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Discussion Starter #1
I have a favour to ask..

I have a VI tenor here that I suspect has had its pips messed with (way out of round, lines from a tap along one wall). Can someone with a pair of calipers measure the diameter of the pips on their VI tenor? I would be eternally grateful!

Thanks in advance!

Dan
 

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i will be where i can measure mine august 15 if you still need it. you might be better with a pin gauge though. they are small. so pm me then if still needed
 

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Forum Contributor 2007-2012, Distinguished SOTW Te
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61xxx tenor
neck: .089 (#43 drill)
body: .120 (#31 drill)

The body pip might be more like .122 or .121. Hard to measure it well, and the drill sizes are farther apart than on the neck.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks Matt that's awesome! I can get a #42 drill into my neck pip but not a 41, so it seems slightly bigger, but the difference is probably not significant..haven't taken the mechanism off to check the body vent yet..

Thanks again!
 

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Matt's dead on. Sorry just got back from rehearsing with the guys.

If the body pip is larger it would make the E and F sharper. If the neck pip is larger it can cause hissy A and weird palm notes intonation
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hmm...there is definitely a bit of both of those things going on with this horn...would a difference of 5-7 thou in the neck be enough to make a difference?
 

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Embouchure, shape of player's mouth cavity (i.e. tongue shape), and breath pressure are also very significant factors when the octave pip location is not at an ideal compromise for a particular note, including these notes.
 

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I agree with Gordon and Juan.

another factor is ensuring the crook is clean. I had a customer last year who owned his mk 6 tenor from new, he swabbed it regularly but when it came in for a service he mentioned the tuninng between the registers was poor. I played it and had to finger G# plus the octave key to play G2! I tried a different mk 6 crook and this narrowed the search for the problem down to the crook.

The inside of the crook looked relatively clean. I measured and compared the pip sizes - no difference. I then plugged the pip and the mouthpiece end of the crook and filled it with hot vinegar that had been in the microwave. left it to cool and emptied the contents out into a glass beaker. there was a flat lump of goo around 1.5 cm in diameter at the bottom of the beaker. The crook was then cleaned and rinsed, test played and the intonation problem had dissapeared.

my point is before you go drilling/modifying or replacing octave pips make sure the crook is clean and free from all deposits.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks guys... I have pretty good control of my oral cavity, etc (many years of overtones)...and the inside of the neck is spotless. It plays well as is, but I played another VI that had NO hiss up there recently (very even from G-B) and upwards, and the palms weren't nearly as flat as on mine. I think they might be over-vented, and as I mentioned earlier, the neck pip has obviously been messed with (irregular shape, vents are slightly larger than stock, looks like a tap was run down one side.) What is the ideal "key height" for the octave keys on a VI tenor?
 

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Also check this out: http://www.musicmedic.com/info/articles/num_46.html

A lot of that hiss is caused by turbulence in and around the pip, and sometimes on the pad skin itself. Interrupting the flow can fix the hiss. Sometimes on old-timers horns you'll see a little piece of wire soldered across the inside of the pip, which has the same effect as Curt's pantyhose trick (the above link).


Also: check neck tenon seal. Check neck angle and length. If you are not a repairman, you might benefit from visiting an experienced repairperson and seeing what they make of it. Sometimes issues like this (well, usually) are the result of a complex and interconnected web of issues that take knowledge to diagnose properly and skill to fix without creating new problems.
 

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Pip "hiss", can possibly be reduced by a very slight countersinking of the top of the pip hole, to reduce turbulence. And that would improve the rapid airflow oscillating through the pip, possibly favouring some notes, possibly not.
 
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