Saxophone Forum


by Brandty
(4 posts)
10 years ago

Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

I have a 2004 monique bari sax that is full of tunning issues. I have heard that by adjusting the distance my pads open I might be able to fix this. I am looking for some one near Sioux Falls South Dakota that could do this. Or anyone who could tell me how to do it my self.

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  1. by definition
    (963 posts)

    10 years ago

    Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

    Dont bother. I have one Monique tenor I givce to students to use in class while they're horn is in the shop, or they forget to bring it, etc but the horn's intonation problem arent fixable overall. The one I have is actually perfectly in tune except fore low C - which is about 40 cents sharp... It took a long time to get it to there. Do yourself a favor, melt that down fer scrap, and go get a nice used student bari.

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    1. by Tbone
      (120 posts)

      8 years ago

      Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

      "The one I have is actually perfectly in tune except fore low C - which is about 40 cents sharp... " A crescent of cork, epoxy putty or other suitable material can be added to the tonehole chimney to move the effective center of the tonehole which will lower the pitch of the troubled note. There's more to tuning a sax than just raising and lowering key heights.

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  2. by MartinMods
    (63 posts)

    5 years ago

    Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

    Some easy intonation fixes: 1. The very common, sharp D2-F#2: While these notes are easy to blow sharp, they should be easily manageable. Very often, replacing the lower register pip with a Benade pip (very short 1mm tube - www.martinmods.com/benaderegisterpip.html will fix the problem. To determine if the original pip is causing the intonation issue, play D1, then overblow to D2 WITHOUT THE OCTAVE KEY. The intonation should be good, though the D2 will be stuffy. Do the same for the other RH notes. If the intonation is good without the octave key, then the original lower pip is the culprit. This is a very easy fix for any tech or anyone who can solder. If the intonation is still bad, then the cause lies elsewhere, and a bore insert may do the trick. 2. Sharp upper register - flat lower register: Very common when the mouthpiece volume and/or the mouthpiece resonance frequency does not match the instrument - the mouthpiece volume is too large and/or the frequency of the mouthpiece is too high. Using a smaller chambered mouthpiece, or inserting a short, cylindrical tube shaped insert, which fits snugly in the mouthpiece throat and has the same inner diameter as the neck opening, will usually fix this problem. One will need to experiment with different insert lengths to get the best balance between high and low registers. 3. Flat middle B, C, C#: Keys not venting (Open) enough or resonators too thick. also see # 2. 4. Individual Notes: Bore inserts, neck adjustments, crescents, replace tone hole with a wide-based Martin style tone hole ring.

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  3. by johnsonfromwisconsin
    (767 posts)

    10 years ago

    Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

    not sure of any techs in your area. Key heights can be crucial to tuning a saxophone, but it's not something a normal player can do without risking messing up the horn. What notes are out of tune? Moniques may not have the best reputation for quality, but it's what we have to work with. Have you tried different mouthpieces? Sometimes just a change there can improve things a lot.

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    1. by jazzdude482
      (38 posts)

      10 years ago

      Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

      I have a yamaha tenor sax and it just started to sound flat all of a sudden even when i put my mouthpeice all the way in its still flat. Does anyone know wats wrong w/ it and if u do wat should i do.

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      1. by connsaxman_jim
        (2336 posts)

        10 years ago

        Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

        Have you made any changes to your set-up jazzdude? A new mouthpiece or different reeds, for example? There are many things that can effect the intonation. If your set-up hasn't changed, you should probably have the horn checked by a technition. It may need some adjustments.

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        1. by jazzdude482
          (38 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

          well... i started using a selmer c* , rico royal size 3 reeds and a rovner dark ligature... yeah i kinda got tired with the stock parts, but i heard that selmers dont go wth yamaha horns

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        2. by DaveUK1965
          (14 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

          85% of tuning a sax is down to the player - on some very old horns, or some very bad cheap modern ones, the intonation is waaaay out and nothing can be done. Believe it or not, a sax doesn't naturally play in tune - the player does most of the work.....

