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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’m about to pull the trigger on this 1974 YAS-21 ad a backup. If anyone with experience buying older horns has a second to take a look, I’d appreciate a second opinion.


I just brought my horn to the shop for an adjustment. They told me two weeks and gave me loner. Needless to say, the loner is a torture device. Not an experience I want to repeat.
 

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Unless the seller is nearby so you can pick it up to save shipping charge, after a test play, I'd pass. Photos are terrible, hide the wear that the seller mentions, and make it look all lacquered, which it isn't.

You should be able to find a good playing YAS-23, Vito Japan, or Jupiter 769-767 or such for under $400. Try Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace.
 

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In the second picture, the pad in the upper stack (by the high F key touch) looks like it's been chewed up by pad bugs. It needs replacement. Makes me question the claim that it just came back from the tech. I don't know what tech wouldn't have replaced that. Combined with the awful pictures that don't show anything relevant, I'd be skeptical of the seller's claims. I agree that unless you can see it in person first, you'll probably want to pass on this one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you! Exactly the help I needed. Unfortunately I live a good 3 hours from civilization, so play testing is hard. I’ll check in with the the reputable resellers that post here.
 

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You do know that that pants guard alone makes this horn a fetish piece. ( Think. MkVI / 6M ) as far as Yamas are concerned. It's a desirable instrument.Vintage Yamaha.


Me myself would have it in a second and get the wee faults done.
Haggle.
 

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From that incredibly fawning review:

"It's also worth mentioning that, as a repairer and player, I see quite a few of these horns used in a professional capacity. Indeed, my tenor of choice is the 23 (a later variant of the 21) - and whilst a see a great many superb tenors come through the workshop, I still haven't found one that does for me what my YTS23 does.*

I think that says it all."

Yes, it does.
 

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What are pad bugs? 😧 Actual insects or is it slang for “wear”?
AKA carpet beetles, case bugs, bow bugs. I guess you missed the discussion on this a couple weeks ago. :D I was told if you google it you get millions of hits.
Anyway, their larvae like to get into instrument cases and eat the glue holding it together, as well as pads, and bow hair in string instrument cases.
 

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You do know that that pants guard alone makes this horn a fetish piece. ( Think. MkVI / 6M ) as far as Yamas are concerned. It's a desirable instrument.Vintage Yamaha.


Me myself would have it in a second and get the wee faults done.
Haggle.
So did you buy it? I see it's sold now.
There's another one listed there for $45 less, supposedly in "excellent playing condition."
 

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AKA carpet beetles, case bugs, bow bugs. I guess you missed the discussion on this a couple weeks ago. :D I was told if you google it you get millions of hits.
Anyway, their larvae like to get into instrument cases and eat the glue holding it together, as well as pads, and bow hair in string instrument cases.
AHHHH YEEEEE NOOOOO!! 😱🤢😱🤢
 

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Pad mites are more common of a problem with clarinets and old saxes with goatskin pads. I bought a few clarinets from a guitar shop in New Hampshire years ago that were infested with them. As soon as I opened one case I knew they were all headed for the dump ASAP.
 

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I’m about to pull the trigger on this 1974 YAS-21 ad a backup. If anyone with experience buying older horns has a second to take a look, I’d appreciate a second opinion.


I just brought my horn to the shop for an adjustment. They told me two weeks and gave me loner. Needless to say, the loner is a torture device. Not an experience I want to repeat.
Hi Clyve,

I have a YAS-21 from 1978 that I had refurbished and I am still playing it today. It is reliable and ergonomic. My repair technican told me that he finds no important differences between it and other alto sax of that time: YAS-61 which was the pro version.

I would recommend it.

Cheers.

nestorfh1
 

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Hi Clyve,

I have a YAS-21 from 1978 that I had refurbished and I am still playing it today. It is reliable and ergonomic. My repair technican told me that he finds no important differences between it and other alto sax of that time: YAS-61 which was the pro version.

I would recommend it.

Cheers.

nestorfh1
Ha Ha . looks like the thread thinks I am in the market for an Alto .. I`m pure Bb as saxophones go these days . I would have any Yam from this period if I were looking though. Low price would be important as would no signs of bad wear and tear within reason.

As already suggested @JayeLID has Vito 21`s on his second ending shop website .I believe the guy looking for a backup horn is @AndrewGVT
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
So did you buy it? I see it's sold now.
There's another one listed there for $45 less, supposedly in "excellent playing condition."
I did. I've since had a pretty good chat wiht the seller, and I'm feeling relatively confident. I've got to admit that this pad mite scare definitely has me a bit nervous, but my research on this suggests that it's pretty rare and unlikely for this horn. In any case, there is a short warranty period, so I can send it back if there's trouble. I'll keep you in the loop.
 

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I did. I've since had a pretty good chat wiht the seller, and I'm feeling relatively confident. I've got to admit that this pad mite scare definitely has me a bit nervous, but my research on this suggests that it's pretty rare and unlikely for this horn. In any case, there is a short warranty period, so I can send it back if there's trouble. I'll keep you in the loop.
If it's only one pad replacing it is no big deal.
When you get it, I'd suggest vacuuming the case out thoroughly and putting a block of cedar wood in the case, just to be safe.
 
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