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Discussion Starter #1
i have the haynes sax manual
oil is $20. maintenance is 300 to 400
the sax is 2.5 years old and works perfectly
and had a major service 18 months ago
money is tight.
Would anyone risk just oiling it every 6 months unless something is a problem?
 

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I'm not sure but it seems to me that oiling is something that would be easy enough to do that most people could do it with no real issues. Just do some research on the right kind of oils and find some guides to be safe. Sorry if this is of no help.
 

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Lots of people I know spend more than a year without oiling or other stuff. Yes it helps, yes it may extend the readiness of the saxophone to be in top shape, but I don't deem it necessary. I bought my alto sax around 2 years ago and did nothing to it in maintenance since. Still works great, no problems at all.

Now I'm a weekend warrior, so if you're playing more serious, then you should definitely be more careful, because wear is real. If not, don't worry too much, just play and be happy playing until you necessarily need to do do something to it.

Also, prices like that vary depending on where you are on the planet.
 

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Huh? there's someone who pays $400 for an "annual maintenance" on a saxophone?

Well, you know what P. T. Barnum said.

Get a little bottle of key oil. Every couple of years, put a tiny drop of oil where two parts have relative motion to each other. Sop up the excess with a paper towel or a rag. Put a little tiny drop of oil where the ends of leaf springs bear on their cradles.

Done.

Total cost <$20. I guess it takes me about 15 minutes to do one sax.

I dunno, I've only been doing this since 1978, and haven't had any saxophones wear out yet.
 

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I oil the keys of my saxophones and clarinets two times per year, and I lightly(!) oil the clarinet bores once per year. I usually only have the instruments checked when I feel something is wrong.
 

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I've always been told never to just put drops of key oil onto the end of the key but to take the whole key apart to clean and re-oil because if you just oil the end it sucks all the outside nastiness and dirt into the key and can make the problem even worse. Can someone tell me if I'm wrong because if I am That would save me SOOOOOO much time every 6 months!
 

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The tech that has done anything comparable to what OP calls the yearly check up saw my horn every 3 or 4 years.

Spending $300 to $400 to do this is absolutely disproportionate if one thinks that one of the best overhauls in the NL costs €600 (including kangaroo pads and special metal resonators).

But then again there are people whom spend $2000 for an overhaul. What’s your pleasure Sir?


Oiling the action has caused rows before so I want tell you my opinion but direct you to the thread.

https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?130833-Oiling-the-action
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?224793-Lubricating-your-sax
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?78372-Step-by-Step-Key-Oil-Procedures
 

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I play a lot and I usually get 3-5 years before anything other than the occasional leak check is necessary. Maybe a pad replacement here and there. The time to have work done is when you're having problems. If things are working well - don't mess about with them. You might actually screw something up.
 

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I only bring in horns when something isn't right.

Last time: alto and concert flute.

One felt hardened and coming off flute which caused clicking.

Alto knocked off stand so bell slightly pushed to side and key bent a little, also had low C# opened to allow low D to come up in pitch (it was impossible to lip up enough).

He fixed both and oiled.

$100.00 while i waited there with him.

We told jokes of course.
 

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See Matt Stohrer’s video regarding “Changing the Oil”.

 

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I've always been told never to just put drops of key oil onto the end of the key but to take the whole key apart to clean and re-oil because if you just oil the end it sucks all the outside nastiness and dirt into the key and can make the problem even worse. Can someone tell me if I'm wrong because if I am That would save me SOOOOOO much time every 6 months!
You're absolutely correct. That does nothing but distribute the grime and dirt particles into the screw heads and/or rod. Having said that, I think it really depends on how much someone plays, what environment they usually play in (outdoors, dusty places, or indoors in concert settings). No, it's not difficult to remove keys, clean them with naptha and re-oil, but there's also a lot of screwy things that can happen if someone who has never attempted this before tries it. Some basic, yet very important tools/supplies are needed. Good screwdrivers with the proper slot/head sizes, Naptha, a spring hook, quality key oil, but most importantly......knowledge of the proper order in which keys are removed and then re-assembled. I've had customers come to me who have tried this on their own and either couldn't get the keys back on correctly (yes, there's a proper order) or ended up knocking corks/felts off, messing up the action and basically made things worse than before they started their little do it yourself journey. Personally, I offer a "clean, oil and adjust" service for saxophones, clarinets and flutes. This involves complete disassembly of the instrument, cleaning and re-oiling all mechanisms, replacing cork/felt as needed and up to three pads. My price for that service is $175 and certainly doesn't need to be done every year, but again, it really depends on how much abuse the instrument takes and how finicky the player is.

