I have been playing a 50,000 SBA tenor for a while and although it plays great it is really reed sensitive.I play on focustone 7*.The MK V1 tenors I have had were not like this.Has any one else found this.
I've never had a Super Action, but I'm sure the neck profile is that of the early MK VI. IMO, these necks just don't blow like the later improved MK VI neck, so that's a possibility since you're comparing it to the VI. But most likely you're experiencing simply characteristics of that particular saxophone that influence resistance, like small leaks, key opening heights, pad types/materials/tone boosters and possibly dent repairs, particularly in the neck, which can result in incorrect profile/dimensions in the neck. I believe that a sax that requires a perfect reed in order to get good results is sucking the power out of your playing. Any tenor sax should be easy-blowing and 'buttery', which enables you to use a slightly harder reed to get more volume, tone and 'urgency' out of it. If you have to use a 'buzzier' reed because the horn is sucking your sound, then you have to fix that. The horn needs to be closely examined. A lot could be, and usually is, wrong with a sax that old - or any sax, really. If you can't do repair work yourself, you might want to find a tech to look it over for leaks and any keywork problems. Look closely at the neck to see if you can detect any abnormalities. Assuming everything else is basically okay, try a Selmer Series III neck on it, or really any new neck in the MK VI profile. Here's an example of one common thing that could be your whole problem - the pads might have build-up in the seating rings. This basically produces small leaks at every pad and makes the sax resistant, or 'reed-needy'. This build-up can be nearly impossible to remove and usually requires a pad job and tone hole cleanup/leveling.
Thank you for your replies. I purchased this saxophone in 2004 and It had been overhauled prior to purchase by a very competent technician here in New Zealand.It has been serviced about 4 times by the same person since.
The reed issue is based on how my MK VI Tenors have been compared to the SBA.I really like the tone of this horn compared to the MK VIs I have owned.I have played it with a good range of reeds from Alexanders ,Vandorens,Rico etc.
I was really wanting to Know if this is a SBA Trait as you can appreciate where I live in New Zealand there are few other SBA owners to compare.Thanks for your help it is appreciated.
The mouthpiece is a Ted Klum handmade focus tone and they are very similar to a metal link.They are a brilliant mouthpiece and are generally really reed friendly but not with this horn.As 1saxman advised I will get another set of eyes to check the horn for leaks etc,I have been playing for 35 years and never experienced this .Many thanks
I almost have the same serial number SBA as you (my tenor has serial 506xx, from 1952) and have never issues with my reeds (no other then the normal ones!). I play on a metal Florida no USA Otto Link 10* and use La Voz medium reeds. Like other members mentioned I also assume that you have a (small) leak in your horn.
Can you see a correlation with the resistance of a problem reed? I could imagine that reeds with more resistance give less air support and thus a greater sensitivity for a horn with a leak. It's just a guess, don't point me on that :bluewink:.
Thank you , that is real good feed back,The horn has been checked over a number of times but it would appear that something has been missed etc.your SBA is 600 away from mine,I could not have asked for a better comparison.Really appreciate the help.
You know what? It could very well be your horn man. I recently found out I can tell as soon as my horn is developing leaks. I used to associate the feeling (or symptoms if you prefer) to various reed and mouthpiece issues but now I know better. What do you think?
Robertos reeds works very well on my 1950 SBA. I use a Handcraftet TK Focustone solid silver. 7*
But I have tried an other mouthpieces of the same model and material, and it where completely different. Good but different.
Wait... just to make sure I'm getting this right, your horn has been seen by a tech only four times in six years?
Do you play this horn much? As in, does it get out of its case at least four days out of seven?
If so, I agree with Magical Pig... it's probably something wonky on the horn. You'd be amazed by how many leaks players just blow through, and then when a tech points out that they've got pads that are actually tearing (something that happens WAY after the pad should have been replaced to begin with), they're stunned at how much easier the repaired horn plays. A small adjustment can make a BIG difference... and if you catch little things early, it's easier on the pocketbook, too.
So... get it looked at if it hasn't been done recently, and when you know your axe is playing well, THEN fixate on the other stuff.
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