Sax on the Web Forum Archive / Alto Saxophone / Different Mark VI's

User ID: 0896204
May 4th 10:01 PM
I found a website that has two Mark VI's. The laquer on them is different and other minor details are different why?
Steve Cars
User ID: 2386864
May 5th 12:03 PM
Point us to the site Kyle. One may be Paris assembled,the other US? Or the vintage could be considerably different... Though I'm just guessing until I see more...
User ID: 0185894
May 5th 12:57 PM
MkVI's were hand made over a 20 some year span. They were continually experimenting, trying to make improvements on the horn.
User ID: 9488873
May 5th 1:06 PM
The website is, look at the Selmer part of the alto section.
Steve Cars
User ID: 2386864
May 6th 12:16 PM
I'd say it's a matter of different vintage. My 1970 VI alto is about in the middle. My lac. is the darker color. Frankly the 1975 horn looks like a relac. from the color, but that is only a passing statement, not an accusation.

There were differences in the horns through the years. One of the easiest to stop is the joints in the RH side key rods. Later horns from about 147K on has little ball joints. These are noisy. The earlier horns have slots and pegs - the slots being lined with cork. This are queiter until the cork leaves, then noiser.

This is not a reason to prefer one horn over the other. Only an example of differences over the years, It could be that the later VIs used a lighter lac., like the VIIs that I've seen.

User ID: 2017574
May 20th 3:30 AM
my 118xxx has ball joints.
Steve Cars
User ID: 2386864
May 22nd 11:11 AM
garyinla, Hmmm... I may be mistaken about that or the altos and tenors changed over at different times...
Dave Dolson
User ID: 9209903
May 22nd 1:05 PM
Steve: What RH side key rods are you describing? . . . the little arms that actually open side Bb and side C?

I have a #110xxx VI (original lacquer and engraved) and I don't see anything like was described. The rods themselves are screwed into the posts. Side hi-E is supported midway by a U-shaped support. The actual keys have cork-covered tips which are actuated by arms with oblong openings in the ends. DAVE
User ID: 1850204
May 26th 8:05 AM
"....Later horns from about 147K on has little ball joints. These are noisy...."

You can say that again.(!)
Ian O'B. May 26th 10:38 AM
The Selmer altos at USA horn are all new horns from what I can see...
Steve Cars
User ID: 2386864
May 28th 5:53 PM
I double checked at the gig last Wednesday and the mid 140K VI tenor did not have the ball valves where my 181K VI alto does.

These are the connecting pieces on the RH side keys (for Ab, C, and E). On the back of the horn, near the neck strap hook, these turn from horizontal to vertical. On the later horns these are a ball joint looking device. On earlier horns they are a slot and post.

The ball joints are noisy from the beginning. The slot (lined with cork) is quiter when the cork is in place and noisier and sloppier when it falls out...

Since garyinla has a 118K horn with ball joints and I know a 147K (TENOR) with slots and posts, there is either a large transition period or maybe garyinla has an alto and they changed at a different time or US and Paris horns are different or... who knows...

Steve Cars
User ID: 2386864
May 28th 5:55 PM
Ian O'B.
"The Selmer altos at USA horn are all new horns from what I can see... "

Nope, not the VI tenors and others that are no longer in production...