John
 

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i have the haynes sax manual
oil is $20. maintenance is 300 to 400
the sax is 2.5 years old and works perfectly
and had a major service 18 months ago
money is tight.
Would anyone risk just oiling it every 6 months unless something is a problem?
Welcome to SOTW.
Ok your sax is 2-1/2 years old. -18 months =1 year old and you had a $300-$400 major service? Ouch! That’s just wrong on that new of a sax. Well unless you had some damage. Otherwise find another tech service. Oil service can cost as little as $60 up to $150 including 3 or 4 pads and tuneup.

I don’t think you’re in danger of any damage at this time. Learn how to disassemble, clean, oil meanwhile.

Some proper tools make a difference in ease of task.
https://musicmedic.com/musicmedic-com-double-sided-spring-hook-in-case.html
https://musicmedic.com/woodwind-screwdriver.html
https://musicmedic.com/products/rep...g-finishing/cleaning/hinge-tube-cleaners.html
 

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Discussion Starter #14
armpit says
many thanks to all who replied
my last major service was part of the purchase package and so it cost no extra.
this year it was going to bleed my bank book
I hoped the yearly major service was a scam.
Now I know it is
Thanks to all
 

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When I do a maintenance service I check all of the corks to make sure they're not falling off .
.... the seal of the neck,
...... pads In-N-Out really good... nevermind just oiling .... please. miniature overhaul
inspection to be done

$50

Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk
 

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I believe a saxophone should be checked over at least once a year by a competent professional tech even if it seems to be playing ok. Materials wear, linkages bend, keys tilt, pads get dirty, and small leaks develop very gradually in a way most players aren't aware they are taking place. Even when an instrument is well maintained it can typically benefit from a "play condition" once a year or even more often if it is "played hard". Preventive maintenance can go a long way to keeping an instrument reliable so a player doesn't experience some unexpected down time. In my shop inspections and estimates are free as are minor "over the counter" tweaks and adjustments. "Play conditions" on newer well maintained saxes run anywhere from $25 to $75 depending upon the number of pads replaced. On older instruments that have not been well maintained I generally recommend a clean, oil adjust which is about twice the cost of a $75 play condition. Signs that a COA is needed include greasy deposits under key hinges, built up crud inside the bell bow, body or neck, and rods that are dry to the touch when removed. My prices reflect my low "overhead" since I have my own shop next to my home.
 

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Once a year or when something goes wrong is about the right time to bring a instrument for maintenance, maybe 6 to 8 months for a really active player. Musical instruments require regular maintenance to be in top playing condition, and if you get a full overhaul and then regular play condition repairs from a good technician, you should never need another overhaul. 400 sounds like someone that is VERY proud of their work, I am not what most would consider a cheap tech., but a annual repair from me after a overhaul usually runs from 25.00-250.00 from depending on how rough the player has been with the instrument. The average is usually around 100 give or take a bit. That isn't to oil the mechanism, but to go over the instrument and make any repairs needed to put it back into, just overhauled playing condition. Who knows what it will cost to get it serviced now, but most shops give free estimates, and the advantage to getting it serviced sooner is that it should play better and require less maintenance later. Honestly just oiling a the keys is likely to do absolutely nothing to help it until the next servicing, unless it has gotten wet. Many will say to do nothing until something is wrong, but the thing is minor leaks build up slowly overtime and players adjust to play through these leaks, without ever realizing they are doing so. When you are compensating for a leaky sax, your playing usually suffers a bit. Better to spread out your maintenance funds, getting smaller repairs and keeping your instrument in better playing condition.
 

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I hoped the yearly major service was a scam.
At $300-$400 yes. But it’s still good to at least have a tech look over it. As suggested by Saxoclese & Saxdaddy.
 

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I hand out to all customers, a sheet on care and maintenance, and another on signs that servicing is due.
No fixed time. That depends so much on the sax and the player, and the reliability of materials and adjustments used by the technician.
 

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I hand out to all customers, a sheet on care and maintenance, and another on signs that servicing is due.
No fixed time. That depends so much on the sax and the player, and the reliability of materials and adjustments used by the technician.
Excellent idea Gordon and one I am going to look forward to using.
 
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