The ClarinetPages Forum

Clarinet Roadshow => Make and Model lists and research => Topic started by: Airflyte on February 02, 2017, 05:18:11 PM

Title: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 02, 2017, 05:18:11 PM
Greetings! I have wanted to create this thread for quite some time now. The more I researched these clarinets the more I realized just how many variations (even if only cosmetic) were manufactured by LeBlanc. Then, add in the altos and bass members of the family and it gets overwhelming! Just an initial disclaimer though - I'm not an expert on these instruments. I do hope through our collective discussion here, we can establish a detailed and accurate record of Reso-Tones.
 I would also like to discuss the wooden Vitos as well, even if they seem somewhat "rare" at least compared to the plastic ones. The VSP and the Pete Fountain models are rather interesting as well.

So, where do we start? Well, I did seek counsel from the more active members here and we determined that Normandy's would not be covered due to the fact that well, they're not Vitos! However, I do need to at least mention the Normandy Reso-Tone as it's most likely the clarinet that ultimately became the very popular Vito. I could be wrong so please correct me if I am.  I think it's safe to say the Vito brand name was inspired by Mr. Vito Pascucci who formed LeBlanc USA In 1946.

So back to the Vitos . . . . the early ones had French keywork anchored to U.S. made plastic bodies. That's not bad for an affordable student grade clarinet. At some point that with any luck we may be able to determine when the switch to all U.S. components occurred.

I don't have a lot of time right now to dedicate to this subject but I just wanted to get this thread off the ground with my first and hopefully accurate observation - the earliest Vitos were stamped with 'Clari-Tone' and later changed to 'Reso-Tone'. If anyone can confirm this or offer a timeline, that would be great!  My theory would be that Clari-Tones were early 1970's instruments. I have recorded two serial numbers as follows;
Notice the lack of a letter on the second serial number. Again, researching these Vitos is an adventure that raises some questions!

That's all for now.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Lisa on February 02, 2017, 07:17:52 PM
I'll post about my Vito, serial number B22750, manufacture date of 1974.
 Its not specifically labeled as a resonite, but it's not wood.  It is marked only with "Vito" on the upper joint and bell, and matching serial numbers on both upper and lower joints. School inventory number WSD 74-132 is scratched into each piece, except the mouthpiece.  The Vito mouthpiece pictured is my own, not the Encore one it came with.  I can't find any info, other than the serial numbers put it at 1974.  I've not found one picture like it, none.  The knurled metal joint rings-bands make it distictive.  Other forum members were sure it was wood, based on pictures, but it isn't, so maybe a prototype?
I think it plays very nicely and easily, I really like it a lot, and am not bothered that it isn't wood.  I hope a lot of kids played it, and got a good start on clarinet.  For a school instrument, with 74 scratched into it, telling me it was added to the fleet in 1974, and in my mind, verifying 1974 as a manufacture date, it's in fantastic condition, so I think it was appreciated by its players.
Lisa
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 02, 2017, 07:28:44 PM
Wow, we're off to a great start with what I consider a less common style of Vito. I've always wondered about the "knurled bands" and assumed they were newer instruments. Does this have the indexing pin for lining up the upper and lower joints?
So now we have serial number;

and a date of 1974. So now a 5 digit number with a letter B as a prefix. Interesting . . . .

Thanks for posting Lisa and the picture is good to have!
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Lisa on February 02, 2017, 08:50:09 PM
No, it doesn't have any pins to help line up the joints, it's normal in every way, except for the very heavy woodgrain appearance, and the knurled rings.  Perhaps that it doesn't have a ring on the bell should be noted also. 
I don't have a very expensive measuring device, but the bore looks to be 14.9 at the top of the left hand joint, and 14.85 at the bottom.
I should also add that while i've found no pictures, i did find a forum reference somewhere, where the poster talked about their old Vito V40, that they had sanded down the woodgrain effect a bit because it was too much, too overdone.  I hadn't seen any V40's with a woodgrain effect, so maybe they only made a few of them that way in 1974, the first year the V40 was produced, and what I have is a V40, also know as a 7177 that first year.  But, i'm speculating, as my instrument has no model markings at all. 
Actually, I haven't seen any Vito's with the woodgrain effect that this one has, which is very strong and pronounced, and I've looked at tons of pictures on the internet trying to figure out what model I have.  Everybody must of sanded their horns down like that one guy said he did!
Lisa
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 03, 2017, 06:23:15 PM
Phil covers a few different versions here on his website ; http://www.clarinetpages.net/plastic-clarinets/vito (http://www.clarinetpages.net/plastic-clarinets/vito)

He talks about the "Big V logo" on a 7212 model (also known as Vito 3!) and has recorded the following serial numbers;


 . . . then - using Phil's data, we have the following serial numbers for the 7212 model;
Using the serial number list from this very informative website; http://www.dannychesnut.com/Music/Clarinet/Leblanc/LeblancSerialNumbers.htm (http://www.dannychesnut.com/Music/Clarinet/Leblanc/LeblancSerialNumbers.htm), it appears that the 7212 model was in production from around 1973? to at least the mid 1980's. The funny thing is the "reset" of using the 'A' prefix in 1984. Confusingly, a 7212 model with a 'B' prefix could be from 1973 or 1989!

Phil recorded the following serial numbers for the 7214 model (Lyre Logo)
So, once again looking at the list these could be from late 70's or from early to mid '90's. I assume they are from the 90's.

Well that's what I have for now. If anyone has any specific info on the 7212 or 7214 model, please chime in!






Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 03, 2017, 08:01:08 PM

Actually, I haven't seen any Vito's with the woodgrain effect that this one has, which is very strong and pronounced, and I've looked at tons of pictures on the internet trying to figure out what model I have.  Everybody must of sanded their horns down like that one guy said he did!
Lisa

Lisa, here's a Vito with what appears to be a woodgrain effect. https://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Vito-Clarinet-by-Leblanc-With-Case-36820139.html (https://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Vito-Clarinet-by-Leblanc-With-Case-36820139.html) It might not be a perfect match to the grain on your clarinet. It's a 7214 model with the "hump" in the top trill key and trim ring on bell. Looks like an 'E' series serial number (1984).
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Lisa on February 03, 2017, 08:38:45 PM
That's pretty cool looking!  It's close, but I do think they toned down the woodgrain effect, or made a more satiny, less shiny finish as years went by.  It looks very nice, I like the trill key hump.
Thanks for posting that!
This is what I got, which seems more veiny.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: bbrandha on February 03, 2017, 09:51:26 PM
The following are excerpts from things I posted last year on another forum.

I have a white Vito Clari-Tone with gold keys.

 The serial number is 0905. No letter. All other serial numbers listed have a letter with 5 numbers. A poster on another forum said they pre-date the Reso-Tone and that his college marching band used red and white Clari-tones. He thought they may go back to the 60s. I also cannot find a model number to attach to the model name. It is very heavy. I think it could safely be used as a baseball bat.

Black ones with SN# 2212, 7802 sold on ebay.
A90964 and 2 more w/o SN given (not the same as 4 digit clarinets)

So I am guessing there were 2 versions of the Claritone. The first version, like mine, has the emblems engraved. It has a small vito and CLARI-TONE, USA inside an oval. The newer ones have the vito lyre printed on.

I called LeBlanc and was told rather rudely that the serial number wasn't correct. When I assured her it was, she said they didn't have a history department and she had no information. She also had no information on what the model number of a Clari-Tone is. Because they don't HAVE A HISTORY DEPARTMENT.
 
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on February 03, 2017, 10:47:54 PM
Here's a few more for the list.  These all have the ringless bell, which should make them all 7212's .
D32921  marked 7212, has the P.R.A.G (positive radial alignment guide) or alignment post to the rest of us
D26012 no model number, no P.R.A.G, coil spring on the register key
D20581 no model number, no P.R.A.G, coil spring on the register key
B27745 marked 7212, no P.R.A.G

Those 4 all have the oval Vito logo and are Reso-Tone 3

9408F  no model number, no P.R.A.G.  Oval logo, but only a Reso-Tone (no number) Also has the funky kidney bean keys

Any of the serial number lists I've been able to find all start with 1972 and the A prefix.  It's my understanding that Vito built the factory in Kenosha in 1951 and started cranking out plastic clarinets soon after, so there's close to 20 years of Vito's that will be tough to place.  I think my 9408F is in that category.  Somewhere I saw a timeline that showed the Claritone and Reso-Tone timelines.  They overlapped a number of years.  I'll keep poking around and see if I can find it again.
Picture 1 is the Reso-Tone 3 logo, pic 2 the Reso-Tone logo and pic 3 the Reso-Tone bean keys.

Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 04, 2017, 08:04:52 AM
The following are excerpts from things I posted last year on another forum.

I have a white Vito Clari-Tone with gold keys.

 The serial number is 0905. No letter. All other serial numbers listed have a letter with 5 numbers. A poster on another forum said they pre-date the Reso-Tone and that his college marching band used red and white Clari-tones. He thought they may go back to the 60s. I also cannot find a model number to attach to the model name. It is very heavy. I think it could safely be used as a baseball bat.

Black ones with SN# 2212, 7802 sold on ebay.
A90964 and 2 more w/o SN given (not the same as 4 digit clarinets)

So I am guessing there were 2 versions of the Claritone. The first version, like mine, has the emblems engraved. It has a small vito and CLARI-TONE, USA inside an oval. The newer ones have the vito lyre printed on.

I called LeBlanc and was told rather rudely that the serial number wasn't correct. When I assured her it was, she said they didn't have a history department and she had no information. She also had no information on what the model number of a Clari-Tone is. Because they don't HAVE A HISTORY DEPARTMENT.

Ok, this is good bbrandha. This helps to confirm that the Clari-Tones predate the Reso-Tones and are from the 60's.
Your white one may be rather rare and there could be red ones out there as well!  These must be pre-Dazzler models.

As for the serial number with only 4 digits and no letters, it's obvious these are early horns and your number is very low.
The weight of your Clari-Tone may be attributed to the white pigment added to the resin. I work in a paint shop and can tell you that a 5 gallon pail white paint is waaaaay heavier than any other color.

Hopefully, we can form our own little History Department here on the forum.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 04, 2017, 08:36:09 AM
Here's a few more for the list.  These all have the ringless bell, which should make them all 7212's .
D32921  marked 7212, has the P.R.A.G (positive radial alignment guide) or alignment post to the rest of us
D26012 no model number, no P.R.A.G, coil spring on the register key
D20581 no model number, no P.R.A.G, coil spring on the register key
B27745 marked 7212, no P.R.A.G

Those 4 all have the oval Vito logo and are Reso-Tone 3

9408F  no model number, no P.R.A.G.  Oval logo, but only a Reso-Tone (no number) Also has the funky kidney bean keys

Any of the serial number lists I've been able to find all start with 1972 and the A prefix.  It's my understanding that Vito built the factory in Kenosha in 1951 and started cranking out plastic clarinets soon after, so there's close to 20 years of Vito's that will be tough to place.  I think my 9408F is in that category.  Somewhere I saw a timeline that showed the Claritone and Reso-Tone timelines.  They overlapped a number of years.  I'll keep poking around and see if I can find it again.
Picture 1 is the Reso-Tone 3 logo, pic 2 the Reso-Tone logo and pic 3 the Reso-Tone bean keys.

Great stuff!  The acronym for the joint pin is nice too.

So in general terms, the 7212 models will have a ringless bell and Reso-Tone 3 stamp. Variables will be spring type on register key and P.R.A.G or no P.R.A.G.

