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Those who play, or have played, a Winnenden, please chime in!

I am interested in the general sound and intonation of these German instruments as compared to French and American saxes. I love my 1960's Mark VI and my 1950's 6M; how would the Winnenden compare to these horns in sound?

Thanks,

Sax Magic
 

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I don't play a Winnenden but since no one has chimed in I will throw in my 2 cents worth.

I play Kohlert 55's which according to the Saxpics website are basically reworked Winnendens so perhaps the information will be helpful. I find the intonation on mine to be very good to excellent with a medium chamber mouthpiece like a runyon or a larger chamber such as a link or the zagar that I am using right now. The intonation seems a bit better with the large chamber but very close either way.

Sound wise I would say they are a versatile horn with a core sound right in between the sweeter sound of the Selmers and the more raucous sound of the early Conn horns.

I am thinking tenor when I make these comparisons as that is what I play most of the time. On alto I have played mostly american or german derivatives. Not too many french horns. I find less of a difference on alto but I don't play that nearly as much as tenor.

I will say I have found kohlerts to be very consistent in quality and intonation(even the later ones and the stencils). They are undervalued IMO, which I like because I can own more :D
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for your thoughtful and measured response. I am accustomed to American and French saxes (having played many others beyond Conn and Selmer over the years). However, I have never played any Germanic instruments, and I am curious about them.

Again, my thanks for your comments.

Sax Magic
 

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My minty Kohlert 57 tenor plays everything great, the only complaint is the angle of the crook which tends to be upward ( similar to my Yani tenors, I would say ) that I need to raise my head and drop my right hand uncomfortably when comparing to my BigB and 10M with very desirable angle of necks. And also the key guard at the lower back stack does hurt my lap when rested against as it is a very well done but sharp and pointy object. I know Kohlert 55 has identical neck, so I hope this help.
 

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I own and play a Kohlert Winnenden tenor from 1954 (s/n 7012). I absolutely love to play it. Tonewise, it is like a "lean and mean" Conn 10M. It somehow feels "flexible" to play. The sound is forceful but not booming. I have tried a King Zephyr, a Conn 10 M, a MkVI, an SML and I own a Dolnet Bel Air. I prefer the Winnenden over all of these for its tone. (The MkVI was easier to finger). I shortly have tried a Martin Handcraft from the 20's and this is the only one that I might prefer due to its sweet lush tone. I play my Winnenden with a Morgan Excalibur or with a Guardala MB I. The intonation is very good with these mouthpieces.
I should mention that this early Winnenden has dome-shaped toneholes. I have seen pictures of later Winnendens with straight toneholes. This could give a different tone.
 

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I'm curious. Are the domed toneholes soldered on? Can you post a pic? Do you mean rolled toneholes?
 

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Domed toneholes

I do not mean rolled toneholes. For soldered, I am never really sure how to recognize soldered-on toneholes, but looking at the pics, I think they are. My tech has seen similar toneholes on Martin.
Comments are welcome.
 

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I'va always heard that Kohlert made horns with soldered toneholes. That is a bit of a rare bird. Hard to tell but from the pics they appear to be brazed rather than soft soldered. I can see why the tone would be similar to a martin. If you ever get a weak moment and decide to sell that horn give me a shout.
 

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Spiderjames,
I will give you a shout - or put in my testament for my relatives to give you a shout.:badgrin:
 

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LOL! I know what you mean. My kohlerts are my main and backup horns now and nothing so far has been able to dethroned them.
 

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The toneholes are rather more like Bueschers than Martins in shape. They certainly do not look as if they have been drawn.
 

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They look soldered on ala martin. Just shaped different.
 

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They look soldered on a la Buescher - when Buescher did this up to about 1924. In fact, I think they all did it before about 1914, the patent date for Buescher for drawn toneholes.
 

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I was thinking late committee or committee II toneholes rather than the earlier martins but you are correct buescher soldered on their tone holes earlier. I had a Cmel carcass that had them.

I'm curious, on the kohlert the color of the solder is yellowish and different in color from the solder on the keguard. Could be from the lacquer, but I was wondering if they were silver soldered instead of soft soldered? Any ideas Peterogping?
 

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I also own a Kohlert Winnenden tenor sax with beveled toneholes, they are definitely solderd. Mine is silverplated, left hand wire keyguards, man in the moon neck, no high f#, big low end, fast action, good intonaton, strong dark voice, a pro level horn, a pleasure to play.
 

