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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,
I just read on Wiki that the American made MK VI was deemed superior than the French made MK VI.
I thought that all Selmer MK VI were made in France.
What gives??
Ronald
 

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They are all manufactured in France. The ones for sale in America were shipped to the U.S in parts, unengraved and unlaqured. Engraved, laquered and assembled in U.S.

According to popular belief in the '60's when I bought mine, the difference was in the setup - the US horns generally set up with the keys further off the tone holes so that they got a bigger sound, while the French-Assembled horns had faster action and a more intimate sound.
 

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They are all manufactured in France. The ones for sale in America were shipped to the U.S in parts, unengraved and unlaqured. Engraved, laquered and assembled in U.S.

According to popular belief in the '60's when I bought mine, the difference was in the setup - the US horns generally set up with the keys further off the tone holes so that they got a bigger sound, while the French-Assembled horns had faster action and a more intimate sound.
That's very interesting, thanks very much!
 

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That's very interesting, thanks very much!
but you shouldn't care to much about that. Being a american assembled doesn't mean that is better than a french one... it depends of the american and french in question... every mark vi is different from each other... do not fool yourself.

take care
 

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but you shouldn't care to much about that. Being a american assembled doesn't mean that is better than a french one... it depends of the american and french in question... every mark vi is different from each other... do not fool yourself.

take care
Thanks man, but I'm well aware of that fact. I find it just interesting, that this rumor apparently has some reasonable background.
 

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According to popular belief in the '60's when I bought mine, the difference was in the setup - the US horns generally set up with the keys further off the tone holes so that they got a bigger sound, while the French-Assembled horns had faster action and a more intimate sound.
If so, then it's simply a matter of how the horn is set up, NOT a difference in the horn itself. In other words, 'better' set-up (assuming you like the bigger, more open sound; I do), not better horn.

So if you have a French-assembled horn, with lower key heights, it's a relatively simple matter for a tech to raise those keys for you. Assuming that wasn't already done at some point since the horn came out of the factory.
 

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Amen, JL. If the horn has been played any of the last 30+ years, I would hope that the setup has been adjusted.

The greater - and more lasting difference - between the French- and American-assembled horns is the finish and engraving.

If neither finish nor engraving affect the sound, which would you rather buy? I prefer a plain silver plate tenor.
 

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Thanks man, but I'm well aware of that fact. I find it just interesting, that this rumor apparently has some reasonable background.
Rumors are just that. rumors. A popular belief is popular, but not necessarily true or correct. It would be intersting if someone actually measured and compared the two (at the time) and made the results public; or Selmer published the differing specs (which would never happen). Even if it is true, an hour with a good tech and it'll be adjusted just the way you like it. The real difference, it seems, is that French assembled VI's were purchased with a lot more options selected, eg. high F#, engraving, no Engraving, nickel silver long side key rods, plated keys, etc.
 

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Amen, JL. If the horn has been played any of the last 30+ years, I would hope that the setup has been adjusted.


If neither finish nor engraving affect the sound, which would you rather buy? I prefer a plain silver plate tenor.
+1 that's the question...and no one really cares with the answer, because it doesn't matter

my mk has no engraving and it's :lick:
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
It ( wiki) also mentions that traditionallly the French market sax had a fleur de lys engraved on the bow, whereas the ones that were engraved in Elkhart did not.
I wish I would know how to bring the Wiki site on this thread, but, I just don't know how to do this.
Nevertheless, it is quite interesting.
It also seems that the serial numbers start with the year of manufacturing, 54###### and not from zero.
Ronald
 

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It ( wiki) also mentions that traditionallly the French market sax had a fleur de lys engraved on the bow, whereas the ones that were engraved in Elkhart did not.
I wish I would know how to bring the Wiki site on this thread, but, I just don't know how to do this.
Cut and paste the URL.

Ex. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Selmer_Mark_VI

It also seems that the serial numbers start with the year of manufacturing, 54###### and not from zero.
Well that's patently WRONG.

http://saxgourmet.com/serial.html

Hmmm, made the mistake of reading that Wiki "Mk VI" entry - it's full of misinformation and inconsistencies.
 

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Another difference between the US and French assembly was that on the US horns the bow was soldered to the body-the French horns were just glued. I have both French and American VI tenors-I've had the bow soldered to the body on the French horn. The difference is subtle but real. I did like the horn before it was soldered too.
Quoting or believing most of what's published on Wiki is a gamble at best....not always the best info.
 

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i'm thinking about soldering mine. What differences did you noticed? soldering the bow to the body by a tech (of course) is a risky operation?
 

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Thanks for recalling that bit about the body/bow joint, Thomas.

SaxT - I had the bow/body joint of my Ref 36 soldered when Randy Jones went through it. Granted, that was not the only thing done at the time but the net result of his work was a perceptible increase in resonance. And it wasn't just me. I didn't tell my quartet about the work on my horn but they all heard a big difference in the first rehearsal after I got the horn back - it just FILLED the room. OK, I'll take some credit as the player...

The operation is only risky if your tech has no experience doing the job - kinda like a hernia operation.
 

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Thanks for recalling that bit about the body/bow joint, Thomas.

SaxT - I had the bow/body joint of my Ref 36 soldered when Randy Jones went through it. Granted, that was not the only thing done at the time but the net result of his work was a perceptible increase in resonance. And it wasn't just me. I didn't tell my quartet about the work on my horn but they all heard a big difference in the first rehearsal after I got the horn back - it just FILLED the room. OK, I'll take some credit as the player...

The operation is only risky if your tech has no experience doing the job - kinda like a hernia operation.
Just to get clear, and thank you for your input, you felt the horn more resonant. The horn tone didn't changed, the horn resistance (airy) didn't changed and it didn't started playing louder or anything? maybe a stupid question i know, i do not know much about technician stuff
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for the replies,
I knew someone in here had to have experiences with both.
I always thought that Wiki got their info straight from a company; but who knows....
Ronald
 

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Thanks for the replies,
I knew someone in here had to have experiences with both.
I always thought that Wiki got their info straight from a company; but who knows....
Ronald
Perhaps you should investigate the source(s) of the various Wiki pages before giving them much credence. Much of the free knowledge on Wiki is worth exactly what you pay for it.
 

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Ralph Morgan told me that the Mark VI saxophones that came to Elkhart had a coat of clear lacquer on them. He said that there were no less than 5 coats of lacquer applied to the Mark VI horns from Elkart. I don't remember if that counted the original one from France. Several of the Elkhart coats of lacquer had the gold tint in them, which is why the Elkhart Selmers were darker than the clear lacquer French ones. Those points were told to me by Ralph Morgan.

Also in years of repairing I encountered nearly all Elkhart Mark VI Selmers as NOT being soldered at the bow.

- anchorsax
 

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My 1964 alto was bought in France and the bow is neither soldered or glued. It has a light gold lacquer and not clear. I got it in Feb. 1964.
 
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