Now, about your 9408F horn . . . . . I have a 3764F Vito (same as your #2 pic). Oddly enough, it does not have the same L.H. pinky keys as yours. I'm convinced that if someone wanted to collect all the different versions of plastic Vitos, it would be nearly impossible.
Maybe we can develop some kind of serial number list for the early clarinets? We have 20 years to work with!

Thanks for posting and the pics are greatly appreciated.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: bbrandha on February 04, 2017, 02:08:02 PM
Here's the pictures I have. It is loaned to my son-in-law, so if you would like to see other views, he can send some to me.

Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 04, 2017, 06:51:19 PM
Nice looking Vito! Thanks for posting the pics.

Now here's an oddball Vito - actually it's a Wurlitzer - a Reso-Tone stencil!
https://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=36769221 (https://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=36769221)
(https://images.shopgoodwill.com/106/1-31-2017/90890311193ob-thumb.jpg)

Just sold for 39 bucks. Looked very clean in the pics with a nice case to go with. Even the cork looked decent.
I'm sure with a repad, this one will sing. Serial number appeared to be 13085.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 05, 2017, 06:39:24 AM
Here's a newer Vito (with LeBlanc finally putting there name on it). It's 7242 model and I guess we could call it the " Big L" logo. I kinda of like it. https://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=36597671 (https://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=36597671)

Serial number was E92826 so it should be an '84. The case sure looks like it's from that era. Has the trill key hump.
This one went for $67. I was surprised to see that - only because now were into plastic Yamaha territory in terms of price for a no guarantee untested horn.

 
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on February 05, 2017, 08:22:02 AM
This one that recently sold on ebay is also a 7242 but with the painted on big V logo.  Serial # E99328.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vito-Classic-7242-Bb-Clarinet-premium-beginner-student-instrument-Very-Nice-/332055420686?nma=true&si=9xR%252FNiJQ98Fm3YKiUK1QGZc%252BesA%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

The E99*** serial number doesn't even make the lists and to be from 1984 would mean a production run of over 70,000 that year.  The lists I have found show them going from E13605 to A07632 in 1984.  Another reason I think the painted big V is a late models is the addition of "Classic" on the big V. 

This is strictly conjecture on my part, but I think the logos will have a lot to do with dating the Vito's.  Here's my guess as to how it will all pan out:
Big V stamped into the clarinet (as seen on the clari-tone) will be the earliest, and not on the lists.
Oval Vito, pre 1972 to mid 1984.
Lyre Logo, mid 1984 to early 2000's
Big V painted on, early 2000's
Big L Leblanc, post Conn-Selmer purchase (2005).

I'm about 75% confident in the first 3 logos/times, the painted on ones- not so much.
Bell photo credit goes to ebay seller tiermis0



Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: KSCop on February 05, 2017, 09:57:44 AM
This thread makes me want to dig through my Vito's.

I think I have a reso-tone, a reso-tone 2, a reso-tone 3, as well as some big lyre 'Kenosha WI' ones
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 05, 2017, 02:33:48 PM
This thread makes me want to dig through my Vito's.

I think I have a reso-tone, a reso-tone 2, a reso-tone 3, as well as some big lyre 'Kenosha WI' ones

Dig 'em out!  I think Reso-Tone 3's outnumber the 2's for some reason. Feel free to post serial numbers if you want.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 05, 2017, 04:19:36 PM

The E99*** serial number doesn't even make the lists and to be from 1984 would mean a production run of over 70,000 that year.  The lists I have found show them going from E13605 to A07632 in 1984.  Another reason I think the painted big V is a late models is the addition of "Classic" on the big V. 

This is strictly conjecture on my part, but I think the logos will have a lot to do with dating the Vito's.  Here's my guess as to how it will all pan out:
Big V stamped into the clarinet (as seen on the clari-tone) will be the earliest, and not on the lists.
Oval Vito, pre 1972 to mid 1984.
Lyre Logo, mid 1984 to early 2000's
Big V painted on, early 2000's
Big L Leblanc, post Conn-Selmer purchase (2005).

I'm about 75% confident in the first 3 logos/times, the painted on ones- not so much.

This is good mechanic - a nice and simple guideline. You're most likely right about the 1984 production. I keep forgetting how long ago the 90's actually were!
As far as the very common Oval Vito logo, it's entirely possible that it was a 12 year run. This seems to be the most popular style.
Thanks for posting this, I think progress is being made.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Windsong on February 05, 2017, 05:39:10 PM
For what it's worth, the Claritone may have preceeded the Resotone in the Vito line, but the Resotone branding was alive and well as early as 1958 in the Normany line.
I have a 1959, a 1961, and had a 1962 that I gave away to a neighbor's kid.  All are branded Resotone USA.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 05, 2017, 05:51:09 PM
Thanks Windsong. Yes, from Reso-Tone to Clari-Tone and then back to Reso-Tone!
I can see the advertising team having a good time with this.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on February 05, 2017, 07:27:10 PM
Thanks to the shopgoodwill folks in San Antonio, Texas, we have this picture of what I have been referring to as the Big V logo stamped in.  I've see this same style on both reso-tones and clari-tones.  The serial number on this one is 2117F .

https://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=36727925

Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Windsong on February 05, 2017, 09:04:38 PM
Thanks Windsong. Yes, from Reso-Tone to Clari-Tone and then back to Reso-Tone!
I can see the advertising team having a good time with this.
Curious, the waffling, innit?
Typically, this would be seen as a bad advertising technique, as folks are easily confused, myself included.
It does cause a person to wonder just what they were up to--if they even knew, themselves.

Nevertheless, these early instruments, made of "new" materials, should be worth more than the common, newer stock (whether branded Vito or Normandy) as they pioneered the mainstream market in the USA, and allowed modest budgets to enjoy music deemed off-limits prior. 
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Lisa on February 06, 2017, 06:49:54 AM
Vito leBlanc, plastic, with harp logo, Kenosha WI, USA
PLATEAU KEYS!!!!!!!!
http://www.ebay.com/itm/RARE-PLATU-CLARINET-VITO-Leblanc-/222399449016?

