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Discussion Starter #1
Hello guys,
this is my first post.
I just won an aution from ebay.
It is a gold lacquered finish horn which I think might be the new wonder series 1 version
it cost 500 plus 50 shipping.. I was the only one bidding...-_-
the microtuner is stuck and might need some fixing.\
pads are old.
Any thoughts?
Thank you.
Lambert








 

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Welcome to the Forum.

It looks like a relacquer, but it looks like there's no significant structural issues such as major dents or damaged toneholes.

The frozen microtuner isn't an expensive fix. If your tech can keep the that repair, plus pad replacement cost... to under $200, then it will turn out to be a decent purchase...not fantastic...not bad.

....if the cost of repair much exceeds $200...not such a good deal from the point of view of market value. But you will end up with a pretty good Alto to play......
 

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I'm playing Conn New Wonder alto not much older than your new horn - fabulous tone and they play really well when set up properly.
And any lacquered New Wonder can be considered a 'relacq' - they weren't lacquering horns in the early 1920's.
It's probably more accurate to say your horn has a recent lacquer on it (say in the last 50 years) rather than an older lacquer (say from about 1930) which would have a much darker golden-brown look to it...

KennyD
 

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That's not even a Chu, and a refinished one like this that will likely need an overhaul is only worth two hundred bucks or less. Do your research before you enter into a binding contract to purchase a saxophone.
 

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You know what though ?

You almost CANNOT use the current "race to the bottom" market values to really determine whether or not you got a good deal or a bad one.

Race to the bottom...there seems to be no bottom.....when I joined here, people were desperately trying to find $400 Altos, $700 Tenors, and $1500 Low Bb BigHorns. Searching back to 2008...people were hoping and pleading for $500 Altos, under-$1000 Tenors, and under-$2000 BigHorns.

Look at the recent 'wanted' posts from the past few months. $150 Altos....sub-$300 Tenors...and sub $1000 Baritones. This is where things are at right now.

Soooo...let's throw market values aside for a moment (because I have seen 10M's, Buescher, and old Yani Tenors...the list goes on, ad nauseum... that didn't sell for even $600 lately....which is truly criminal).

You put $750 of TOTAL investment into that old Conn you bought there, Lambert (i.e. $200 of work from here on)...and you will have an alto which is far, far better than any contemporary/newish horn you could buy for the same price. And it's hella cooler, damn better-sounding, and full o' vintage Mojo, to boot.

Like I said...not a great deal, and Grumps is correct when he implies you could have done better for the money you spent; and indeed it would have behooved you to have researched a bit more beforehand, as he noted...BUT, if you can keep the repairs reasonable...you didn't get taken, either....
 

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Here's an auction where people actually bid:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dl...i=sqds3Jp6lnHzIu4Zwi7IfVfu76I%3D#ht_512wt_922
Doesn't look like the pads are in any better shape, but the horn is a better finish and in better condition, and it's a New Wonder Series II.
So yes, what you paid is a bit on the high side. Probably $300 is where you should have been on the high side. Those horns can flat howl at the moon though in good working order.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you for all the comments!
Really sorry about the late reply, I have been having many midterms lately..
I didnt buy the horn finally due to some stupid reasons.
anyway, I finally got myself a King Zephy for $500 :)
Look like lots of repair has to be done though.
I have some pictures of it in another post. It looks like it is heavily tarnished but some how has some gloss on top of the horn as seen from the picture. I am thinking it might be relacquer... the seller is not a sax player and cannot explain much ..
 

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Hello guys,
this is my first post.
I just won an auction from ebay.
It is a gold lacquered finish Conn......
Thank you for all the comments!
Really sorry about the late reply, I have been having many midterms lately..
I didnt buy the horn finally due to some stupid reasons.

:|

:|

:scratch:

OK, well...you won an eBay auction but didn't buy the horn (?) I won't ask....

