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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Some of you that own the Series I also own a Mark VI tenor. I am wondering how the Series I measures up in terms of power. I recently came into possession of a Series I tenor and I find its tone very pleasing, but at this point in time (I have only had the horn a couple of weeks) find it suspect in terms of power, especially when compared to my Mark VI. Because of this, I have yet ot play it outside of the practice room. During an informal jam session our bassist was of the opinion that the VI sounded "bigger". On the other hand, frankly, I am not a Mark VI fanatic, and in fact in some ways like the Buecher better in that regard. If I could get used to ergos of this Series I, and become confident that it could deliver sufficient power (I play unmiked, necessarily because most of my work is in restauants), I'd be tempted to sell the VI, to which I am not particularly attached, and look for a large bore horn for contrast. (156? BB?) I'm wondering how the Series I compares to the Mark VI, since some of you have both. My VI is an original, and I wonder if I like it equally to the amount of money it could bring in, and what else it could purchase or be traded for. My reluctance is that the VI is so reliable, dependable - a real workhouse, if lacking in individuality and personality.
 

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The Big B/156 is generally not thought of as a large bore horn. In fact, the body tube would be very similar--if not identical--to that on a "true" Aristo (30's model). The big difference between the two models is the bell flare, which is bigger on the Big B/156. Some may consider this the bore, but I think of the bore as having more to do with the body tube and length/size of the bow.

If you want a large bore vintage American horn, go with a Conn New Wonder ("Chu") or a King Super 20. The latter, especially, will have keywork that is faster than the Buescher and will have a similar tonal smoothness throughout the registers (aside from their Big Sound, what King's are known for). The Conn will be boomier on the low end and will probably have worse intonation than the Buescher.

Then again, you could just try a louder mouthpiece on your current Aristo. How about a Morgan L or the new Vandoren V16 HR's? I just received the latter and it works great on my vintage King Zephyr and SML. What a room-filling sound it produces! But it's still rich and full up through the high register--not shrill or thin.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for claifying that the bore size between the two model Crats are the same. It has been speculated that perhaps the bell size accounts for the broader sound of the BB and 156. I currentlly use a Vintage Link Tonemaster perfected by Brian Powell. It's great on my Mark VI - perhaps something else would be preferable on the Crat. Sam Ash is the only local outlet might carry the mouthpiece you mention; they have it in metal, I don't know if the HR model has arrived in their shop but I'll call and if so drive out.
I like about a 108-110 tip.
 

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The S1 bueschers are seriously good horns and should project very well. I use a metal lawton on my S1
Dave
 

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Are your keys open enough? If the keys are closed down you will be faster but the tone will be much smaller. Repair techs always want to close my keys too far and this makes a noticeable difference in the tone and it's projection.
 

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Leon, what set up are you currently playing and has a competent professional tech seen the horn recently?
I've seen dramatic changes in the power of a horn just from 10 minutes worth of adjustments.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I think I mentioned already I'm playing a vintage brass Tonemaster that was done by Brian Powell - it's marked a 9* but I think measures less. The keys are more open than on my Mark VI and feel quite open. Ed Zentera did the refurbish and I trust him and have no complaints there. I've been working out this tenor all day today, and I am beginning to suspect that the problem is me - a matter of getting used to it. I can play it hard - but when trying to play softly, that is when it quiets almost too much, as compared to my Mark VI.
 

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You are likely right about the acclimation to the horn.

If you are still having the problem after more time with the horn, I'd get a proper leak test done locally. I'm sure Ed did nice work, but sometimes a minor leak can develop after even the best overhaul as everything gets worked into place. If there was shipping involved, that could also easily explain it, no matter how good the packing.

Keep us posted.
 

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I get a pretty loud sound from my Big B when I want it.
 

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As Bob Ackerman always says: when you change horns, sometimes you have
to change mpcs. too.

I know the tonemaster has gotten that particular VI into a comfortable spot
for you, but you may need something else for the Aristo. to make it work, optimally.
 

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VI and Series I Tenor

I have a VI that was made in late '69 early 70 and a Series I tenor. I got the Series I as a backup to the VI. It played ok -- until I tried the VI neck and the Barone neck that I play on the VI. It plays great with the VI neck and even better with the Barone. I didn't notice any real difference in power between the two horns. The action is a bit different. But to me, there is not a ton of difference between the VI and the Series I with the Barone neck. I can easily switch back and forth between the two.

