Dearman made in Italy
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    tazonsax's Avatar
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    Default Dearman made in Italy

    Hi, my name is Pete, I've been playing sax for about four years now. Can anyone help me in tracing the history/manufacturer of this sax. Saxismyaxe who is a regular contributor of "The Breakfast Room" web site, has asked me to post my story here. I have not added all the replies that I received (if you want to read them, they are in the breakfast room under Technical section under the heading of "What have I gone and done!"

    So I shall do the copy and paste thing and you can all see where I'm at.

    Post 1

    Oh dear.... and ooops are two sentiments that spring to mind.
    What exactly have I done I hear you all cry?
    I've bought a dead sax. I found it hidden in the backroom of a music shop in Coventry and labeled as "Scrap." Its a "Dearman" (if anyone knows anything about these I would be very interested to here from you) It comes in a battered hard case and it has several pads (not spare pads, just several pads!) It seems at first glance to be fairly straight and a good tenor for a beginner's restoration project. I shall post some pictures as soon as I can.
    No doubt I will be picking the brains of the likes of Griff, Pete, Steven Howard and Saxismyaxe, to name but a few of the tinkerers (professional and amature alike) on this site.
    Before I start, I shall probably open up a few well buried worm cans, such as "To lacquer or to leave bare."
    I'd like to hear your thoughts, especially if you've "Been there, ate the pie and wore the "T" shirt." Even if you haven't, I'd be interested in knowing what you'd do with a "blank canvas" so to speak.
    My plan of action is to take my time with this and hopefully create a nice "Vintage" sounding sax. I plan to post lots of pictures as I go so that you can follow the restoration (demise) of this instrument and maybe, if you have any ideas you would like to share, then feel free to post them.

    (I wont post all the replies,)

    Post 2

    Well here she is, in all her glory. Although she is almost unplayable, a few notes are possible, she is not in as bad a condition as I remembered from my first visit to the shop. The bell has received a knock, flattening the outer edge by a few millimeters, there is a small dent about three inches below the thumb rest. The left hand palm keys look to be slightly bent as does one of the pillars. When the bell received it's bump, the bell brace area was also damaged. this has been repaired but on the tube side the repair is of a very low standard. There are several very small dents around the body, but none that will effect the tone (when I can eventually get one ) and I believe most of the pads are history. There is only one pad missing although a complete re-pad is going to be on the cards. (Hopefully done by me)
    The lacquer is in better shape than I first thought, although the way it is coming off is quite unsightly, this may improve after I have striped the sax down and washed it.
    Other than that for the moment at least, she will gather a little more dust as I prepare my game plan and seek some advice as to where to start. She doesn't appear to have anything else written on her other than Dearman and the serial number which is 6643. Also the tone holes are not rolled.
    In the mean time, here are some pictures of the old dear

    http://www.awooga.org/images/pl9asu2vzxvmstmoygn.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/qulpvv38re877zxrc59.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/szwi2zajns68wvcxahs7.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/gzluj1kho6hotcxfgd8.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/dxaorum4t3zrq7kkdvzc.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/kgr93guvp7cts1tcoab9.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/620z0x8vdhdpm5uc64zd.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/u81mu9lxfyq2dp304fu.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/d4985tbpbot7rj1m9ct5.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/i8z89nvdx1i829uqy5.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/f1yapuol4xbcg3q4vh2.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/0lcwgk6v9vgxm6djqvqg.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/dwaedkiq03st8x28ee0h.jpg
    http://www.awooga.org/images/1qpiaii95del0ncwiw9.jpg

    Post 3

    I could have sworn that I said in a earlier post, that I was going to take my time with this project...
    As I type this post, the dreaded "Nitromors" is eating its way into that horrible old lacquer.
    I sat down this afternoon and looked at the Dearman.
    Suddenly this feeling in the pit of my stomach started to grow.... out came the tools. I couldn't stop myself
    I started off by buying some self sealing sandwich bags, not cos tinkering with saxes makes you peckish, I thought they would be good for keeping small groups of parts together Then out came the camera, as I decided where to start, I knew that photographic evidence would be very helpful when it comes time to rebuild the old girl.
    I had her totally striped down in about two hours, during this time I realised that this is not the first time that an amature has taken her apart, although to what extent I cant be sure (possibly a partial strip) Some of the rods that the keys pivot on had damaged screw slots and where very difficult to remove, also a general build up of crud caused a few problems. I think the rods will probably clean up ok
    Once everything was "Bagged 'n' Tagged" (I've always wanted to say that ) I took the time to give the bodywork and the tone holes a good inspection. One pillar is slightly bent, but I think it may be ok to leave (Griff?) It is on one of the keys that was playable. Also one of the tone holes is warped, this is beside the bell support bar. As I said in an earlier post, she has had a knock at some time in her life, so I may need to get that professionally sorted.
    Well its time to go scrub the "Goo" off and see what I'm left with.
    Till the next exciting episode...