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Bevelled, tonnfisch, or rounded like Peterogping's? A bevel is shaped like the end of a chisel.
 

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Spiderjames: If I feel the bell-tonehole edge from inside the bell, the edge is sharp, like on my two Martins from around 1930. On my other horns with drawn toneholes, the edge is rounded. Conclusion: They are soldered on the Winnenden.
It seems the colour of the solder is greyish, which can be seen several places where the laquer is worn off. Conclusion::?
Tonfisch: You describe accurately my Winnenden, except for the silverplating and the bevelled toneholes.
Pinnman and Tonfisch: I attach a picture of a tonehole from my Martin soprano which fit Pinnman's description of bevelled.
The bevelled toneholes on my Martin's are straight on the inside. The rounded toneholes on my Winnenden are rounded on the inside as well. Therefore, there is no reason to conclude that my Winnenden should sound like a Martin. And it does not. It would be really interesting to compare the sound of tonfisch's Winnenden wth mine if his has straight and bevelled toneholes. Do you ever go to Denmark ?:)
 

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That's exactly it: the difference is obvious in the photos.

Two trips to Denmark only for me: 1969 and 2004. Lovely country; very warm people.
 

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Hi again
OK,the tonholes are domed one mine as well. I thought that type of tone holes is called bevelled in general-learned something. If they are rounded on the inside
it is only slightly-they look and feel almost straight to eye and finger.

Sax Magic to answer your initial question: Most of the (old) german saxes
(Adler, Hammerschmid, Hess, Hohner, Hüller, Köhler, Kohlert, Mönning, Schuster, Keilwerth, Weltklang, Wunderlich) had a dark strong voice- somewhere in the middle between the French and the vintage american saxes. Apart from Keilwerth these companies dont exist anymore, but their horns where pretty good in terms of craftmanship and sound. Many(not all) are as good as the vintage French /American saxes,but outside of Germany they are hardly known. More infos you find on www.saxwelt.de, but its all in german language

Peterogping: I am from Hamburg,I was several times in Denmark, it is so close, but since years I live mainly in Portugal. If there is an opportunity to meet, play and compare we can send PM
Besides you I never heard of anyone who owns one of these Kohlerts. Perhaps some more will appear through this thread.
And finally here are two pics of my sax.

Ps. I still hope to get some answers on my Tenor MP Ben Davis thread.
 

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tonfisch said:
Sax Magic to answer your initial question: Most of the (old) german saxes
(Adler, Hammerschmid, Hess, Hohner, Hüller, Köhler, Kohlert, Mönning, Schuster, Keilwerth, Weltklang, Wunderlich) had a dark strong voice- somewhere in the middle between the French and the vintage american saxes. Apart from Keilwerth these companies dont exist anymore, but their horns where pretty good in terms of craftmanship and sound. Many(not all) are as good as the vintage French /American saxes,but outside of Germany they are hardly known.
I agree. The Kohlerts are right in between. To me that makes them more flexible. You can get a nice classical, jazz or raunchy R&B/rock sound easily with the same middle of the road setup (medium to large chamber with a rollover baffle).

Don't be afraid to try out any of the more obscure german saxes that you run accross. There are quite a lot of pleasant surprises out there. Lots of saxes from the Adler/Huller/Amati stable out under some pretty obscure names. I've seen a couple under the Gracin name that looked real nice. I think some of the Weltklang ones would be worth looking at. I suspect that these are dogged unfairly because they came from a former soviet bloc nation. Lots of these out there under various stencil names.

Back to the kohlerts. I believe any of the Kohlerts up through th early sixties are worth looking at. Anything with the man in the moon neck would most likely be a good horn. Kohlerts are very consistent in QC and everytime I have bought one off the cuff it has turned out well. If you watch you can catch them cheap sometimes. And with Kohlert the stencils are the same build as the branded models. Here's my latest catch from EBay:http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&item=220139444393&ssPageName=STRK:MEWN:IT&ih=012
This one is from 1958 or 59 same as the 57 with a few modifications and should be a fine hirn when done. If you can do the work, or most of it, yourself you can have a great horn for cheap. I'll have way less than $300.00 in it when I am done.:D
 
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