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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I let a friend of mine use my sax a few days ago. They didn't have any experience but they wanted to play. The day after my sax wouldn't play anything but a few notes. I have found that my middle A key will not close all the way, but if I press on it really hard it will close and I can pretty much play all the notes. My middle G is just sorta hard to control. Please help if you have an idea. I'm not sure if this is from lending my sax because I was sitting next to them, but I've learned my lesson!
 

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I'm not a tech, but let me see if I can help a little.

The middle touch (button) on the upper stack closes two pads when you play the A and three pads when you play the C. From your description, it sounds like the pad below the middle touch and the pad right below it are no longer in time with one another. I would guess that either the lever that the middle touch is on has gotten bent, or the felt or cork below the touch that presses down the pad below it has fallen off and is missing.

The best bet is to take it to a repair shop. This fix should be very quick and should not cost very much. The fix is so easy, that if you are in school, there is a chance your teacher can even fix it. But I would not recommend trying to fix this yourself unless you have the money and time to have a repair shop fix a bigger problem if your attempt at fixing this goes badly.

And Welcome to SOTW! Tell us more about yourself and we might be able to give better advice.
 

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I pretty much agree.

Just to confirm... When you press down the A key(on its own), 3 keys (with pads) go down. Which is the one whose pad does not close without excessive finger pressure, the A key itself?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you for the quick responses, I checked the cork and it's placed correctly and still in good shape. I did see though that a screw is a little loose. And yes, it is the A key itself. I will take it into the repair shop in town:) thanks again!
 

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I'm now 99% certain the A key is bent. If you wish to try to deal with it yourself:

At the back of the key there is an arm, that links (via cork) to the other keys that are pressed down.

Hold the key firmly closed, and press down on this arm with say a wooden stick, to bend it a little closer to the sax's body.

If you bend it too far, then the opposite condition will occur... the other two keys will not fully close. If so...

Under the arm is another cork (or felt). Close the key and place, say an ice block stick or equivalent, between that arm's cork and the sax body. Now gently force the key open, just a little.

Relatively straight forward, but if you lack confidence, by all means leave it to a technician, who will probably do much the same, in a few seconds. Somebody else, some day, may use the info here.
 

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It always annoys me when I've seen someone (in most cases it's been a repairer) has regulated LH2 with the bis key by either sticking a thin bit of cork on the felt disc (whih makes it creak) or by sanding the felt disc down (which looks untidy) on altos, tenors and baris when there's just no need to.

Which usually makes me want to shout "JUST BEND THE ****ING KEY!"
 

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It always annoys me when I've seen someone (in most cases it's been a repairer) has regulated LH2 with the bis key by either sticking a thin bit of cork on the felt disc (whih makes it creak) or by sanding the felt disc down (which looks untidy) on altos, tenors and baris when there's just no need to.

Which usually makes me want to shout "JUST BEND THE ****ING KEY!"
Chris I prefer to use a cork disc here,instead of felt, with a piece of slippery ultrasuede laminated to the underside to quieten down the action.
 

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IMO, if the player is particular (and accomplished, or maybe just particular), and was happy with the feel before, then you want to bend it back to where it was, because it'll change the feel if the height of the A touch changes.

Otherwise, it's about whether you hesitate to bend or not. Most of my customers would rather you not bend their stuff if you don't have to, but IMO if you were very happy (to OP) with how your horn felt before you might mention it to your tech so that -- if it was bent away from where it was last by your friend -- he can return it to where it was without changing it by shimming.

Re the larger topic, that's what would make me choose between bending and shimming: feel, for the player. Then, after that, you try to maintain the feel that the player likes, i.e. you try to return the horn to that place, once you've started the horn there.

If the horn felt right, and the linkage material fell out, IMO bending it would be kind of silly if you knew that before the shim fell out it was perfect for the player.
 

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What I usually do on Selmer MkVI altos is put a strip of ultrasuede on the LH2 touchpiece arm right to the end and also a green felt disc on the underside of the pearl cup (with a cut-out so it fits around the end of the arm) just for appearances sake - the touchpiece arm has more contact with the bis key on these and more often than not the underside of the pearl cup has been scratched to **** by previous repairers.

On Yamahas (and others) that have a relatively thick touchpiece arm under the pearl cup, I just put a strip of felt on the LH2 touchpiece arm as that's all they need (provided the underside of the pearl cup hasn't been all scratched up).
 

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yep true, but the cork and ultrasuede wont compress as much as felt will once its on and regulated. IMO
Are you talking about under the foot, or in the linkage? The problem primarily concerns a linkage.

Ultrasuede is springy. (Try squashing many thicknesses.) IMO far too springy for a linkage. Far more springy and "squishy" than the high density, high damping, synthetic felt that Kraus and some other suppliers now sell.
 
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