    Post 4

    Thanks for the input Griff, the key has an "Axle" so I will probably leave it alone as everything lines up without binding.
    I have just finished removing the lacquer to find a tiny "Made in Italy" stamped on the front of the horn on the seal where the bell meets the bow.
    Does this strengthen the theory that it could be a Borgani and Grassi and stenciled by Kielwerth.
    Griff with two of the tone holes being slightly warped, what are your recommendation, I could remove the solder holding the bell brace in place, then using a soft'ish rod, place the rod through the opposite tone hole and gently "massage" the indented area, using again gentle pressure from a soft headed SMALL mallet.
    I know this could literally go pear shaped but is it worth trying or not in your honest opinion.
    Also as the pads are history, what sort would you recommend and what sort of price would I be looking at.
    Thanks again all for your words of wisdom

    Well that's as far as I've got so if anyone has any information, or any ideas, I'd love to hear from you.
    Last edited by tazonsax; 06-20-2008 at 08:38 PM.

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    It's unlikely to be a Grassi. The G# pinky cluster is wrong for a Grassi horn, and I've never seen one with left hand wire key guards like that. Also, the "Made in Italy" with that serial number would be on the side of the horn. I don't think it's a Borgani either...here's a Borgani tenor with an EARLIER serial number showing sheet metal keyguards and RH bell keys:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Borgani-Macerata...QQcmdZViewItem

    My first instinct on that horn is "Keilwerth" or even "Amati", but the "Made in Italy" really throws me for a loop - I'm not sure what it is...
    Current setups:
    Yamaha YSS-875EX, Vandoren mouthpiece, Ishimori Kodama, Legere Sig 3
    Yamaha YAS-875EXS, Selmer LT (Bob Scott reface), Ishimori Kodama, Legere Sig 3
    Yamaha YTS-875, Hite Classic (finished by me), Rovner Mark III, Legere Sig 3
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    SOTW Lead Administrator SAXISMYAXE's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Hi Taz,

    Many thanks for posting your inquiry and info here. I hope that you can get some good answers from our membership.

    Cheers my friend.
    Mike S.
    SOTW Administrator/Staff

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    Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru milandro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    this horn has a distinct Rampone feel about it....write Rampone and ask them

    but all the 4 well known Italian Brands (Rampone, Grassi, Orsi, Borgani) have had similar horns attributed to them in time on this forum. One day someone should write a book with a serious research on the Italian saxophone. There were however other brands which disappeared in time so there are other possibilities.
    FOR SALE: Selmer SA 80 Silverplate Soprano, Keilwerth IV toneking for Schenkelaars soprano, Yamaha YSS 475 CUSTOM CURVED NECK soprano, Couesnon Monopole I silverplate soprano. For information and pictures go to the for sale section or PM me please.

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    tazonsax's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Thanks for the comments guys,

    J.max I know what you mean, I think your first instincts are in the right direction, I have an Amati, and the left hand pinkie cluster is very similar.

    Milandro, I think writing to them will be my next step, what gives you the idea that it may be one of theirs?
    Also on a more personal note, where in the Netherlands are you, I'm coming over in September to visit Arnhem (a regular event for me)

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    Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru milandro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Hi Tazonsax, I think that have seen other horns in the past which I thought were attributed to Rampone (also Orsi) and I have seen some of the horns in the Rampone own museum (not this type) and there's something reminding me of them. Unfortunately Arnhem is very far away I am close to Amsterdam.....
    FOR SALE: Selmer SA 80 Silverplate Soprano, Keilwerth IV toneking for Schenkelaars soprano, Yamaha YSS 475 CUSTOM CURVED NECK soprano, Couesnon Monopole I silverplate soprano. For information and pictures go to the for sale section or PM me please.

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    tazonsax's Avatar
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    Cool Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Thanks for the help Milandro, I have just sent them an email, I'll let you know what the reply is.

