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Discussion Starter #1
I had possession of a VI tenor for a couple months a couple years ago, and had no problem switching between my Buescher 156 and the VI. I just got a B&S tenor which has Selmer copy keywork, and have no problem going from my Martin Comm III tenor to the B&S.

I also just got a VI bari, and I am having the hardest time acclimating to what looks like the same left pinkie cluster, especially finding the C# touch, which feels so small I have to hunt around for it. (been playing a Comm III bari)

Does anyone else find the bari cluster different from the tenor? I have a feeling it's not the cluster layout as much as perhaps its relationship to the upper stack touches. Maybe the whole cluster feels a little higher relative to everything else (can that be adjusted?)

I'm almost sure I'll get used to it, I think... but it would be nice to know if it's just me or my horn or what... Thanks:)
 

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I had possession of a VI tenor for a couple months a couple years ago, and had no problem switching between my Buescher 156 and the VI. I just got a B&S tenor which has Selmer copy keywork, and have no problem going from my Martin Comm III tenor to the B&S.

I also just got a VI bari, and I am having the hardest time acclimating to what looks like the same left pinkie cluster, especially finding the C# touch, which feels so small I have to hunt around for it. (been playing a Comm III bari)

Does anyone else find the bari cluster different from the tenor? I have a feeling it's not the cluster layout as much as perhaps its relationship to the upper stack touches. Maybe the whole cluster feels a little higher relative to everything else (can that be adjusted?)

I'm almost sure I'll get used to it, I think... but it would be nice to know if it's just me or my horn or what... Thanks:)
The solution is a Conn 12M. The left hand keys are designed in accordance with how the human hand actually works, not according to a theory.
 

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Well you could extend the C sharp key with some Sugru to make it easier to reach. I would also take your bari to a tech who might be able to increase the tilt of the cluster or possibly bend it a little bit.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well you could extend the C sharp key with some Sugru to make it easier to reach. I would also take your bari to a tech who might be able to increase the tilt of the cluster or possibly bend it a little bit.
Yeah I've only had it less than a week so I'll play it for a while then take it in once I've given myself a chance to adapt. I'm just surprised it feels so different than the tenor. Actually feels smaller, subjectively. I'll have to study the differences between it and the tenor more closely... Thx.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The solution is a Conn 12M. The left hand keys are designed in accordance with how the human hand actually works, not according to a theory.
I may try a 12M at some point; I've played a Martin the last 10-15 years and really liked the fit but as I've developed some pretty serious joint problems I'm looking for something easier ('though I always thought the Martin was easy) on my hands. I don't know how the 12M compares to a Comm III...
 

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I have a 1977 MKVI Bari that I purchased refurbished from Emilio in 2008. I had big problems with the left hand pinky table, my pinky finger tip would get caught in a gap between the keys.

One (well known) tech advised crimping the rods to shorten the distance and therefore tighten things up.

I brought it to Bob Drinkwater in Stoneham MA, where I bring all of repairs/ maintenance. I got it back and - Voila - the entire pinky table was snug - as snug as my other Saxes.
I asked him what he did and he told me that he did "something with the corks"

I don't know exactly what he did but it works just fine at least 5 years later...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I have a 1977 MKVI Bari that I purchased refurbished from Emilio in 2008. I had big problems with the left hand pinky table, my pinky finger tip would get caught in a gap between the keys.

One (well known) tech advised crimping the rods to shorten the distance and therefore tighten things up.

I brought it to Bob Drinkwater in Stoneham MA, where I bring all of repairs/ maintenance. I got it back and - Voila - the entire pinky table was snug - as snug as my other Saxes.
I asked him what he did and he told me that he did "something with the corks"

I don't know exactly what he did but it works just fine at least 5 years later...
Wow, that's interesting. I'll pay more attention next time I'm at it. The impression I've had is like it's all rollers and no key surface:) I'm curious to look at it...
 

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Wow, that's interesting. I'll pay more attention next time I'm at it. The impression I've had is like it's all rollers and no key surface:) I'm curious to look at it...
Yes, the left hand pink table should be the same on Tenor as well as Bari, they appear to be the same size- I've never measured them but even the Sop Pinky table looks to be the same size - the only thing that is different is the length of the rods - that adds flex to the bell keys :(
(My Yani has doubled bell key rods that eliminates that problem).


A problem with the rollers is another thing - maybe new rollers needed? A tech person would know.
 

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I have a 1977 MKVI Bari that I purchased refurbished from Emilio in 2008. I had big problems with the left hand pinky table, my pinky finger tip would get caught in a gap between the keys.

One (well known) tech advised crimping the rods to shorten the distance and therefore tighten things up.

I brought it to Bob Drinkwater in Stoneham MA, where I bring all of repairs/ maintenance. I got it back and - Voila - the entire pinky table was snug - as snug as my other Saxes.
I asked him what he did and he told me that he did "something with the corks"

I don't know exactly what he did but it works just fine at least 5 years later...
I have done a lot of that kind of stuff to my horns, and you can't really describe it. You have to look at the machinery, and figure out where you need to bend just a teeny bit and where you should increase/decrease cork thickness, etc., etc., with multiple iterations. In the end it's probably 20 or 30 little adjustments that add up to a big improvement.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I have done a lot of that kind of stuff to my horns, and you can't really describe it. You have to look at the machinery, and figure out where you need to bend just a teeny bit and where you should increase/decrease cork thickness, etc., etc., with multiple iterations. In the end it's probably 20 or 30 little adjustments that add up to a big improvement.
I'm going to measure and study the cluster on my tenor vs on the bari and figure out what's different. I'd be pretty happy if I can match the bari to the tenor. Thanks:)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
BSG, the rollers are fine. It's remarkable how different it feels and I think it's probably like I need to take the whole cluster and move it a few millimeters one way or another. Will update here when I figure it out - thanks:)
 

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If it feels like the whole thing is a bit in the wrong place, it may just be a matter of familiarization.

I know that from the RH ring finger to the little finger the spread is dramatically different among my Conn 6M (significant spread), 10M (little finger almost rubs the ring finger, very little spread) and 12M (slightly more spread than 6M).

When I first started going among these three horns the difference bothered me quite a bit. Today, after almost 40 years of playing on 6M 10M and 12M, I don't even notice it.
 
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