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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Before I sell/trade this alto Meyer I want to be sure whether it is a USA, or a 'transitional' piece.
Thanks in advance for any input.










 

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I don't know what a "transitional" Meyer is - hence no answer.
(Wait a minute. I just....oh, well, you know. :mrgreen:)
 

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I have never heard the term "Transitional" applied to Meyers either and don't know what that would be. Recently, I have started to hear "Early Babbitt" applied to Meyers, but I suspect that is mostly marketing hype.

Meyer Bros NY were made through the 50's (if I'm not mistaken) are the most valuable. Meyer NYUSA are next most valuable and were made until the mid-late 70's (this is what Phil Woods plays), at which point the Company was sold to Babbitt and the engraving changed to the simple "USA". I have owned a "NYUSA" and currently own a "USA" which I bought in 1979 or 1980. Visually, there is no difference that I could see between the "NYUSA" and "USA" versions.

What does it say on the shank; "USA" or "New York USA" (it is clearly not a Meyer Brothers)?
 

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I think that the only time you can date them is when you know the original owner, as this advert claims. Meyers vary so much that you can't really go by a single feature, such as the sidewalls.
Still, a lot of people enjoy the feel of the older rubber that you had in the 70s, and 80s. I've collected a fair number of pieces like that and play one from the early eighties.
Is it a nice piece?
 

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I didn't have mine in front of me when I made my post above and subsequently took a look. It is engraved "Made in USA", not simply USA, also. This is the version being currently made and while it may be a great player (mine is, especially after Phil Engleman did this thing to it) it does not have any particular vintage value.
 

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While making no claim to be an expert on Meyer mouthpieces, I think the OP was referring to the first batch of Babbit made 'Meyers USA' mpcs (early '70's) which according Theo Wanne's write up on Meyer mouthpieces had internal chamber dimensions supposedly identical to the later 'Meyer NY' pieces. This is most evident in the more rounded sidewalls of these 'early Babbits' (or perhaps 'transitional' pieces) as compared to all the other Babbit made 'Made in USA' mpcs up until the present. I have only owned one Meyer NY which I sold recently, but have seen the difference in the typical 'Made in USA' pieces, which do have much less defined curve to the sidewalls on the inside of the chamber as compared to 'Meyer's Bros', and 'NY Meyers' pieces having more pronounced 'scooped out' or rounded sidewalls.

Theo Wanne concludes that these transitional pieces from the early '70's are of basically of identical internal design to the later NY Meyers, with good finishing work but not as fine as with the true NY Meyer pieces. The inference being these transitional 'USA' pieces should play like a NY Meyer, even though they show 'Meyer USA' on the barrel. Thus they've attracted somewhat higher prices than later standard 'USA' pieces, but still much lower than those officially designated 'NY Meyer'. So some people see these as NY Meyer pieces in sheep's clothing (sorry for the mixed metaphor) and a bargain compared to the prices fetched for a true NY Meyers. I've seen photos here on SOTW and in auctions on Ebay which do appear to show the same more rounded inner side walls as on my NY Meyer, and these could very well play like a NY Meyer, but not having played one of them myself I can't warrant that claim. Anyway, no 'NY Meyer' likely plays identical to another, and I'm sure there are some exceptionally fine examples, as likely there are others not so special. But the transitional or early Babbit pieces do appear to fetch more on the market than later more straight side-walled examples. I have also seen photos of Meyers which are claimed to be these vintage transitional pieces, however, to my eyes they look identical to any standard 'Meyer USA' having been made from the mid 70's until present. 'Buyer beware'.....or be aware, as always. It appears most people do believe the rubber on all these older pieces is of better quality than in more recent later Meyer mouthpieces. All this information is out there on-line and spoken of here on SOTW.

To the OP.......looks to me from the photos you've presented that your piece could possibly be one of these transitional early Babbit pieces Theo Wanne refers to, but I can't tell for sure. If you sell or put it to auction you could always list it as a 70's 'vintage' USA piece and let the discerning (or gullible, depending on what one believes) make the decision as to what it is worth. Perhaps you still will get a more expert opinion here on this question. In any case, good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
museman, I think you hit it on the head.
I am trying to trade the piece, which was Amanda's preferred piece until she received a custom Lakey from her teacher.
So the value is important in determining a fair trade.
am not trying to rip anyone off, but I don't want to under-value the piece either

Thanks.
 

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museman, I think you hit it on the head.
I am trying to trade the piece, which was Amanda's preferred piece until she received a custom Lakey from her teacher.
So the value is important in determining a fair trade.
am not trying to rip anyone off, but I don't want to under-value the piece either

Thanks.
Hi 'AmandasDad'. Tried to send you a PM just now, however your box is full and not accepting incoming messages. Perhaps you could PM me your email address, and I could contact you that way?

Cheers,
'museman'
 

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There are some odd Meyers out there and they have changed a little over the years. I've included a picture of the 3 I own. The one on the right plays the best. It's a 7M but has no markings on it at all except the diamond including the size on the table. The other two are later (newer) examples - a 5M and a Phil-Tone 6M. Yours looks to me like a pretty standard 1990's or newer Meyer.

Regardless, my advice would be; if it plays well and she really liked it at one time and played on it for a while I'd keep it. You never know when she might want to go back to it if just to compare it to other pieces.

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There are some odd Meyers out there and they have changed a little over the years. I've included a picture of the 3 I own. The one on the right plays the best. It's a 7M but has no markings on it at all except the diamond including the size on the table. The other two are later (newer) examples - a 5M and a Phil-Tone 6M. Yours looks to me like a pretty standard 1990's or newer Meyer.

Regardless, my advice would be; if it plays well and she really liked it at one time and played on it for a while I'd keep it. You never know when she might want to go back to it if just to compare it to other pieces.

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+1; I'd hang on to the Meyer .....in fact I did hang on to the Meyer. Through all the different mouthpieces that I've owned, including a NYUSA, I've kept the one I bought at Fisher Music, Boston, in 1979. Send it to Phil and he'll make it play killer then save if for when your daughter gets tired of the shrill Lakey sound ;-)
 
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