YES!! PLATEAU!!

Lisa
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on February 06, 2017, 07:36:10 AM
Thanks Windsong. Yes, from Reso-Tone to Clari-Tone and then back to Reso-Tone!
I can see the advertising team having a good time with this.
Curious, the waffling, innit?
Typically, this would be seen as a bad advertising technique, as folks are easily confused, myself included.
It does cause a person to wonder just what they were up to--if they even knew, themselves.

Nevertheless, these early instruments, made of "new" materials, should be worth more than the common, newer stock (whether branded Vito or Normandy) as they pioneered the mainstream market in the USA, and allowed modest budgets to enjoy music deemed off-limits prior.

I saw reference to a lawsuit between Leblanc and Selmer concerning the reso-tone trademark.  Found this from 1962.
http://heinonline.org/HOL/LandingPage?handle=hein.journals/thetmr53&div=45

Could explain the waffling between clari-tone and reso-tone.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 06, 2017, 08:20:06 AM
Well how about that? A battle of Resonite vs. Reso-Tone in 1962. Great find mechanic!
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 06, 2017, 08:24:48 AM
Thanks to the shopgoodwill folks in San Antonio, Texas, we have this picture of what I have been referring to as the Big V logo stamped in.  I've see this same style on both reso-tones and clari-tones.  The serial number on this one is 2117F .

https://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=36727925

That looks like a very early logo to me. And we have another (F) as a suffix (or postfix). So, do we say mid 1960's on these?
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Windsong on February 06, 2017, 04:47:18 PM
Mechanic,
I doff my hat to you, sir!
Excellent sleuthing, there.
Fascinating, and I suspect you are spot on with your assumption.
Thanks for that.

Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on February 06, 2017, 09:51:38 PM
Found an interesting site to add to the confusion, and a couple that just make for a good read if you've got some time and are interested in the history of Leblanc in the U.S.

This first one offers up a timeline and a pre-72 serial number list for the Vito but I believe the start date is based on a faulty assumption.
 
https://stockinstrumentrepair.wordpress.com/normandy-reso-tone/

The assumption is that the Vito line started in 1963, after the 1962 lawsuit with Conn-Selmer, because only the Normandy reso-tone was mentioned in the suit. After Windsongs comment about advertising I looked in that direction and found an ad for the Normandy and Vito Reso-tone in the Music Educators Journal from Feb/Mar 1962.

Next link is an oral history featuring Vito Pascucci.  I haven't watched it yet, so don't know if it's any help.

https://www.namm.org/library/oral-history/vito-pascucci

And finally, the results from a search of Leblanc in the University of Wisconsin digital collection.  360 results, so it could take awhile to dig through them all.

http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/WI/WI-idx?type=simple&submit=Search&work=WI.KLILeblancBell&rgn=Entire%20work&q1=Leblanc&amt=0&size=more

The oral history and Leblanc search probably won't be much help with generating a serial number list, but buried in there somewhere may be a start date for the Vito line and its various incarnations.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 07, 2017, 12:12:55 PM
OK, the 1st link (wordpress) has me befuddled!

So now we have 2 series of Normandy Reso-Tones. The first series with no less than 5 variants!!! . . . . . . and that's before we get to the Vitos.   ???
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 08, 2017, 08:07:15 PM
The median selling price of the last 9 Reso-Tones on shopgoodwill was $32.01. Just a market update!

There was an exceptionally low priced Normandy in the group that sold for $11.99.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on February 09, 2017, 06:48:01 AM
Who is up for a unicorn hunt?  Here are 2 excerpts from the same article/blog from the New School of Music.  Not only does it introduce the unicorn, but dates in it seem to contradict each other.

Vito clarinets are named after Vito Pascucci, who co-founded the G. Leblanc Corporation in Kenosha Wisconsin after World War II. Vito was the instrument repair man for Glenn Miller.The Vito clarinet started out as a metal clarinet, but the plastic clarinet was more popular because it was less expensive. Leblanc started producing plastic Vito clarinets in the 1950s.

In 1960, the brand Vito was created with a complete line of composite student clarinets.  In 1961, the Positive Radial Alignment Guide (P.R.A.G.), which is still used today was patented to help beginning clarinet students properly assemble the top and bottom joints of their instruments.

http://newschoolofmusic.com/about/blog/index.php?published-max=2013-04-25T14%3A14%3A00.002-07%3A00

Know any 65 year old music stores that sold band instruments and still have sales receipts from day 1? 
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 09, 2017, 07:19:13 AM
Has anyone here ever seen a metal VITO clarinet ???  I haven't.

I assumed all the 1950's Reso-Tones were mostly Normandys. I'm hoping to find solid data on the first year of Vito clarinets.

As far as P.R.A.G. goes, it seems only the newer Vitos have it! 

Thanks for posting the links Mechanic.

Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Windsong on February 09, 2017, 03:06:30 PM
I suspect Vitos and Normandies were the same horn, and I would also not be surprised to learn that they were made on the same assembly line. 
That said, does anyone know if the serial numbers are co-mingled, or are they separate?
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on February 09, 2017, 09:51:33 PM
Has anyone here ever seen a metal VITO clarinet ???  I haven't.

I assumed all the 1950's Reso-Tones were mostly Normandys. I'm hoping to find solid data on the first year of Vito clarinets.

As far as P.R.A.G. goes, it seems only the newer Vitos have it! 

Thanks for posting the links Mechanic.