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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    "Well stone me and knock me down with a kipper" (a Kipper is a gutted and smoked herring (Fish) for our foreign readers, quite deliciouse for breakfast with a cup of tea) I just recieved an email confirming where my Dearman was made. It would appear that it was made by Rampone and Cazzani. I'm well chuffed (happy) at this descovery. Here is a copy of my reply from R & C:

    DEAR PETER
    IT LOOKS LIKE A TENOR PUT TOGHETER HERE IN OUR FACTORY.
    FOR SURE MANY PIECES COME FROM HERE.
    IT COULD BE A STENCIL MADE HERE OR AN ASSEMBLED HORN MANUFACTURED FROM R&C WORKERS AT THEIR HOUSES OR PRIVAT WORKSHOPS.
    REGARDS

    R&C SAXES

    How cool is that?
    Thanks Milandro for pointing me in the right direction.
    I've just emaild them again, to see if they can give me an age.

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    Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru milandro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Quote Originally Posted by tazonsax View Post
    IT COULD BE A STENCIL MADE HERE OR AN ASSEMBLED HORN MANUFACTURED FROM R&C WORKERS AT THEIR HOUSES OR PRIVAT WORKSHOPS.
    Don't mention it Tazonsax! You're very welcome

    I like kippers, they remind me of my days in England. I like mine well smoked and grilled, not so much the supermarket variety colored with a reddish dye, wrapped in plastic (with some of butter inside the plastic bag) to be warmed " au bain marie" and served.....not my cup of tea!

    This comment offered by Rampone sheds some light onto the plethora of unidentified Italian horns which surface every so often and which attribution is rather unconvincing most of the times. Some of the lesser known brandnames could have been actually put together in the various workshops around the location of a saxophone factory and not being necessarily a production of any factory as such but something someone knocked-off in his spare time at home.


    Quarna sotto, home to Rampone & Cazzani, is the ideal village setting to be the origin for this unidentifiable horns because there were two factories there working side by side and probably using the same people, Rampone & Cazzani and Grassi.

    So, your horn might very well be a combination of several horns.
    FOR SALE: Selmer SA 80 Silverplate Soprano, Keilwerth IV toneking for Schenkelaars soprano, Yamaha YSS 475 CUSTOM CURVED NECK soprano, Couesnon Monopole I silverplate soprano. For information and pictures go to the for sale section or PM me please.

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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    I've just recieved another email from them, apparently it was made around 1955.

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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Well folks, the restoration is in full flourish. Tone holes flattened, solder tidied and lacquer striped.
    Last time I posted about the work that was being done, I had just started striping the lacquer of the Dearman. As many of you have read these post you'll remember my shock when I uncovered the "Made in Italy" stamp. After a little investigation work (thanks to Milandro) I was able to confirm that it is a Rampone and Cazzani circa 1955.
    Well the lacquer is now gone and the pads are being removed bit by bit. They are quite stubborn even with heat to melt the shellac. I have also given her the Brasso treatment, but I'm still in two minds as to whether to treat her to a good coat of Bees wax, or to leave her bare. Where the lacquer had already worn off, the brass underneath had aged beautifully, so, do I leave it or wax on... wax off!
    Any road (as Jools would probably say) I thought you'd like to see my little mess, so here's some more pictures for you all to laugh...tut....sharp intake of breath... that'll cost ya!!

    http://awooga.org/images/pkmnl2lwqdlfjuhs490.jpg
    http://awooga.org/images/0by183ckhpgg4jqwhwh1.jpg
    http://awooga.org/images/d1t47ydf2u29nvbmiwsw.jpg
    http://awooga.org/images/1w4auw9ogdl8qano9uu.jpg
    http://awooga.org/images/vsnrkc603ogb5ajns.jpg
    http://awooga.org/images/anbmjgbul9crsm6sot6c.jpg
    http://awooga.org/images/fa98dkgnwakxzxmcesxi.jpg
    http://awooga.org/images/ga54ppdz3109sd0wpgzg.jpg

    Till the next time

    Tazonsax

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    Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru milandro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    well done! The Bell looks a million dollars! I love the art deco-ish engravings! I am not for the floral type. I would suggest you wax you horn, it will still look nice but it won't turn green.....
    FOR SALE: Selmer SA 80 Silverplate Soprano, Keilwerth IV toneking for Schenkelaars soprano, Yamaha YSS 475 CUSTOM CURVED NECK soprano, Couesnon Monopole I silverplate soprano. For information and pictures go to the for sale section or PM me please.

