Posted by Alex C on February 23, 2003 at 10:05:07:
In Reply to: Where to make Fletcher or Parker cut? posted by Bill on February 23, 2003 at 04:16:03:
My first recommendation is to see a good repairman.
If you are going to do this yourself be careful, you can't put back what you cut off.
First measure to make sure the tubing doesn't taper. Remove the tubing and measure. If it does taper, re-soldering it back in can present two problems. If it doesn't taper, continue.
With the U-shaped tubing removed, clean off excess solder, mark how much you want to cut. You will cut the tubing (male end?), not the ferrules. You have to cut the same amount off each side and a half inch cut (total 1") would be drastic.
Cutting is an art itself, it can be done with a hacksaw and a good blade but you will need a good file to clean up the cut and even it out. A tubing cutter works if you can clean up the scarring left by the wheels.
Assuming you have not ruined the tubing at this point, you have to solder it back on. For God's sake, don't use plumbing solder from Home Depot. Go to a repairman and buy good flux and thin solder wire from him. The flame used in soldering is important, it's hard to get it right with a propane torch.
I'm not going to try to describe soldering. I will tell you that if you leave solder gaps when you re-attach the U-shaped tubing, the horn will play poorly.
This repair job should cost under $100 from a repairman and while I understand how hard $100 can be to spend sometimes, this one seems worth the cost.
But... Good luck.
BTW, my first repair job was attaching a 5th valve to an expensive tuba. Oh well, I was young and brave. It came out good.