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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all-

My buddy and I just went halvesies on an old Conn bari from eBay (or eFlay, if you prefer) as a project horn. I've been out of the loop for so long, I have a bunch of questions about it.

1) What model is it?: It's definitely a MexiConn, since it clearly say Mexico below the serial number, but I don't really know Conn model names at all. It's got a low A. And what does the "shooting stars" engraving look like. *I* wouldn't cal this "shooting stars".

2) What year?: The serial number is N 876xx. I looked at the recent thread on Conn serial numbers; I'm not getting in the middle of *that*!

3)Replacement case?: The case is just about totaled. My partner (my friend Mark) went ahead and ordered an SKB flight case, but the Conn profile didn't fit. I'm thinking the same will be true of the J. Winter case he's ordered next.

4) *Suggestions* on m'piece, reeds, etc.: My background is playing bari in High School on a low Bb Mark VI with a Berg Larsen m'piece (sorry, don't remember the chamber; shoot, that was 30 years ago!), and a variety of reeds, sometimes Rico 4s for jazz band, sometimes LaVoz or Vandorens for concert band/wind ensemble.

5) Since I'm supposed to be the one fixing this up, I need some help with a couple of parts; I'm pretty sure I can get the low c# key guard from Allied, but the high f lever is missing, as is the threaded post (and the screw, but I can probably manage that). Anyone have any help? Pads and such shouldn't be a problem.

If anyone wants to see what I got, here's the eBay link:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dl...QbRur58%3D&viewitem=&sspagename=STRK:MEWNX:IT

TIA for any input!

Geoff
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Oh, yeah, I've got a Rico Metalite M7 m'piece for now, just to get started. I didn't want to jump directly into $x00 'pieces before the horn was all fixed up! Using whatever reeds I had lying around the house, but I'm curious about Hemkes and others I didn't have to try back in High School. G-
 

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It is a Conn 11M bari with range to Low A. This was NOT a Director student model, and thus would not have the "Shooting Stars" engraving. The year of manufacture is 1970, and it was made in Nogales, Mexico.

Your horn was the end of the road for Conn's pro Artist line of horns, in days past known as the "Ladyface or Naked Lady" after the engraving design it used to sport. Although not the most desired era or location of manufacture (Conn's truly great horns were made in their Elkhart IN plant), it should be a nice sounding horn once returned to playing condition.

A larger chambered mouthpiece will generally give the best results on this horn.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks, Mike, that's what I was hoping for, but there's no "11M" engraved anywhere. I really like the horn, the intonation is *loads* better than the one we were borrowing from friend #3, but the "Mexico" thing had me worried.
 

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The negative connotation "Mexi-Conn" refers to the student "Director" models that were made there C. 1969 and later as production moved across the street from Nogales, AZ to Nogales, Mexico. This is due to a perceived drop in quality control and the general decline of Conn's saxophones in general during this era.

Although the earlier Elkhart made pro "Artist" models are preferred, your horn was still a pro model in Conn's catalog, and its provenance is still with Conn's 6M/10M/11M/12M professional line.

It should be a good sounding and playing horn once fixed up.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the clarification; I'll stop saying "Mexi-Conn". :)
It already sounds good, and I expect it to sound great once it's finished up. The hardest part right now is finding a good case for it!
 

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These are good horns...it's an early 70's....cannot quite be certain it's from 1970 as there has been a fair amount of (valid) doubt cast upon the N serial # info online as of late. But being it is under N 100,000, it is definitely somewhere in the early 70's. It's not late 70's or later because those WERE engraved 11M on the bell....

These DID used to get a terrible rap. I have had a few thru here....and as Mike says, it is an Artist series horn and therefore their top-shelf line.

These horns sound MASSIVE. They are basically a 12M with an extended bell....so what else would one expect ? I have sold a couple and both buyers were really stoked with their purchases. The one I had around here for quite a while, a late 60's...I played quite a bit myself and it was pretty darn nice.

Really important to get the keywork/spring tensions regulated nicely. Also, they don't handle a high-baffle, narrow chamber m'piece well, as Mike also noted.

It worked really wonderfully with a Meyer 5 and 6, as well as a newer George M. Bundy signature 4. It was a disaster with my Runyon, only so-so with a Yamaha 5c.

You guys did pretty well on the price....you could put $1200 into tech work and rest assured that you would cover your investment should you ever sell it (and it probably doesn't need that much work). In good playing shape these have a market value of around $1800-2200....um, with a case....
 

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I am one of the guys who bought an 11m off of JayeSF (the late 1960's one he was talking about), and I will say that the horn is pretty much a badass. I have found a few things that I am not a fan of, mostly being the ergos on the LH pinky cluster (having the A for both the thumb and pinky is a good idea...in theory, but it makes the rest of the LH really, really heavy). The stuff I have been playing as of late involves near constant use of C# and B, putting tons of work on the huge rods and massive LH cluster. The only other real negative I have found has been in the bell itself - the extension makes the horn a little akwardly balanced.

As for the real parts that matter, like I said, the horn is pretty much a badass. I got it completly re-adjusted to fit me by my horn guy over here (the shipping from CA to NH was not kind on the poor girl) once I got it and have been trying different mouthpieces on it. With a modern STM she is edgy, fat and everything awesome about a rocking bari. I have been trying a Rico Metallite and a Link Tone Edge on her for when I am woodshedding, and they both accentuate the bottom end. Oh...yeah...that is pretty much what makes this horn. The bottom end can make the baby Jesus cry, rattle your windows and get you a gig or two if you use it correctly.
 

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I have accquired a bari with the union stamp with the words union above and factory 34 above the medallion. the serial is bar 31551 L. Can you help me find out what it is?
I think it is a Conn, no spit valve so I think it is quite old.
 

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I have accquired a bari with the union stamp with the words union above and factory 34 above the medallion. the serial is bar 31551 L. Can you help me find out what it is?
I think it is a Conn, no spit valve so I think it is quite old.
Photos will be needed.
 

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Conn bought off the union in 1914 or '15 when Carl Greenleaf took over. So it's gotta be before that.
 

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Otto Link hard rubber tone edge 8 is the perfect piece for this great bari.....
 
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