Found an add from 1947 for metal Noblets from G. Leblanc Co. (American Division) Kenosha Wi.  These are most likely what is being referred to as a metal Vito.  I've be watching the metal clarinets for a few years now, and have never seen a Vito.  Most likely a case of "if it came from Kenosha, it must be a Vito".  Probably a misinformation campaign from the Buffet Mafia.  All the French made wood Leblancs and Noblets also passed through Kenosha.  The original purpose for the American division was to take apart, acclimate, reassemble to Leblanc specs and regulate all the clarinets coming across the ocean.  Your new Leblanc was to play perfect out of the box.

The P.R.A.G. is another interesting bit.  The Conn-Selmer website says 1961 for the patent.  Lot's of sites say 1961 for the patent.  The patent (#5,000,072) however, says it was filed April 10, 1990 and approved March 19, 1991.  (Any patent attorneys out there?  If a patent gets renewed does it get a new date and number?)  Interesting bit, the next patent in line # 5,000,073 is for a Hite mouthpiece and approved the same day.  But I digress, 1991 patent could be why we've only seen them on newer Vitos.  Unfortunately that shoots to hell my theory about the repeat serial numbers coinciding with the different logo's.  The only P.R.A.G I've run across was serial number D32921.  I figured 1983 because of the oval Vito logo.  Post patent would make it a 1997 and by my theory would have the lyre logo. 

As for a launch date, the Conn-Selmer website says 1960.  The Leblanc Bell (Spring/Summer 1996) gives a history of the company and talks about the ever growing school market in the 50's, then the Vito line, comprising a range from soprano to contrabass was born, then construction of the factory in 1951 with expansion in 1953, 1960 and 1966.  Bad editing, jumbled order of events, or is the Conn-Selmer website wrong?

Leon Pascucci (son of Vito, godson of Leon Leblanc) currently resides in the greater Los Angeles area.  Maybe the only way to get the answers will be to have someone camp out in his front yard and question him.  Any L.A. members got some spare time?
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on February 20, 2017, 01:40:30 PM
The average price for last 5 plastic Vitos on shopgoodwill was $ 38.44.

One was V40 that sold higher ($61.00) than the others so the results are bit on the high side. Just another market update!

Anyone here ever play a V40 ??? 
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: dr_bob_k on February 20, 2017, 07:26:17 PM
I have a VITO Resotone (Resonite?) one-piece (+neck, bell, mouthpiece) alto clarinet  that has a very sweet tone.   I don't know about the intonation.   the serial # is (from memory) 5015, which doesn't correspond to a Vito  on any of the web pages I've looked at.  I'll be posting some pictures soon because I'll be putting it up for sale (Hite mouthpiece, nice strap and my home-made stand).
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on March 02, 2017, 08:19:42 AM
The average price for last 3 plastic Vitos on shopgoodwill was $ 26.68.

Just a market update - they're getting cheaper!
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: JenF on April 29, 2017, 12:41:23 AM
Hello
I am new to the forum and found this thread while trying to research a Clarinet I just bought.

Lots of great information here 😊

I have a White Vito Claritone serial 1528.

It's in need of an overhaul which I have arranged to be done. I know it will cost more than its worth but I love it's uniqueness.

Reading everyone's posts it sounds like there have been many models of Vito's.

I'm guessing mine maybe 60s or 70s. What's everyone's thoughts.

Has anyone else come across one of these.

Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Jen
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on April 29, 2017, 06:55:10 AM
Welcome to the forum, Jen.

Another forum member here (bbrandha) has a white Clari-Tone with a 4 digit serial number with gold plated key work. Her post is #7 on the first page of this thread.

I think your copy will be an early one (early 60's)  Does it have the gold plated keys?  Is it heavier than a "normal" Vito?
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: bbrandha on April 29, 2017, 03:20:02 PM
I just got a blue Dazzler, serial # E04161. Now I have red, white, and blue. My red one is a B serial.

The differences I can notice are that the blue one has black tone holes and a metal post insert to help line up the 2 halves. I do not have the white here to compare.

The red should be from 1974 and the blue from 1983. Both have original mouthpieces. I hope the blue mouthpiece is better than the red one. It is unplayable.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on April 30, 2017, 06:53:06 AM
Thanks Windsong. Yes, from Reso-Tone to Clari-Tone and then back to Reso-Tone!
I can see the advertising team having a good time with this.
Curious, the waffling, innit?
Typically, this would be seen as a bad advertising technique, as folks are easily confused, myself included.
It does cause a person to wonder just what they were up to--if they even knew, themselves.

Nevertheless, these early instruments, made of "new" materials, should be worth more than the common, newer stock (whether branded Vito or Normandy) as they pioneered the mainstream market in the USA, and allowed modest budgets to enjoy music deemed off-limits prior.

I saw reference to a lawsuit between Leblanc and Selmer concerning the reso-tone trademark.  Found this from 1962.
http://heinonline.org/HOL/LandingPage?handle=hein.journals/thetmr53&div=45

Could explain the waffling between clari-tone and reso-tone.

You know what?  I'm starting to wonder if the folks at Bundy actually used "Resotone" . I found this clarinet on shopgoodwill - it appears to be a Bundy stencil https://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Lyons-Chicago-Resotome-Clarinet-with-Case-39173379.html (https://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Lyons-Chicago-Resotome-Clarinet-with-Case-39173379.html) - (I'm only using the keywork as my indicator). The bell clearly is marked Resotone under the Lyon's logo. Interesting.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: DaveLeBlanc on April 30, 2017, 10:18:30 PM
Thanks Windsong. Yes, from Reso-Tone to Clari-Tone and then back to Reso-Tone!
I can see the advertising team having a good time with this.
Curious, the waffling, innit?
Typically, this would be seen as a bad advertising technique, as folks are easily confused, myself included.
It does cause a person to wonder just what they were up to--if they even knew, themselves.

Nevertheless, these early instruments, made of "new" materials, should be worth more than the common, newer stock (whether branded Vito or Normandy) as they pioneered the mainstream market in the USA, and allowed modest budgets to enjoy music deemed off-limits prior.

