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Discussion Starter #1
I'm in the market for a beginner tenor, but I stumbled upon this. It's only about $200. I'd be tempted to get this, clean it up, and tinker on it as I get the time. I haven't talked to the guy yet...so I don't know if: 1. All of the parts are included, and 2. All of the parts are in serviceable condition.

From what you can see here (it's completely disassembled)...is it even worth $200? I'm assuming so, but I just wanted to get an educated opinion.

Buescher True-Tone. The serial number places it as a 1922.

 

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I wouldn't buy in that condition . . . I'd want it assembled so I knew that all of the parts were present and working, regardless of it is a C or a Bb. I own a Buescher TT C-mel but just from those limited photos I couldn't tell you what it is, either. I think even the experts would need better photos than that, including some measurements. DAVE
 

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That's not worth anything unless it's at least "functional", otherwise your paying him for some parts, or even worse, paying him to throw it away for him.
 

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It would make a nice planter in the garden (I have one) or wall hanger. Do not purchase an instrument that is not fully assembled and test player by someone especially for a beginner.
 

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First, it does look like a C-mel. But it's hard to tell. You should ask if it's got a C or T above the serial number/logo.

Next, even if it's a tenor, it's probably not worth any more than $200 taken apart like that.

Third, how could you be sure it's all there. Even if one little piece is missing, you might a very hard time finding that one little part without buying a whole other sax for parts.

Forth, say it's a tenor and it's all there with every piece. The pads and supplies to rebuild it could easily cost $150 or more if you do all the work yourself and if you already have all the tools necessary to rebuild a sax. Having it rebuilt at a shop would probably cost upward of $500. And some techs wouldn't take the job with the sax all pulled apart like that to begin with. Since a good TT tenor in playing condition brings around $500 on eBay, the rebuild wouldn't be worth it.
 

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I recognize those pics from ebay. It sold just a couple of days ago for 127. Search ebay for this number 280736859168. The seller said it was 23" without neck so I think that makes it a c mel. I don't know what the current ebay rate for c mels are but I bought one a few years ago for $250 working. Even if everything is there I would stay away from it.
 

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its probably a c melody, but its almost impossible to tell from the photos. you shouldnt pay any money for it unless its assembled and in playing condition. From personal experience, i would say get a yts 23. theyre pricey, but theyre durable and they play and sound really well.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I appreciate the advice.
I guess I figured that based on the age alone, it would be worth that.

There's obviously a reason the guy had to re-list it several times (it was on ebay...as SephirothTNH said). It also stands to reason that if he had all the parts...he would have at least assembled it. The seller is local (it's also on craigslist), so I would have had the chance to inspect it. He's got in the craigslist ad that "if the ads still up, It's still for sale..." so I assumed the last ebay sale didn't go through. Thanks again.
 

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I agree with all advice above. It does look like a C-melody based on how much the bell extends up in front of the main tube.
You can do much better for $ 200.00 + what would take to put it together and in playing condition (at least $400-500 more if all parts are there and there is not much damage to them).
 

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Sterling - hello. Not amazing pics, but from the position of the bottom leg of the bell-B guard (well up from the bow joint) it's almost certainly a C.

Run away...:bluewink:
 

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I appreciate the advice.
I guess I figured that based on the age alone, it would be worth that. .
It may be worth that, but not to anyone who wants to PLAY it. You say you are in the market for a 'beginner tenor.' Do you mean you're a beginner sax player looking for an inexpensive, but functional tenor? There's no such thing as a 'beginner' horn, just beginner players. In any case, if you want a horn to play, look for a horn in good playing condition (or one you can spend some $$ on, getting it fixed up by a tech), no matter what level player you are.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
It may be worth that, but not to anyone who wants to PLAY it. You say you are in the market for a 'beginner tenor.' Do you mean you're a beginner sax player looking for an inexpensive, but functional tenor? There's no such thing as a 'beginner' horn, just beginner players. In any case, if you want a horn to play, look for a horn in good playing condition (or one you can spend some $$ on, getting it fixed up by a tech), no matter what level player you are.
I guess "entry level" might be a better way to put it. I played bari sax when i was in high school. I played tenor before that. I said beginner because as long as it's been since I've played (10+ years)...I'll essentially be a beginner all over again.

