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I was wondering why Buescher chose " 400 " for their new line up of instruments?

Could it have been to do with the new decade, the '40's?

Any ideas, or urban myths?

Regards, in anticipation

Peter
 

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$400 retail?

Good question. There were two very well respected guitars with similar names, the Gibson Super 400 and Stromberg Master 400, widely used in big bands around that time. Google sez Gibson named theirs for its retail price, don't know about the Stromberg.

The styling of the original Buescher 400 saxophones is somehow reminiscent of the styling of those guitars, too. Not sure what the name of that style is - I want to say Streamline Moderne but that's probably not accurate.
 

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It seems to be a popular number among sax marketers. In addition to the Buescher 400, there's the Buffet 400, Selmer TS400, Saxgourmet Super 400, Jean Paul AS-400, Schiller American Heritage 400, Boosey & Hawkes 400, and probably others.

Of course, they probably all just copied Buescher, who apparently copied Gibson and Stromberg.
 

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Sounds like a good premise to start a conspiracy theory. I mean, half of em begin by connecting common numbers... !! 😳

Too bad it wouldn't go anywhere since there's exactly zero power associated with musical instruments, even in the music industry. Ok, "zero" is hyperbolic, but still.
 

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FWIW Buescher's first "400" model horns to hit the market were trumpets, cornets and trombones. Probably already in the market by '37 or '38, definitely in the '39 catalog.
 

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I don't know how Buescher "thought" of their series of horns, but I always think:

True-Tone, New Aristocrat, Big B, TH&C (400) - so, like their 4th iteration = 400

But, I know not everyone counts them like that.

dv
 

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I don't know how Buescher "thought" of their series of horns, but I always think:

True-Tone, New Aristocrat, Big B, TH&C (400) - so, like their 4th iteration = 400
I'd also think of it that way, except the "Big B" is not a particular model. Big B is an engraving that was placed on 3 different Aristocrat models (127, 155, 156). Also the earliest "Big B" (127) is identical to the preceding series one Aristocrat, except for art deco engraving & wire key guards. And the latest "Big B" (156) is identical in all ways to the following 156 script-engraved tenor except for the engraving.

Of course this has been pointed out and discussed many times on here. But the "Big B" moniker persists, even though it encompasses three different model horns with significant differences between them. Or at least a difference between the 127 & 156. I don't know quite where the 155 fits in; "transitional" between the other two?
 

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^ yeah, JL, but it doesn't stop me from thinking of them in that way, hahaha :mrgreen:
 

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Seeing how the 400 models appeared first in the brass instruments (trumpet / cornet / trombone), I doubt the name had a sax-specific connotation.

Incidentally, the Aristocrat line also showed up in brass before saxes. Same for "Custom Built", though only one sax ever got that moniker. Sometimes I think of Buescher as a brass company that found itself famous for saxophones. Even though Gus Buescher was a sax man, in its early days his company emphasized the brass lines. There's a pre- WWI catalog where the saxes don't show up until the very last page, after things like clarinets and triangles. Then the sax craze kicked in after the war, and the emphasis in sales was inverted. But they never stopped showcasing their brass instruments, which were very fine right from the beginning and only decreased in quality at about the same time as the saxes, if a little later.
 

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yeah, JL, but it doesn't stop me from thinking of them in that way, hahaha :mrgreen:
Understandable. And you're not the only one for sure. Nothing wrong with referring to the "Big B" tenor (all 3 models with that engraving are excellent horns!), but for those who are researching vintage horns or looking to buy, it's important to understand there is more than one model with that engraving. As well as the fact the two of the "Big B" models (127 & 156) can be had with different engraving, often at a reduced price just because they don't have the Big B engraving.
 

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