I saw reference to a lawsuit between Leblanc and Selmer concerning the reso-tone trademark.  Found this from 1962.
http://heinonline.org/HOL/LandingPage?handle=hein.journals/thetmr53&div=45

Could explain the waffling between clari-tone and reso-tone.

You know what?  I'm starting to wonder if the folks at Bundy actually used "Resotone" . I found this clarinet on shopgoodwill - it appears to be a Bundy stencil https://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Lyons-Chicago-Resotome-Clarinet-with-Case-39173379.html (https://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Lyons-Chicago-Resotome-Clarinet-with-Case-39173379.html) - (I'm only using the keywork as my indicator). The bell clearly is marked Resotone under the Lyon's logo. Interesting.
Don't Bundys have a more right-angular throat G# key? Or at least, that's how many of the Bundys and Selmer USA's I've come across had.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Windsong on May 24, 2017, 02:18:54 PM
Mechanic,
I suspect that the below listed clarinet is the clever logo you mention, used from 1984-2000?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/332229234837?ul_ref=http%253A%252F%252Frover.ebay.com%252Frover%252F0%252Fe11051.m43.l1465%252F7%253Feuid%253D6bbf78d54399499f9a93887731ab3acc%2526bu%253D43208945403%2526loc%253Dhttp%25253A%25252F%25252Fwww.ebay.com%25252Fulk%25252Fitm%25252F332229234837%2526sojTags%253Dbu%253Dbu%2526srcrot%253De11051.m43.l1465%2526rvr_id%253D0&ul_noapp=true


Here's a few more for the list.  These all have the ringless bell, which should make them all 7212's .
D32921  marked 7212, has the P.R.A.G (positive radial alignment guide) or alignment post to the rest of us
D26012 no model number, no P.R.A.G, coil spring on the register key
D20581 no model number, no P.R.A.G, coil spring on the register key
B27745 marked 7212, no P.R.A.G

Those 4 all have the oval Vito logo and are Reso-Tone 3

9408F  no model number, no P.R.A.G.  Oval logo, but only a Reso-Tone (no number) Also has the funky kidney bean keys

Any of the serial number lists I've been able to find all start with 1972 and the A prefix.  It's my understanding that Vito built the factory in Kenosha in 1951 and started cranking out plastic clarinets soon after, so there's close to 20 years of Vito's that will be tough to place.  I think my 9408F is in that category.  Somewhere I saw a timeline that showed the Claritone and Reso-Tone timelines.  They overlapped a number of years.  I'll keep poking around and see if I can find it again.
Picture 1 is the Reso-Tone 3 logo, pic 2 the Reso-Tone logo and pic 3 the Reso-Tone bean keys.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on May 24, 2017, 07:51:35 PM
Mechanic,
I suspect that the below listed clarinet is the clever logo you mention, used from 1984-2000?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/332229234837?ul_ref=http%253A%252F%252Frover.ebay.com%252Frover%252F0%252Fe11051.m43.l1465%252F7%253Feuid%253D6bbf78d54399499f9a93887731ab3acc%2526bu%253D43208945403%2526loc%253Dhttp%25253A%25252F%25252Fwww.ebay.com%25252Fulk%25252Fitm%25252F332229234837%2526sojTags%253Dbu%253Dbu%2526srcrot%253De11051.m43.l1465%2526rvr_id%253D0&ul_noapp=true


Here's a few more for the list.  These all have the ringless bell, which should make them all 7212's .
D32921  marked 7212, has the P.R.A.G (positive radial alignment guide) or alignment post to the rest of us
D26012 no model number, no P.R.A.G, coil spring on the register key
D20581 no model number, no P.R.A.G, coil spring on the register key
B27745 marked 7212, no P.R.A.G

Those 4 all have the oval Vito logo and are Reso-Tone 3

9408F  no model number, no P.R.A.G.  Oval logo, but only a Reso-Tone (no number) Also has the funky kidney bean keys

Any of the serial number lists I've been able to find all start with 1972 and the A prefix.  It's my understanding that Vito built the factory in Kenosha in 1951 and started cranking out plastic clarinets soon after, so there's close to 20 years of Vito's that will be tough to place.  I think my 9408F is in that category.  Somewhere I saw a timeline that showed the Claritone and Reso-Tone timelines.  They overlapped a number of years.  I'll keep poking around and see if I can find it again.
Picture 1 is the Reso-Tone 3 logo, pic 2 the Reso-Tone logo and pic 3 the Reso-Tone bean keys.

Now that's a cool Vito logo. I never looked close before - that it actually makes up the lyre.
Nice looking clarinet as well - and I really like that style of LeBlanc case. My Noblet 27 has one to call home (a green one) and those 2 latches will never fail under normal conditions. Very robust design.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Windsong on May 24, 2017, 08:30:16 PM
Yeah, I think it's their best logo.  Very clever...
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on May 24, 2017, 09:01:25 PM
Mechanic,
I suspect that the below listed clarinet is the clever logo you mention, used from 1984-2000?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/332229234837?ul_ref=http%253A%252F%252Frover.ebay.com%252Frover%252F0%252Fe11051.m43.l1465%252F7%253Feuid%253D6bbf78d54399499f9a93887731ab3acc%2526bu%253D43208945403%2526loc%253Dhttp%25253A%25252F%25252Fwww.ebay.com%25252Fulk%25252Fitm%25252F332229234837%2526sojTags%253Dbu%253Dbu%2526srcrot%253De11051.m43.l1465%2526rvr_id%253D0&ul_noapp=true

[/quote]

That's the one I've always referred to as the Lyre Logo.  That and the Oval Vito seem to be in the majority. 

Something on that one you don"t see on many Vitos it the music holder receiver as part of the center ring.  Only 2 out of the 100 or so I've looked at have that, and that one is the only one with the serial number shown.

