Re: 1917 King Tempo
First, King Tempo was an imported line that was made in the Keilwerth factory and sold by the HN White Co. These saxophones were first introduced in about 1962-1963. The serial numbers did not follow the normal HN White King saxophone serial number list. So, your sax is most likely a 60's vintage instrument.
As for the neck octave pip. Its normal for the tube to enter into the neck by about 1/16th of an inch or so. 3/16ths is definitely more than normal. However, for the issue that you're having, I don't think the octave pip is the problem. The octave pip would not cause a random problem. It would tend to make the horn stuffy or affect response or intonation and it would do so consistently. I would guess its more of a set up issue. I once had a customer complain of the exact same thing and it was that there neck strap was bumping the side Bb key when the horn was in a certain position. The random thing makes it a bit difficult to diagnose without seeing it. Anyway, keep us informed!!