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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got an old Vito tenor "eBay bargain that turned out to be a project". Don't know it's heritage- guessing it was assembled in Kenosha from French parts- SN 0001xx; no country name anywhere on the instrument.

All the pivot screws are held in with red ("permanent") Loctite. With great perseverence and profanity, I've managed to back out at least one of each pair of screws.


> Is this "normal" for Vitos, i.e., is it likely the Loctite was applied at the factory?

> What's the best way to clean the Loctite from the threads?

> Assuming the Loctite was applied with good reason, what should I do upon re-assembly- use blue (medium) Loctite; forego the Locktite and lock the screw heads with nail polish; wait a while and see if the screws go out of adjustment?

Any insight appreciated.


Distinguished Technician & SOTW Columnist. RIP, Yo
17,204 Posts
Yes, use heat to destroy Loctite. That is what you could have done before you tried to back them out.

Once the Loctite bond has been well and truly broken, as you have done, you may find that the screws are now a good fit, especially with a little lubricant.

The weakest Loctite does the job, and leaves the screw adjustable.. "Loctite 222".

Distinguished SOTW member, musician, technician &
5,134 Posts
You only need 150C temp to ruin Loctite so that's pretty easy with no damage to anything else.

Blue (medium) Loctite is ok but for pivot screws I prefer purple (weak) Loctite. It's more than strong enough to hold and can be removed without heat. If you break the bond, although it's not as tight as before, it is usually still good enough so you don't have to remove and put new Loctite.

As suggested, the broken red Loctite might be exactly a good fit now so worth checking before removing it. Just make sure you don't have chips from it getting into the hinge hole between the key and the screw.

I don't know if it's normal from factory. No Vito (or any) saxophone that I've ever seen had red Loctite, but I don't know if any of the Vitos had the factory setup (though I really doubt they would put red Loctite).

Weak Loctite is IMO much better than nail polish. I would even prefer blue Loctite over nail polish, but I really prefer the purple. You say "lock the heads"... are these headless pivot screws and you meant the thread? Or do they really have a head? If it's the latter, the real repair is to have a good fit with the screws tightened all the way, so not requiring anything to lock. If this can't be done for budget or any reason, weak Loctite is a very good repair instead (not as good but still good). If they are headless I would use weak Loctite over other options.
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