There is a thread on here somewhere about using VI necks (or necks basically designed for the VI) on Series I tenors.

Hope this helps.

Scott
 

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You mean Scott that a VI neck or a Barone neck fit perfectly on a serie I tenor, without special work by a tech ?
 

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I'd be very surprised if any MKVI neck would be a drop-in fit.

I have a VI neck here and it would need to be expanded to fit my 1st year Big B,
which is essentially still a Ser. 1; save different engraving and keyguards.

I think a Keilwerth neck might be a better(easier) fit in modern necks.
 

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Just a thought ..I play a Aristo 1939 Tenor and i drink Coke I know my Bad but once in a while if i am at a gig and my horn sounds low volume i blow out the Pip on the neck and the one on the body of the horn that is part of the octive mech and that seems to make a huge difference...anyone else have this situation...

Steve
 

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I'm lucky enough to have the tenors mentioned in this thread: A series 1 'Crat, a 156, and a MKVI. They each have a rather unique sound, but I'll try to address the issue at hand.

I think I do get a bit more raw power out of my MKVI than the Series 1, if I really push it. However, the Series 1 seems to "cut" more, especially in the upper register. In other words the Buescher has a bit more focus and projection than the VI. I think it might be "louder" overall. The VI maybe has more depth and body. That's about the best I can describe it. The Buescher definitely seems to be more versatile in terms of playing both softly and loud, which I find more suitable when playing without a mic. I think the Buescher has the edge on tone quality. All these differences are kind of subtle, though. My wife keeps telling me the Buescher has better tone and the VI is "raunchier."

The 156 seems to have a fuller, broader tone than either the Series 1 or the VI. But it doesn't have as much punch as either or them.

I know what you mean about the feel, reliability, and workhorse nature of the MKVI. Plus, for me at least, the VI has a resonance that I can feel like no other horn. For these reasons I will never sell it--for better or worse, I don't think you can replace a VI with anything very similar, unless you get another VI.

I like to play all three of these horns but usually stick to one for a couple of months (or more) at a time. I also agree that you have to really spend some time and get used to whatever horn you're playing before you can bring out the best in that horn. That can't be emphasized enough.
 

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I'm A Knucklehead

Geez, I'm a knucklehead. I didn't notice that this thread was under Buescher area. I just saw it in Today's Posts.

I have a Mark VI and an SA 80 Series I, not a Buescher Series I.

So, to quote Rosanne Rosanadana:

"Never mind."

Sorry about that.


Scott
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
JL said:
JL - when you write:

I think I do get a bit more raw power out of my MKVI than the Series 1, if I really push it. However, the Series 1 seems to "cut" more, especially in the upper register. In other words the Buescher has a bit more focus and projection than the VI. I think it might be "louder" overall. The VI maybe has more depth and body. That's about the best I can describe it. The Buescher definitely seems to be more versatile in terms of playing both softly and loud, which I find more suitable when playing without a mic. I think the Buescher has the edge on tone quality.

That is very well stated and exactly what I am experiencing. If this Series I had the breadth and body and weight to the sound the VI has - well, there would be no need for the VI. Also, when you write:


I also agree that you have to really spend some time and get used to whatever horn you're playing before you can bring out the best in that horn. That can't be emphasized enough.
This will no doubt prove true. I had the same experience with the Mark VI when I first switched over from another brand.
 

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Leon, I might go out on a limb and say that very few horns, if any, have that "depth and body and weight to the sound" that a VI has. I think this may be part of what really separates the VI from the pack, so to speak. In my search for a second tenor, I tried a King Super 20 that I really liked, but it couldn't come close to the VI in that "depth of sound" category. I did try a Silversonic that had noticeably more volume and could out-scream the VI easily, but it also lacked something in depth. The Bueschers come very close, but don't quite get there either in that (depth of sound) department. I think they exceed the VI in some other ways, though. Whether the listener can detect any of this or not, I don't know.

One thing I would say, if you find a really great horn, whether it be a Conn, Buescher, Selmer, whatever, and put some time into it with a good mpc, you'll get used to that horn and it will do the job for you. It's mostly a matter of deciding to go for one or another. I wouldn't sell that VI, though, if I were you. Unless you REALLY, really need the $$, like if you'll starve otherwise.
 
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