Problematic A# key

Taking care of your instrument

Moderators: Classitar, pied_piper, Phineas

Post Reply
User avatar
Chris Carr
Posts: 48
Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2014 5:48 pm
Location: Volcano, HI
Contact:

Problematic A# key

Post by Chris Carr » Tue Sep 02, 2014 6:13 pm

I'm having an issue with my A# key. It seems to be getting stuck partway up. The pad isn't sticking, but the key doesn't seem to be moving freely. It seems to have a tiny bit of resistance.

I had this instrument completely overhauled by the manufacturer just a couple of months ago, and I'm kind of surprised I'm having issues already.

If I lived on the mainland, I'd just take it in to a repair facility. However, I live on an island in the middle of the pacific, and that would involve me shipping it off somewhere. Necessity requires I do as much as I can by myself.

Any suggestions on what I should look at?

Someday I'll have more than one flute and sending one off for repair won't be that big of a deal.

Thanks all!

mirwa
Posts: 271
Joined: Fri Dec 14, 2012 6:36 pm
Location: Australia - Perth
Contact:

Re: Problematic A# key

Post by mirwa » Wed Sep 03, 2014 3:58 am

It could be many reasons unfortunatley.

Sticky residue on the long Bb contact point (linked to F)
Internal rod bent between A and Bb
Key hinge bent on Bb
Incorrect spring tension on either A or Bb
Incorrect contact at the thumb lever,
The thumb over ride sticking
Overtightened rod on C
Posts too close together between F# and C
Bent body
Incorrectly filed contact ends on A/Bb
Old residue between rod and hinge tube
Incorerctly fitted tapered pin on A/Bb assembly

To name but a few

User avatar
JButky
Posts: 389
Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2009 8:21 pm
Location: Mt. Juliet

Re: Problematic A# key

Post by JButky » Wed Sep 03, 2014 6:02 am

MrHarryReems wrote:I'm having an issue with my A# key. It seems to be getting stuck partway up. The pad isn't sticking, but the key doesn't seem to be moving freely. It seems to have a tiny bit of resistance.

I had this instrument completely overhauled by the manufacturer just a couple of months ago, and I'm kind of surprised I'm having issues already.

If I lived on the mainland, I'd just take it in to a repair facility. However, I live on an island in the middle of the pacific, and that would involve me shipping it off somewhere. Necessity requires I do as much as I can by myself.

Any suggestions on what I should look at?

Someday I'll have more than one flute and sending one off for repair won't be that big of a deal.

Thanks all!
Go see Robin Leong over at Music Center of Hawaii. Tell him Joe B sent you

I vote for overtightened C rod
Joe B

User avatar
Chris Carr
Posts: 48
Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2014 5:48 pm
Location: Volcano, HI
Contact:

Re: Problematic A# key

Post by Chris Carr » Wed Sep 03, 2014 4:38 pm

JButky wrote:
MrHarryReems wrote:I'm having an issue with my A# key. It seems to be getting stuck partway up. The pad isn't sticking, but the key doesn't seem to be moving freely. It seems to have a tiny bit of resistance.

I had this instrument completely overhauled by the manufacturer just a couple of months ago, and I'm kind of surprised I'm having issues already.

If I lived on the mainland, I'd just take it in to a repair facility. However, I live on an island in the middle of the pacific, and that would involve me shipping it off somewhere. Necessity requires I do as much as I can by myself.

Any suggestions on what I should look at?

Someday I'll have more than one flute and sending one off for repair won't be that big of a deal.

Thanks all!
Go see Robin Leong over at Music Center of Hawaii. Tell him Joe B sent you

I vote for overtightened C rod
What island is Music Center of Hawaii on? I'm on the Big Island, and the only place I'm aware of on this island that does anything at all is a furniture store in Hilo.

I did check the C rod, and I've found that if I loosen the C rod tiny bit, it works ok... for about 5 mins, then sticks again.

