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Discussion Starter #1
Does anyone here own both or has anyone here OWNED both - and/or played them side by side? I’ve been a big fan of silver plated Blue Labels but I have never been near a Guardala 2001 OR New York. I’d appreciate anyone’s information about comparisons.
 

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The Blue label is a good horn but mechanically inferior to the much newer series.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The Blue label is a good horn but mechanically inferior to the much newer series.
Thanks, Milandro.
If there is anyone who uses the Guardala New York model tenor as a main or back up horn, I’d love to hear from you what you like about the sound and how it compares to your other tenor sax experiences. Are you a VI guy who loves these or a Conn person who now plays Guardala exclusively .. etc. And why. Thanks.
 

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There are definitely a select few of us here who prefer the modern B&S to anything out there. I got rid of my mark VI after owning the B&S for about a year. Alto and tenor are both great. They didn’t make a soprano or baritone in the modern design.

If I had to describe the sound, I would say it’s like a mixture of the tone of a super 20 and a VI with a little bit of the conn huskiness.
 

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And by the way, the Gaurdala are exactly the same as the later models tenor like the 2001 or the Medusa.
 

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And by the way, the Gaurdala are exactly the same as the later models tenor like the 2001 or the Medusa.
So there a 1993 or so gold lacquer one on eBay with a recent ‘overhaul.’ $2100. Isn’t that as good a price as you can find for one of these?
 

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Some later Guardala NY models were made in Czechoslovakia and are nowhere near B&S quality.
 

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I prefer B&S horns and have several tenors. Guardala and B&S 2001 series. I have a Chicago Jazz on its way to me. I have never had a blue label. However I have an alto coming to me on Weds. I would be able to compare the alto mechanically at least to my Medusa alto. I believe the B&S is like a MKVI in feel but with a little more umph. It has a bit bigger sound to me but with a core.

I have done many head to heads with two MKVI tenors that I owned and my Guardala horns. I have always been curious about the blue labels. I have seem some nice lookers come up for around 1k in the past. However I haven't seen one recently. There are many horns that claim to be MkVI like and I have always thought the B&S was the closest.
 

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Would the “good ones” be stamped “Germany”?
Yes, “Made In Germany”. I forgot about the last run of Gaurdala saxes made by Amati and sold by WWBW.

“the Guardala are exactly the same as the later models tenor like the 2001 or the Medusa.” I should have said “the Guardala tenor is almost exactly the same” as there were s few very small differences. For example, most of the Guardala did not have the non-stick G# lifter. This applies to the tenor sax. The alto went through a second revision.
 

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“I have a Chicago Jazz on its way to me. I have never had a blue label. However I have an alto coming to me on Weds.”

Of course you do!🤣 I would love to see your collection of horns someday! Pretty sure you own or have owned one or more of everything made by now and I’m dead serious! I used to have a lot of horns but nothing in comparison. Very impressive!

I’ve owned a pair of silver plated Blue Label Tenors, an Allora sand finish Tenor, a 2001 black nickel Alto, a Medusa black nickel Alto, a 2001 lacquered Alto and currently a 2001 lacquered Tenor and Medusa Goldbrass Alto with three necks. Subtle differences between all these horns but all have a very similar core tone. The Blue Labels have a slightly more ballsy tone in the bottom end but ergos aren’t as nice. I really like my two remaining horns, though there was a certain something the sand finish Allora Tenor had that I miss. I prefer the Medusa altos over the 2001 as they seem to subtone easier and are very VI like. I’m pretty sure the tenors remained very similar in design from the Guardalas through the end of the run, with the exception of the G# mechanism which was absent in the Guardalas I’ve seen.
 

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So there a 1993 or so gold lacquer one on eBay with a recent ‘overhaul.’ $2100. Isn’t that as good a price as you can find for one of these?
If its a made in germany tenor thats a decent price for a Guardala branded B&S. 1993 would be a pretty early one. Not sure if thats a good thing or a bad thing.

Not that Im in the market, but from what Ive seen on ebay recently there is a lot of optimistic price setting that the market doesnt really support. If you know your branding you can pick up these great horns for way less than Guardala asking prices. Seen late model B&S 2001/ medussa clones sell at <$1000 for altos and ~$1500 for tenors, so really no more than I paid for my pair 10 or more years ago.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
If its a made in germany tenor thats a decent price for a Guardala branded B&S. 1993 would be a pretty early one. Not sure if thats a good thing or a bad thing.

Not that Im in the market, but from what Ive seen on ebay recently there is a lot of optimistic price setting that the market doesnt really support. If you know your branding you can pick up these great horns for way less than Guardala asking prices. Seen late model B&S 2001/ medussa clones sell at <$1000 for altos and ~$1500 for tenors, so really no more than I paid for my pair 10 or more years ago.
The one for $2100 does have Made in Germany on it. It sold already. Thanks. I actually HAVEN’T seen good prices on Guardalas.. But I may just be looking at the wrong time. The closest now on eBay is $2800 I believe. Ditto, someone in Ohio is selling a black one for $2800.
 

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The one for $2100 does have Made in Germany on it. It sold already. Thanks. I actually HAVEN’T seen good prices on Guardalas.. But I may just be looking at the wrong time. The closest now on eBay is $2800 I believe. Ditto, someone in Ohio is selling a black one for $2800.
Thats the Guardala price premium:) Just buy the same great horn with a different name. My pair are "bottom of the barrel" wwbw Allora stencils, (the Tenor is the one Jerry referenced earlier) and while its not a sought after or well regarded name I'm not sure there is anything I would trade them for. Certainly no point in selling them based on the current market as their trade in value wouldnt even make a down-payment on the cost of buying a new horn of a comparable level.

The bigger problem for buyers is you just dont see them come on the market much now, I guess those that have them feel much like I do and see no point in selling them for what the market dictates they are worth.
 

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We’re the proud and the few without having to be Marines. Still have my DG New York silver plate tenor bought in ‘94 at Sam Ash in midtown Manhattan. You can put classical and jazz pieces on this horn and it responds. I traded my VII for this horn, well not exactly, I went for the cognac gold lacquered finish and after a week or 2 gravitated towards the silver. There is a pristine cognac lacquered horn with the raw clear lacquered engraving that’s on eBay now and I hope it doesn’t sell right away. It’s just like I remembered it, very early serial # (93-94) and no leaf auxiliary spring key work on the low C#, just like my SP, otherwise identical.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
But. Noone has quite said that the Guardalas SOUND better than the silver plate Blue Labels that I’ve had 5 of. My current one I got here from Jerry K and, along with it being a great transaction - in every way - this B&S is a great sounding vintage horn.
 
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