Saxophone Forum


by SelmerParisPassion
(59 posts)
10 years ago

Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

I've wanted a Chu-berry for so long, and I'm so thrilled I finally have one!!! Wooo!!!! Sorry, I'm excited. But anyways, I bought this horn a couple of weeks ago, and the pads are shot. I was wondering, what would be the best type of pads to repad this sucker with? I was going to buy the gold resonator roo-skin pads by Saxgourmet, but would the conn resotone pads be a better pick??? I'm kind of in the dark when it comes to that stuff. As long as the set's under 250$ I'm good. Thanks, Christie J

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  1. by sax_maniac
    (984 posts)

    10 years ago

    Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

    I've worked with both kinds of pads. The Conn resopads have a metal ring around the perimeter which means your measurements need to be exact when you order them (from Ferree's, I recommend). 1mm too large, and it won't fit in the pad cup. Those pads are suited for rolled tone holes that are very level as they aren't "gushy' at all - not a very deep impression as they are rather thin pads. So you might want to verify that your toneholes are level before going that route. The reso pads would be a more "authentic" choice. Kind of like vintage Selmers should be refurbed with plastic domed resos if authenticity is a priority. The SaxGourmet pads work great - especially on tenors and baris where there's a bit of energy behind those large pads. They play quietly and just feel great to work with. For tenor, a set of Conn Reso pads will run about $40. SaxGourmet pads, depending on the resonator might be around $75 plus or minus a few bucks. Are you installing them yourself? If so, have fun and good luck.

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    1. by SelmerParisPassion
      (59 posts)

      10 years ago

      Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

      I've got a chu-berry alto, and actually I thought about installing them myself, as I love working on saxes, but I don't know if I'm good enough to do it myself- is there any major skill involved, or do you just stick em in (carefully of course! but you know what I mean) I'm going to take it to a much older much more experienced guy to adjust it. I'm thinking about going with the Saxgourmet pads- do you know where I can find them? Cheapest I've found for a chu-berry are 103.00 for a set. Authenticity is all nice warm and fuzzy, but for this sax sound is a priority- you can always change pads, but you can't take back that solo at the gig that was a bit too nasal for the song. :P I was thinking about gold resonators- any suggestions? This is all new frontier for me. Oh! Are Modele 26 Selmer saxes good horns? I don't know if I should go for one or not. I've gotten a lovely unexpected cash bonus and I intend to treat myself to saxes- having only one as of late has made me a bit lonely. Again, thanks for your time, it's much appreciated as always! Christie J

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      1. by connsaxman_jim
        (2336 posts)

        10 years ago

        Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

        I bought a pad set for both of my Chu Berry saxophones with white kangaroo leather pads and metal resonators. The sets fit my Chu's perfectly. They offered a few different "kits". The kit I purchsed included the adhesive, corks, felt, and replacement screws and rods. They're a little pricey. I paid like $180 for tenor, $140 for alto. The guy I have do a lot of my repairs had the catalog. I'll see if they have a website or if I can get you some information.

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    2. by South Florida Sax
      (10 posts)

      10 years ago

      Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

      Sax Maniac, I'm shopping for a 10M and I've been passing up opportunities because I've got my heart set on metal domed reso's. My Buescher 400's got metal snap-ins and I'm convinced this would be the best set up for me. Have you heard of any pro players touting oher types of reso's for a 10M with rolled-tone holes? What are the differences in the sound? THanks

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      1. by sax_maniac
        (984 posts)

        10 years ago

        Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

        The authentic pad for a 10M with RTH is a flat metal reso - specifically the Conn Reso pads which can be ordered from Ferree's and, I think, MusicMedic. To find a 10M with domed metal resos would mean you have to come across one that has been repadded with them. I'm of the opinion that the type of reso doesn't affect the sound all that much. The difference between having resos and not having them may be noticeable to some players. To outfit a horn with new pads properly will resolve pad leak issues - which I think is the "big difference" people experience with new pads - thinking it was the resos making the difference. Just my opinion. I think authenticity is the reason to use Conn Reso Pads on a RTH 10M. Domed metal resonators or any other resonator would work just as well in terms of sound, though. Don't pass up on a nice 10M on account of the kind of pads that are in it. You can always have the pads switched to whatever kind you want, and I'd be happy to do it for you!

