Bend in Soprano Sax

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  1. #1
    Forum Contributor 2008 Giganova's Avatar
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    Default Bend in Soprano Sax

    Hi all --

    I recently bought a Conn New Wonder from a tech in Florida who restored the horn into playing condition. The horn plays well and there are no big issues, but the horn has a noticeable bend and a couple of dents in the neck (which the seller did not disclose prior to purchasing it!).

    Do you think I should get the bend and the dents fixed?

    Thanks!

    Conn_bend_1-1.jpg
    Conn_bend_2.jpg
    Tenor: Barone bare brass + Otto Link STM
    Soprano: Conn "Chu Berry" + vintage large chamber mouthpiece
    Soprano: Barone tipped-bell + Morgan Vintage

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    Administrator Pete Thomas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    Quote Originally Posted by Giganova View Post
    Do you think I should get the bend and the dents fixed?
    I would. I'd get the tech (who let it out of their shop like that) to fix it and politely advise next time they disclose any issues they know about. Granted those dents may be tricky to get at with a soprano, I'm not sure, but they should show them clearly in photos if selling in that condition.
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    Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru milandro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    I don’t understand how a tech would repad a saxophone and NOT address these issues.

    Despite the fact that the saxophone plays “ well” as is, is like selling a car that has been in a crash and is no longer straight.

    What would be the point to simply spray it if not addressing the dents and the chassis not being straight?
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    saxoclese's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    If I understand the original post, the tech "put it into playing condition". That is not the same as a repad or an overhaul. Those dents are easily accessible and should be no problem for a tech with the correct tools. Straightening the body is another issue. If all the keys are moving without friction and the pads are all seating as it is straightening the body will undo a lot of that. In sax repair "everything affects everything". Straightening the body could take a few minutes depending upon the technique used. Making the keys work by realigning the posts, and bending keywork to reseat the pads could take several hours. If you like how it plays it may be better to leave well enough alone until sometime in the future you want to have the sax overhauled.

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    Forum Contributor 2008 Giganova's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    That's my concern too: the horn plays well and straightening the body would create a whole lot of other work. The question is, is it worth straightening the body and what would be gained?
    Tenor: Barone bare brass + Otto Link STM
    Soprano: Conn "Chu Berry" + vintage large chamber mouthpiece
    Soprano: Barone tipped-bell + Morgan Vintage

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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    It is possible that the horn was bent in shipment, and if so, you will need proof that it was damaged in shipment (including the box and packing it came in), a written appraisal and the seller will have to file the claim. This just happened to me (I was the seller) and I had to take the horn back and file a claim with the shipper.

    If you like the horn enough to keep it, ask the seller for a credit so you can at least get the undisclosed damage fixed. The dents are minor and are easily fixed. The bend, however, is a far more significant issue. Unbending the horn will likely require some new pads as changing the geometry may not necessarily mean that the pads will seat in the same way that they are now. You might be better off returning the horn and getting something else, because there is no guarantee that the horn will be straightened all the way. If it plays well and no keys are binding up, straightening the horn will be largely a cosmetic concern.

    If this is too much of a hassle, return the horn and find something else.

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    Mike T's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    Yes, get the dents in the neck taken out by all means.

    As for the bend in the body: are you sure it's is not just the bell that has been bent slightly out of true on one side ? If the instrument is playing well as is, I wouldn't mess with the body tube.
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    Forum Contributor 2008-2017 Sidepipes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    I agree with Mike T. From the photo, if the bell is slightly bent, then the body would appear to be OK. just tilted in the photo.
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    Forum Contributor 2008 Giganova's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    I checked it more carefully: the bell is straight and the bend starts under the upper stack, roughly where I put the arrow into the attached image. It's easiest to see when I look straight down the horn from both sides, but it is difficult to make a picture of it shooting down the barrel.

    None of the keys are binding and the action is smooth because the horn has been adjusted after it bent. I can't see any stress marks in the metal, which would be easy to see because this is a "one owner, never-lacquered horn".

    Conn_bend_1-2.jpg
    Tenor: Barone bare brass + Otto Link STM
    Soprano: Conn "Chu Berry" + vintage large chamber mouthpiece
    Soprano: Barone tipped-bell + Morgan Vintage

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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    Well, If it plays OK, and has been adjusted after the bend, sometimes things are better off left alone.

    Good luck!
    "Lets Play!"

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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    I would get a good pro to play the sax and get his opinion on how it plays. It may not play as well as you think.
    I just can't imagine a soprano sax bent and out of alignment that would play at an optimal level.
    Tolerances on a soprano sax are considerably smaller than on the larger horns.
    I would return the sax if possible.

  14. #12
    Forum Contributor 2008 Giganova's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    Quote Originally Posted by empressdiver View Post
    I would get a good pro to play the sax and get his opinion on how it plays. It may not play as well as you think.
    Good point! I friend of mine is a Blue Note artist and I'll ask him to test play it.
    Tenor: Barone bare brass + Otto Link STM
    Soprano: Conn "Chu Berry" + vintage large chamber mouthpiece
    Soprano: Barone tipped-bell + Morgan Vintage

  15. #13
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    Default Re: Bend in Soprano Sax

    Hold near the ends of the body with hands. Hold the sax horizontal with bent area against belly. Tighten diaphragm to distend stomach and straight sax. Done!
    Or leave it as it is.
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