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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Hello all, I have an old Dearman tenor with no markings other than the name Dearman and engraving on the bell, or so I thought. After reading this thread I have found what looks like "Made in Italy" just visible under the lacquer on the bell to bow sealing band. Good to know where it was made. Thanks.

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    Distinguished SOTW Member Captain Beeflat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Quote Originally Posted by milandro View Post
    but all the 4 well known Italian Brands (Rampone, Grassi, Orsi, Borgani) have had similar horns attributed to them in time on this forum. One day someone should write a book with a serious research on the Italian saxophone. There were however other brands which disappeared in time so there are other possibilities.
    You have just talked your way into the job! Just the man for the occasion....that should keep you off the street corners for a while.
    As you speak Italian & know so much about their horns, why not take it on? A comprehensive reference is badly needed...especially for us with a penchant for Italian horns.
    While you are about it, in your spare time, rattle off a history of Professor Colletto's mouthpieces.
    If you feel that you are in full control..... you are not going fast enough.

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    Distinguished SOTW Technician BOPITY FUNK's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Used to be loads of 'Dearman' saxes over here in UK. The best ones were the 'Dearman Special' also known as the "Poor Mans Conn 10m"! These had rolled tone holes and looked similar to 10m from a distance. These-- I think-- were made by the Amati/ Keilwerth (Max)/Kohlert cabal in Germany.

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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Beeflat View Post
    You have just talked your way into the job! Just the man for the occasion....that should keep you off the street corners for a while.
    As you speak Italian & know so much about their horns, why not take it on? A comprehensive reference is badly needed...especially for us with a penchant for Italian horns.
    As a recent convert, I fully applaud this initiative

    Or maybe not, for such a book will undoubtly drive up the prices for Grassi tenors
    "Forgive me Charlie Parker, wherever you are!" (Zoot)

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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Beeflat View Post
    You have just talked your way into the job! Just the man for the occasion....that should keep you off the street corners for a while.
    As you speak Italian & know so much about their horns, why not take it on? A comprehensive reference is badly needed...especially for us with a penchant for Italian horns.
    While you are about it, in your spare time, rattle off a history of Professor Colletto's mouthpieces.
    Captain Beeflat, if you were pointing at me: yes, I speak Italian, and no, I know nothing about Italian saxes. The only one I have ever played (other than the old Dearman which I now know is Italian) is a Borgani which was being proposed as a swap for my Mk VI tenor. I have to say my impression is that Italian saxes are appreciated more outside Italy than by Italians themselves.
    Last edited by londonluke; 02-20-2012 at 08:30 AM. Reason: correction

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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Here's the thing....there is a reason why some "off" brand horns become wall hangings or are stuck in some musty backroom somewhere & its not because they are "hidden gems".

    In the end, after all this effort, you'll have a very nice looking, MEDIOCRE saxophone that will probably be worth about $100 more that before you restored it. The old Rampone horns are of dubious quality & reputation. Its only in recent years that the company has made a serious "upgrade" to their quality & design to make artist level horns. The old stencil ones were not very good. Sorry, but those are the facts.

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    Distinguished SOTW Technician BOPITY FUNK's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Quote Originally Posted by Black Obelisk View Post
    Here's the thing....there is a reason why some "off" brand horns become wall hangings or are stuck in some musty backroom somewhere & its not because they are "hidden gems".

    In the end, after all this effort, you'll have a very nice looking, MEDIOCRE saxophone that will probably be worth about $100 more that before you restored it. The old Rampone horns are of dubious quality & reputation. Its only in recent years that the company has made a serious "upgrade" to their quality & design to make artist level horns. The old stencil ones were not very good. Sorry, but those are the facts.
    You are spot on Black Obelisk--same goes for the old Borgani's too.
    Last edited by BOPITY FUNK; 02-20-2012 at 12:00 AM. Reason: spelling/punctuatiion

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    Distinguished SOTW Member Captain Beeflat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dearman made in Italy

    Quote Originally Posted by londonluke View Post
    Captain Beeflat, if you were pointing at me: yes, I speak Italian, and no, I know nothing about Italian saxes.
    Sorry...my comments were aimed at milandro....he has the language, the contacts and the knowledge.

    Black Obelisk.
    Exactly...I have a very old R&C..... an ornament ....... it looks good & has mellowed to a lovely copper colour. As a tenor sax it is useless.
    By contrast, my modern R1 R&C is a delight in every respect.
    If you feel that you are in full control..... you are not going fast enough.

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