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Discussion Starter #1
I was going to add this to another thread on stencils, but thought I would create it's own thread in case someone wanted to search for this information.
We all know that stencils can be a great way to pick up a 'brand name' horn at a reduced price, but sometimes the stencil is lacking some of the features of brand name cousin.

I have read that Conn stencils lack the RTHs.
Sometimes the stencil may have MORE features than the brand name horn I've heard.

So I am asking members if they know of differences between the stencil and the horn it was 'made from' to list them here.
Or just to say the stencil & horn it was stenciled after are exactly the same is OK too.
Even better would be if the brand name & stencil were compared what was the outcome.

Thanks
 

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Pretty good article but it's hard to generalize. Rarely do stencils have extra features that a standard model does not, unless we are talking about a special sorta agreement like the Conn DJH-Modified horns of the '80's.

Typically, American makers pared down their stencil horns or used second shelf-models as the stencil (Conn, Buescher). In some instances, they used a model which had they had retired from name-brand production (Martin).

Thus you will NEVER see a stencil horn which is a 6M or 10M, a 400, a Committee, or the like. But you will see Elkhart 20A and 30A's, 14M's and 16M's, and early Handcrafts and later Handcraft Imperials.

European makers didn't seem to do this as much. Thus ...Kohlert, Beaugnier, JK, to name a few....those were basically the exact same instruments as their top shelfers of the day. Pierret seems to have stenciled all their models ...top, middle, and lower shelf...but not many EU makers did that.

generalizing here....which as I said, one shouldn't do...but as a rule of thumb....
 

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Rarely do stencils have extra features that a standard model does not, unless we are talking about a special sorta agreement like the Conn DJH-Modified horns of the '80's.

Typically, American makers pared down their stencil horns or used second shelf-models as the stencil (Conn, Buescher). In some instances, they used a model which had they had retired from name-brand production (Martin).

Thus you will NEVER see a stencil horn which is a 6M or 10M, a 400, a Committee, or the like. But you will see Elkhart 20A and 30A's, 14M's and 16M's, and early Handcrafts and later Handcraft Imperials.
Agree "extras" are not common on stencils, unless you include 2nd line horns. I have a '30-'36 Elkhart ("made in Elkhart" not "Elkhart by Buescher") which is basically TT series 2 with left side bell keys. It was produced in the same time frame as New Aristocrat, so it is conceivable that Buescher had a try run prior to incorporating it into Aristocrat line. Similar innovations popped up in PanAm line of Conn. Holton continued with Couturier features for a while, after Lyon & Healy transferred tooling to Holton factory.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Can I change the course of this thread a bit?

How would you define a 'Stencil'?

Is it a (close) COPY of a horn already being made by a manufacturer and re-branded?
Or is it any horn made by one company for another?

I ask this because based on Saxpics, companies....Martin in particular, seemed to make saxophones for other companies based on the other companies designs and are still considered stencils.

If it is the former, then stencils probably don't have any extra features, but if it's the latter then there are strong possibilities of extras.
 

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Can I change the course of this thread a bit?

How would you define a 'Stencil'?

Is it a (close) COPY of a horn already being made by a manufacturer and re-branded?
Or is it any horn made by one company for another?
it is a very good question; what is "any horn made by one company for another"?

for example Dörfler & Jörka made saxes for Keilwerth; Keilwerth saxes were sold through Sears catalogue as Silvertone. Which one is stencil?
 

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I ask this because based on Saxpics, companies....Martin in particular, seemed to make saxophones for other companies based on the other companies designs and are still considered stencils.
IMHO it is a misnomer and Saxpics is wrong on this. La Porta is Couturier not Martin. Different town, different people, different company, different design.

Couturier gets labeled as "Martin" b/c it also had beveled soldered toneholes.

Martin never made Couturiers. Holton did make some after Lyon & Healy sold equipment to them in 1928.

Watch this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AbkmT0-YMRU and read Couturier board good luck.
 

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And regarding question 2, yes, sometimes mfr's went to extents to actually obscure who made the horn. The detailing on Olds Ambassadors (Martin) for example, or even more so, the Buescher-made Reynolds saxes, which had quite a lot of stylistic flourishes which could throw someone for a loop.

Soetimes stencils appear with a different serial sequence than the mother company's, and this confuses things even more.

Whether this was per the request of the stencil brand company, or the intent of the 'mother' company...I am not sure. But changing things like bell braces, neck braces, keyguards, thumbhooks, occasionally even the shape of the spat keys and pinky table keys.....this happened now and again. Interesting stuff.
 
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