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Discussion Starter #1
I have a MVI and a MVII that have been sitting for about 20 years and need an overhaul. I can only afford to have one done. The VI had been overhauled before it was bought in 1972 and was handled pretty rough through 1978. The VII was a college horn and spent lots of time in many honky tonks and has the battle wounds that go with that. As far as playing, the VI was much easier to play altissimo, the VII had a great classical sound. Which one would get the vote of my fellow sax friends? I live in NW Louisiana and don't really know of a repair guy around here, who would be best to ship it to for around a 1500.00 overhaul.
 

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I have a MVI and a MVII that have been sitting for about 20 years and need an overhaul. I can only afford to have one done. The VI had been overhauled before it was bought in 1972 and was handled pretty rough through 1978. The VII was a college horn and spent lots of time in many honky tonks and has the battle wounds that go with that. As far as playing, the VI was much easier to play altissimo, the VII had a great classical sound. Which one would get the vote of my fellow sax friends? I live in NW Louisiana and don't really know of a repair guy around here, who would be best to ship it to for around a 1500.00 overhaul.
What are your needs? What music do you play now?

Get one overhauled now, and the other in a couple more years.
 

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If you don’t mind shipping to California, Les Arbuckle would likely do both horns for close to your budget. Of course extensive dent or additional work would add to that. He’s done several of my horns, which all turned out great.
 

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I think you answered your own question with the Altissimo versus classical comment. If you’re going to be playing Pop, overhaul the VI. If you’re going to be playing classical, overhaul the VII.
 

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Are these horns altos or tenors?

Why are you assuming a good overhaul would cost $1,500? In my area, the price would be about a third of that; maybe somewhat more if there are lots of dents or body damage. Are New York City prices really the norm across the country? (I understand that "name" places such as Music Medic and Tenor Madness are also very expensive.)
 

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If you don’t mind shipping to California, Les Arbuckle would likely do both horns for close to your budget. Of course extensive dent or additional work would add to that. He’s done several of my horns, which all turned out great.
Great suggestion. Les has done two overhauls for me. Cost for my tenor was $850 but it needed extensive work. I thought it was very reasonable, and his work is top notch.
 

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I would take both horns to the repair shop of your choice and get a written estimate of the repairs needed. Proceed from there.
 

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Best course would be to get them both into good playing condition. But if you can only afford to get one of them overhauled at the present time then this would be my answer:

Looking at it from a financial angle, the VI is worth considerably more than the VII, so you'd be better off having the VI overhauled.

From a player's standpoint, both horns are essentially useless in their present condition, so get the horn you prefer to play overhauled. That's up to you, but I'd bet on the VI.

Since you're asking, my vote is the VI, hands down.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The cost was based on research I had done on the web. Complete restoration seemed to run between 900 - 1250 dollars if nothing special was needed. The horns don't have dents, but there are lots of clicking and clacking going on. The VI had a bad overhaul 45 years ago and I figure it will have to have some "special attention". That is where I got the 1500.00 figure from. Sounds like this California man is the place to go.....so VI it is.
 

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Find a local guy. You could probably get both done a lot cheaper.
No way I would ship my My Mark VI anywhere and pay $1500. I’ve got a local guy who gets my sax playing and I get it back the same day. The last trip he re-fit the neck, replaced a spring and replaced and seated 7 pads, $75. I took it in at 10am and got it back at 1pm.
It it’s suffered some severe trauma I could see the price being higher. I bought a Selmer USA tenor that had been through the wringer and repaired before I got it. Some seriously expert dent work had been done on it. As I remember the previous owner said a shop in Texas called Fleming had done the repairs. They may be close to you.
 

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The cost was based on research I had done on the web. Complete restoration seemed to run between 900 - 1250 dollars if nothing special was needed. The horns don't have dents, but there are lots of clicking and clacking going on. The VI had a bad overhaul 45 years ago and I figure it will have to have some "special attention". That is where I got the 1500.00 figure from. Sounds like this California man is the place to go.....so VI it is.
PM me if you'd like the contact information for Les. If I were you I'd get the VI done and if happy with the overhaul and price, get the VII done.
 

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I’ve got a local guy who gets my sax playing and I get it back the same day. The last trip he re-fit the neck, replaced a spring and replaced and seated 7 pads, $75. I took it in at 10am and got it back at 1pm.
You're probably right he could get it done locally for a reasonable price, depending on where he lives. But what you describe is far short of an overhaul. I also have a local guy where I can take my horn for minor fixes, along the lines of what you mentioned, usually done while I wait in the coffee shop next door. But if my horn needed a total overhaul (and it sounds like the horns in question do need one), I'd have to leave it for a few days and pay the price.
 
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