Saxophone Forum


by MarcM
(7 posts)
8 years ago

Dumb Questions

I have recently become interested in playing again after a 20 year break. 20 years ago, I inherited a 1946 balanced action alto and a 1955 MK VI tenor, along with a bunch of different mouthpieces. First question: In the interest of hygiene, I boiled 6 rubber Selmer mouthpieces. They turned a lovely shade of rust brown. Did I ruin them? They do not appear to be distorted in any way, they are just nasty looking. Second question: My tenor has been sitting in its case for those 20 years without being played (I favor the alto.) When I took it out of the case, it seemed a little grungy, so I wiped the neck with a paper towel. I got some crud off of the neck that was green. I guess it was tarnish. Anyway, what can I use, if anything, to get the crud off of the rest of the horn that will not hurt the pads? Speaking of the pads, they are in remarkably good condition, but it looks like who ever took the old ones off, used some sort of heat source, as the (cups? what do you call what the pads are attached to?) are scorched. I was able to rub some of the scorched stuff off, but I did not go crazy with the cleaning because I did not want to hurt the finish anymore than it is. I have a large supply of cloth diapers that I think will work well for cleaning. Thank you for any help! Marc

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  1. by johnsonfromwisconsin
    (767 posts)

    8 years ago

    Re: Dumb Questions

    Don't boil mouthpieces. A soft scrub in lukewarm water, soap, and then maybe a soak in a sanitizer solution or alchohol is what most recommned. If they turned brown, then they are asthetically ruined, but may still function properly. soft cloth would work well for wiping down the horn of old dirt, soot, etc. As for the pads, visual inspection may not be enough. The horn could have leaks and other problems. Both horns are very much worth the cost of competent repairs by techs experienced in working with professional instruments.

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    1. by Stiles B
      (101 posts)

      8 years ago

      Re: Dumb Questions

      The tenor is ruined. You should send it to me. I'll take it off your hands as a favor. I'm kidding (but you should consider my offer anyway)

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      1. by kelsey
        (815 posts)

        8 years ago

        Re: Dumb Questions

        Hey Stiles B, I'll give him $300. for it.....Kelsey
        Barry Kelsey

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        1. by chiamac
          (586 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: Dumb Questions

          That black crap on your horn is actually highly toxic and caused by the glue selmer used for only 2 months, you were just unlucky enough to have one of those horns. You should not use this since this toxic crap causes cancer and pain under the players fingernails. You can't even throw it away, it breaks EPA law 34.572A-63 and the only way to dispose of it is to get it to one of 3 places in the country. One happens to be in the same area I live, and i was planning to fly down to LA here in the next month anyway. I could easly stop by, help you wrap the horn up (it has to be in plastic and bubble wrap) and dispose if it for you. Just let me know!

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        2. by MarcM
          (7 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: Dumb Questions

          Well, I appreciate your answers to my questions. I am glad I found this place! I had a sneaking suspicion that that tenor was a dud. I almost feel guilty for trading it to some guy for a set of really cool orange plates. I think they are called "Fiestaware".....

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        3. by chiamac
          (586 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: Dumb Questions

          I feel guilty for that guy, you totally ripped him off! I would have at least gave him $5 or something. =)

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        4. by chiamac
          (586 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: Dumb Questions

          but seriously, you should take that to a repair person and get their opinon, I'm sure they have seen this quite a few times.

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        5. by MarcM
          (7 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: Dumb Questions

          I have found a good tech by my house that I will have take a look at the tenor after he completes the repairs on my alto. I am buying a house, so I may have to wait a little while longer before I put new pads on it. I played the tenor a few days ago, and I honestly can not tell if it is my diminished lung capacity, or a leak or two from the pads, but the horn did sound pretty good between my gasps for air. There may be a bit of an air leak at the neck, as the screw to tighten the neck is all the way in, but the neck still swings around freely.

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