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Date: Sun, 13 Jan 2002 19:17:36 -0800 (PST)
From: JJ McLallen
Subject: Re: [CB] [CB Digest]

> If the large woodwind is a bassoon, saxophone, or just about anything
> *except* for a Leblanc contrabass (or contralto) clarinet, it is just
> as easy as an ophicleide.  The pad is floated on a bed of shellac,
> which hardens and sets the pad in position.  However, Leblanc pads
> are a bit different: the key has a "spud" - a short, threaded tube.
> The pads are held down by a resonator (basically a washer) and a
> screw threaded into the spud (the pads are perforated in the center).
> So, the inside of the key is constructed differently, and doesn't
> have the wide *flat* space for shellac that all the other woodwinds
> (and certain brass instruments) have.
> *Why* they're made that way I don't know.  I'm tempted to suggest
> that the low frequencies would otherwise shake the pads free too
> quickly (and they're a small enough diameter that there's not as much
> shellac holding them as on a large sax), but as far as I know the
> other brands of contra don't use the same arrangement.  (Or do they?
> Someone go look at your Selmer, please...)

When I repadded a Leblanc paperclip two years ago I shellaced
the pads in and then put the resonator on the spud. It seemed to
work pretty well. I had no trouble floating the pads even with
just a little shellac.

Page 2.

I told you all a few months ago about a Selmer plastic
contra-alto that had broken. We sent the lower joint to Selmer,
and they simply replaced the joint. Five days ago I did the key
transfer and was lucky enough not to have to replace any pads.
VERY LUCKY!!! I floated most of them, tweaked a few of the keys
so the lod seats would match up with the new toneholes. When I
got done I, of course, had to play test it, and I was absolutely
amazed at how easy it was to play. WOW!!! I moved up and down
both registers and back and forth between them more easily than
I can on most sopranos. WOW!!! I gotta get me one of these
things one of these days!

JJ - Denver


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