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Messages - kewald

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1
All about Clarinets / Re: Making new key posts
« on: August 06, 2020, 03:15:52 PM »
My two cents, take it face value.  :D
I destroyed 3 screws on my first attempt at taking down a clarinet, it was only a few months ago on a Yamaha 250. I figured I would start with something more readily replaceable.  I cranked the screws figuring they would just come out with enough force. I ended up having to drilling out the screws through the post with a dremmel(good idea at the time I thought).  One I actually drilled the whole rod clear to the other side before I figured out I could drill out to the inside of the first post then bend it up pull the key and unscrew the remaining. Bought stock bar, threaded it and put it all back. Fortunately didn't do any real damage and everything went back together nicely. Lesson learned.
I had to remove a screw on I think it was my brilliant. I used a jeweler saw on this one, I had a little clearance between key and post, the Yamaha was too tight, plus I hadent picked one up yet. So cut, bend, pull and unscrew. Worked well enough. 
Anyway, you asked if it is worth it. Self education, hands on experience is priceless. Worst case the only thing you will lose is the cost of the instrument you paid if you do it yourself. If you send it out, unless you have some kind of attachment to it you will more than likely spend far more than the worth of the finished product. As a hobby I find it fun to monkey with this sort of thing but I'm not expecting to many anything off of it.
Thanks.  I am considering buying a small, inexpensive engine lathe to make the parts.  That way I can make more posts, etc. if needed.  I have had machining done on another project recently and paid $50 per hour for that.  Too expensive for this kind of project.  But if I have a machine that's capable costs will be primarily for material.  I have a full woodworking shop already, so one more little machine might be useful for many other projects.

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All about Clarinets / Making new key posts
« on: August 06, 2020, 10:17:06 AM »
This is also posted in the Penzel Mueller Timeline Topic.
I purchased a Penzel Mueller Bb Clarinet on Ebay and am in the process of restoring it.  The clarinet is marked "LP" and "B".  SN is 11832, so apparently it was made ca. 1935.
This was one of my earliest restoration attempts and I made mistakes that ruined two of the key posts.  Essentially, the posts must be replaced or remade. Then fitted to the body and drilled, faced and tapped for a new rod.
Background of the opportunity to learn: When I received the instrument, the Hinge Rod was stuck in the posts and was too short, driven in by someone who broke one of the slot tangs.
Mistakes made:  Tried getting it out by grinding a flat on a spare rod to mate it to the remaining slot - used it like a screwdriver but couldn't get it to budge.  Then, clamped the joint in my drill press vice and drilled out the rod, which messed up the hole in the post when the bit drifted.  Don't recall the exact sequence of subsequent events, but I believe I may have gotten the posts out of the body and then in trying to extract the thread end of the rod - broke it off.  Drilled it out messing up the hole again.  Silver soldered some brass rod into the holes, remounted the posts and tried to drill through one into the other.  Of course, I don't have the proper equipment, so those holes didn't work either.  Filled them both with silver solder and set the project aside. 

That was a few months ago.  In the meantime I've learned a better way of extracting impossible rods - cut between the hinge and post at the slot end with a jewelers saw, remove that post from the body and then twist out the other post using the remaining rod.  Then soak the rod & post in penetrating oil and gradually work the rod out.  Reface the cut post and add a little silver solder to the cut hinge then reface that to fit between the posts - ream to fit the new rod.  I learned about this from a nice professional SaxProShop technician when the second problem arose.

I now have a joint mounting jig and cross slide vice for my drill press, so with the judicious use of a very small machinist jack that I will make from a screw, connecting nut and stop nut, I could attempt another drilling.  However, I'm concerned about the strength of the threads being tapped into silver solder/nickel-silver.  And of course, I might mess it up yet again.

Is it worth fixing? If so, any ideas of someone who could tackle the job, or of another approach.