Just for grins, I started a spreadsheet with serial numbers, logo, model # if known, and a few other bits of info.  The more I collect, the weirder the data looks.  I'm finding 4, 5, and 6 digit all numeric numbers, 4 and 5 digits followed by a letter, and the ever popular letter followed by 5 digits which we know from the official serial number list repeated.  I had hoped to work backwards from the known list, and may eventually figure something out. 

In the meantime, I did find this ad from Leblanc USA claiming the Vito line was established in 1953.

Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on May 25, 2017, 07:03:42 AM
I have never seen that ad before. Thanks for posting.

I think "Mel's" Drive-In was a California based business. Oh well, "Arnold's" Drive-In was closer to Kenosha !   ;)
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on May 25, 2017, 11:34:04 AM
Here's a Vito with what can be considered the "Rare" logo. I just do not see many of these . . .  https://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Vito-Reso-Tone-Clarinet-4136E-w-Goldentone-2-MP-39967309.html (https://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Vito-Reso-Tone-Clarinet-4136E-w-Goldentone-2-MP-39967309.html)

Serial number: 4136E

(https://images.shopgoodwill.com/58/5-25-2017/1161876258431an.JPG)
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on May 27, 2017, 04:17:39 PM
I wrote the blog page referenced earlier which has apparently caused confusion. I can answer any questions on that, but I'll start with some Vitos I've kept notes of that have crossed my bench in one form or another.

Vito Reso-Tone
4983E (Big V logo)
9946F (oval logo)

Vito Reso II
1427

Reso-Tone 3
21550 (with original warranty card)
35482
55300
C77639

Clari-Tone
3914 (oval logo)

Lyre logo
A29658


I can partly clear up the model number confusion earlier in the thread. The model numbers in the '70s and early '80s were actually 7112 and 7114 according to price lists. They were changed to 7212 and 7214 when the serial numbers were reset in 1984. The latter ones have the model number stamped next to the serial number, the former do not.

Two positively-confirmed dates: The "Reso II" was trademarked as having been first used in commerce (meaning either when the name was first applied to a product, or when the so-named product was first shipped from the factory) December 27, 1962. The Clari-Tone name was first used July 21, 1964.

I can't find any evidence of the Clari-Tone in the 1974 price list, but the VSP is there. I've noted Clari-Tone serial numbers from 0968 through 8867, all with the oval stamping, and then one at 91358 which might have had a very faint lyre logo above the Claritone name, and the "swoopy" C trill key.

I've recorded examples of the original Reso-Tone from 3054E to 9745J, the Reso II from 1427 to 3069, the Reso-Tone 2 from 01443 to 15686, and the Reso-Tone 3 from 05727 up. The earliest Lyre logo I've seen is at A25474. The early ones had only the outline of the lyre engraved, as opposed to the thick stamping that most had.

Not to muddy the waters by getting the Normandy involved, but I'm 100% certain that there was a great deal of Normandy production before the Vito clarinets were introduced. The keywork differences and the clear difference in the type of plastic used in the first run of Normandy models confirm it in my mind, along with the fact that the first Vitos appear with serial numbers in the middle of the second Normandy series.

Sorry for the novel; hope this brings more clarity than confusion...
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on May 27, 2017, 07:32:58 PM
Good info 350 Rocket  (Olds fan?) 

I just wish the serial number system for these Vitos was a little easier to pinpoint a manufacture date!

Thanks for posting.  I'm glad others are recording data on the Vitos.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on May 28, 2017, 05:21:37 PM
Yes, I have a '77 Cutlass.

Leblanc USA seems to have used a different sequence for every variation until 1970 or thereabouts when they rolled it into one series for all plastic clarinets. I think the early Holtons had their own as well (a $15 Holton Collegiate started this for me in the first place).

Here's what appears in the price lists I have:

1974
7112Reso-Tone 3$189.50
7112EbReso-Tone 3$209.50
7114Lyre$199.50
7114D"Deluxe Outfit"$219.50
7114PPlateau$275.00
7115Stubbins$214.50
7118Semi-plateau$219.50
7177VSP$299.50
7100"Sonnet"$182.50
Carry-all case $10.00

1976
7112Reso-Tone 3$199.50
7112EbReso-Tone 3$235.00
7114Lyre$214.50
7114PPlateau$305.00
7115Stubbins$257.50
7118Semi-plateau$255.00
7177VSP$335.00
7100"Sonnet"$194.50
7110"Sonnet"$194.50
Carry-all case $12.00, Vandoren mouthpiece $15.00

1977
7112Reso-Tone 3$209.50
7112EbReso-Tone 3"On request"
7114Lyre$224.50
7114PPlateau$314.50
7115Stubbins$269.50
7116"Reso-Dyne"$229.50
7118Semi-plateau$239.50
7177VSP$350.00
Carry-all case $12.00, Vandoren mouthpiece $15.00
Holton clarinets were re-introduced in 1977.

I have no idea what the "Sonnet" is. I've searched and never found anything of the sort. The "Reso-Dyne" has a brushed "wooden" finish and I'm guessing it's otherwise the same as the Lyre model. The Stubbins and semi-plateau were Reso-Tone 3 models.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on May 28, 2017, 09:47:49 PM
I wrote the blog page referenced earlier which has apparently caused confusion. I can answer any questions on that, but I'll start with some Vitos I've kept notes of that have crossed my bench in one form or another.

Vito Reso-Tone
4983E (Big V logo)
9946F (oval logo)

Vito Reso II
1427

Reso-Tone 3
21550 (with original warranty card)
35482
55300
C77639

Clari-Tone
3914 (oval logo)

Lyre logo
A29658


I can partly clear up the model number confusion earlier in the thread. The model numbers in the '70s and early '80s were actually 7112 and 7114 according to price lists. They were changed to 7212 and 7214 when the serial numbers were reset in 1984. The latter ones have the model number stamped next to the serial number, the former do not.

