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SBA alto sax

1370 Views 5 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  skeller047
Someone I know is offering me a SBA alto with about 95% lacquer and great playing condition for approx $4000. Photos look fantastic, but now he tells me that 'the lacquer is still on the pearls.' I have always considered that to be tell-tale evidence of a relacquer, but he seems to think that it is original lacquer. The original owner is now 80 and swears it is original lacquer.

Does this story hold water? And, if it is original lacquer, is $4000 a good deal?

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I own an SBA alto, and you will never get it from me. I've played several others, and they range from "dog" to "unbelievable". I think the good ones were the best altos ever made. None of them sound at all like a Mark VI, to me - they have a different bore. A good one will have a clear, ringing sound, maybe a little lighter in character than a Mark VI. It's a perfect lead horn, and a perfect soloists horn.

I second Grumps' advice, though I don't think these horns have the 'motorboat' issue that many VI's have (including the one I sold when I bought the SBA).

I think $4K is a very good price, IF the horn is set up well. Check to see if the original resonators are on it (they are metal domes, and they screw in, so make sure, if you buy it, that when new pads are installed that the tech keeps the old resonators!).

Of course, if you don't like it you shouldn't buy it.
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