Thanks

3
Make and Model lists and research / Re: Penzel Mueller Serial Time line
« on: August 04, 2020, 05:43:48 PM »
I purchased a Penzel Mueller Bb Clarinet on Ebay and am in the process of restoring it.  The clarinet is marked "LP" and "B".  SN is 11832, so apparently it was made ca. 1935.
This was one of my earliest restoration attempts and I made mistakes that ruined two of the key posts.  Essentially, the posts must be replaced or remade. Then fitted to the body and drilled, faced and tapped for a new rod.
Background of the opportunity to learn: When I received the instrument, the Hinge Rod was stuck in the posts and was too short, driven in by someone who broke one of the slot tangs.
Mistakes made:  Tried getting it out by grinding a flat on a spare rod to mate it to the remaining slot - used it like a screwdriver but couldn't get it to budge.  Then, clamped the joint in my drill press vice and drilled out the rod, which messed up the hole in the post when the bit drifted.  Don't recall the exact sequence of subsequent events, but I believe I may have gotten the posts out of the body and then in trying to extract the thread end of the rod - broke it off.  Drilled it out messing up the hole again.  Silver soldered some brass rod into the holes, remounted the posts and tried to drill through one into the other.  Of course, I don't have the proper equipment, so those holes didn't work either.  Filled them both with silver solder and set the project aside. 

That was a few months ago.  In the meantime I've learned a better way of extracting impossible rods - cut between the hinge and post at the slot end with a jewelers saw, remove that post from the body and then twist out the other post using the remaining rod.  Then soak the rod & post in penetrating oil and gradually work the rod out.  Reface the cut post and add a little silver solder to the cut hinge then reface that to fit between the posts - ream to fit the new rod.  I learned about this from a nice professional SaxProShop technician when the second problem arose.

I now have a joint mounting jig and cross slide vice for my drill press, so with the judicious use of a very small machinist jack that I will make from a screw, connecting nut and stop nut, I could attempt another drilling.  However, I'm concerned about the strength of the threads being tapped into silver solder/nickel-silver.  And of course, I might mess it up yet again.
Is it worth fixing? If so, any ideas of someone who could tackle the job, or of another approach.

Thanks

4
All about Clarinets / Re: Value of Reconditioned Vintage Clarinets
« on: August 01, 2020, 11:57:39 AM »
Thanks, that helps a lot.

5
My story is complicated and could be book length.  Here's the short version.

Played clarinet from 4th grade through HS and never again until recently.

A few of my careers include: Electronics technician in the early 1960s.  Computer software developer (mainframe in the 1960's and more modern stuff in the 1990's.Small business owner: Home cleaning service, energy conservation products (sun control film, etc.), energy conservation engineering (I'm not an engineer but farmed out any work that needed to be done by one), SEC Registered Representative and financial analyst on a few small private stock offerings.  Then I decided to finish college.  Earned a BBA '91 and later an MBA '94 (age 54).  After completing my second stint in computer software in 2001, opened a custom picture framing store which went bust in 2008 (like many many others).  Semi retired since then, having worked a year at Home Depot, built custom furniture for about 5 years, flew drones doing roof inspections for 3 years, and now refurbishing clarinets for the fun of it.

Life happens while planning to do something else.

Can you tell that I get bored easily?  Never did want to get into a rut.


6
All about Clarinets / Value of Reconditioned Vintage Clarinets
« on: August 01, 2020, 10:56:24 AM »
In the past several months I've been reconditioning some Bb Clarinets that I bought on Ebay, with the intent of selling them, though probably not on Ebay if there are other venues that might be more appropriate.  The one aspect of doing this that I am absolutely terrible at is establishing a fair market value for the instruments.  Don't ask me how many hours I've spent on each horn - my short term memory is terrible, so I don't even try to keep track.  If I made a note of the start time I'd lose the note.  Not looking to make enough to justify the time as that is time well spent.


