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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone know how to get a factory refurbish done on a vintage selmer? (1933 Super Sax).

Also, will it dramatically change the sound of the horn?
 

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Factory refurbish?
As far as I know, factories don't refurbish. They manufacture.
They are mass production lines, little different from, those that make sewing machines, or bicycles.
 

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do you have pictures of the horn? I would like to see if you do.


-Birdman
 

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I am sure he's referring to the famous "factory relacquer" that everyone always talks about, but doesn't really exist. If you're talking about restoring a vintage saxophone, that doesn't necessarily mean replacing its finish. There are several excellent vintage restorers out there. Do a search for user Chu-Jerry and check out his restorations of old Conn saxophones. He does not replace the finish, but meticulously cleans and hand-polishes the original.

In terms of value, relacquering a Super is going to kill any value it has left. Those horns are not nearly as desireable as other vintage Selmers, but if it has original lacquer (extremely rare), it boosts the value some.

Picture would help too! Welcome to SOTW!
 

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Here's a great and very cheap way to make your old Selmer look almost new. I have a1930 New Largebore, the pre Cigar Cutter. I got it very badly discolored? So I used SIMICHROME POLISH, Polishing Paste, made in Germany by a company named Happich, and distributed in US by Competition Chemicals, of IowaFalls, Iowa, 50126. I have used this stuff for over 50 years to shine motorcycle alloy parts, I see it in many bike shops. Anyway, I used this stuff on my Selmer and with a "lot" of elbow grease and good polishinbg cloths, have made the bell and base area look like shiny gold, the brass is beautiful, I can't see any laquer being taken off" maybe they didn't laquer them back then? but the discoloration was removed and the horn is shiny and clean, it hasn't dulled in many months. Worth a shot, but expect to rub hard, use the stuff generously , it looks just like toothpaste and same type tube. Good luck to all, Bruce B.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Here she is...

Thanks for the clarification - I guess what I meant was a re-laquer, re-pad, re-cork,....

I bought this horn form the original owner almost 30 years ago and have been enjoying it since. As you see in the pics, it's starting to blacken in certain areas. I don't believe the orig owner ever had the horn re-laquered, but I can't be sure.

I was less concerned about re-sale value (no plans to sell), but more about aesthetics, and a good thorough overhaul - after all these years of pleasure I've gotten from this old baby - she deserves it!
 

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selmer1933 said:
Thanks for the clarification - I guess what I meant was a re-laquer, re-pad, re-cork,....

I bought this horn form the original owner almost 30 years ago and have been enjoying it since. As you see in the pics, it's starting to blacken in certain areas. I don't believe the orig owner ever had the horn re-laquered, but I can't be sure.

I was less concerned about re-sale value (no plans to sell), but more about aesthetics, and a good thorough overhaul - after all these years of pleasure I've gotten from this old baby - she deserves it!
I'm no expert, but I suspect gold plate. To plate gold on Brass the instrument first must be plated with silver, then the gold on top of that. The areas where it's "blackening" is where the the Gold plate is gone or thin enough for air to permeate into the the silver, making it tarnish. Polishing with something like Haggerty's Silversmith Polish will bring the *exposed* silver to a shine, but won't bring back the gold look, rather it will remove a bit, and it may not unblacken the silver tarnishing under a thin film of gold plate.

What you want is essentially a complete restoration. Those are very expensive, especially for gold-plate candidates. You've mentioned you're not worried about value, but an expert restoration won't increase the value of that horn by much and it'll cost almost as much as a new or gently used pro horn to do! It's still a very pretty horn, sometimes I think applying a pristine finish to an old horn design is a bit of an asthetic mismatch. If you like the horn, just have it expertly overhauled and mechanically restored.
 

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olhonker said:
Here's a great and very cheap way to make your old Selmer look almost new. I have a1930 New Largebore, the pre Cigar Cutter. I got it very badly discolored? So I used SIMICHROME POLISH, Polishing Paste, made in Germany by a company named Happich, and distributed in US by Competition Chemicals, of IowaFalls, Iowa, 50126. I have used this stuff for over 50 years to shine motorcycle alloy parts, I see it in many bike shops. Anyway, I used this stuff on my Selmer and with a "lot" of elbow grease and good polishinbg cloths, have made the bell and base area look like shiny gold, the brass is beautiful, I can't see any laquer being taken off" maybe they didn't laquer them back then? but the discoloration was removed and the horn is shiny and clean, it hasn't dulled in many months. Worth a shot, but expect to rub hard, use the stuff generously , it looks just like toothpaste and same type tube. Good luck to all, Bruce B.
With respect, I'm suspicious of the stuff you mention. An agent suitable for polishing the steel and chrome of motorcycle parts will be far to abbrasive and course to polish silver or gold plate as it'll eat it right off. I'm also curious if there's any lines or grain on the horn's you've treated. If so, then I'd say it's too rough for brass as well.
 

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selmer1933 said:
after all these years of pleasure I've gotten from this old baby - she deserves it!
Then don't dishonor her with a relacquer! If you do, then do LOTS of research and make sure you can find someone that will do the job without buffing the horn to :evil: and back.

As mentioned before, the horn does look as though it may be gold plate, if that is the case then please don't have any buffing or lacquering done, it would break a lot of people's hearts. If it is indeed gold plated, find a restorer who can spot gold plate the areas that have worn through to silver to make the entire thing look gold again.

-Scott
 

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Selmer 1933, Read my earlier reply to you, contrary to the writer who says the dark discolorization is from a gold plate, positively NOT, I have similar horn and your darkening is what my earlier reply to you mentioned "discolored" brass, the Paste I mention with hard rubbing will remove that darkening ! I advise not to relaquer , your sound probably will not be as good after. Your horn looks in pretty good shape cometiallly, when I got mine it ws much worse, it now looks almost newe. Good luck, Bruce.
 

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JfW said:
With respect, I'm suspicious of the stuff you mention. An agent suitable for polishing the steel and chrome of motorcycle parts will be far to abbrasive and course to polish silver or gold plate as it'll eat it right off. I'm also curious if there's any lines or grain on the horn's you've treated. If so, then I'd say it's too rough for brass as well.
I disagree. Semichrome or Flitz is extremely mild and polishes those surfaces very nicely. I also have used those products on my aluminum (note:alloy)motorcycle parts. We use them daily in our shop on all types of finishes and have never done damage using them in over 30 years of use.
 

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i am a big fan of all Selmers, including 22s, 26s, supers and cigar cutters, i don't see why their value is so low?
 

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Perhaps because like very old cars, they drip oil, break axles, harbour rust, slide off the road, belch smokke, etc, and will cost an absolute fortune to have these wonderful qualities corrected.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
thanks for all the tips and ideas -

I guess I'll just knock the idea out of my head of having this sweeheart look "mint" and let its sound do the talkin'..

I once questioned a tech about when this sax will reach its 'end-of-life' and just be worthy of a mantle piece --- he said it will outlive me and my grand kids. Based on how this thing is playing - I believe him!
 

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It looks to me like it was already re-lacquered. On one of the photos, it looks like the shading on some of the engraving is faint. This is a tell-tale sign of re-lacquering.

I agree that it's best not to re-lacquer. However, I have seen (and done) some excellent re-lacquered horns.
 

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It looks like I was off-base with the gold-plate thing. Also, I too have used Flitz to polish nickle and really dingy silver plate to good effect. I didn't know it was the same as the stuff olhonker was speaking about. My Mistake!

:)
 
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