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Discussion Starter #1
Yesterday I had the chance to play a 1962's Buffet Crampon BC-20 Bes clarinet. The instrument recently had a check-up, and all pads looked and felt good (I did not perform a suction test, but everything spoke very easily). I'm in love with its tone, but intonation is slightly less good than my Buffet Crampon Continentale from 1972. The wood looks great, no cracks or repairs, with a smooth looking bore. The silver plated keywork looks less good, with a deep scratch on one of the side keys, and a bit of play in the mechanism (compared to my Continentale and E-13 clarinets). I don't know when the wood was oiled the last time, but it looked to be in good condition (black, shiny, smooth feel).

Here's the thing; I don't need another clarinet, but this instrument, with its full tone and big volume, would be great for jazz (which I want to get back into anyway, after having played classical only for the past years). I'm not worried about the wood or the pads, but I am certain that the mechanics will need an overhaul at some point. Like I said, tuning (throat tones) is a bit sharp, even at 442 Hz, but the altissimo is to die for. Way fuller and more open than on my other clarinets. The tone across the registers is beautiful and very even, and it was very easy to go from pp to FFF without the sound getting ugly.

The seller wants €700, and I have said that I might consider it if he would offer it for €600 instead. He said yes, so now I am wondering if this is a reasonable deal, or if I should let this pass. I'm not looking for a bargain really, but I also do not want to be ripped off ;) This is a 55 years old instrument that will need a full overhaul sometime in the next 3 years (my assumption), and the volume will scare my band director to death :mrgreen: ... but it sounds great!

My heart says "buy" but my head says that it's a lot of money for an old piece of wood that certainly needs proper maintenance in the near future.

What would you do? :)
 

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It is a reasonable deal but if you are not in a hurry you can buy better.

The clarinet market is a buyer’s market. Nobody buys clarinets in the Netherlands (and anywhere else too) these days. There are lots for sale and few ever buy any.

Shops won’t even consider part exchange unless you practically give the clarinet to them and only models that are in demand.

I have sold top Selmer and Buffet clarinets for €800 per piece but it took a very long time.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I have sold top Selmer and Buffet clarinets for €800 per piece but it took a very long time.
I haven't played a Selmer clarinet yet that I really loved, but that is entirely personal. I have "Buffet fingers", I guess ;)
 

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that’s another type of Buffet that I am thinking about

 
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