I was just looking at this particular horn as being a project to tinker on. I wasn't banking on having it to play anytime soon. I've decided against doing that though. I'm doing good to find the time to mow my lawn these days. If I bought this thing (or one in similar condition), I'm sure it would still be in the same state of disrepair years from now.
 

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I'm doing good to find the time to mow my lawn these days. If I bought this thing (or one in similar condition), I'm sure it would still be in the same state of disrepair years from now.
Reality sucks, doesn't it?

G'luck on finding a worthy horn to get you motivated to play.

Enjoy!
 

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I wouldn't rule out a C Melody for a repair practice as they are pretty cheap but not this one or any horn in parts. It only takes one part missing!
 

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Agreed Bruce, if the pivot screws aren't all in the pillars, several are probably now lost in the carpet...

I've recently bought fully assembled, complete, playable C-Mels for less than $200. Sterling - it might be stretching the budget a little to find a playable Bb tenor for $200, but you could always try putting the word out here ?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Agreed Bruce, if the pivot screws aren't all in the pillars, several are probably now lost in the carpet...

I've recently bought fully assembled, complete, playable C-Mels for less than $200. Sterling - it might be stretching the budget a little to find a playable Bb tenor for $200, but you could always try putting the word out here ?
The budget I set for a playable instrument is in the ~$400 range. I've thought about doing what you suggest, but I don't think I'm going to be happy with anything I get online in the x<$400 range (pretty much all I see is beat up Bundy II's in the ~$275-400 range). If I'm mistaken...feel free to correct me on that.

I wouldn't really be comfortable purchasing one sight unseen either. I've seen multiple online auctions with instruments in "good playable condition" that I can pick out flaws that would impact playability (i.e. missing components) and I haven't held a sax in 10+ years. That's not even counting the fact that a used instrument may need pads replaced. I don't know....I may just put up a want to buy ad like you suggested and see what happens.

I've found a few at local shops, I just need to get out and check them out. My mouthpiece came in yesterday. I'm just waiting for the reeds and ligature to show up so I can go test drive a few. I found a pawn shop that has a King tenor for $400 (though they said that they'll flex on the price).

I figure that might be a good starter. This first horn is really just going to be a test for me..."can I find the time to play and will it hold my interest?"

Edit: I went ahead and put up a want to buy ad. We'll see what happens. Thank you.
 

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. I found a pawn shop that has a King tenor for $400 (though they said that they'll flex on the price).

I figure that might be a good starter. This first horn is really just going to be a test for me..."can I find the time to play and will it hold my interest?"
Hi Sterling. I think that could be very good (and I mean very good) or fairly bad, although I'm no kind of expert on King-stamped saxes. It might be worth asking around about that one here (another thread?) before jumping for it. It's up to you, of course. I suppose as long as it plays reasonably well from top to bottom it's not that much money for a tenor. On the other hand, if it's a mess and hard to play it's going to put you off right from the start. Ultimately, nothing is cheap if it's no good. But you knew that anyway. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Hi Sterling. I think that could be very good (and I mean very good) or fairly bad, although I'm no kind of expert on King-stamped saxes. It might be worth asking around about that one here (another thread?) before jumping for it. It's up to you, of course. I suppose as long as it plays reasonably well from top to bottom it's not that much money for a tenor. On the other hand, if it's a mess and hard to play it's going to put you off right from the start. Ultimately, nothing is cheap if it's no good. But you knew that anyway. :)
Yup. I have a thread in the beginner section and I mentioned this instrument. That particular one was a "King-Empire" (if that makes any difference). The people in that forum seemed to agree with you...assuming it's in good shape. If it's not in playable condition, I would obviously just pass though.


Edit: Sunday 9/18. I checked out the King yesterday. It was actually an alto...not tenor (the people at the pawn shop apparently didn't know the difference).
 
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