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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2013-
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https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?100742-Bueschers-aren-t-Bundies!

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during the early Selmer years, and up to mid 400xxx serial range, they're still using top notch details.

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After mid 400xxx serial range, you have buescher bodies with stencil keywork up to 65xxxx on tenors and up to as high as 79xxxx on altos. This means that while having the truetone side trill looking keys (the aristocrat side trill key style were destined to Signets in this period) and the New Aristocrat LH pinky table with the no-rollered G# table that says BUESCHER or BUNDY, these horns are indeed pristine buescher bodies (the necks on this horns are True Tone necks in bore and shape, while the aristocrat necks are saved for signets occasionally and buescher 400 always)

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BOTTOMLINE: tenors up to mid 600xxx serial ranges and altos up to late 700xxx serial ranges are Buescher by all means and should not be taken lightly or as cheap student horns. The nickel plate may or may not appeal to you, and on the later edge of that ranges they may look cheaper than before, but up to about the '80's the selmer american company was paying the bills with overproduction stock from the golden years. even with round post flanges!
 

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BOTTOMLINE: tenors up to mid 600xxx serial ranges and altos up to late 700xxx serial ranges are Buescher by all means and should not be taken lightly or as cheap student horns. The nickel plate may or may not appeal to you, and on the later edge of that ranges they may look cheaper than before, but up to about the '80's the selmer american company was paying the bills with overproduction stock from the golden years. even with round post flanges!
Probably true. OTOH, and I've been pointing this out on here for some time, you can get an Aristocrat from the 'golden era' ('30s to mid-'50s) for a very good price, given the top quality of those horns, so I can see no good reason not to do that if you're looking for a Buescher. Why mess around trying to find the so-called great deal when it's already staring you in the face?
 

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Indistinguishable Resident Buescher Bigot and Foru
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https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?100742-Bueschers-aren-t-Bundies!

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during the early Selmer years, and up to mid 400xxx serial range, they're still using top notch details.
Except for eliminating many of the previous features, including nickle-silver key rods, raised r/h Eb3 touch, back bell keys, articulated side Bb, snap-on pads, Norton springs, Aristocrat pinky table, and ribbon key guards to name a few off the top of my head. This is not to mention that they deleted the entire historical Aristocrat line (140/141/S-5 altos, 156/157/S-25 tenors) and renamed the Elkhart instruments with far fewer features as Aristocrats. :) This is also not to mention the level of craftsmanship for the key work dropping like a stone. The good news is that they didn't regress the design enough to eliminate the high F, front F key, and high E. That said, it did take many years to become a strictly student instrument, but as a Buescher-branded instrument, they worked on that hard and were well on their way by 360k to make a more affordable saxophone and establish the Buescher brand as the "go-to" student saxophone for the bulk of the 60's, 70's, and well into the 80's.

After mid 400xxx serial range, you have buescher bodies with stencil keywork up to 65xxxx on tenors and up to as high as 79xxxx on altos. This means that while having the truetone side trill looking keys (the aristocrat side trill key style were destined to Signets in this period) and the New Aristocrat LH pinky table with the no-rollered G# table that says BUESCHER or BUNDY, these horns are indeed pristine buescher bodies (the necks on this horns are True Tone necks in bore and shape, while the aristocrat necks are saved for signets occasionally and buescher 400 always)
Well, this is going to depend on which instrument. As noted above, everything that says Aristocrat on it after 1959 is actually an EBIC 21A or 30A, and those necks were unique to EBIC (as is the body tube). The S-5 and S-25 "400"s retained most everything (except for side Bb articulation) until they were discontinued around 400k. Not sure about the necks on these, but they were probably the same necks dimensions as on the 140/141 altos and 156/157 tenors -- which were new to these instruments in the 40's, so not TT dimensions. The S-1 and S-20 (Super 400) lost the nickle-silver rods and back bell keys, but retained most everything else until sometime after 400k when it's no longer clear to me what those instruments were originally based on until we get to the mid-70's and the Bundy II and Buescher Aristocrats that were produced into the 80's. As for the 400 underslung necks, maybe they were retained, maybe they weren't. I haven't measured any of the late ones with underslung necks. That said, it's not too hard to make a common neck work across multiple products and just change the octave key, and that is what I suspect they did though I can't yet prove it.


...but up to about the '80's the selmer american company was paying the bills with overproduction stock from the golden years. even with round post flanges!
This is a common statement (myth) I've heard quite a few times but can't possibly be true. Tooling, yes. Parts, generally no -- at least not for their common instruments.

From 1900 to 1965, Buescher made a TOTAL of ~400k instruments of all types. That's an average of 6k/yr. From 1965 to 1983 (you could still buy a TT-based Bundy II or Buescher Aristocrat) they made another 800k instruments, or about 45k/yr. There's just no way they had parts in stock for an 18-year production run that was twice the size of their entire previous 80+ years of instrument production by 1965. I'm certain some parts may have been drawn from old stock in the '60's, certainly for things like sopranos and basses, but most if not all of the rest of had to be produced as they went along using the old tooling. This was a company in financial distress for a decade before SUSA took over, and simply would not have been producing 5x's the number of parts (from 1945 on) it needed for the number of horns it sold.

The only plausible explanation is that they continued to build new parts from the old tooling. It was cheaper to change some of the small peripheral parts (keys) with an older design that they still had much of the old tooling for, than it was to design entirely new instruments and tooling. As an additional data point, body tubes from the 20's and 30's did appear on "new" instruments in the 60's, but they retained the serial number they were stamped with when the body tube was originally made. In short, 60's engraving, 30's serial number. Even for the smaller parts, like posts as an illustrative example, there's no reason to make & store 1,000,000 round foot posts when you're only expecting to use 1,000 of them a year. Not actual numbers, but close enough and illustrative of why that notion doesn't hold up under scrutiny.

Even with the Bundy II and Aristocrats of the mid 70's and later, those were TT bodies with just some updated key work and a different bell and I'm pretty certain they didn't use 1930's inventory to make those.
 
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