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Discussion Starter #1
I have a project in the works that may be of interest to some readers: I've been working on an adaptation of a Tenor Sax to be played with the Left Hand ONLY. The project is nearing completion, with maybe a couple months left. Here's a link to a "set" of photos on flickr showing the work-in-progress.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/flute_russell/sets/72157629733569913/

Brian Russell
 

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Wow again ! Quite an amazing first post after two years membership of SOTW.

Is that a MkVI ?

Please explain the mechanisms and shoot a video when it is in a playable condition.

Thanks

Rhys

PS Where in the world are you ?
 

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Unbelievable! Should make some disabled players extremely happy! Great work!
 

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That's great!

What a wonderful project. You should copyright and sell the plans for this. That would allow others to possibly build these for more players with right hand problems. I'd likely buy a set of plans just to keep in case.

Again, great work. I know some sax player is going to be very happy to perform again.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Glad you've found it interesting.

The instrument is for Charlie Borzillire, in Western NY. He was a fixture in that regional music scene for many years, until being sidelined by a stroke in 2004.
I probably should have posted something when I completed the first horn I worked on for him. That one was an early Bundy Tenor, with limited modifications to give him range down to E with the left hand. You'll find some pictures of it here: The last picture in that set shows him playing that instrument in a New Horizon's Band. You can hear his first public performance on it here: He is really looking forward to the completion of the job on his Mk6, and I am happy to have been able to do the work for him.

Brian Russell

PS: To answer a couple questions: I'm a repair tech located in Winneconne, WI. Posting the pictures of what I'm doing is as close to making 'plans' available as I can do. It is one-of-a-kind, custom work. I am hopeful that putting it out there as I have will help others who might need to do something similar.
 

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This is such a great thing you're doing. I'm sure many exceptional sax players who have lost their right hand capabilities, due to one reason or another, will greatly benefit from this advancement. Bravo!
 

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Very cool to hear the guy playing! Can't wait to hear the MK6! Awesome job man, really!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I've attached a fingering chart for this system, which will surely aid in understanding how the horn works. There are a couple things in it that need revision/correction (side key location, B&B-flat orientation, Palm E location) but I think it'll get the idea across. It bears a resemblance to the right-hand-only system developed by Jeff Stelling/David Nabb, who have been encouraging throughout this process.

If anyone has ideas about how to make the chart more legible, I'd appreciate the input.

Brian
 

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Hi Brian,
This immediately reminded me of an article I saw years ago and, believe it or not, I found it!
If it's at all possible to track down, look at The Saxophone Journal - Volume 20, number 2 from September/October 1995 (yes, I'm getting old). Page 6 has an article about a Martin Commander tenor modified for left hand by George Theodos in Hamden, Ct.

You are pursuing a worthy endeavor and I thought it any additional information might be helpful.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Thank you very much for the information. Looking online, I found that one is an available back issue, but it doesn't list the article you mention in the contents. I'll check the archives at a local university.

Brian

Edit: I found this article about a player of an instrument modified by Mr. Theodus. http://www.hartfordinfo.org/issues/documents/health/htfd_courant_052708_1.asp
It sounds like the modification is probably similar to the one I did on the Bundy. If you can give the left hand control over the right hand E & F, you have a fully chromatic instrument with over 2 octaves available. This is a pretty practical modification, really, but it has its limitations. View attachment 39415
 

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Incredible! Great job, Brian. I bet Charlie will be very happy with the end result.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for the kind words and the links. Having all this info in one place could certainly be helpful to someone in the future, so I'll add a couple more pointers. There are some more videos (including some other adaptations) posted that have been compiled by David Nabb on his You-Tube Channel. Lots of information there.

As mentioned, my system bears some resemblance to the Stelling/Nabb 'Toggle Key' system, but without the toggle keys. If I'm understanding it right, Maarten Visser's system is somewhat similar in concept (though not in execution) to the Conn F Mezzo. Stefan Tiefenbacher has a Right-Hand-Only tenor modified by Martin Foag that is significantly different. All of these people (and MANY more) have been encouraging to me through the project, and I am indebted to all of them.

Brian
 

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This really is a great thing, and you made it not only functional but elegant as well. true craftsmanship. Thanks for sharing so much detail.
 

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Brian,

Glad to see you posting on here finally and to know your project is nearing completion. My only suggestion for the fingering chart would maybe be to show the notes on a staff instead of in words. At least for me. it's easier to associate the fingering to a note in its place on the staff than by description. I'm sure that would mean more work in order to find snippets of staff lines with the note in place. When I had Maarten Visser's one-handed recorder on trial from David Nabb in early 209, I gave up trying to figure out the fingering scheme because it was far to cumbersome to decipher his excel spreadsheet fingering "chart". I intended to try to do a more visual chart, but gave up due to my lack of graphic skills.
 
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