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Hi,

I will try this horn in a couple of days. Unfortunately re-lacquered but looks in a pretty good shape otherwise. Serial number seems to be 65081 or C5081, seller will confirm later.

Its being sold locally for $1150 US Dlls including a Berg larsen mouthpiece and a pretty nice vintage case (which is good since I don't have neither of them, as this would be my first bari). Not clear if it is Bel Air or M70 or ??

Opinions and comments will be appreciated!

Antonio DOLNET1.jpg DOLNET2.jpg DOLNET3.jpg DOLNET4.jpg DOLNET5.jpg DOLNET6.jpg DOLNET7.jpg DOLNET8.jpg
 

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Nothing wrong with a relacq, and the price is VERY good if it plays up and down well and has no significant body damage.

I like these....FWIW, if you are used to vintage keywork you will probably like it too. But if you are used to modern keywork, then you may find this one (like many an older BigHorn) requires a bit of woodshedding to get under the fingers.

My recollection (I have only refurbed two of their Baris) is intonation is pretty good....more flexible than say a Yama or Yani, certainly...but nothing approaching a probematic range.

Their tone is awesome.

SaxBass...how is intonation on yours ?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Confirmed the serial number begins with a C and then number 5081 (and not after as for Bel Air), which is something I didn't find in SAXPICS or any other web page or online forum (please see photo). Judging the mechanism and keys, which year / model would you think this sax is ?

I also attach a new photo detailing the engraving.

Definitely looking forward to try it.

Thanks for all your comments!

DOLNET9.jpg DOLNET SERIAL.jpg
 

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Looks nice, but then is relacqued, I’ve sold one similar (but not as nice) for twice the money , so, it is a steal!

This is a Bel Air (whether it says or not so) you are probably thinking of the M70 model. Nobody has ever ascertained the meaning of the letters in the serial numbers by Dolnet and NO serial number chart really exists.
 

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Very cool. Just checking with the experts: is there a risk this is a HP horn? I seem to remember that some Dolnets are HP without being marked as such. I’d take a tuner (app) to be sure!
 

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Well, not to throw any cold water on things, but my experience with a Dolnet tenor was notso hotso.

I found that it had a pretty good sound and intonation, but it was heavy as all heck and the long keyrods were so thin that it created a totally unacceptable amount of flex. It was very difficult to get it to stay in adjustment and the long keys you always felt like you were going to bend them.

The other thing was that the bell pointed off to one side in a weird way.

Unless they seriously beefed up the mechanism for the baritone, it may be very floppy and insubstantial feeling.

That said, I have known one guy who had a Dolnet baritone and liked it a lot. I never had the opportunity to play it.
 

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Intonation on my Dolnet (actually Jean Cartier stencil) low A bari is good; I was pleasantly surprised with it. As to the concern regarding HP, I agree with taking a tuner. I doubt that will be a problem as the older Dolnets did not have the hexagonal keyguards and diamond bell brace, which this one has. In contrast to turf3's tenor experience, mine feels very solid and not floppy at all. I also have a Jean Cartier tenor, and while the springs are notably lighter, I would neither describe it as floppy nor insubstantial.
 

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Well, not to throw any cold water on things, but my experience with a Dolnet tenor was notso hotso.

I found that it had a pretty good sound and intonation, but it was heavy as all heck and the long keyrods were so thin that it created a totally unacceptable amount of flex. It was very difficult to get it to stay in adjustment and the long keys you always felt like you were going to bend them.

The other thing was that the bell pointed off to one side in a weird way.

Unless they seriously beefed up the mechanism for the baritone, it may be very floppy and insubstantial feeling.

That said, I have known one guy who had a Dolnet baritone and liked it a lot. I never had the opportunity to play it.
Was yours a M70 or Royal Jazz?
I had a Royal Jazz with offset bell, but mine was very well built with no noticeable flex as you mentioned.
It was heavy though and felt awkward with the offset bell.
My Belair model was a fantastic horn in all respects.
Build quality was great, sound was full and dark and the intonation was as close to spot on as any tenor I have owned.
A friends Dolnet Imperial was the complete opposite.
It was not well built and the intonation was a real challenge to work with.
Sound was okay though.
Personally I’d love to get my dirty little mits on a Dolnet Baritone.
A 50’s or 60’s model, not an Imperial though.
 

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There are earlier Low Bb HP (one if for sale in the NL right now the seller initially advertised as a E horn :) and said that you could play it in a different key... NOT).

The Low A shouldn’t have never being built in any other pitch.

Dolnets Low Bb are plentiful in the NL but Low A not quite so much.
 

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There are earlier Low Bb HP (one if for sale in the NL right now the seller initially advertised as a E horn :) and said that you could play it in a different key... NOT).

The Low A shouldn’t have never being built in any other pitch.

Dolnets Low Bb are plentiful in the NL but Low A not quite so much.
I need to make a trip to the Nederlands then.
I’d love a Low Bb Dolnet Baritone.
Although I’d prefer an Eb one.
 

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Please, do come, how you THEN bring the baritone back is a different thing. I have bought 3 over the years but lately there are so many people whom are buying so much that it has become difficult for me to buy.

There are currently 2 for sale on the most popular site (one is the HP).
 

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I could always buy a Dolnet Baritone, then just live in Maastricht with my wife’s relatives.
Although it may be best if I meet them first.
 

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Good Idea! Maastricht is very far (what we call far) from most places (about 300 Km from me) in the NL but close to Belgium and Germany.

Seriously if you have that option, you may want to look in Belgium and France too.
 

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I meant precisely to say that, as far as I know, there are NO Low A Dolnet baritones in high pitch while, yes, there are some low Bb built in high pitch.

I can’t say the no low A baritones (of any brand) have been ever built in high pitch.

THAT I cannot say ( there may have been some obscure makers who did this, who knows, but no Dolnets Low A)
 

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Nice horn, for its age it is in extremely good shape. Regarding lack of Low A, I don't know about others, but I have found that to not be a detriment to playing, desirable, yes, necessary, no. Also if it lacks the high F#, I've found the same, too, easier to use a falsetto fingering.

In a similar vein I love my early to mid 1950's Beaugnier Vito Bari. (Left pinky finger pad precedes the Duke.) Got it at an auction for a couple hundred bucks, was badly battered as an ex-school instrument. Case was very musty smelling, must have been stored in an unconditioned warehouse or basement where humidity could permeate. It's taken me a while over the past 7 years to fix things, re-align the key racks, resolder posts, remove dents, replace various pads, etc. Rolled and hammered out of high copper alloy brass, portions were the color of a well worn old penny. However, with my various repairs, it now plays very well in tune, is easy blowing, belts out the low notes with authority, falsetto fingers easy, etc. with only about 40% of its lacquer left, occasionally I clean it, looks good in its transformation now compared to what I started with.

I learned that back then, about the only difference between the pro model and beginner was the amount of after TLC on the pro in the amount of adjustment for tuning, engraving and better quality jewels for adornment. These were all hand made. It has a slight darker sound that I like. It has become my favourite horn. I now need to replace a few pads, through my heavy use have added more wear and tear. The way it plays reminds me of a song called, "The Touch of The Master's Hand":


Sorry to deviate from the topic, but enjoy your Dolnet bari. Master it and you'll be able to make that sax sing :glasses7:
 
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