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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2014
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2,081 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Recently I had time to see after one of my long-term project horns, a medium-age Amati ATS-31. When it arrived, the C keyguard was missing, so I found myself a replacement from Windcraft. The replacement had the same engraving but was of brass, so I swapped it with the Eb guard which fitted just fine, problem solved, I can live with a brass Eb guard.

I replaced pads, regulated stuff, renewed corks, the whole programme. Play test. Whoa. Stuffy D1. Warbly D1. To a lesser extend D2 as well. Now everyone will tell you there's a problem further up. Leak light, feeler gauge, linkage, sand a bit here, bend a bit there, but the problem is still there. Eb and C were fine, however. :scratch:

Searched the forum, the internet, some claims that the "Stuffy D" was a generic problem found in many tenors, and what do you expect from a commie student instrument, yadda, yadda. Finally I stumbled over an anecdote about Emilio Lyons...

More seasoned sax repair people might already have guessed - it was the swapped keyguard that was the culprit - the darn felt there was fine for the Eb, but didn't let the C keycup open enough. So I did what Emilio did in the aforementioned anecdote - cut two millimeters off the bumper felt (no adj screw - it's glued in) and lo and behold, no more stuffy and warbly D. :cheers:

Lesson learned: not only check further up for leaks, also check further down for proper venting.

Thanks for reading, and thanks for posting in here - it's an invaluable resource.

You may now resume your Sunday activities. :bluewink:
 

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Forum Contributor 2007-2012, Distinguished SOTW Te
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3,314 Posts
Oh yeah! Underventing sometimes causes very similar effects to leaks. Sometimes you'll have a horn that just feels dead, but raise the key heights by a millimeter and the horn comes alive.
 
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