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Messages - DaveLeBlanc

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All about Clarinets / Re: Is this a Vito 7214?
« on: February 16, 2019, 01:10:56 PM »
They all sort of look the same to be honest.

So just like mechanic said, it's generally only a 7214 if it's marked as such.

All about Clarinets / Re: Lyons Wood Clarinet - 5 Point Crown Logo
« on: February 10, 2019, 10:49:31 AM »
Neat, almost looks like a King hallmark

All about Clarinets / Re: Difference between sax and clarinet playing
« on: February 07, 2019, 12:19:53 PM »
Probably, would be a bit tough not to at that angle

All about Clarinets / Re: Vintage Martin Freres Grand Prix advice
« on: February 06, 2019, 06:45:56 PM »
Thanks for sharing! We are all happy to help.

First off, I believe you have a Bb clarinet.
The lengths of the standard, A=440Hz clarinets are:
Bb     23 3/8 inches        595 mm
A       24 15/16 inches   633 mm
C       20   inches             510 mm

So your 23 inches is almost certainly a Bb clarinet (unfortunately...)

120 pounds for a reconditioning is an amazing price! I am astounded you found somebody who charges so low.

A missing key is a real toughie. Sometimes, even the same key from identical models might not be interchangeable, especially for older instruments, which often varied slightly from piece to piece and had to be adjusted accordingly.

You may contact the Martin Freres company here:

Their price list is, I believe, quite optimistic. They valuations are for pristine examples being sold top-dollar to the highest possible bidder. More realistically, slash at least half of what they say for a more reasonable estimate.
They say $2,000 for a Grand Prix in Bb. I say, more like $500.

There are two schools of thought regarding how to sell unusual, rare, or oddball clarinets.
1. Set a Buy It Now for higher than you want, and accept offers. This guarantees that you will never sell it for less than you want.
2. Set an auction with $0.99 starting bid. Some of the most expensive clarinet sales I've seen have all started with a $0.99 bid. I suspect this is because such a low starting price helps spur a heated bidding war, and drives up price.

The problem with an auction is that sometimes, things can sell for absurdly low prices. I bought one of the rarest clarinets I've ever seen for just around $64 since it was on a low starting bid with no reserve. Very low interest for an oddball, and so I snatched it up for like a 95% discount over what I should have paid.
Once, I had a Bundy Eb alto clarinet for auction, starting at $0.99 with free shipping. It sold for $36.01 TOTAL, and I lost quite a bit of money. I never did an auction again.

If I was to do an auction, I would absolutely place a reserve around where you're hoping for. Otherwise, it's simply too dangerous.

Anyways, long story short, (assuming you can find a key that fits), I estimate an approx $500 sale for this clarinet. You will almost certainly triple your 120 pound investment.

Best of luck!

All about Clarinets / Re: New metal clarinets!
« on: February 03, 2019, 11:41:37 AM »
In what aspect is the "poor quality" of student-level metal clarinets considered to be? Build quality? Tone? Intonation?

Sort of like how modern cheap Chinese plastic clarinets are no good.

Physically they appear to be a perfectly sound clarinet. However, build quality is poor, and quality control is poor. The same is probably the case with the metal clarinets - these were churned out by the hundreds of thousands, and were not made to as near a standard as your typical hand-finished higher-end clarinet.

All about Clarinets / Re: EBONITE McIntyre
« on: February 03, 2019, 11:40:19 AM »
That certainly makes sense.

From what I understand, the McIntyre bros weren't in the best financial straits especially after the first year, and probably just went for the cheapest option possible. I'd imagine they just bought excess overstock from whoever would sell to them and did it that way.

It seems they went out of business fairly suddenly, as one of my McIntyres appears to never have been fully completed from the factory - the upper joint shows no signs of any keys having ever been attached to it.

All about Clarinets / Re: The World\'s Most Expensive Clarinet
« on: February 03, 2019, 10:59:41 AM »
Iíve played one of the $25k contra alto clarinets once.

Pretty nice, but I think Iíd rather have a car

All about Clarinets / Re: EBONITE McIntyre
« on: January 30, 2019, 05:39:38 PM »
The idea was to reform the throat tone notes with a system thatís allowed you to play Ab, A, and Bb without lifting any fingers up.

Was supposed to keep the notes in tune and allow for faster playing.

Nothing too special about the ring on the C, you see that every now and then on mostly vintage instruments.

All about Clarinets / Re: Difference between sax and clarinet playing
« on: January 28, 2019, 11:08:05 PM »
Iíve alwshs been taught that the two biggest sins of playing are 1) puffed cheeks and 2) double lip...

Then again Iím by no means an authority at all on good playing practices

All about Clarinets / Re: Squidward from Spongebob plays the taragato
« on: January 28, 2019, 04:35:51 PM »
Errm its a cartoon...

In all seriousness, I think the theory that he's playing a taragato might explain why he is ridiculed for being a terrible player.

How many of us can pick up a 400 year old instrument and play well?

All about Clarinets / Re: Squidward from Spongebob plays the taragato
« on: January 28, 2019, 04:34:46 PM »
I self identify as an animated squid

All about Clarinets / Re: Difference between sax and clarinet playing
« on: January 28, 2019, 04:34:19 PM »
Great question.

Certain bass clarinets have necks that point out at a 90 degree angle; essentially making the playing position like a saxophone. Most players hate these necks.

Most of the sax players I saw in school bands held the sax to the side, allowing for the mouthpiece to be a bit more vertical.

I often see jazz saxophonists hold the sax at in front, so that they are blowing through the reed.

I think it must depend on playing style. Again, in my experience in school bands most, if not all of the sax players did NOT use a double-lip embouchure.

All about Clarinets / Re: Case Finds
« on: January 28, 2019, 04:13:51 PM »
I didnít expect to find the Audion Organ Key Selector Method inside a Normandy case...

I suppose its possible...

All about Clarinets / Re: EBONITE McIntyre
« on: January 25, 2019, 08:28:09 PM »
The good thing is you and I BOTH have twice as many McIntyres as the Metropolitan Museum of Art  8)

And I bet they don't even mess with the keys on theirs!

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