything like it. Could it just be an unplayable horn?

This forum has helped in the past. Thanks in advance if anyone has an idea.
 

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Is it possible the reeds are too strong for the player?

It sounds strange, but it was happening with a tenor player in my community band this week so it's fresh in my mind.

Sent from my LGUS997 using Tapatalk
 

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Are the tone holes soldered???
I assume you are using a suction test to test the neck, not just a light. and that the neck tenon is a firm fit while the clamp is loose.
Suction test on soldering of neck socket???
Wick a liquid, say loctite, around the octave vents in case a leak is not visible???
 

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From the description of the symptoms there has to be a leak somewhere in the air column. I would look again at the G#, side Bb area if the low register down to G responds as it should, but notes lower than that do not. I have found elusive leaks caused by keys that are loose on their hinge rods that have some lateral movement of the keycup. Sometimes it closes on the pad seat and sometimes it misses causing a leak. Side keys and palm keys are the usual suspects. How deep are the seats in the pads? In my experience it is difficult to spot leaks when the seats are deep, as you just can't see down in the "trench". One of my more elusive leaks was a small channel under the neck cork at the seam. I found that only by accident when a drop of moisture appeared at the back of the cork. Occasionally I find a front F mechanism that just barely keeps the F palm key from seating all the way. To follow up on what Gordon suggested a "neck leak isolator" is an invaluable tool to make sure the neck tenon is completely airtight. Necks can feel "snug" and still leak if the tenon is slightly oval shaped, or if there is an air bubble below the slot the tightening screw closes.

I hope this doesn't sound condescending going through this check list. I'm sure you know most if not all these things already. I just wanted to share my experience with leaks that avoid detection. I can tell you it will be at the last place you look. :)

Good luck. Let us know what you find.
 

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From the description of the symptoms there has to be a leak somewhere in the air column. I would look again at the G#, side Bb area if the low register down to G responds as it should, but notes lower than that do not. I have found elusive leaks caused by keys that are loose on their hinge rods that have some lateral movement of the keycup. Sometimes it closes on the pad seat and sometimes it misses causing a leak. Side keys and palm keys are the usual suspects. How deep are the seats in the pads? In my experience it is difficult to spot leaks when the seats are deep, as you just can't see down in the "trench". One of my more elusive leaks was a small channel under the neck cork at the seam. I found that only by accident when a drop of moisture appeared at the back of the cork. Occasionally I find a front F mechanism that just barely keeps the F palm key from seating all the way. To follow up on what Gordon suggested a "neck leak isolator" is an invaluable tool to make sure the neck tenon is completely airtight. Necks can feel "snug" and still leak if the tenon is slightly oval shaped, or if there is an air bubble below the slot the tightening screw closes.

I hope this doesn't sound condescending going through this check list. I'm sure you know most if not all these things already. I just wanted to share my experience with leaks that avoid detection. I can tell you it will be at the last place you look. :)

Good luck. Let us know what you find.
Must have found the problem..could have, should have let the forum know what the issue was!!
 

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I had this problem on my Cleveland Acorn also. It has a funky mechanism that is very dependent on 3 springs having just the correct tension. It was my body pip not closing under the weight of the keywork itself, and only showed up when the horn was tilted from vertical. It required adjustments and judicial lubrication on all springs and pivots. I am not a tech. But if I managed to do it, it is probably not a design flaw requiring skill to fix.

(I created the problem by fitting a new underslung neck that had way more spring tension than the OEM one did after 50 years of use. But I made a Super 15!:twisted:)
 
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