User avatar
JButky
Posts: 389
Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2009 8:21 pm
Location: Mt. Juliet

Re: Problematic A# key

Post by JButky » Wed Sep 03, 2014 7:19 pm

MrHarryReems wrote:
What island is Music Center of Hawaii on? I'm on the Big Island, and the only place I'm aware of on this island that does anything at all is a furniture store in Hilo.

I did check the C rod, and I've found that if I loosen the C rod tiny bit, it works ok... for about 5 mins, then sticks again.
Honolulu
http://www.musiccenterofhawaii.net/

Sounds like the pivot needs to be refit a little better. If it works when you loosened it, as you play it's turning, tightening and binding again. Should be a pretty simple fix
Joe B

User avatar
Chris Carr
Posts: 48
Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2014 5:48 pm
Location: Volcano, HI
Contact:

Re: Problematic A# key

Post by Chris Carr » Thu Sep 04, 2014 12:18 pm

JButky wrote:
MrHarryReems wrote:
What island is Music Center of Hawaii on? I'm on the Big Island, and the only place I'm aware of on this island that does anything at all is a furniture store in Hilo.

I did check the C rod, and I've found that if I loosen the C rod tiny bit, it works ok... for about 5 mins, then sticks again.
Honolulu
http://www.musiccenterofhawaii.net/

Sounds like the pivot needs to be refit a little better. If it works when you loosened it, as you play it's turning, tightening and binding again. Should be a pretty simple fix
Bummer. I live on an outer island, so using them would still require me to ship it off. Is the pivot something I can fix/adjust myself?

User avatar
JButky
Posts: 389
Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2009 8:21 pm
Location: Mt. Juliet

Re: Problematic A# key

Post by JButky » Thu Sep 04, 2014 3:12 pm

MrHarryReems wrote: Bummer. I live on an outer island, so using them would still require me to ship it off. Is the pivot something I can fix/adjust myself?
Not really, It requires it to be reprofiled a bit and shortened every so slightly. IF, it is a cylindrical pivot, you might be able to just file the pilot end a bit, That is, IF, that is exactly what the problem is. If it is a pivot, then it needs to be determined where it is binding on the pivot. It may be just length but it may be due to the profile of the pivot.

The problem is that if you go too far, you run the risk of the LH stack assembly wobbling on the pivot from being to short. Then you need to cut the should back on the steel. No biggie for a shop, but if you don't have the tools, there's not much you can do.

There is a bad but easy, quick way to make it work fine that techs have used over the years to solve this, but I'm not going to describe so that you don't try it.
Joe B

User avatar
Chris Carr
Posts: 48
Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2014 5:48 pm
Location: Volcano, HI
Contact:

Re: Problematic A# key

Post by Chris Carr » Thu Sep 04, 2014 5:03 pm

JButky wrote:
MrHarryReems wrote: Bummer. I live on an outer island, so using them would still require me to ship it off. Is the pivot something I can fix/adjust myself?
Not really, It requires it to be reprofiled a bit and shortened every so slightly. IF, it is a cylindrical pivot, you might be able to just file the pilot end a bit, That is, IF, that is exactly what the problem is. If it is a pivot, then it needs to be determined where it is binding on the pivot. It may be just length but it may be due to the profile of the pivot.

The problem is that if you go too far, you run the risk of the LH stack assembly wobbling on the pivot from being to short. Then you need to cut the should back on the steel. No biggie for a shop, but if you don't have the tools, there's not much you can do.

There is a bad but easy, quick way to make it work fine that techs have used over the years to solve this, but I'm not going to describe so that you don't try it.
I certainly appreciate your candor. I wouldn't want a hack job on any of my instruments! I'm really hoping beyond hope to purchase another flute after the first of the year so I can more comfortably afford the downtime. It's kind of rough because I need the flute for a few songs I play with one of my bands, and we're rehearsing or gigging at least twice a week. I have plenty of backup guitars, I don't know why it only recently occurred to me that I might need backup flutes... Probably because I only recently started gigging with the flute, making it much more important to have available.

Post Reply