Sax on the Web Forum / SML (Strasser-Marigaux) / Old SML alto?

Denny H
User ID: 1961724
Dec 27th 1:03 PM
I just got an alto which I believe to be a standard sml. It has nothing other than some bell evgraving. Has an odd bronzeee gold thing going on. What would be too much $ to put into it? Can't check for sound or anything it has no pads. I think it may be a really nice horn with some work. Anyone seen anything similar? This is my first time posting on here, just want to say thanks to all here. This site has been invaluable to me.
User ID: 9558813
Dec 27th 1:11 PM
Hi Denny H,

Assuming the horn is mechanically sound, there's no way to tell what the final result will be until you actually have the horn overhauled, and it's tight.

You can get some clue by playing just the neck alone, A/B'ing it, say, with some other necks.

A general rule, on how much to pay for an overhaul, or to be willing to pay for one, is that this isn't the place to shop for a bargain. There are a very few competent repairpersons who charge less than $400 for an overhaul; most competent techs charge between $450-900. I know of only one competent tech who charges less than $400 for an overhaul (in Brooklyn/Redhook, NY). He may have changed this already. Go with your gut feeling, tho. Someone who takes the time to talk with you about your horn, and to listen to you, is likely to also apply a similar attentiveness to your horn.

One thing to mention to your tech is that SMLs tend to like lower key heights than other horns, for a variety of reasons. When setting up keyheights for SML's, it's best to start with the heights much smaller than one normally would. At least that's my experience.
Denny H
User ID: 1961724
Dec 29th 12:10 AM
tungp, thanks. I'm trying to piece the puzzle together. I don't have anyone local, going to send it off.
User ID: 9558813
Dec 30th 9:53 AM
Hey Denn,

I have an SML Alto serial #11120.
Like yours, it came to me as a basket case and could not be play tested (the stack was corroded).

This horn plays beautifully. It is rather heavy, and I believe the extra mass keeps the sound tamed until you drive it, at which point it can wail!

What is the serial number of your horn?
Does it have rolled tone holes?
How is the octave vent actuated?

Send me a picture and I can tell you if it looks much like mine.