Anyway, you did better on the Zephyr. But...may I ask you ? In your other thread, you bought the horn and then asked if it has bad intonation because this is what you have heard.

If you remember Grumps' post/reply (above)...he suggested that it is better off for you do some research before buying a sax, because this way you can get your money's worth, learn the good from the not-so-good, and not have to worry about all the repair it may need.

Now, it looks like you went and bought the Zephyr, and are now asking if it's good.

In any case...you have there a Cleveland-made Zephyr. That is good. Now...what year is it (serial #) ? Because depending on the year, it may have been an OK purchase, or it may have been a very, very good purchase. You say it needs work, and once again....if that means $200 of work, you are sorta OK or maybe very OK. But if it means $600 of work, then...again....you are in a similar position you would have been in with the Conn (you over-paid). Although this is a better horn than the Conn is (was).

It is hard to tell much from the photos, they are not very clear despite being huge.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hello Jaye,
Thank you for the message.
You guys are absolutely right.
I should learn what kind of sound am I actually looking for before I decide to purchase an instrument.
I am a beginner in saxophone, the only kind of horn I played before is one of those Taiwan student model. I however find myself learning quite fast at saxophone and would like to take it serious.That's how I start looking up ebay.lol
I understand that the 2 horns have very different sound and the keyworks will also take time to get use to, but I am really devoted and will be having this same instrument for quite awhile :) or pass on to my kids lol. That's why I hope it worths the time and money./
In response to your question, the serial number is 202606 (I like the number lol). I believe it is the series 2 model of king zephyr (but i don't think it is the special model(guessing)) It has a 3 holes for neck straps (I find it gorgeous!) It looks like it is tarnished from the pics, it come with a good looking mouthpiece and neck strap and a musty case. That's all I know about the sax. I tried to look up people playing king zephyr on youtube but didn't find many videos.
Thank you!
Lambert
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Oh by the way,
I just email a well known sax repair shop in Montreal to ask about the price for fixing it.
Thank you!
Lambert
 

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It's a 1940 Zephyr.

... (by the way, Lambert....not that you should have known this, but...usually when someone writes a serial # online, they "X" out the last few digits. I would suggest you change your serial # to: 202,6XX...just for your own security (even though I agree, its a cool serial # !)

At a certain point, the Zeph body was redesigned to become what was essentially a Super 20 body. Zephs began in '35 and evolved from the Voll-True II's (horns which I like immensely because they possess a great old smoky, breath-y tone which is no longer found in the sax world).

My recollection is this body design change happened in around 1945, with serial #'s 270,XXX and above.

Yours is a 1940, so...I would hazard to guess your horn has the older body design. But perhaps you can confirm this in the King section of the Forum. This sort of Zephyr oexisted with the Voll-True II for a number of years. In good playing shape, this sorta Zephyr is worth about $600-700 (while the Voll-True II of similar vintage is worth about $450-500).

....so, even if your horn needs a few hundred dollars of work....it was a much better buy than the Conn.

And the tone and quality of construction is going to be far, far better than any contemporary saxophone.

Let us know what the tech says.
 

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I think people way under value their own time. If you buy a sax for 1000 and put another 1000 into a complete rebuild and buy a 150 mouthpiece and buy 200 in books you have invested 2350.....

if you play that horn, mouthpiece while using the books for a half hour a day for two years you are at 350 hours of playing time. If you sell the sax after that for 1000 and throw in the books and mouthpiece. Your cost per hour of entertainment is 1350/350 or $3.85 per hour. And that is the extreme case.

If you are a one sax man then find a reasonable vintage sax and have it put in great shape and play the hell out of it.... Stop worying about will I get my mony back when I sell it... rather ask..... will I get the sound out of it when I blow?
 

