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Clarinet Roadshow => All about Clarinets => Topic started by: GrumpyMiddleAgedMan on October 15, 2020, 07:47:38 PM

Title: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: GrumpyMiddleAgedMan on October 15, 2020, 07:47:38 PM
On so here it goes.
I picked up a kind of rough looking piece of wood with some keys attached to it. It was a little more run down than I thought. It came with the bell but no barrel so no biggie. I was kind of figuring on just using it for parts even though it was missing the lower b-f key.  What kind of surprised was that I can't find any cracks in the wood, nothing that would be considered a crack as opposed to grain.
With that in mind I figured I might as well have a go at saving it. I've had to cut 5 of the screws that were really stuck and stripped the whole body of posts. Only problem is I broke the threaded bit of the right pinky levers (b c)in the inside post.  What I need a little help with is can I unscrew those inside posts or am I going to have to get the threads out some other way?
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: GrumpyMiddleAgedMan on October 16, 2020, 11:38:46 PM
Good thing I'm not being paid by the hour, I don't think I could justify the bill  :-\ .  I managed to get the inside posts out and hit it with some alum. So far I had to punch out 4 of the screw pins once I cut the keys. I tried heat and wd40 but it didn't get into it.
Does anyone have experience with replating keys?  The keywork is missing a fair percemtage of its plating. Either doing it yourself with some system or I'm pretty sure its more professional to send them out to a shop to have it done. I know there is a do it yourself electroplate kit and a wipe on solution but are thin at best.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: DaveLeBlanc on October 20, 2020, 04:54:19 PM
It’s almost NEVER worth it to replate keys, unless you’re doing it for fun or a learning experience.

My advice- use some Weimann metal polish and call it a day.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: GrumpyMiddleAgedMan on October 22, 2020, 05:02:09 PM
Let me run this by you first. I don't know how stupid this sounds.
Would I be able to plate it myself with solder?  I could flux and flow it on sections that are missing and sand it down and blend it in. I have a few spots that have some actual divits, must have gotten gauged by something.
Would this look ridiculous?  I don't think it would hurt the resale at this point.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: windydankoff on October 23, 2020, 10:37:20 AM
Low-temp silver solder has a much lower melting point than the high-temp brazing material with which most keys are assembled. I've used it for repairs and mods with no problem. As long as the horn doesn't have cheesy cast-metal keys.

An easier solution worth mentioning is "chrome" color nail polish. It's more fake, but it's easy and removeable. It makes crappy looking keys look normal from a distance. I got some at a pharmacy. I searched for mirror-shiny nail polish, but it doesn't seem to be available. The "chrome" is a reasonable match to silver plating or to German silver (if you're legally blind).
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: Dibbs on October 26, 2020, 02:41:20 AM
Let me run this by you first. I don't know how stupid this sounds.
Would I be able to plate it myself with solder?  I could flux and flow it on sections that are missing and sand it down and blend it in. I have a few spots that have some actual divits, must have gotten gauged by something.
Would this look ridiculous?  I don't think it would hurt the resale at this point.

You can certainly fill in divots with solder but not really plate things that way.  For filling holes you can use extra easy silver solder from jewellers suppliers. It melts at a lower temperature than that used for joining key parts together. 

Windy, are you talking about using the so called silver solder with about 5% silver intended for electronics ?  I've always heard it shouldn't be used for keywork but I don't know why.  I imagine it's not as strong as the high silver content stuff but that wouldn't matter much if it's just for filling holes.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: windydankoff on October 26, 2020, 08:18:01 AM
I was thinking of jeweler's solder. Its purpose is closer to the intended application, and more likely to match appearance.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: GrumpyMiddleAgedMan on November 24, 2020, 04:41:14 PM
When looking at bores, what is acceptable for condition. I mean ideally a mirror smooth bore with zero holes/deviations or grain separation is the target.
I was shining the bore and noticed it was a little rough looking. I am guessing this is from not being properly maintained, swabbing drying etc. Or just cumulative use over many decades.
I am wondering about the condition, will it have a  negatively impact its sound based on just looking at the pictures. Is it even viable to be put into play?
I don't think there is any real way to repair bore pitting is there?
These are the best pics I was able to get.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: windydankoff on November 24, 2020, 07:11:38 PM
My suggestion, based on a true joke ... Throw it in the car. Meet a buddy at a bar. Leave a car window open. When you come back out, if you're lucky, there will be a few more clarinets in your car.