By way of background, I'm old enough to know better, but not too old to try anyway.  I'm a fairly competent woodworker (actually made custom furniture professionally for a few years), and lifelong DIYer.  I've bought and read several books about clarinet repair, and think I have now become somewhat proficient in most aspects of the craft.  So far, starting with my 1949 Boosey & Hawkes Edgware that I played from 4th grade through graduating high school in 1958, and then not again until earlier this year (or was it late last year?), I've completed work on 7 instruments.  They all play well, at least to my old ears.  I've also refaced each mouthpiece, flattening the table and smoothing the curve so the mouthpiece plays well with a #2 reed (figuring most beginners should start around that strength).  This is a listing of the instruments completed to date:
  • Boosey & Hawkes Edgware, SN 43614 - 1949 (mine)
  • Boosey & Hawkes Edgware, SN 36056 - 1941
  • Boosey & Hawkes Series 1-10, SN 255967 - 1984?
  • American Student, SN 63425 - year?
  • Boosey & Hawkes Edgware, SN 119294 - year?
  • LeBlanc Normandy, SN 1968C - year?
  • R. Malerne Standard, SN A1630 - year?
BTW, I got back into music to learn to play Alto Sax, thanks to a review of the Jean Paul instrument by Jay Metcalf of BetterSax on YouTube.  Finding it very enjoyable in addition to relearning clarinet.  Probably won't ever play well enough for anyone's enjoyment but my own, but it helps keep the gray matter alive.

So the main question: any idea what a fair market value range for any of these horns might be?

Kindest Regards,

7
Make and Model lists and research / Mystery Clarinet
« on: May 07, 2020, 08:44:14 AM »
Just received an old clarinet (Ebay find) that only has one marking on it: "American Student".  Any idea of the maker or vintage would be welcome.
Thanks,

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All about Clarinets / Re: efficient home set-up?
« on: May 05, 2020, 11:19:50 AM »
Interesting.

I leave my clarinet on the stand.  Using a Hercules clarinet peg, which I believe provides adequate airflow as the bell isn't blocked.

The peg mounts on my Hercules Sax stand leg so they are both conveniently located.  I use Key Leaves on the major closed keys on the sax to prevent sticking.  Wonder if it would be worthwhile using a small wedge to open the closed keys on the clarinet?

I remove the reeds and store them in D’Addario Woodwind Reeds Cases that are supposedly humidity controlled.  I put both cane and synthetic reeds in the cases.  Went a step further according to something a read somewhere that suggests rotating reeds daily.  So, I labeled each reed slot with the days of the week plus 1 marked "rotate".  This way, I play a different reed on each instrument each day and I'm keeping track of the playing difficulty, squeaking and accidental overtones with a simple rating system.  I know squeaks and overtones are also caused by my embouchure, but I generally  know when that happens.  Yes - it's more information than I need, but I'm a data geek.

Also a gadget geek.

I also brush my teeth before ever playing either instrument.

Not good enough to play gigs, and might not get that good, but having fun anyway.

Stay safe!

9
All about Clarinets / Re: Bore oil vs. Key oil
« on: May 05, 2020, 10:38:44 AM »
I'm an old man who is new to working on clarinets.  I bought a small bottle of key oil in medium viscosity from one of the repair sites online - don't recall which one.  Anyway - if I understand the process correctly, one should never just apply oil to the joints between the posts and hinges, but should remove the key, clean the rod/pivots and hinge tube and then re-oil sparingly.  It seems that oiling the joint may cause a buildup of dust, etc. and cause the key to eventually become sluggish.

Comments, please.

Ken

10
All about Clarinets / Re: I finally started to play clarinet again!
« on: May 05, 2020, 10:32:20 AM »
I also recently started playing a woodwind after 61 years!  Played clarinet from 5th grade through High School, then stopped in 1958.  Always wanted to play saxophone, so I bought a Jean Paul alto and started teaching myself last summer.  Then, a few months later decided to get out my old clarinet.  It's a Boosey & Hawkes Edgware made in 1949.  In terrible shape - missing a pivot screw, thumb rest and had bad pads.  Decided to renovate it myself.  Bought a set of pads, rods and springs on Ebay (Chinese) and went to work, having no idea what I was doing.  Found a few repair shops online and bought J.L. Smith's book.  Well, after several failed attempts and better pads, it now plays ok and I've also started buying and renovating vintage clarinets.  Learning as I go.  Just hope to eventually sell a few and recoup my costs.  Another of my many hobbies.

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