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Worth Rebuilding 1927 Medalist Alto?

2329 Views 14 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  delboy1961
Found one that looks decent. Laquer ok. No dents. Even the pads don't look that bad. Brass Keywork. These are the intermediate model? Would intonation be ok? The price is under $200.
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I was hoping for someone to answer this but in the meantime, I did some research so I'll answer myself. Yes, Mope, jump on it. Roberto's is selling one of those for $2200. Don't wait. Pick it up tomorrow.
OK Thanks.
Lol yeah --- take mope's advice and buy it :D
No way a Medalist would go for $2,200. I didn't pay that much for 6 of my high end Martins! The Medalist is about the same as the Indiana, a good intermediate horn but not a pro model. $200 is good if the pads are usable and the finish is not too worn.
I bought a 'slightly challenged' 80xxx Medalist on ebay last year for $102 plus shipping, so $200 is a good price for a better one - I suspect Roberto is being a little speculative, or leaving room for a (very) generous part-exchange....:D

Mope - As an aside, my Medalist has a curious angled 'heart-shaped' lh/octave thumbrest, that part-wraps around the octave key - did the one you saw have that ? I can't decide whether it's a later add-on.
No heart shape here. According to the serial #79473 it should be from 1927. I can't believe it's that old. I've had it all apart except the lower stack to measure the pads. It's really well made. Americans used to make good stuff.
You have to use Martin's second go round on the numbers. The horn is from the early 60's.
So what's the final word, did Mope give Mope good advice, or did Mope screw over Mope.

(Are you going to burn Mope's trailer down with foam now? :yikes!: )
Thanks, Grumps, that makes sense. All I knew was that a Martin was a good bet. I was sure the case was from the 60's. That raised my eyebrows. All the cork and felts are there. The pads are worse than I thought.

Yes, Ferret, I'm glad I listened to Mope. I'm very happy with it. At $175, He might have paid too much, but it's a project which keeps Mope busy. This will be his first repad. We think it will be a good player.
To access the serial number list, go to and look in the right hand dropdown for "serial numbers". The list #2 covers Indianas and Medalists. Yours is from 1960 (79,xxx).
Well, Mope got some marginal advice at the get-go. This is the 'lesser' branded Medalist. No adjustable thumbrest, and no nickel-silver keywork. The RMC brand shows that this was just after the end of true Martin ownership. Although, all of the vintage Martins are good players, this is going to need a bit of help to get into the $400 range.

Luckily, they play well right out of the box most times. BE careful of the bell brace area, they tend to get crumpled around that if the horn falls over the wrong way.
Is this worth it

I am looking for a better sax as I have been playing a cheapo for 1 year now.Given the choice I would prefer a vintage horn as I like one with history as opposed to a shiny new one I would be afraid to pick up unless I scratch it.I have seen this and would welcome any comments as to how much I might need to spend and is it worth it
Stephen Howard, the seller, is a well respected UK repairer, and also a contributor here. He could answer those questions...
Thank you .....I have heard of Stephen,so am confident its genuine so thats a good start.I looked at your Website and am sure I am Weymouth bound after x-mas as I'm in Somerset so not too far away and I am certain I want a vintage horn.Not sure If I want a tenor or another alto though
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