Saxophone Repair advice
Hello Saxophone Forum! So glad to have found a place to talk saxophone with other people. So here's my story:
I currently play on a Jean Baptiste 480 T/L tenor saxophone, which I got more or less brand new back in the early months of 2007. Only reason I say more or less brand new was because it was a display model at the local music shop and the guy said it may have very minor weathering conditions. Nonetheless, it played well and has lasted me ever since, taking me from: Midlle School Band to the School District Honors Band where we performed at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood, High School Concert Band/Marching Band, High School Jazz Ensemble, and a saxophone quartet some friends and I made, all of which have thankfully taken me to perform at fantastic locations such as the Hollywood Bowl, Walt Disney Concert Hall, an out-of-state trip to Las Vegas, and many more. Now, I have reached a new peak at my musical career.
So right now I am a freshman/rising sophmore at my university and have decided to pursue a chance at declaring a double major in mathematics and in jazz studies. This year, I'll be auditioning for the school of music to see if I can get a spot in the school.
Now, here comes the real sax talk:
Through the years, my saxophone has taken quite a beating going from place to place. While I've always treated it well, it is still succeptible to damage. Here is a list of problems I have with the sax:
- the cork that holds the mouthpiece to the neck is wearing away, just barely holding on.
- lower register notes (starting from F and downward) play really muffled and require more wind than necessary to get the notes to come out.
- some of the hardware and bridges are beginning to fall apart.
- handful of cushioning pads have fallen off or are basically done for.
Over the years, I have done everything that I could to keep the sax up and running and in as tip-top shape as possible. I know eventually, I will have to upgrade to a better saxophone, but for the sake of the audition and practicing, I plan on sticking to this one for the time being. Also, since I'm kind of on a budget, I need to know approximately what needs to be fixed, what unecessary fixing can be avoided, and how much would I be looking into spending on repairing it.
I guess I can generalize down the questions:
- For the lower register notes problems, would that be a pad factor? If so, would I need to replace all the pads or just a certain amount of pads?
- Which would be the best course of action to take on repairing this old saxophone?
- Would it be better to invest in another saxophone now rather than invest on this one?
And a side question here, kind of apart from my sax:
- I recently found a vintage HN White King Voll-True tenor sax that needs some new padding for about $800. Would that be a better investment than repairing my old sax?
Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated. I hope to hear from you all soon and am excited to find out more about this great website.