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        1. by South Florida Sax
          (10 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

          Thanks sax_maniac. I've gotten nervous about reso's because I play-tested a 1951 10M that had plastic domes. I didn't feel that it had the big sound that I had been hearing about (I'm comparing it to my Buescher 400). I thought it might be due to the plastic domes but Mark Sepunick suggested to me that the key heights were to low. I think I should conclude that I should dismiss the resos in my decision and just make sure that the horn is setup right. THanks again!

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        2. by connsaxman_jim
          (2336 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

          I have dome plastic resonators on my 10M and it sounds great. I really don't notice any difference whatsoever. When I had my 10M overhauled, this is what they recommended. If I had to do over again, I probably would have insisted on metal resonators. I overhauled my Chu Berry alto and tenor myself, and bought the white metal resonator pads for them.

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        3. by sax_maniac
          (984 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

          Low key heights or a pad leak can easily rob the sound on any horn. It's my observation that 10M's ergonomics are set up for larger hands. It is possible that someone closed things up to make it more comfortable or faster or they possibly didn't know what they were doing to the overall sound. Pad heights are a balancing act. The person who set it up that way might have been pleased with it. Mark is a great guy to talk with - a solid resource.

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        4. by sax_maniac
          (984 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

          I'll add that I think that Conn Reso pads, with their metal ring around the outside thus flatter and "tighter" leather surface are very suitable for rolled tone holes. RTH make much less of an impression on the pads, so Conn Reso pads are nice to work with so long as the tone hole is level. If the RTH's aren't level, it's a tricky fix.

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        5. by South Florida Sax
          (10 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

          I wouldn't have thought that there is any inconsistency in the height of the RTH with this era/model horn, based on what I've heard. Has anyone heard of there being any inconsistencies with the 10M with RTH's?

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        6. by sax_maniac
          (984 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

          SFS - To clarify my comments about RTH possibly not being level, I've never heard of Conns being out of whack factory mint (though I have heard this about Keilwerth's modern soldered on rings). What can happen, though, is body damage that changes the profile of nearby tone holes such that they no longer are level. Even after fixing a dent, the tone hole may not be true. This is not specific to RTH, but repairing the profile of a RTH is more difficult than fixing drawn holes as you can't (or shouldn't) level the tonehole by grinding like you can with drawn holes. In an ideal world, drawn holes don't get ground either, but corrosion damage can sometimes make it mandatory. A person looking to buy a RTH horn (Conn, Keilwerth/Couf, etc.) should take a look at how level the tone holes are before committing to it. It could become frustrating to address tonehole issues and not all techs are astute to how to properly address it.

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        7. by South Florida Sax
          (10 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

          Great insight Sax Maniac, To check the levels, shall I just take a straight edge and lay it under the pads? Or is this something that needs to be done when all the keys/rods are removed? Thanks

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        8. by sax_maniac
          (984 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: Best pads for a Conn 157xxx Chu Berry?

          I suppose to have the keys off would allow the most complete and accurate view, but for practicality, it can be checked by using something flat and thin and somewhat rigid (think credit card without the embossment on it) and lay it across the tone hole. Cutaways from a fiberboard clipboard or plexiglass would work nicely. From there, you could use a thin feeler gauge (0.005") around the profile of the hole to see if there are any spots where the gauge can get through. I recommend using a leak light if possible, but if not, this mechanical method will suffice. The mere placing of your flat, thin object on the tonehole may tell you something. If it rocks on the tone hole, for example, it would mean that your pad would not be able to seal properly with out an unusual amount of deformation of the pad or a high amount of finger pressure. The bigger the horn, the more forgiving pad leaks are. While pad leaks always "get in the way" of a horn playing it's best, you can get away with slight leaks on tenors and moreso on bari's to a certain extent. Altos and sopranos are much more fickle when it comes to having a good pad seal. Good Luck.

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