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      2. by selmerfan
        (67 posts)

        8 years ago

        Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

        Brandty, I hate to tell you this, but there aren't any repairmen in the SF area that I would label "sax techs" The guys at the local stores can repair some simple things, but setting up a horn so it plays great is a different story entirely, especially if you're playing a Monique! I grew up in SD, have my BME from SDSU and used Randy Jones at Tenor Madness for all of my sax tech work in college. You might try asking Dr. Crawley up at SDSU, he might know of some recommendations, but SD doesn't have any GREAT techs for the saxophone, I know Crawley takes his to K&M if he needs a little work done, otherwise he has a different source. You also might contact CJ Coker over at USD, great player, really nice guy, too bad he teaches at USD! :) He might have some recommendations as well. BTW, which school are you at in SF, or in the area? I did my student teaching at Brandon Valley. selmerfan

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        1. by kneejerk52
          (397 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

          i agree semer fan, i recently restored a old stencil of a tru tone, but when i had the tech i know do the "set-up" it played about 100percent better.

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          1. by jwaltb
            (15 posts)

            8 years ago

            Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

            On this topic I have an old Buescher tenor that is flat on the middle C but sharp on the D above that. I was thinking it has to do with the pad heights, etc. as one has most open and the other has most closed. Do you think this could be the case? Do any of you know of a good resource - instruction manual or the like - available that would explain all of this and what is required to correct? Thanks, JB

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            1. by selmerfan
              (67 posts)

              8 years ago

              Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

              The D, D#, E, and F nat. above middle C are sharp on almost every saxophone, regardless of how well set up, the pitch can be lowered by fingering the low B key while playing these notes. As for the C, it could be the pad heights, or the tone hole could be the wrong size, my suggestion would be to send it to Randy at Tenor Madness and have him set it up for you, it's not real cheap, but it will play as well as it possibly can when he's done with it. selmerfan

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            2. by jwaltb
              (15 posts)

              8 years ago

              Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

              Thanks for the info. I'm gonna play around with it some but may end up going that route.

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            3. by selmerfan
              (67 posts)

              8 years ago

              Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

              JB, if you got the Randy Jones route, call him first. He had some kidney stones removed last week and is passing more, as well as fighting a nasty fever, so I'd call him first, his contact info is available on this website or at www.tenormadness.com Good luck! selmerfan

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            4. by dee
              (23 posts)

              8 years ago

              Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

              Hi selmerfan I'd be interested in hearing the outcome of this discussion. I've been following it with great interest. On my tenor the middle B C and D are all flat . I compensate as I'm playing but it's a real pain in the #+* while recording and during fast passages. The rest of the horn is ok. I am about to go into a sax repair tech' and ask what them to fix the prob'. First i'd be keen to see if there is something I can do myself. thanks dee

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            5. by selmerfan
              (67 posts)

              8 years ago

              Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

              dee, I'm not enough of an expert to tell you your problem, there are some likely candidates, but I'll let a qualified tech tell you those, I just play the horn and know when it's not working just right. It could be key heights, that's my only decent guess. I'd once again recommend Randy at Tenor Madness, he'll make it the best playing horn it can be, I have NO reservations about saying that! selmerfan

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            6. by dee
              (23 posts)

              8 years ago

              Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

              Thanks Selmerfan I'll have to take it on down to my local city repair tech' my friend, Randy is a hell of a long way from Sydney Australia. cheers dee

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            7. by selmerfan
              (67 posts)

              8 years ago

              Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

              Yes, yes he is. :) Although I know he's shipped horns to Australia, I'd hate to see the shipping cost w/insurance, it would be more than the repair cost! selmerfan

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            8. by advanstraeten
              (1 post)

              5 years ago

              Re: Saxophone Tuning Need Help!!!!

              That's correct.On my Selmer Mark 6 alto E was sharp. I am still struggling with my recently bought baritone, The Martin, with middle F, but after practicing with the baritone, now my E on alto is correct, without anybody's intervention, still my F is to high on baritone.Nobody notices, but myself.Still, I don't like it. I could have it fixed by getting pads lower, closer to the body, but then there is the risk of sounding dull. I would like to have somebody to help me fix my problem, but to be honest: the best idea is to practice, it's all in the mind and your mouth.

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