1928 Martin "Medium" Eb Helicon Bookmark and Share

1928 Martin "Medium" Eb Helicon

Postby Tubajug » Wed Apr 24, 2019 1:38 pm

I thought since I'll be starting some work on this horn here and there I would move the discussion over to the repair forum, rather than the main TubeNet forum. The photos below are just copied from my post in the other thread. The only thing added is a picture of the polished engraving, just because that's what people do, right? Polish just the engraving? :)

But last night I got it out and looked at it a bit closer. It looks like the neck that came with it does fit, but when the tension band is tightened all the way, the neck can still move rather freely in the receiver. Is there a way to shorten the tension band to give it a more snug fit when tightened?

It certainly will need at least one bit, simply because the mouthpiece would be too far away from the player if only inserted into the neck. I am bringing home a random bunch of sousaphone bits from work today to see if any will work, then I'll ask around for purchasing one if I find one that works.

Next steps will be to remove the tarnish with Tarn-X and baking soda/water before going after the dents. If one of the bits works, then it shouldn't take much to get this thing playable. There only two loose braces, and I need to replace a cork bumper on the third valve that just disintegrated when I took the valve out (I'll probably replace all three...).

Anywho, thanks for looking and have a great day!

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Polished engraving:

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Jordan
King 2341 with a Holton "Monster" Eb bell
Eb Frankentuba in progress
Martin Medium Eb Helicon

Used to own, but still a fun thread: Lyon & Healy Eb

If at first you don't succeed, skydiving's probably not for you.
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Re: 1928 Martin "Medium" Eb Helicon

Postby Tubajug » Fri Apr 26, 2019 2:45 pm

I took home a few sousaphone bits to try and see if any would fit into the neck of my helicon. Of the four pictured below, #4 seated the best in the neck, but I don't know exactly what brand it is, Holton? #1 is a King I believe and barely fit into the neck. #2 and #3 are Conn and went all the way in up to the bend in the bit.

I haven't gotten the horn cleaned up enough to put back together for a play-test to see if I'll need one or two bits to play it in tune either, but thought this was a good start.

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If anyone can confirm that brand of bit #4, I'll be in the market for purchasing one (or two) if anyone has some around.

Also, any thoughts on how I can alter the tension band around the receiver (holding the neck) so that it holds it tighter? The neck is still rather free-moving even with the tension band fully tightened.

Thanks!
Jordan
King 2341 with a Holton "Monster" Eb bell
Eb Frankentuba in progress
Martin Medium Eb Helicon

Used to own, but still a fun thread: Lyon & Healy Eb

If at first you don't succeed, skydiving's probably not for you.
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Re: 1928 Martin "Medium" Eb Helicon

Postby toobagrowl » Fri Apr 26, 2019 2:57 pm

Bit #4 is a Yamaha sousaphone bit. They come in 2 angles; 20-degree and 45-degree; looks like you have the 45-degree bit.
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Re: 1928 Martin "Medium" Eb Helicon

Postby Tubajug » Fri Apr 26, 2019 3:35 pm

I also thought it looked like an Olds sousaphone bit:

Image
Last edited by Tubajug on Fri May 10, 2019 10:56 am, edited 1 time in total.
Jordan
King 2341 with a Holton "Monster" Eb bell
Eb Frankentuba in progress
Martin Medium Eb Helicon

Used to own, but still a fun thread: Lyon & Healy Eb

If at first you don't succeed, skydiving's probably not for you.
User avatar
Tubajug
5 valves
5 valves
 
Posts: 1643
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 7:23 pm
Location: Lincoln, NE

Re: 1928 Martin "Medium" Eb Helicon

Postby Tubajug » Fri May 10, 2019 10:53 am

I've been messing with this a little bit here and there and it still plays really stuffy/leaky. I'm leaning more to the "leaky" side because I've flushed it with water and put some compressed air through it, and nothing has come loose...

I have a feeling the culprit is the neck. The receiver where the bits would go has a slot that should have a tension band around it, but that is gone. The previous owner was using a hose clamp, but that doesn't provide a solid seal (that's my theory anyway). When I blow into it I hear air coming out somewhere early in the horn. I've checked the neck itself and it is free of leaks (though there are cracks that have been sealed with what looks like epoxy).

My plan is to take the neck apart (brace, receiver, etc.) and test for leaks without the receiver. I have a few extra receivers floating around (a generic one from Allied and the smaller shank one from off of my H.N. White King Eb I'm rebuilding) that I plan on putting on there just to test out my theory of the receiver being the leaky party.

The bits from the post above were on eBay, so I bought them to try out. If I can get this leak sorted out, I can test to see how close to pitch it is before I start going too crazy with the repairs and clean up. Here is the neck receiver I believe is the problem:

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It's hard to see, but there appear to be cracks, epoxy, and gunk all over the back to the neck:

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Finally, the receiver on the horn that the neck goes into still has the original tension band around it, but when tightened all the way, doesn't keep the neck secure. Any thoughts on what I can do to fix that? Is there any way to trim it shorter so it has more "pull" when being tightened? Thanks for your input!
Jordan
King 2341 with a Holton "Monster" Eb bell
Eb Frankentuba in progress
Martin Medium Eb Helicon

Used to own, but still a fun thread: Lyon & Healy Eb

If at first you don't succeed, skydiving's probably not for you.
User avatar
Tubajug
5 valves
5 valves
 
Posts: 1643
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 7:23 pm
Location: Lincoln, NE

Re: 1928 Martin "Medium" Eb Helicon

Postby Tubajug » Fri May 24, 2019 12:13 pm

I started a different thread about stuffiness, and I'm happy to report that the help I got produced a very happy result! I found a 1940 campaign button feature Roosevelt and Wallace stuck in my horn (button and location are pictured below).

I only played it for a few minutes and the neck is still just taped up, but with one bit in it, it played pretty closely in tune (just a tiny bit flat overall still). It has a very sweet, light tone to it. It plays pretty open (certainly compared to before!) and the pedal Eb just pops out. I haven't done much to it in the way of cleaning yet, so now I feel like I can proceed with earnest knowing that it will actually play!

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I still need to figure out how to make the receiver that clamps onto the neck hold tighter (the neck just swings around when all the way tightened) and patch/braze the cracks in the neck. Other than that, this should just take a lot of cleaning and dent work to get it up and running again! I'm just glad it plays!!!
Jordan
King 2341 with a Holton "Monster" Eb bell
Eb Frankentuba in progress
Martin Medium Eb Helicon

Used to own, but still a fun thread: Lyon & Healy Eb

If at first you don't succeed, skydiving's probably not for you.
User avatar
Tubajug
5 valves
5 valves
 
Posts: 1643
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 7:23 pm
Location: Lincoln, NE


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