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Discussion Starter #1
I bought a Conn 28m tonight and while a portion of the original keyguard
is remaining, I would like to purchase a replacement. I have read about folks
purchasing them but have no idea where to look and a google search has been
fruitless for me. So I would greatly appreciate if someone could point me in the right direction or if a member here may have one, thanks as always. Jay.
 

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Do a search here at SOTW as this has been asked before and there is someone who posted here that makes them. I think they were around $125 undrilled.
 

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Please.........don't have wire or sheet metal made for this superb saxophone which is a beauty the way it was meant to be and nothing else makes it look good. You will spend good money anyway and metal guards will devalue it , while reproductions (which includes the leafage and Conn emblem ) will bring back the complete beauty in this piece of history. If I had one (and unfortunately I don't) I would bite the bullet and spend even a considerable amount for it. It would be nice that the repro would be made out of polycarbonate because it would make the guard more robust of the originals, also to have some sort of rubber ring in the holes for the tightening screws to protect the guards from cracking in those delicate spots would be a great addition.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
@ Milandro- Well as I have followed your posts as well as many others since I started here and I have a good deal
of respect for your opinion I will take your advice, I paid $1025 for the horn here

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=180685116943&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT

and so hopefully I can limp along with the old one for a while, as I would like to invest in an overhaul
before I spend the $135(doctorsax price) on the keyguard. I am going to sell my THC alto and
that should provide the funds I need to replace the funds I used and leave me a bit extra. Thanks
as always. Jay.
 

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Thank Jaysz you for what you're saying! I hope to be worthy of the esteem that you hold me in!

I think that your horn looks very nice and deserves the best. In my view 135$ is proportionate to the value of the horn and it will do a great deal to improve its looks. Enjoy!
 

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As it happens I own a 28m which sports the Doctor Sax (Matt S) lucite cover. It came out very well indeed.

If you spring for it I have a couple of suggestions (I've replaced several of these- different 28ms requiring replacements for broken/ missing originals; the replacement on mine is fine and has proved durable over the years).

To make the holes in the new cover use a small metal rod (nail would be fine) heated in a flame and then melt the hole through the plastic. It comes out very neatly and leaves none of the potential residual stress from drilling in the plastic.

Do one hole while carefully holding the keyguard in position and then loosely fix the keyguard in exactly the proper position with a screw or a toothpick and melt the hole for the rod diagonally across from the first hole. When that is done and you can lock the guard in place with these two first holes you can make the other holes wth an assurance that it'll all line up properly.

Melting the holes with the heated metal rod allows you to make the holes with the keyguard on the horn without risk of marring the horn or the posts. You can also make the holes at just the right angle to insert the screws into the posts. This is much more difficult to do well with a drill- you'd pretty much have to do the drilling off the horn or risk cosmetic chaos.

After cleaning up the holes (there'll be some melted plastic residue around the holes- it scraped off easily with my fingernail so it really amounts to no issue) I fastened the keyguard to the horn with a small washer on both the top and underside of the hole where the screw goes through. This required a slightly longer hold down screw. The washers help to evenly distribute the stress on the plastic guard. Though I don't recall the thread size, brass screws which appeared pretty much identical to the originals but for length were available at my local hardware store for about three bucks for a dozen in a little plastic bag.

When you do the final assembly tighten evenly and gently. A drop of blue loctite on the screw threads (if you believe loosening to be an issue) would be preferable to "torqueing that baby down" and begging for cracks. I just has to be tight enough not to vibrate- not very tight at all.

FWIW the engraving on the replacement guard is uncolored. The "gold wax in a tube" used for clarinet engraving touch ups is easily applied and makes the "frosted" engraving on the replacement guard appear to be the same as the original factory gold design.

Good luck and congratulations.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the info Henry, not sure if I will do it or have a tech, anyway what do you guys think about the lacquer original or not?

Also I would love to hear your opinion on the 28m that you have
as I have held one of these before but it was in poor playing shape, thanks. Jay
 

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Quite a nice horn with a very unique mechanism and good tone. The keywork is almost creepily smooth.

Unless you're quite good at tinkering on sax's I'd surely take the horn to a good tech for the work on the pads and mechanism as required. It's got several unusual twists and all those minescule set screws making it a bad choice to learn on.

I'd do the keyguard myself just because you're unlikely to run into a tech who has any experience on the things; the 28 M's are not exactly a common horn and they are pretty much the only model with such a keyguard.

That said, most techs are pretty darned good at mechanical tinkering in the first place (or they probably wouldn't have become techs) and so if you're uncomfotable you could probably get it done. You'd owe the guy though- not exactly a normal bit of work.

Good luck- let us know how it turns out.
 

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I think you horn has original, and not too worn out, lacquer . I have only ever seen one from close by (with a horrible wire guard replacement!) and never played it. I hope to find one ........one day!
 

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If the horn has good lacquer and no dents, go with the new one. I have had 3 of these and they have the best keywork around. I would go with a wire guard only if I was doing a complete rebuild or if the posts for the lucite are missing. There were some made from the factory with the 6M style guards for the military. I heard there were like 50 of them. IF I found a straight 28M with bad lacquer, I might consider a redo with the wires.
 

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Quite a few 28Ms (even the plastic guarded ones) were made for the Navy bands. It's pretty common to see one with USN engraved. Might be that the military took them at a good price when the public wouldn't.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I would go with a wire guard only if I was doing a complete rebuild or if the posts for the lucite are missing.
Well I will probably have a mechanical overhaul done, just curious as to why you would choose a wire guard
in this situation. I had considered having a brass, aluminum shield fabricated so as to not have to worry about
breaking the shield in the future, just not sure how it would look. I am currently awaiting a quote from a
local plastic fabricator to see how much they would charge me to make the shield.
 

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The problem with making one is the set-up costs. I bet it is way over $135 to make one only. The reason I would go with the wires for a compete redo is.....I don't like the plastic!
 

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Interesting...my keyguard has no design on it, and it looks as tho it was always plain. Anyone else ever see one like that?
 

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The guard on my first 28m was plain. It was also cracked at one post and I wound up replacing it.

It appeared to be a factory produced keyguard though- was an exact match for the original stencilled one on 28m number two and showed no signs of having been made from cast plastic or resin as a one off by an individual.

Whether sold as a replacement part sans stencil from Conn, whether a plain model from some aftermarket company since gone, or whether the original pattern simply wore completely off over the decades I couldn't say.
 
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