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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys,
I verified in the 43 pages and didn't find a specific topic on this.
Here is my story: 10 days ago, I played on the tenor of a friend. It's a Selmer SA I. I played it with my Morgan 7L and my rico 3 reed. I found it easy to play (the low notes were much easier than on my Buescher) and liked the sound, especially this special thing that I seem to not hear on my Buescher, I don't know how to express it ... I think you guys would say "some core" (?).
I'd like to ask to thus who play Buescher AND Selmer tenor, if they see what I mean and if they achieve to get the same sound on both? i'm getting kind of frustration on my Buescher, always feeling a lack of something ...
Could a specific set-up change something?
 

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do you mean modern super action 80 or a super balanced action tenor?

are you sure your buescher is in proper adjustment?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yes I meant modern super action I.
I think my buescher is in proper adjustement, It's been adjusted 2 week ago by a vintage specialist.
 

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I went from a Selmer SA80 II to a Big B .... and won't go back. I like the Morgan on the Buescher, but I an understand that some might like a bit more oomph. I would suggest a change of mouthpiece might be worh thinking about. There are a lot of posts on what suits a Buescher if you care to run a search.
 

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Silvin: I wouldn't advise switching just yet. You've only played one example of each marque and that is not a valid sample to tell you that all Selmers (or Bueschers) will give the same sound.

If you want something different, that's okay, just go looking for the right replacement (or supplement). Don't be surprised if the next Selmer you play doesn't give you the same results as the first one. DAVE
 

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Silvin, I've posted a few thoughts on this very topic since I own 3 tenors: A Selmer MVI, Buescher series 1 Aristocrat, and 156 Aristocrat. All three are in excellent playing condition, so I can make some valid comparisons without playing condition as an issue.

All three of these horns are different. I wouldn't say that any of them lack anything in comparison to the others, but they do each have a distinctive tone and feel. So, in that sense, each lacks something that the other has, OR each has something that the other lacks.

Of the 3, my Selmer has the most resistance and is more difficult on the low notes. I'm surprised you find the opposite in this regard. Both my Bueschers are very "free-blowing" and easy on the low notes. I'd suggest you have your tech take a close look at the G# key and check for any other leaks. Or try a different tech.

The Bueschers both have a bit "livelier" sound and I think a bit more volume or cut. The MKVI has more depth and a slightly more complex tone, with a quality all its own. I can't say which horn I prefer for sure. Right now I'm playing the VI, but I'll still pull out one of the Bueschers at some point, just for variety. I'd be perfectly happy with any one of these tenors as my main horn.
 

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Your Bueschers should be about twice as loud as your Selmer. If you use a HR mpc on your Buescher then you will notice that it sounds good but try a nicely modified metal Link on the Selmer and the Buescher, yo uwillnotice very different things. Do you have snap in pads on your Buescher?
 

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I hate to break it to you, but vintage Buescher's are the same great old horns they've been for 60+ years, way before most of us we're born. What IS true is that the fad/trend for Buescher's seems to have cooled a little by my estimate from its peak of about a year ago. Maybe that's why you've lost interest. People aren't gushing about them on here as much as they were 8 months ago. Now it seems like the Martin fad is picking up more steam, or should I say the "SOTW SHE" effect, as one of our astute members coined it. A lot of this herd mentality is led by a very small number of influential members who are working musicians and prefer vintage saxes. This is all fine and good, but I think it's better if the followers (i.e. hobbyists)-- whether consciously or not--step back and see what's happening and understand why they suddenly had that unexplained flare up of GAS. It helps a lot when making big ticket decisions. Sorry if I sound cryptic here. I will expound further in a upcoming thread.

Bottom line is your horn is great. If you were to record yourself playing on four of your dream horns that maybe you're already planning on how to finance, you would no doubt sound like you. If you want to change your sound, get another mouthpiece--it's a lot cheaper! ;) (BTW you need to use a mouthpiece with a big round open chamber (a la Link) on the Buescher's--that's what they were originally designed to go with.)

And forget about the keywork. Should I post that youtube again of Johnny Griffin blowing the house down with his "clunky" Super 20 at super human speeds? People are waaaaay too obsessed about the keywork thing. That Selmer you seem to even now be drawn to is not going to make you play any better--practice is. :)
 

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Swingtone said:
,,,, I will expound further in a upcoming thread.
...... :)
Most interesting comments, Swingtone, I will be looking for that thread.

