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Subject Topic: BOOSEY & HAWKES 32 ALTO Post ReplyPost New Topic
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DavidWright
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Posted: December.03.07 at 5:04am | IP Logged Quote DavidWright

Hi - A customer has just brought in a B & H 32 silver plated alto sax. It's in very good condition. The fault lies in the tuning. The notes A Bb B C and C# in the second register are all playing flat by almost a semi-tone. The same notes in the third register are not quite so bad but the high D plays a very flat E natural (concert). The pad cup venting seems normal on all tone holes. There is also some 'burbling' on low Bb B and C but there do not appear to be any leaks up the top of the instrument.Does anybody have any ideas before I start breaking it down?
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bobbaier
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Posted: December.04.07 at 4:07am | IP Logged Quote bobbaier

I haven't had any experience with these saxes, but it sounds like this may be why they are not sought after by collectors. Is there any chance that the neck with it is not the original? Is the neck bent at all?

bob
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Posted: December.04.07 at 4:11pm | IP Logged Quote admin

Also check that the neck tenon is air tight in the neck receiver.  Use the leak checker from J.L. Smith to make sure there is suction there.  I've seen leaks in that area cause pretty strange problems.

Michelle  
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DaveWeiner
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Posted: December.05.07 at 4:18pm | IP Logged Quote DaveWeiner

I'm going to bet you have a leak problem in the neck tenon, as previously noted, OR, you have some other neck-related problem. Note that the problem is not as bad when the octave key is opened. Somewhere between the octave vent and palm Eb there is either a leak or a dent or a misshapen tube of some kind causing a flat condition in these notes. Also indicative is the fact that G seems to be in tune. Look also for leaks in the side octave key pad or the vent tube itself, besides the other leaks mentioned. Look for dents or solder blobs in the neck. Look for a misshapen neck venturi or a poorly fitting neck cork, too. A leak there can cause all kinds of burbling problems down low, which seems also to be a problem. Try the intonation with a different model mouthpiece, just to rule out a mouthpiece problem.

Hope all that helps.
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DavidWright
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Posted: December.10.07 at 9:00am | IP Logged Quote DavidWright

Thanks to Bob, Michelle and Dave. On closer examination I discovered the 'fault'. Somehow the saxophone end-plug had found it's way into the bell and had lodged itself quite tightly inside the body about 2" down from the neck receiver!!! I've still got the B/Bb burbling but that should be sorted out during the service. Thanks again

David
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DavidWright
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Posted: December.13.07 at 3:01am | IP Logged Quote DavidWright

Hi - on the B & H 32, below the serial number, is a flat sign (b). What does this signify?

David
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IanWhite
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Posted: December.15.07 at 2:09pm | IP Logged Quote IanWhite

I'm not familiar with this model but if it is from 1920s or 30s I imagine it would signify low pitch rather than high (Marked with a #?)

Where abouts are you in UK?

Ian
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DavidWright
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Posted: December.16.07 at 12:54pm | IP Logged Quote DavidWright

Hi Ian - Yes it's from 1932. The tuning (with the mouthpiece on as far as it will go) is about 25 cents flat. Is there any way of modifying the instrument?

David

(Burnham on Sea
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IanWhite
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Posted: December.17.07 at 2:16am | IP Logged Quote IanWhite

The tuning should be OK. Maybe it's a mouthpiece problem - putting a modern one on these older horns can cause trouble.
There are people on this forum who know much more about these things than me. Any ideas guys?

Ian
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