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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can I just get a torch, shellac stick and put that pad back in or do I need to float it etc.?

Also, which torch should I get?
 

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Floating a pad isnt that difficult..I would not personally attack an entire horn.

Just put in enough shellac and also on the edge of the key cup.

Be careful not to burn the lacquer. If its already gone no worries.

Take the cup off, clean it, put in the shellac and pad.

put the key back on

see what you have and gently warm the cup until it floats out level...You have to float it. Its got two other pads that are regulated with it. If its not the right height you will have leaks in two tone holes. If its too low it will leak....so you have to attend to that detail. If you are talking about the rt hand lower stack that pad is easier.

thats my take on it but im not a tech. I probably left out important details but I dont see why you cant do it if you have the stuff.

Shellac isnt cheap. If you have to order it and the pad it may be no savings over having your local tech take care of it.
 

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If it were only that easy. :) The difficulty with re-gluing a pad that has fallen out is that pads develop a seat where they contact the tonehole over time. This wouldn't be an issue except for the fact that key cups are not always perfectly centered over the tonehole which means the pad seat is generally speaking not exactly in the center of the pad. If the two circles representing the tonehole and the pad "seat" are not perfectly aligned, the pad is not going to provide the same airtight seal it had before falling out. Sometimes it is possible to carefully turn the pad in the key cup to where the seat matches the tonehole before heating the key cup to re-glue the pad, but this is often tricky and difficult to see. When repair techs have to remove and replace an existing pad for whatever reason they always make a pencil mark on the pad or resonator that marks the orientation of the pad to the keycup so it can be put back in exactly the same location.
 

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Actually installing a new pad isn't that big a deal, but you'll probably screw it up the first couple of times. However, if it's the C pad in the upper stack, you will have to regulate the rest of the keywork which means adjusting the thicknesses of corks. The RH little finger key or the side key don't have any interactions with other keys so that doesn't apply.

If you want to take this on, I would suggest pulling the key off, carefully measuring the ID of the cup with a caliper (you might get lucky and the old pad has the size printed on the back), order three or four of them plus a package of shellac sticks from Music Medic, and get a little hot air gun. I use an el cheapo heat gun from the hardware store that I put a conical reducer on the nozzle to give a narrow directed air stream. Better heat guns have attachments included that do this.

There are numerous videos on the net about how to install pads; everyone's method differs just a bit in the fine details, but they will all lead you to a successful result.
 

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Realize that basically the ENTIRE LH stack needs to be removed in order to remove the C key/cup. That means also removing the high E and/or High F# key. With the money you'll spend buying a couple of pads, shellac (or hot glue) and some kind of torch (and still probably screwing it up.......no offense).......and the time it will take you (about 4 times longer than a tech), you'll spend more and swear a lot more than simply taking it to a competent tech and spending maybe $15 bucks. But hey, the choice is yours.
 

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Chances are that if a pad just fell out like you say, the instrument may need more than just that pad replaced. That is usually, not always, a sign that your instrument is in a poor state of repair. Most techs give free estimates, so at the very least you could find out what condition your instrument is in.
 

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If it were only that easy. :) The difficulty with re-gluing a pad that has fallen out is that pads develop a seat where they contact the tonehole over time. This wouldn't be an issue except for the fact that key cups are not always perfectly centered over the tonehole which means the pad seat is generally speaking not exactly in the center of the pad. If the two circles representing the tonehole and the pad "seat" are not perfectly aligned, the pad is not going to provide the same airtight seal it had before falling out. Sometimes it is possible to carefully turn the pad in the key cup to where the seat matches the tonehole before heating the key cup to re-glue the pad, but this is often tricky and difficult to see. When repair techs have to remove and replace an existing pad for whatever reason they always make a pencil mark on the pad or resonator that marks the orientation of the pad to the keycup so it can be put back in exactly the same location.
This is what I was going to say. Mine fell out about 6 months ago. I drove 4 hours each way to my tech in Boston to fix it. The trick with doing it your self is trying to figure out where exactly north, south east and west was with the pad and making sure it lines up exactly. I figured I should just let him handle it.......
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yeah I have an appointment at Boston sax shop on Saturday. I put the lad back in with a drop of contact cement so I can play this week.
 

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Take it to a tech if you have to ask what to do here.
Hear hear!
Do it yourself and get a good result if you are confident you can get the pad back exactly where it was, and protruding exactly the same amount from the key cup, all to an accuracy better than 0.001" (0.025mm)
Otherwise, your result is likely to be crappy.
But not too much lost by trying band-aids, even a spec of chewing gum.
 
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