I was drawn to this thread because I play a Selmer SA80II with a Morgan7L. There is one player I often hear whose tone I most admire. He plays a Buescher.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Swingtone: as a french guy I unfortunatly don't understand all the words of your post ... All I'll say is: I don't have problem with the ergonomics of my Buescher and with the Selmer's neither. I just felt, playing my Buescher and the Selmer SA I of a friend side by side with my set up (Morgan 7L and rico 3) , that the Selmer has this more complexe tone, this depth that JL mentionned. It's something I like and that I don't really achieve to get with my Buescher. I love my Crat but this little difference give me frustration.
I don't suffer of GAS. My 3 sax are the only ones I ever bought!
Pinnman: actually I don't known if my horn has original snap in pads, would it make a difference? I'll try to take photographes ...
 

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Actually, I think it was Bootman who asked about the snaps ... and he will tell you that Bueschers need the snaps to be at their best. To recognise, look to see if the resonators are slightly domed but not shaped in any other way. If so, then they are probably snaps.

I prefer to have the snaps for authenticity, but my alto has lost them (the tenor and soprano both have them, though) and I don't really feel that loss. Some posters on SOTW in the past have said that Bueschers lay better without them.

So you have two diametrically opposed points of view - take your pick! I don't understand the technicalities; I just like Bueschers.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Sorry, yes, it was Bootman!
Actually, I just take a look at the pads and they are exactly as you described, Pinnman. I guess they are snap-in pads, then!
 

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Silvin: If the pads are snap-ins and properly installed, you'll be able to pry the resonators up with a sharp knife blade. You don't have to remove them for this test, just show yourself that they will rise off their posts. This probably is most easily done on the big pads on the bell. They are easily replaced on the posts.

Gayle Fredenburgh posted a series of photos a while back that clearly showed Buescher snap-in pads.

Many top-flight repair techs I know won't re-pad with snap-ins - they will switch them out and use modern pads when doing a Buescher overhaul and they are adamant about the problems with snap-ins and the better results with modern pads. Sure, there are some who are willing to do it and swear by snap-ins, but I suspect they are in the minority. Who's right? Who knows?

As to my experiences, I have Bueschers with both styles of pads and resos, and frankly, the horns with more modern pads (floated with shellac) play better. I don't know the reason for this, but that's how I hear/feel it.

I must agree with much of what Swingtone posted, but I'm not sure if the Buescher craze is growing or lessening. In my view, they've always been great saxophones and I've been playing my '28 TT soprano longer than SOTW has been around. My BIG B and TH&C altos are my two favorites among a closet full of great altos.

Still, I've recently switched to my Yanagisawa S992 soprano because it has a better scale and plays just as easily as does my TT (especially after the S992 was overhauled). The only thing the S992 lacks is the authentic "look" for vintage jazz - certainly a non-factor in my view.

My advice still holds - each horn is different and I think you should prove to yourself that all Selmers will offer the same qualities that you felt with one Selmer before making a move away from the Buescher and into a Selmer . . . meaning, don't dump the Buescher just yet and especially for a sight-unseen Selmer purchase. DAVE
 

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Silvin, I'll expand just a bit on what I said. What you noticed with that Selmer may be important to you, but don't get too carried away. Whenever you pick up a different horn, if it's a good one, you'll likely hear/feel something different than what you are used to with the horn you now have. I played my VI for 25 years before trying another tenor. Then I went on a search for a "backup" horn. The instant I played the Buescher Aristocrat I heard/felt something I'd never experienced with the Selmer---a shockingly big, cutting, and resonant sound that came right out almost effortlessly. So of course I bought it, and then played it on several gigs and the VI went into backup status. And I gushed about the Buescher on SOTW (this was about 4 years ago) because I was so surprised about the whole experience. I always thought nothing could touch my VI. And several very good horns I tried prior to the Buescher couldn't touch it.

However...........as time went on, I discovered the VI has some characteristics that I miss in the Buescher. Now I view them as equal, but somewhat different. I say "somewhat" because I think the differences are not all that noticeable to the audience. I've had people (my wife is one of them) tell me they like the tone of the Buescher better. I've had others say the VI has a better sound. But MOST people don't really notice which horn I'm playing. So I'm basically agreeing with Swingtone on this. A great horn is a great horn. If you have one, be thankful. But if you go on a search, you'll find other great horns that have some differences. If you REALLY want that different thing, then maybe go for it. But be careful. You might miss what you trade it for. Bottom line of course is to focus mainly on the music and practice to get better. Switching horns/mpcs etc too much can get in the way.
 

