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I am in the middle of my freshman year in high school and I have just been moved from tenor to alto in the marching band for balance issues (0 veteran altos, 7 veteran tenors). I am actually a better alto player by miles, I'd say 2nd in the school, but I am running in to a problem that I didn't have with my tenor. My tenor is a student model, it takes all the abuse that marching band gives. My alto is a professional, god forbid I march with it. I need to get another alto to march, one that's tough but won't disappoint in the sound department. I know it's a tall order but really anything reasonably priced that wont be shockingly worse than what I'm currently on would be great. Thank you in advance forum!
 

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I've played on a couple Vitos that took a beating and held up nicely. You can probably find one for a decent price on eBay.
 

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Yeah, Bundy II -back in college I had a buddy drop one from the bleachers and-- it still played! I bought one for my son to learn on very sturdy horn and pretty nice sound and intonation on the one I got. Also can be had on the cheap!
 

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There are many less desirable brands around and they can all be acquired for little money , provided that you have someone to look after them and keep them in adjustment you can even buy for a pittance some horns that have gone out of adjustment and have been put aside and because of this kept also reasonably looking (you don't want to march a piece of junk do you?) . Vitos (yamaha or not) and Bundys are good candidates but I will also add the ubiquitous King 613 or 615 (later version of the Cleveland model) which are very good players and for no good reason are incredibly cheap and often times remain unsold . Than you have some European brands and their stencils which, sometimes, can be more expensive in America than they are in Europe, but Orsi and all their incarnations (many many stencil names) are as cheap as they come and not too bad for example.
Despite their bad press the Conn directors and later incarnations are decent players. We see shooting stars here for very little money indeed, maybe you can find a Mexi-Conn for little cash over there.
 

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Bundy II, I've seen them very cheap. They seem to have pretty good sound, someone in my band has one.
 

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i gave my nephew a bundy ii marching band beater. it's dented at the bow, with most of the lacquer worn off. it still plays top to bottom! the brass is good with nice patina. he's a very clumsy kid and noone can trust him with anything, so i feel safe with this bet. the metal on that is tougher than my vito, which i'm not sure will hold up as well with the abuse.
i got it off ebay for 80 bucks shipped, and didn't have to pay more to adjust since it played out of the box. it's a good horn.
 

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I had an old Japanese Vito that got me through college marching band without any problems. It even went through a bus crash (out of the case at the time) with me!
 

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the reality is that there are so many minor brands unloved and unwanted around that are decent players (most definitely for whatever one would be playing in a marching band, no disrespect meant, but nuances are mostly lost in this environment). Armstrongs , Weltklang, Amati, Grassi, Orsi, Rampone FISM, can be a good choice too.
 

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I'm selling a Martin Indiana in the marketplace that's built like a tank, 100% playing condition, good sound, and cheap ($399 shipped). I'll even throw in a new Reunion Blues "Continental" case to replace the old tattered original case, if you want.
 

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Yamaha 23 is also a worthy consideration - nice sound and can take a beating, and in my experience, they stay in adjustment for a very long time. You can get them used for under $500. In fact my tech Bill Cole is selling my old one on consignment right now - his website is http://www.coleswoodwind.com/.
 

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I use a yamaha 23 in marching band and for school use, its a decent sounding horn and it will definitely fit the durability bill. I am personally very cautious with the horn and it hasn't needed any adjustments for over 5 years. But to attest to the durability my friend's 23 has bent tone holes, nasty dents, and and has seen some scary falls and still keeps on playing! It's definitely a tank.
 

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Vitos and Bundy's are good choices. So is the King Cleveland model, which was marketed as a marching band instrument. I bought one used in perfect condition for $180 with the intention of using in parades - not so much marching, but rather for cold and other bad weather conditions. It has lots of ooomph!
 

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we have two King Altos at home, a Cleaveland and a Cleaveland 613 - picked up both for about $100 each on ebuy - both had not been played for years and after some minor adjustement played very well - my son loves the 613 for jazz band. For around $300 you can get a YAS-23 - can't go wrong there.
 

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I'm using a Bundy II too (tenor), for marching band. They're rugged and sounds good (with a Meyer 6 hr mpc).
 

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I dunno. I don't think anything woodwind sounds particularily good in a marching band.
 
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