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Discussion Starter #1
So a friend of mine is trying to get rid of a Buescher true tone alto, he offered to sell it to me for $200. I want it, but it's crappy, took it into the local music shop, estimated $600 for a full repair. I was also saving money for a YAS-62 to buy probably some time next year. So just wondering is it worth it to buy the vintage Buescher and get it repaired or should I save my money for the professional alto?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Don't have the sax right now... But looks won't tell you much, 90% of the silver laquer is still there, it looks fine. But there are some loose keys and huge leaks in the pads. Just wondering what you would recommend cuz I have an intermediate horn.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2007-
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1. A Buescher True Tone IS a professional alto.
2. Save your money and buy the 62.

Now, what sax are you playing now?
 

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A True Tone OR a pro sax? It's not an either/or situation. The True Tone is one of the better professional altos ever made. In terms of tone quality and given how old those horns are, it ranks very high, imo. The prices don't reflect that because they are very common horns and they are all at least 70 years old. The fact there are so many still around, and still playable, says a lot for them. From a financial standpoint, sinking $600 into that horn is a losing proposition if you want to sell it. However, if you want a horn to play, it would be well worth it.

The Buescher will sound a lot better than any YAS or Vito, that's for sure!
 

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Indistinguishable Resident Buescher Bigot and Foru
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1. A Buescher True Tone IS a professional alto.
2. Save your money and buy the 62.
This is going to sound strange coming from me, but I agree. A 115,xxx TT doesn't have very good ergonomics, missing some keys and key connections (C#/G#) you'll probably want until you develop further, and an extra one or two you won't want to know about.

The TT will sound great, but it's a bit quirky and can be mouthpiece sensitive. If you're a rank beginner, the sound and the ergonoics aren't going to matter to you. If you're an intermediate student, the ergonomics will be cumbersome. If you're an experienced player, you'll appreciate the tone and won't care as much about the ergos.

TT's aren't for everyone, but those that appreciate them obviously swear by them.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well with all of the differences of answers I'll definitely talk to my teacher. I really like the tone that comes out of the few notes that'll come out of the horn, I didnt realize it was a professional sax because I can only get about 5 notes out. I've been recommended to get a professional sax a few times also... But what makes this horn professional? The pro horns I've played on before I recognized were pro because of the fast key action. But I don't know much about saxes either...
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2016
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1. A Buescher True Tone IS a professional alto.
2. Save your money and buy the 62.
Disagree (w/ #2). A Silverplate TT which, in the worst-case scenario needs an $800 investment ?

...vs. a 62 which will cost twice that amount (used) ? That's no contest whatsoever.

If you wanna sound like everyone else, get the 62.

If you want a wonderful vintage horn which stands out, get the TT.

A True Tone OR a pro sax? It's not an either/or situation. The True Tone is one of the better professional altos ever made. In terms of tone quality and given how old those horns are, it ranks very high, imo. The prices don't reflect that because they are very common horns and they are all at least 70 years old. The fact there are so many still around, and still playable, says a lot for them. From a financial standpoint, sinking $600 into that horn is a losing proposition if you want to sell it. However, if you want a horn to play, it would be well worth it.

The Buescher will sound a lot better than any YAS or Vito, that's for sure!
Uh-huh. The mouthpiece selection thing is not a difficult proposition, either...really, it ain't rocket science. Old horns perform best with certain style mouthpieces. There.

Regarding key action, have a tech tweak the spring tensions and clean and lube the rods, and there you go....

Word of advice: I bet it doesn't need $600 of work. Techs tend to do that...they'll see an old horn and insist it needs an overhaul. Trust me, from a guy who has rehabbed over 200 vintage horns...very few oldies "need" an overhaul. Go to someone else, ask them to perform a scope of work which would make the horn play up and down solidly; leaving the less high-priority items for later. (Although quite honestly, $600 for an overhaul or repad doesn't sound too bad from this part of the country).

 

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Discussion Starter #12
Ha, ya I was told it needed overhaul... Well I trust the people at this music store, I'll see if they can't repair it half way for less. Unless anyone else knows someone who can take care of a vintage horn in the bay area of CA?
 

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Indistinguishable Resident Buescher Bigot and Foru
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I can't argue with most of this, but this is a series II we're talking about. The typewriter G#, the lack of an articulated G# (in the common usage of the term), the lack of a front F, and the mouthpiece sensitivity will make this a challenge for an intermediate player.

If this were a series IV, I'd be suggesting something different. At least then he'd be only missing the G#/C# connectivity and the horn would likely be less mouthpiece sensitive.

JaySF is right though about sounding like everyone else with a 62.

What makes this a pro horn is the attention to detail, the precision of the action (in good repair), the intonation that's spot on with the right mouthpiece, and the overall craftsmanship of the instrument. As someone else pointed out, the fact that there's a zillion of them still around points to the overall quality of the horn -- which is what you'd expect of a pro instrument.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yes that's the sax, g# key is odd with no front f key. Id like a challenge anyways, and with all of the good things I've heard about it I have completely changed my mind, I will get it. JayeSF did say that period mouthpiece will work better, what's are some mouthpieces to look at?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Actually that last question can probably be answered in another forum. Well thanks alot for the input! Really helped.
 

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I can't argue with most of this, but this is a series II we're talking about. The typewriter G#, the lack of an articulated G# (in the common usage of the term), the lack of a front F, and the mouthpiece sensitivity will make this a challenge for an intermediate player.
Um... None of the 'issues' you have listed weren't a challenge for the BEGINNERS who played these horns when they were new. Why would they be a problem now? You don't NEED a front F, and there are plenty of 'modern' mouthpieces that work well on these old timers.

As for the mouthpiece. If it has one with it, clean it up and give it a try. Usually what's in the case works. If it's not for you,
at least you'll have an idea of where to start your search.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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I'll see if they can't repair it half way for less.
That could be false economy


TT's aren't for everyone, but those that appreciate them obviously swear by them.
Very true. I have had three TT altos, and I certainly swore by them. Every time I got close.

But I agree, they are great little horns if you want that sound and can deal with the ergonomics and can find the right mouthpiece. I agree, they are a pro horn.
 

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You don't NEED a front F...
That really depends upon what type of music you play. I play old time jazz, but also more modern jazz as well as rock and roll with my late model TT alto. I need a front F to better facilitate playing altissimo for the latter style, and wouldn't want an alto without one.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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I need a front F to better facilitate playing altissimo for the latter style, and wouldn't want an alto without one.
I'm not saying it isn't nice to have one, but you can still play altissimo without, there's alternative fingerings that simulate a front F, e.g xxo|ooo plus palm F using LH3), or xoo|ooo plus palm F )
 
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