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I guess it was finally my turn…

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Home Forums Instruments and Tools Instrument Questions I guess it was finally my turn…

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  • #93218
    Dean Williams
    Participant

    I started playing bassoon in 1976, and during all of this time, I have never had this problem. I came close a few times, in fact I have come far too close for comfort on more than one occasion, but in the end I always managed to save the situation.
    Until last night.
    Last night, after a practice session I was cleaning my bassoon (as usual), and I…. got my swab stuck in my wing joint. It ain’t coming out. I’m bringing it in to the shop today, but I was just wondering how you all deal with this.

    #113412
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Swab extractor –

    http://www.mmimports.com/xcart/swab-extractor-eh.html

    This is an EH extractor, but I bet if you call and talk to Trent, he can come up with one for bassoon.

    #113413
    Paul.F
    Participant

    See “Stuck Swabs in Bassoon Wing Joints” by Chip Owen of Fox:
    http://www.foxproducts.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=62&Itemid=17

    I followed this myself one time when a swab got stuck. Removing the swab from the bocal receiver one tiny piece at a time was slow, tedious work and required a lot of patience. But it worked and, most importantly, did no damage to the instrument.

    Paul

    #113414
    Chad Taylor
    Participant

    The first and foremost thing to remember is if it gets, stuck. DO NO1 try to continue to pull it out the rest of the way with force. Itll only get jammed even further, and take more work to remove it. Generally, I can go in with a steel rod that I have threads on, and pull it out from the bottom of the wing joint. If it is REALLY stuck, then it becomes a much bigger job.

    The first thing i do if its really stuck is determine if the horn has tubes that protrude into the bore, if they do I will have to extract the tubes, the next thing I will do is take a rounded end rod that is slightly smaller than the bore, and proceed to push the swab from the top end of the wing bore, back down to the bottom. I did a job like this back around christmas to help A friend, and it took me over an hour, of pushing and tapping on the rod with a hammer to get the swab to finally drop back down. I was able to get the swab out with no damage to the bore, but it is a very long and tedious job.

    Hope that helps, If you have any other questions, let me know.

    Cordially,
    Chad

    #113415
    Trent Jacobs
    Participant

    If you didn’t pull it too tight, a typical swab extractor (the English horn one linked above works fine for a bassoon wing joint) you can do that procedure. Otherwise the dowel rod method described by Chip is the most sure fire way. I’ve never actually heard of the more intense procedures being needed, but Chip has probably seen it all.

    Either way, you’re going to need a new swab. It was time for a new one anyway, right?

    #113416
    Dean Williams
    Participant

    Well, it’s out. The tech scared the bejeebers out of me, but it worked. He put the end of the swab into a vise, wound it tight and PULLED. To my great surprise, it worked! My heart rate took a while to come back down to normal, though!

    Thanks for the replies, all.

    Dean.

    ps. Chad, did you sell the Fox 660? I know someone who wants one.

    #113417
    Trent Jacobs
    Participant

    Never take your bassoon to that technician ever again.

    #113418
    Chad Taylor
    Participant

    Hi Dean:

    I sold that bassoon to a very promising young bassoonist down at LSU. Last time I heard, he was doing quite well with it. At this point, I am just really having a heck of a time trying to get my Puchner sold. Its a fantastic horn, but I just doesnt seem to be much interest in it. Let me know if your colleague is interested in that, I REALLY would like to get it sold, and its an absolute bargain at the price I am asking.

    Cordially,
    Chad

    #113419
    Jim Kirker
    Participant

    Dean, I have to agree with Trent. I’d avoid that tech in the future. There are some great stories to be told about swabs getting stuck, Chip has quite a few as do I. If the water tubes are installed properly there really isn’t any need to remove them. Some of the earlier water tube jobs, back when they were first getting installed and were put way too far into the bore, may require it, but it is fairly rare to see that these days.

    #113411
    Joel Cage
    Participant

    Funny thing. In the morning I read this topic and went to practice. After, I was cleaning my bassoon and … the swab stuck in the joint. What are the odds…?
    So first thing I remembered from this topic – DO NOT PANIC AND DO NOT PULL THE SWAB MORE!!!
    With this in mind after 15 min I succeeded to take it out. Although it was difficult to don’t fall in panic knowing you have a concert in a few hours.
    And I definitely agree with the others. You should avoid that repairmen in the future.

    #113420
    Dean Williams
    Participant

    Joel, I am sorry. I will try to wait a bit to post my problems so that you can avoid them.

    bassoonkd wrote:
    Funny thing. In the morning I read this topic and went to practice. After, I was cleaning my bassoon and … the swab stuck in the joint. What are the odds…?
    So first thing I remembered from this topic – DO NOT PANIC AND DO NOT PULL THE SWAB MORE!!!
    With this in mind after 15 min I succeeded to take it out. Although it was difficult to don’t fall in panic knowing you have a concert in a few hours.
    And I definitely agree with the others. You should avoid that repairmen in the future.

    Funny thing? Re-reading this, and knowing that it’s out, it’s hilarious! It was not funny then, but now… 😆

    #113421
    Tom
    Participant

    There was a repairs tech in the area that I currently live who, “back in the day”, removed a stuck oboe swab by drilling out the bottom of the reed well. Totaled the instrument. He no longer works in repair, but occasionally you get a horn with his characteristic “mound of solder” holding parts to an instrument, most recently a neck strap ring on a bassoon. Sigh.

    There is always a sigh involved with a stuck swab, at this point in life after having made it through secondary school and two rounds of university having never stuck a swab and then one day it happens. Sigh. :)

    #113422
    William Safford
    Participant

    Just to reiterate what others have written:

    Dean wrote:
    Last night, after a practice session I was cleaning my bassoon (as usual), and I…. got my swab stuck in my bassoon. It ain’t coming out. I’m bringing it in to the shop today, but I was just wondering how you all deal with this.

    The one time this happened to me, I went straight to the repairman. I did not pass go, I did not collect $200, and I did nothing else to the instrument once I ascertained that the swab was stuck.

    The repairman had it out in two minutes. He didn’t charge me a dime, despite keeping the shop open past closing for me.

    #113423
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Re-reading the posts on this thread, there is one thing no one has mentioned – always use a swab with a pull cord on the distal end. Like oboe or clarinet swabs, if you know what those look like. That’s why I like my Moosmann swab–it has a cord to allow you to pull it out, should it ever get stuck (which it probably won’t anyway).

    #113424
    Nancy Duncan
    Participant

    Yes, Chris, I agree about the Moosmann swabs – easy to reverse directions if you get in trouble. Another thing to think about is that if you just cool it and wait a day or two (assuming you have that leisure) things might dry out in there and shrink a bit so that you could pull the swab out.

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