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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2008
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Discussion Starter #1
:D Hello all, I have the oppurtunity to buy a gold plated one owner "players horn" modele 22 for a few hundred dollars (negotiable either way, I want to give a fair price to the guy). It says "Serie 22" on the bell, no pictures, but I have seen the horn. In great shape, except for two things. The gold plate has been eaten away in the usual places (not a problem to me, I could care less about the looks of the horn), but the real problem is that the low Eb key guard has dented the body from a knock, and I am therefore unable to really give the horn a test blow.

I have read the various reviews on SOTW of the horns, saying that they are mainly for "collectors", but I want a back up alto, seeing as I let go of my Bundy for a friend who couldn't afford the rent of a sax.

I guess what I am going at is this:

What would be fair price to pay for this horn? The seller has offered to repair the sax at the tech of my choice, I just want to make sure that it would be worth the time (and not a waste of his money).

PS:
By players horn, I mean that it has seen constant use throughout it's life, but has also recieved the necessary repairs, etc. without being skimped on by the owner. He is the ORIGINAL owner, and has kept all the documentation of the horn. Selling it because he has horrible arthritis in his hands, and wants to see the horn get some use, as it should. Comes three mouthpieces, I believe one of them is the original, but he can't remember. The other two are a selmer metal classic in a D facing, and a long shank soloist (vintage). The mouthpieces are in pretty good shape, an dI expect them to be worth more than the horn, but he is throwing them in gratis. Thanks for the help!:D
 

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'a few hundred $$$' is right. In anything but mint/closet condition, these horns just ain't worth it. They're collectibles ONLY.
Don't even have all of the modern/current keywork.

$200-300, tops, imo.

Btw, these aren't as rare as one would think, as the few that are still around don't get used much, and tend to float from collector to collector...
 

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Discussion Starter #3
OK, thanks! Guess I will have to give this one a pass...
 

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Not necessarily..it could still be a very nice player. I honestly have no idea how much they go for, but it would be something very nice to have if you can afford it.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I have the money for it, just don't want to get the horn and then have it sit in a closet, unable to play in tune with itself. The keywork would definitely take some getting used to though! Just found out that it has a Front F that was added in the mid '50's, so at least there is that, right?
 

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I wouldn't write it off without playing it using several different mouthpieces and a tuner. If it has been played for some many years and maintained then it probably has some good qualities. The added front F is also a good sign. People don't tend to do those mods to a horn unless it deserves to be played. And if the mpcs thrown in are worth the price of the horn you could do pretty well by flipping them.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Another great opinion! Thanks! I was thinking along the same lines about the front F, but a concern of mine is if there could be irrepairable damage done to the body of the horn during the knock that it suffered. The bottom of the key guard is a good .5" (or about 7/8 of a cm, for you metric folks) into the horn, which I feel might have messed up the body tube and bent it in some way. Is this at all possible? I would also hate to buy this guy's horn and just have it sit in a closet, and sell the mouthpieces.

I am actually happy with my mouthpieces right now, and am even considering getting rid of some of them, so no need for the pieces in this deal. However, I am sure they would play very well.
 

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I had a bare brass 22 and played it quite a lot. In fact, I prefered it to a silver BA I had at the time.

Do they have their quirks? Yes. The bore is smaller than you'll be used to, and they can't take as much air as a "modern" horn. The key work is antiquated (mostly left hand pinky), but you can adjust to it quite quickly, and I still found the keywork on older Selmers to be more comfortable / intuitive than on some of the famous US made horns. (For the record, I now play an SBA, and it is incomparably better than the 22).

What these horns do have is a wonderfully lyrical tone to them, and (at least in my experience), a great upper register.

If you buy it, this horn will not be a traditional "backup" horn, in that it will not play similarly to whatever you are using now. However, if you treat it like another unique voice to work with, you could have a lot of fun with it.

For a few hundred bucks, if you're not going to buy it, please put me in touch with the seller. :) I sold mine, and I miss it sometimes.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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I had one of these and really liked it, yes quite a light sound but lyrical and could get quite funky. Very in tune also. I'd say it sounds like a good buy, especially with those mouthpieces. Gold plate is nice, even if its worn.

EDIT: I've got a nice soundclip of that alto somewhere, I'll see if I can dig it out.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I have decided to go for it, with your guys' advice. Thanks everyone! If I had wanted my backup horn to sound similar to my main one, I would have just gone a YAS-23, but that's no fun, right? :D:D:D:D:D I shouldn't be too unfamiliar with the pinky cluster, given that I was playing a very early H.N. White alto for a little bit, but it just wouldn't play in tune with itself on my mouthpieces.

I was looking at this as more of a horn that I could leave at home, so I don't have to cart my 82Z home from school over the holidays and breaks (I'll be coming home pretty much every weekend). This way, I don't have to worry about forgetting the horn at home and being completely ****** (censored by me!) for classes in the morning (music major).

If it doesn't work out for me, you've got first dibs, altoblues! I want this horn played out of respect for the seller.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Forgot to mention that the price we have agreed upon is $400. I wanted to go a little bit higher, but he wouldn't hear of it.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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ianhart said:
Forgot to mention that the price we have agreed upon is $400. I wanted to go a little bit higher, but he wouldn't hear of it.
bargain
 

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I have two...a silver plated one that I paid $ 400 for and a lacquered brass version that I paid $ 600. They are both 'fixer-uppers' but they are cool old horns in prettygood shape.

I think that you got a pretty good deal to get a one owner gold plated model for $ 400.

If you deicide to move it and Alto Blues isn't interested, please contact me via PM.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
altoblues said:
Ianhart - I'll hold you to that. :D

Enjoy your new horn! :)
Duly noted! I plan on opening up the good old DeVille book and playing some of the patterns to see how the ergos compare. From what I felt while "air-saxing", the action is nice and light, but still strong enough to spring back up after a key is released. Hopefully the tech doesn't have to adjust it too much, I love how it is right now. I will try to do an A B recording of a few scales when I get the horn and post it up here, if I can get my recorder to work. Camera is dead though... some weird E18 message on the screen.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Got it in from the shop today, and man does it play! I'll post a recording of Work Song by Nat Adderley in a few minutes, played alongside my Z. I wonder who can tell them apart?
 
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