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Discussion Starter #1
I know ZERO about Buescher saxophones. Those on here who are gurus...please tell which Buescher bari is a really good one to get and likewise...which of the curved or strait sops is really good? For example, if I were talking about selmers or yamaha, I'd tell someone get a Ref. 54 or get a Custom 875/62 series horn...

I appreciate any guidance!

Thanks..

Ryan
 

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Discussion Starter #3
What is "late?" Is it by serial no or year or do they coincide...The reason I ask is I played a buescher true tone at Ishimori's and it had the sweetest tone! I've never given any of the conn's or bueschers much of a chance recently I've started play-testing some and I think I might really dig some of them...
 

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The TT sops all sound pretty good, I believe, but the later ones have a rectangular G# with rollers rather than a pearl, which improves playability. From memory I think that came in around late '26 early '27. Very early ones also lack a top F key.
 

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You have to look out for C sopranos; which are generally the straight ones keyed only to Eb3 (and are about 22"). Avoid them. Early curved TT sopranos, though in Bb, are also keyed only to Eb3. Mine is a gem though, and it ain't hard to work above that; so these horns can be a bargain if you're looking for a curvy. TT bari's are known to have quirks, and you can find some of them reported here with a search.
 

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Ryan: I sometimes stop by a local chain-music-store and visit with the clerk there - a nice guy who does his own overhauls and likes vintage saxophones. He did a Buescher TT bari and then moved it on in favor of a newer Yamaha bari. I don't know baritones, but he claimed the Yamaha had superior keywork (I believe THAT) and the intonation on the Yamaha was much better (that could be). I suspect this guy would have liked to play the TT bari if it played like a modern horn - apparently it didn't.

I've owned and played a number of vintage Buescher sopranos (curved and straight) and altos. I feel more comfortable discussing them.

I have two straight silver TT sops from 1928 (the "late" versions - roller G#, etc.). I have played the earlier versions (button G#) and except for that one difference, all TT's I've played sounded the same (generally) and played great - even those in need of some work. My one TT sop is my favorite soprano from among all the sopranos (hi-end modern and vintage) I own and all the ones I've ever played (modern and vintage).

Vintage curvies I don't like, but I recognize others do. The curved TTs have maybe the sweetest tone but that is reallty subjective. What bothers me about vintage curvies is the right-hand bell-pad-cup - I always seem to hit it with my right fingers and I find that to be distracting. My curved Yanagisawa has left-hand bell pad-cups and finger interference is not an issue. The newest curved Yanagisawas moved the bell-pad-cups to the right side of the bell, but they also canted the bell to the left so that a player's fingers don't interfere with the bell-pad-cups.

I've owned old Conns too (are there any new ones? I don't think so) and have never played one with a decent scale (curved and straight). The Conns I've played had huge voices, though, and the guy who got me started on soprano (George Probert of the Firehouse Five plus Two, a famous Dixie band out of Disney Studios years ago) STILL plays an old clapped-out Conn sop. I don't know of ANYONE who had/has the power of George Probert on soprano.

I also owned a King Saxello - terrible scale, interesting look. I would advise against one of those for several reasons. I tried a co-worker's straight King soprano once and the scale was as bad as my Saxello (side-by-side). Hard to "dis" a whole line of horns based on limited experiences, though.

The one vintae soprano I've never played is The Martin. I'd like to do so. They have a great tonal reputation - I know nothing about their intonation.

Bottom line? Look for a Buescher straight TT soprano, preferably with the roller G#. DAVE
 

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My experience is limited, but my TT sop is serial no. 238xxx. Look for a TT above 200xxx to meet the characteristics others have mentioned ... and measure it to 24 inches long to make sure it is in Bb.
 

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If you can find a Buescher 400 bari, especially with Top hat & cane engraving, that would most likely be a very special horn. Advice about TT sopranos is good, the best vintage straight soprano I had was a later TT. Lovely tone.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks SO much...perfect advice! I appreciate it...Buescher cliffnotes if you will :)

I'll look for a 24 inch, Bb, 200,XXX, Roller G#, Not pearl and rectangular...I'll have to double check the one I played at ishimori...but for some reason they have the Vintage Buescher marked WAY high...It was like 3600$ for that buescher and the tuning was a little weird...could of been a c though...

Again thanks..
Ryan
 

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nitrosax said:
It was like 3600$ for that buescher and the tuning was a little weird...
Again thanks..
Ryan
A very good friend of mine had a 233K TT straight soprano on trial, and no matter what mouthpiece we tried playing on it, and how far pushed in it was, it played nearly a quarter tone flat. Think he got another one in the 180K range, and that worked out perfectly. He's been very happy with it these last couple of years. The button G# isn't really a hassle, as opposed to the roller G# of the later models. And I'm not saying later models are out of tune... it's just that it's best to try before you buy and/or have a decent trial policy. And should you find an earlier straight model keyed up to F3 that plays in tune... I wouldn't rule it out just because it's pre 200K. Just use that to bargain with.
 

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Nitrosax, My TT alto is 138xxx and is great. However, TTs improved significantly over time and those from 200xxx are generally reckoned to be the best. Nothing wrong with the earlier ones, but bear Grumps' comments in mind.

Please note that you do not need to worry about the features too much if you look at the serial number; that was the main point of my previous post.

Pete, I am wondering how many TH&C baris were made. Perhaps some, but I have never seen any - their owners would be too sensible to let them go, perhaps. However, the Big B bari continued long after Big B altos and tenors were phased out and I would be interested to know when 400 baris started. Is it possible that the Big B baris were replaced directly by the 400s but without TH&C engraving?

A word of warning to Notrosax here: the 400 baris continued long, long after Selmer took over Buescher. They are reckoned to be very good, but I would be looking for a serial below 500xxx at the most (if I didn't play a Conn 12M).
 

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I own a Buescher Big B bari and also doubted between a 400 and a Big B.

Finally decided on a Big B because they are supposed to have a better intonation than a 400 (this is something my tech told me, although I'm sure this isn't an absolute truth)

Still looking for the 'right' mouthpiece though...
 
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