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If you are a one sax man then find a reasonable vintage sax and have it put in great shape and play the hell out of it.... Stop worying about will I get my mony back when I sell it... rather ask..... will I get the sound out of it when I blow?
Very well said.
As a C-melody player, I couldn't agree more. If you re-pad a C-melody you will never be able to sell it for what you spent on it, but I have had many hours of fun with it.
 

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How true on the repair costs. I am lucky that I do repair and can put a horn into playing condition for very little. I generally figure about $10 an hour for my own horns.
I agree that if you are not well versed in horns it is best to ask questions here first. Often there are longtime members here who can find you a player (JayeSF is one). I always have someting like a Martin, Buescher or Conn for $500-750 in good playing condition and some have really great looks too. I have about 20 altos right now including a Mark VI I got new and I use a Conn NW series one as my player so you DID get a desirable horn.
 

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Perhaps this is the typical story of all those who get to buy a saxophone for its looks, name and history rather than anything else.

I too have had people who wanted to buy from me a vintage horn " per se" regardless of any rational reasons and concentrating solely on looks and famous name.

In the end this is what fuels most new buyers in the vintage market. I know of several people whom even before of learning to play (should I include myself in the list? :( ) have managed to buy a serious amount of vintage horns.

I have done that ( buying and selling ) as a means to an end. I find that the best way to know anything is to buy and sell it.

One acquires a lot of knowledge in the process of buying and selling, as I hope I am still doing, and have a lot of fun because you get to own, cuddle and play (and perhaps even learn to fix them a little bit) an amount os saxophones that otherwise, under " normal" circumstances you would have rarely seen.

Among these " collectors" there is the special needs " cheap horn hoarders " group.

Someone I know who belongs to this group has managed to buy, in less than a year 25 cheap vintage saxophones with a purchase price between 25€ and 150€ all belonging to the " minor brands group" . He has attempted to restore them himself, on the cheap of course, by repadding them with Chinese pads and with limited technical means. He did a botch job at best of all of these horns. The point of this collection? None whatsoever. The value? Same as the point.

The best way to start any journey is to give yourself a direction. Once you know where you are and where you want to go, the road between is, for the most part, a line crossing these two points. Ok, Ok! There are detours, mistakes, accidents, but I did say for the most part!:twisted:

Once you start buying horns you are a collector or a trader, but give yourself some rules otherwise you end up buying anything , as I said , you need a direction. The sooner you give yourself a direction, the better. Good luck, Enjoy! :mrgreen:
 

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All well-said. I will say THIS, additionally...the type of horn you end up with can also give you direction.

Lambert did pretty well with the Zeph...the Conn would NOT have been so much of a good purchase (in my initial replies, I tried my best to make a guy feel better, assuming he had already paid for it; that was about the extent I could go on it and it wasn't all that easy to come up with a valid-sounding rationale :|). I don't like to be the sorta guy who tells someone "oomp ~ you paid THAT much for THAT ? Why ?"

But, regardless of whether it was just complete luck, you did well. That model will lend itself well to a lot of contexts (probably not classical, however).

The Zeph will be a nice player...hopefully your tech will not try to take advantage of the situation and of a novice, and he/she will give you a reasonable repair estimate.

It will have a much bigger, fuller, sexier tone than a contemporary horn, and their intonation is pretty good and ergos are straightforward....so already, you are ahead of the curve coming right out of the gate.

Find a good teacher, and enjoy....
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thank you for all the messages!
Milandro is definitely right. My original goal was to get a horn that sounds good for the money. But during the process of buying, I start caring more about the brand name. After all, the instrument is just a medium to amplify the musical skill of the person playing it. I should definitely focus more on the skills side before looking for my "best saxophone". :)
It is great to know it is a good horn from JaySF. I am sure I will have fun with it everyday lol.
Talking about repair, what kind of service shall I go for? (e.g. overhaul? or just fix the bent and change the pads?) what is the general price for that service? how long is it about to take?
I hope the price is not directly proportional to the skill of the repairman.lol
Thank you.
Lambert
 
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