Cheers!
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: Windsong on November 24, 2020, 07:37:26 PM
What brand is this clarinet, Grumpy?
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: GrumpyMiddleAgedMan on November 24, 2020, 10:18:23 PM
Its  penzel, I'm trying to revive it. To bottom joint is in good shape, the top joint as seen here, is a little rough. It absorbed roughly 12-14 ml of bore oil so far. It was really dry but seems to be almost rehydrated.
This has been a learning experience.
 My next trick is going to be finding or making the missing key.
I haven't been out to a bar in years  :(     
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: windydankoff on November 25, 2020, 07:56:29 AM
So, with the bars all closed these days, you're stuck with this wreck. A Penzel may play out well afterall!

I don't believe that the bore texture effects the performance. Even if it's shiny smooth, it's quickly coated with droplets of water that get bigger, then drip down, altering the surface substantially. Do you, or anyone, notice a change in tone from dry to wet? I don't.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: GrumpyMiddleAgedMan on December 01, 2020, 06:36:05 PM
I have been thinking about the network. It is going to have to be done before I pad or anything. Nail polish would seem the quick and dirty way to do it but im thinking it would flake/chip easy. Solder is out because of the retardedness needed to coat whole key. Maybe good for gap filler. Paint same thing as nail.polish but probably less durable.
Now how does powder coat sound?  I can bake it on, it is relatively cheap and application doesn't seem too bad. Need to prep the surface good for proper adhesion. I can get a high gloss chrome finish powder unless I go color? High gloss black keywork?  Maybe cherry red... Probably not red.
Not sure how it will feel on fingers. Is super smooth preferable or do you want something with some tack? 
Any thoughts?
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: Airflyte on December 01, 2020, 07:43:43 PM
When looking at bores, what is acceptable for condition. I mean ideally a mirror smooth bore with zero holes/deviations or grain separation is the target.

Are mirror smooth bores acoustically superior over grainy ones?

I have to ask as I have my doubts.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: GrumpyMiddleAgedMan on December 01, 2020, 11:29:15 PM
In my head, I would say the smoother the better. If you think of liquid in say a river if the bottom is rocky you are going to get deviations and cavitations in the flow. I would assume air would be similar. Changing the flow of air causing irregularties. Also i am thinking when saliva builds up it is going to be forming on the places that are not as smooth first and going to kind of anchored a little better to those spots. Of course when the droplet becomes big enough the surface tension of the liquid will no longer be able to hold it in place and it will roll down n out. Though condensation is going to occur on cold spots as well so basically the whole inside. I can talk in circles.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: Dibbs on December 02, 2020, 03:13:11 PM
Personally, I feel bore smoothness makes a perceptible difference as do most (all?) instrument makers but I've never experienced it personally or seen any studies.

In Acoustical aspects of woodwind instruments p11 Nederveen states

"The velocity of sound in the tube is slightly different from that in free space because of the action of friction and heat exchange of the air with the wall.  In practice this causes a damping and a change in frequency."

Friction is obviously greater if the surface is rough so, on the face of it, one would expect bore smoothness to affect both tone and intonation.  However he later (p15) calculates the thickness of the boundary layer to be ~0.05mm at 1000Hz.   He calculates this purely from the viscosity and density of air.  There is no "roughness" parameter. 

I don't know what to make of that.  Maybe the calculation assumes a perfectly smooth bore surface because the roughness effect is considered negligible but he states no such assumption.

Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: Airflyte on December 02, 2020, 07:12:01 PM
So plastic Bundy's and Vito's technically have the best bore surfaces "teamed up" with inferior bore dimensions?
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: modernicus on December 04, 2020, 05:32:59 PM
When looking at bores, what is acceptable for condition. I mean ideally a mirror smooth bore with zero holes/deviations or grain separation is the target.

Are mirror smooth bores acoustically superior over grainy ones?

I have to ask as I have my doubts.
IIRC it was the opposite.
Title: Re: 30 dollar train wreck
Post by: windydankoff on December 06, 2020, 09:23:42 AM
Again I point out that the bore, after seconds of play, is coated with condensation which then presents a new surface to the bore.

I put a barrel with a rough bore onto an upper joint with glossy bore, then played it and pulled off the MP. Looking down the bore, the condensation looks the same on both surfaces. Therefore, I'm not concerned with bore texture.

Your observations may vary. So much is subjective ... like when I clean and polish the outside of my flute, it ALWAYS sounds better. Really? (I don't think so.) But I believe it, therefore it is.