Sax on the Web Forum banner
21 - 28 of 28 Posts

·
Registered
Soprano: 1983 Keilwerth Toneking Schenklaars stencil
Joined
·
905 Posts
They are an older brand than the place that sold one to you back then. That's probably the year that they started selling them.

My old music store, Royal Music in Royal Oak, Michigan, which was Mr. Couf's store, had them much, much earlier than 1983.

For example, if you research Grover Washington Jr in the 1970s, look at old videos, and album covers, etc you'll see him use Couf horns clearly into the 1970s. He preferred a Selmer alto, but Couf soprano and tenors.

here's my SN chart. It's in blog format now and I haven't bothered making it look good.
https://www.woodwindforum.com/clarinetperfection/keilwerth-sax/

Mr. Couf and Gary Ferree (one of his engineers at the time) helped evolve the JK keywork from the 1960s old style keywork to more modern-ish keywork. The above webpage, who's links don't work right now (oops), actually show(ed) some of those changes.

I would think about 1969 for Helen's Low A bari.
I've always wanted to get Couf Low A Bari, but the weight doesn't do good things to my back no matter what I do nowadays. I've only played low A bari once, back in 1982 which was a Superba I supplied by Mr Couf, for the state honor's band. He was a great guy always wanting to help the budding musician.

FYI, there was a Bundy Special which was a Couf designed instrument, which evolved into the Superbas. Well, that one model actually devolved into the student version Couf horns Royalist and Royalist I. Royalist II was an Elkhart, IN model.
For those following this URL to the serial number chart, I want to point out that the year listed is the year in which that instrument serial number was made. The serial number therefore is neither the first instrument nor the last instrument of the year. While an absolutely legitimate way to design a table, if care is not taken, this method can lead to a misreading of the table.

Here is the table that I have used and here is a Google translation of the author's introduction. This was referred to in an earlier post.

This list is from the manufacturer directly. It is therefore considered right. The only inaccuracies arose in 1945/46 because after the new start of production in Nauheim, 20,000 were simply restarted to number the instruments.
In this table the serial number given is the first number in the production year. This is generally in agreement with the table above, but may be more complete and easier to read.

https://saxwelt.de/index.php/ratgeber/seriennummern/keilwerthser
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,860 Posts
Hi Helen, I felt compelled to bump up your thread in the hope you’ll see that I responded to your last post in it. You post more infrequently than I do so you may haven’t noticed it. Anyway hope that you do and I have some ideas on mouthpieces as it pertains to JK low A baritones. BTW I too have a Zinner, a BA 63-5 among the pieces that I play. It started out at about .095-ish I almost remember and I opened it up to .120 exactly.
 

·
Distinguished Member and Bass Sax Extraordinaire
Joined
·
1,044 Posts
Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Thank you Lambros.

I'll have to re-check the Zinner that I have. I just looked it up, and it too is a BA63-5. I also borrowed a metal Link 7* from my big band colleague last night. I'm going to give that a whirl. I'm also connecting up with a player in a couple of weeks at a jazz festival. He has a bunch of different bari pieces that he is going to lend me to try out.

I'm finding that the more I play the Couf, the better I'm becoming at being able to figure out its idiosyncrasies. Last night at rehearsal I got all the palm key notes in tune with the rest of the sax section in those crucial parts. (We're currently rehearsing for a big band festival.) At first I didn't think I was going to use the horn for the show on Nov. 17 b/c I wouldn't have its intonation figured out by then. However, last night proved to me that I likely can do it, and that by show date I should the Couf under control, and sounding the way I want to enough with my SS Berg.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,860 Posts
That’s so great to hear Helen and you’re finding the heart and soul of your JK. I think the plain cut tone holes definitely give a little more snap to the action as well. Here’s a suggestion for the metal Berg with its smaller shank diameter, if you know a player that has a YBS-62, ask them if you can try out the neck on your Couf. If it has the same tenon receiver diameter as the SX90 bari and you like the way it sounds with the metal Berg, getting one as an alternate for narrow fitting mouthpieces is a nice way to use them. I bought one factory sealed from a Yamaha distributor.
Did you see the pictures I posted above Helen? They are not the best but at least you can get an idea how the 2 B&S horns compare side by side.
 

·
Distinguished Member and Bass Sax Extraordinaire
Joined
·
1,044 Posts
Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Interesting about the YBS-62. I happen to access to one. No need to ask another player. I can borrow the neck and try it in the privacy of my own home. :)

Yes, I did see the photos. The sax world is a small one in the end in some ways. Here's an example from my own life: I wrote about a weird mystery horn on eBay 10 years or so ago. It was a J.R. Lefleur & Sons Varsity alto the likes of which I had never seen before. The horn was being sold on eBay by a store in Winnipeg.

A year or so later, the player who bought it--a sax player in New Westminster (a suburb of Vancouver)--reached out to me to let me know he ended up with it. He and I made arrangements to get together so I could see and photograph it in person. Since then he and I have become friends, and we get together and play regularly.

After owning the horn for nearly a decade, he opted to sell the mystery alto, and I ended up buying it from him. Why? B/C it is still the only one I have ever seen like it in all the thousands of vintage saxes I have looked at and catalogued over the years. The only other one that resembles it, is a Hüttl tenor, which leds me to believe that the Varsity is actually a Hüttl stencil.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,860 Posts
Thanks for sharing your story Helen and you’re right about the sax community being small and yet those who really care about vintage horns with a genuine passion seek to find those who echo the same feeling. The 2 horns which you have linked to your site are really interesting as I’m not familiar with vintage English/UK saxophones. The tenor reminds me of a Reference 22 and the alto has more of an American looking setup (Conn, Buescher, King, etc.).

Let me know if the 62 neck works on your JK Couf.
 

·
Researcher, Teacher and Horn Revitalizer, Forum Co
Joined
·
3,510 Posts
Not quite on topic, but the earliest Couf Superba II tenor sax I've seen had serial number 65xxx, which is to say they weren't available before then. Also, there was a recent discussion about dates serial numbers for the Superba 1 tenor in the Sticky at the top of this section.
FYI, one of the earliest serial numbers I have for a Couf horn is 564xx which has a plexiplastic pant guard thing.
I haven't really searched for lower SNs in probably a decade though, so they could have come about earlier.
It's a Superba 2 alto, with RTH.

Oops, I'm not getting notifications for this thread.
 
21 - 28 of 28 Posts
Top