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Well said. Moderators please bestow upon this member his long overdue distinguished status. Let's see, what should his tagline be...something to do with Buescher's....hmmm....Chief Defender of the Buescher Faith? Buescher Blower Extraordinaire? (or Par Excellence?--or even Buescherite Par Excellence?). I am actually being serious here. Anyone else have any ideas? There are many others with Distinguished Status who are less worthy of it than Mr. Lull IMHO. Oh I know, he's probably waved it off in the past. That's the only explanation for why someone of his calibre would still not have attained this status. :)
 

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I still think JL should try an early Martin. :D (but I haven't tried the tenors, only altos!)
 

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Thanks Swingtone, you're too kind! Maybe the tag "bigmouth" or "blowhard" would suit me best, lol. I don't think the Buescher tag would be appropriate since I play my MK VI a lot of the time, especially lately. And that might be anathema to the real die-hard Buescherites around here.

Hey coolsax, I did try a The Martin once and thought it was a great horn! But I already had, and still have, enough tenors. I don't need another to choose from.
 

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JL said:
Thanks Swingtone, you're too kind! Maybe the tag "bigmouth" or "blowhard" would suit me best, lol. I don't think the Buescher tag would be appropriate since I play my MK VI a lot of the time, especially lately. And that might be anathema to the real die-hard Buescherites around here.

Hey coolsax, I did try a The Martin once and thought it was a great horn! But I already had, and still have, enough tenors. I don't need another to choose from.
I'm not sure if The Martin is "the one" to try, imo - I tried one labeled "The Martin" which I did not like nearly as much my Indiana (which I bought on the spot, supposedly built using 20's or 30's era tooling like the "Handcrafts.") I guess it's the earlier design, before they got brighter (even though the keywork did improve) that I think can compete with the sound of a classic Buescher in terms of richness, depth, and power.
 

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The reasoning behind my snap in pads comments are based on practical experience, feel of the keywork (due to key weight and springing issues). It is also a key height issue when using non snap in pads in a Buescher sax.

My first real Beuscher experience was in finding a mint condition 1935 270K silver plate tenor that sat under a bed for 60plus years unplayed. I opened the case, pulled the horn out, put my mpc on and blew it. I fell over, I couldn't believe the sound, the cultured powerful sound, it was everthing I had been looking for in a sax for years. It was so noticeably better under my fingers than my Selmer, my Keilwerth etc........It was coming home with me. I still have the horn now 14years later and even though I am not using it as my main horn at the moment and preferring a Martin Magna or Conn tenor, I will keep it sitting there awaiting to be played when I have another sound change infatuation.

The benefit of having more than one model of tenor is that once you have found the right example of the range is that you can chop and change at a whim and not be faced with a ridiculously huge expense everytime you have this feeling. I continue to play as many saxes as I can and have been known to buy things for the sake of it but I still keep my good examples of the vintage saxes. I use them for gigs etc.......they feel right to play and once you have overcome Selmeritus you will find that you can have a bigger more solid sound, a distinctive tone, projection without a microphone and the thrill of repairing or rebuilding a sax. There is a lot of enjoyment in restoring a vintage isntrument that until you have done it, you just cant understand. It is similar to rebuilding a vintage car or a boat, the joy is in doing it not the having it. Remember that in any rebuild, any shortcut you take will affect the total outcome of the job. Unfortunately a lot of so called repair jobs I see here after people have purchased from various shops, eBay, privately etc shouldn't be called playable or even repaired. I prefer to get my instruments repaired here where I know of the quality of the repair. I am happy to pay for a good rebuild but I refuse to pay big money for so called overhauled instruments that leak like a sieve, have slp in the keywork, incorrect thickness pads, corks etc...

Remember to apply the same quality requirements to your instrument as you would to your playing. You wouldn't accept worn brakes on your car or a miss in the engine of your car. Why accept less than the best with your instrument?

Saxophones wear out due to use in exactly the same way as a car does, they will need maintenance. Remember to expect the same level of quality in the repairs to your instrument as you do on your car. If you do this, you will find that this elliminates one of the major areas of problems with learning or playing any instrument.

Another reason for my love of the Buescher saxes is that they hold their level of set-up much longer than any other brand of sax. Not to mention better intonation, precise keywork and the non stuffy middle D on tenors.
 

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I asked Bootman some years ago (I had a different user name then - don't ask why, it's a long story) why he favoured Bueschers. The reply was simple and succinct: ergonomics and sound. He has elaborated over the years, but the response does encapsulate my opinion now that I am firmly established in my choice of instruments. The main reason for getting rid of my Selmer was ergonomics; not the sound, although, now I have found it, I prefer the sound from my Bueschers.

Silvin, that's my view .... but it is just one perspective. Try your question out in the Selmer section, and I bet the answers will be very different!
 
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