How to Put Together a Saxophone

How to Put Together a Saxophone?

Assembling a saxophone involves carefully fitting together several components, including the reed, mouthpiece, neck, and the body of the instrument. The typical sequence starts by affixing the reed to the mouthpiece, connecting the mouthpiece to the neck, and lastly attaching the neck to the body of the saxophone, all the while being mindful to avoid any potential damage.

Attaching the Reed to the Mouthpiece

A reed is a critical part of a saxophone that vibrates to create the instrument’s sound. Here’s how to attach it:

  • Soak the Reed: The flat side of the reed should be soaked in your mouth for a few minutes to make it flexible and ready for use.
  • Place the Reed on the Mouthpiece: Once the reed is moistened, slide it onto the mouthpiece, flat side down. The tip of the reed should align with the tip of the mouthpiece.
  • Secure the Reed with the Ligature: Slip the ligature (a metal clamp) over the reed and mouthpiece, ensuring it is secure but not too tight. The ligature should keep the reed firmly in place without exerting too much pressure.

Connecting the Mouthpiece to the Neck

The neck of the saxophone, which is the curved part, is where you attach the mouthpiece.

  • Insert the Mouthpiece: Gently twist the mouthpiece onto the corked end of the neck. It’s important not to push it too far; leaving about half an inch of cork visible is a good guideline.
  • Align the Mouthpiece: The flat part of the reed should align with the guides on the neck. Depending on the comfort of the player and the sound desired, some adjustment might be needed.How to Put Together a Saxophone

Connecting the Neck to the Body

The body of the saxophone, which includes the keys and bell, is where the neck is affixed.

  • Loosen the Screw on the Body: Before attaching the neck, ensure that the screw designed to hold the neck in place on the body is loose.
  • Attach the Neck: Place the end of the neck into the opening on the body, aligning it with the octave key mechanism. Make sure it is straight and secure.
  • Secure the Neck: Once the neck is properly aligned, gently tighten the screw on the body to secure it in place.

Securing the Saxophone with a Neck Strap

The neck strap provides support for the saxophone, helping to balance it while you play.

  • Attach the Neck Strap: The neck strap should be clipped onto the hook or ring located on the back of the saxophone’s body.
  • Adjust the Strap: The saxophone should rest comfortably against your body, allowing your fingers easy access to the keys. If needed, adjust the neck strap to achieve the correct length.

With practice, assembling a saxophone becomes a simple routine. Always handle your saxophone with care to preserve its quality and longevity. To gain more insights about saxophone assembly and maintenance, refer to the saxophone Wikipedia page for additional information.

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