Facebook Twitter Instagram

Forums — Saxophones
Flat low C

Use of the NASA Forums constitutes agreement to the Forums Acceptable Use Policy. If you see something that violates these terms or is inappropriate for the forums, please so that we may investigate. Please provide as much information as possible.

Non-members may browse the forums, but only members may post to the forums.

Return to Forums Home | Return to Parent Topic — Saxophones

Flat low C

Tuesday, November 23, 2010 6:42 PM
Author: Not Found

Good day, I play a Selmer Mark VI (serial # 98687) and my low C is extremely flat. The reason for this is my bow is extended to help lower the pitch on the low Bb (a note that is very sharp on most Mark VI's as well as other models. My saxophone professor demonstrated to me that the extended bow was a feature on Mark VI's for a certain period of time before going back to the original size of bow (the bow on her VI-which has a later serial #- is shorter than mine). I've looked into ways to counter the low flat C and what I have found is people tune sharper and blow flatter, take more mouthpiece, and drop their mouthpiece cap into the bottom of the bell. I am curious into knowing if anyone here has had this problem and if so, what have you done to dealt with it? Thanks! Samuel Sturza


Wednesday, November 24, 2010 8:08 PM
Author: Not Found

There were actually four different bow lengths used during Mk VI production. If you were trying to correct the low Bb, you should lengthen the bell, not the bow, although this is a fool's game IMHO. The lengthening of the bow is the root of your problem, as you have altered the relationship of the tone holes. Do not be misled if anyone tells you to adjust the key heights. True, you can flatten a note by lowering the height, but at the expense of the voice. Any opening beyond 30% of the diameter of the tonehole makes absolutely no difference. If you wish to sharpen the note, you can get somewhat acceptable results by moving the effective center of the first open tone hole toward the mouthpiece by inserting a shim on the opposing side of the tonehole. Some experimentation will be necessary in order to judge the correct thickness of the shim. Modeling clay is an excellent medium to use for trials. Once the correct size is determined, duplicate the temporary shim in a permanent material. I use epoxy putty.

Please login if you wish to contribute to the NASA Forums.