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we have a member, Felix, with the monicker La Porte, who is the foremost expert on these horns,

https://forum.saxontheweb.net/member.php?36900-LaPorte

Last seen here on January this year

Here there is a thread where he offers a New pespective on Laporte Indiana , American made saxophones.

https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?128000-LaPorte-IND-A-New-Perspective

Before opening a new thread, please, always check first here ( and only here because is the only place where there is a Google Custom Search box)

https://www.saxontheweb.net

On the top-center of the page

There you get the best possible use of the local search engine (not the top right of any other page)

If you had written there “ American La Porte”, you will have had around 151 hits.

One of this is this is entitled “ the forgotten American Manufacturer”

E.A. Couturier was a gorgeous cornet player and a respected manufacturer of brass (conical bore patent).

The fact that he was a manufacturer of fine saxophones, too, is not well known.

Is anybody interested in info/discussion about

history
series
technical details
stencilling companies
serial numbers/years of manufacturing
patent info
advertisement
sound
etc.?

Please let me know.

Felix
On this horn.

My perspective is that this horn is worth fixing if it is very dear to you and means something special, if not, unfortunately , the cost of fixing it will surpass the cost of buying one in better s.tate and in playing conditions.
 

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I actually did search for “ American La Porte” but I didn't get any information that helped me figure out who made this horn. When I read the thread “ the forgotten American Manufacturer” He was talking about Couturier and their history. Is my sax a stencil of a Couturier ? Would "American " be the model or the company that sold it? I took some more pics of the beveled tone holes and the guards that use a circular attachment point where they are soldered, It seems like everyone else uses a diamond shape. The main reason why I would like to figure out who made this sax is to see if it's worth putting money into. My daughter and I found this at a garage sale and she talked me into spending the $25 for it. View attachment 219482 View attachment 219484 View attachment 219486
 

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Actually Buescher/Bundy and sometimes Martin also used round escutceons at their guardfeet, FWIW....

This is an interesting puzzle because, according to Felix:

"On request I bring forward following matter:

How to identify a LaPorte made saxophone.

All following statements are based on my own examinations and researches.

I recommend not to rely on one feature alone as there are similiarities which can be found on saxophones of different manufacturers as well as differences which easily could be changed e.g. keyguards. Note that there are some positive related features but also features which exclude a LaPorte origin.

And of course there are features that can be identified on good photos but there are some - and that are the most reliable - which requires the real object of examination e.g. measurements of the body!

All LaPorte made saxophones

1. have split bell keys except straight sopranos.

2. are lacking front F.

3. have thick simple bevelled toneholes (handcrafted, therefore slightly varying in shape) soldered onto the body. I call them „LaPorte Type“ as most saxophones made since 1922 equipped with this type of bevelled toneholes were produced in LaPorte. Saxophones produced at the same time (twenties) by Martin have thick bevelled toneholes, too. But unlike those made in Laporte they have usually an inward sloping rim.

What makes things more complicated: Martin saxophones made between 1918 and ca.1921 and some stencils are lacking this feature, they look like the LaPorte type ones! So not all saxophones with 'LaPorte Type' toneholes are made in LaPorte! Vice versa: Saxophones with toneholes other than 'LaPorte Type' are not made in LaPorte.

4. have serial numbers in the range of 6,xxx and 19,xxx as well as 200,xxx and 203,xxx (except Holton Collegiate I which are not considered here). Possibly there are very rare exceptions. Still researching.

5. All numbers are written in a straight line e.g. with an „A“ above for alto saxophone and an „L“ beneath for „Low Pitch“. There never can be found the term „LOW PITCH“ like stamped on Martin made saxophones. Since 1926 (1925 on the 'Perfect Curved Soprano') "PAT APPLD FOR“ was supplemented.

6. LaPorte made saxophone bodies are larger bored than any other contemporary make. Trying (e.g.) to fix a martin neck on a LaPorte saxophone, you will be very surprised how much the difference in diameter is!

7. LaPorte made saxophone bodies (comparing examinations on numerous alto saxophones) are longer than any other make. Accordingly their necks are shorter (otherwise they would have a pitch which is much too low).

There are more indications which I will explain when presenting some info about model history.

Felix


Yours (OP) certainly has the non-Martinesque beveled holes....and as you say, the round guardfeet escutcheons...and the serial # is in a curve, not straight, and to me sorta looks Buescheresque.

However, the neck and the spat keys, as two examples, do NOT look '20's Buescheresque whatsoever....

Nice head-scratcher....
 

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As Milandro says, 'worth putting $ into' can be sorta subjective. Even in immaculate, refurbished condition, your sax would be worth perhaps $400....regardless of whether you ever determine what factory it came from.

You would likely need to pay a repair tech $500+ to get that horn into top playing condition...although you might be able to get away with $300 worth of work just for a cleaning and enough pad work/adjustment to at least get it to play somewhat passably.

On the other hand, it's always nice to bring back an oldie...so sometimes the family experience itself is worth something which market value does not acknowledge.
 

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The main reason why I would like to figure out who made this sax is to see if it's worth putting money into. My daughter and I found this at a garage sale and she talked me into spending the $25 for it. View attachment 219482 View attachment 219484 View attachment 219486
A good value for garage sale. Complete with an undamaged neck. Are you or your daughter are already playing sax? If you want to spend $500 to see if you like it go for it. At the very least I would get it by a technician and see what it needs just to get it to play for testing. Might be able to squeeze by for a couple hundred.
Don’t plan on regrouping your money and write off the loss as entertainment. No different than spending a couple hundred dollars on a day at Disneyland. Where are you located?
I find it awesome that you were out with your daughter at a garage sale and adventurous enough to dive into something like this. Good for both of you !
 

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... The main reason why I would like to figure out who made this sax is to see if it's worth putting money into.
Only if there is a sentimental attachment to this particular horn or if you were to do the work yourself (and having a first time go with a horn like this wouldn’t be the easiest of the ways to lear repairing).

We periodically have people finding horns on line or on garage sales who come with the question is it worth repairing, and the answer to this question is getting, these days of ours, that if your goal is to buy a functional saxophone to play , not it is not worth it.

If your goal is to have an unique saxophone with all its quirks and moods ( intonation, ergonomics) given the age , maybe, then, it is.

But the fact remains that the silverplate on the cartouche where the name is (American in this contest really can mean anything, model... one of the companies, ) is badly damaged and replating the sax or even that spot will never be an option and it will look like a sore spot forever.

If your goal is having a functional saxophone to play, you will be better served by selling this one on (You may very well get $100) ten putting the money that you get together with the overhaul money that you may have spent towards buying a saxophone which needs nothing at all.
 

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I recently acquired a “Royal Artist” $65 with a case. Ugly as sin. Somebody meticulously painted it gold like those ugly Bueshers. Complete and undamaged. Research shows it’s late 20s Buesher stencil. Is it worth refurbishing it? Good advice in this thread. +1
I have no intentions of selling it. So the value is strictly what I get out of the entertainment and enjoyment of repairing it. I have no intentions of making it a museum piece. Bottom line it is what it is and I like it. A old sax. So yeah it’s worth it.

OP’s horn is particularly interesting. Those round escutcheon plates make for some interesting head scratching. The body-bell To bow joint bands look Holton.
I join JayLID....maker??
Would also be nice to see a good picture of the left hand pinky table.
 
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