Two positively-confirmed dates: The "Reso II" was trademarked as having been first used in commerce (meaning either when the name was first applied to a product, or when the so-named product was first shipped from the factory) December 27, 1962. The Clari-Tone name was first used July 21, 1964.

I can't find any evidence of the Clari-Tone in the 1974 price list, but the VSP is there. I've noted Clari-Tone serial numbers from 0968 through 8867, all with the oval stamping, and then one at 91358 which might have had a very faint lyre logo above the Claritone name, and the "swoopy" C trill key.

I've recorded examples of the original Reso-Tone from 3054E to 9745J, the Reso II from 1427 to 3069, the Reso-Tone 2 from 01443 to 15686, and the Reso-Tone 3 from 05727 up. The earliest Lyre logo I've seen is at A25474. The early ones had only the outline of the lyre engraved, as opposed to the thick stamping that most had.

Not to muddy the waters by getting the Normandy involved, but I'm 100% certain that there was a great deal of Normandy production before the Vito clarinets were introduced. The keywork differences and the clear difference in the type of plastic used in the first run of Normandy models confirm it in my mind, along with the fact that the first Vitos appear with serial numbers in the middle of the second Normandy series.

Sorry for the novel; hope this brings more clarity than confusion...

Thanks for all the information.
Does the  Reso-Tone 3  21550 (with original warranty card) come with a date?  It would make for a nice anchor point to work out a possible serial number list from.

You are almost certainly correct about the Normandy.  The Kenosha factory was built in 1951, expanded on in 1953, and Vito trademark registration came along in 1958 with a first use date of 7/23/1958. 
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on May 29, 2017, 07:15:58 PM
No, the card wasn't dated. It's one of the punch-style ones and has a ZIP code in the address, although post-1963 is pretty much a given for it anyway. I don't think I've ever seen a Leblanc warranty card with a date.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on May 30, 2017, 09:12:47 PM
Here's one I can't explain.  No model number was visible, serial number is 22546.  Check the heavy, faux wood grain, the center ring and the left hand pinky key touches.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on May 31, 2017, 09:50:42 AM
mechanic, that looks like Lisa's '74 Vito  on page 1. Her copy seems to have the normal LH pinky keys. These Vito's are "all over the map" in terms of logos, models and some features.



I'll post about my Vito, serial number B22750, manufacture date of 1974.
 Its not specifically labeled as a resonite, but it's not wood.  It is marked only with "Vito" on the upper joint and bell, and matching serial numbers on both upper and lower joints. School inventory number WSD 74-132 is scratched into each piece, except the mouthpiece.  The Vito mouthpiece pictured is my own, not the Encore one it came with.  I can't find any info, other than the serial numbers put it at 1974.  I've not found one picture like it, none.  The knurled metal joint rings-bands make it distictive.  Other forum members were sure it was wood, based on pictures, but it isn't, so maybe a prototype?
I think it plays very nicely and easily, I really like it a lot, and am not bothered that it isn't wood.  I hope a lot of kids played it, and got a good start on clarinet.  For a school instrument, with 74 scratched into it, telling me it was added to the fleet in 1974, and in my mind, verifying 1974 as a manufacture date, it's in fantastic condition, so I think it was appreciated by its players.
Lisa
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on May 31, 2017, 07:53:48 PM
"All over the map" might be a gross understatement.  How about a Reso-Tone 2 with standard offset trill keys?
https://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=40142976
No serial number visible or in the listing.

If they only ran 1 serial number sequence at a time, the one I posted would have to be pre-1968.  Based on the production numbers of the official serial number list, I calculated it back to late 1967, if they started with A00001.

Numbers in red are based on them going to 99999 before changing prefix letter,  The Blue numbers I can't figure.  To run to 99999 before switching would have both those years over 80,000 units. D in 1983 probably went to somewhere in the 37,000 neighborhood before switching to E.  1984, E could have gone to around 30,000 before switching.  Hard to determine as the next 2 years '85 and '86 put up the lowest production numbers.  The last 4 years are an approximate based on them starting at A00001.  This 35 year sequence accounts for over 800,000 Vito clarinets.

YEAR   NUMBER      NUMBER        TOTAL       # / WEEK
2003   E   53901   E   74400   20499   394
2002   E   33520   E   53900   20380   392
2001   E   09560   E   33519   23959   461
2000   D   86151   E   09559   23407   450
1999   D   62071   D   86150   24079   463
1998   D   33264   D   62070   28806   554
1997   D   04017   D   33263   29246   562
1996   C   74051   D   04016   29964   576
1995   C   45958   C   74050   28092   540
1994   C   18261   C   45957   27696   533
1993   B   89437   C   18260   22882   440
1992   B   64824   B   89436   24612   473
1991   B   40077   B   64823   24746   476
1990   B   14493   B   40076   25583   492
1989   A   86497   B   14492   27994   538
1988   A   61457   A   86496   25039   482
1987   A   37939   A   61456   23517   452
1986   A   22038   A   37938   15900   306
1985   A   07633   A   22037   14404   277
1984   E   13605   A   07632   -5973   -115
1983   D   25636   E   13604   -12032   -231
1982   D   01579   D   25635   24056   463
1981   C   75804   D   01578   25782   496
1980   C   54834   C   75803   20969   403
1979   C   30366   C   54833   24467   471
1978   C   11804   C   30365   18561   357
1977   B   89671   C   11803   22131   426
1976   B   67360   B   89670   22310   429
1975   B   43178   B   67359   24181   465
1974   B   19756   B   43177   23421   450
1973   B   00236   B   19755   19519   375
1972   A   80000   B   00235   20234   389
1971   A   60479   A   79999   19520   375
1970   A   40958   A   60478   19520   375
1969   A   21437   A   40957   19520   375
1968   A   01916   A   21436   19520   375



mechanic, that looks like Lisa's '74 Vito  on page 1. Her copy seems to have the normal LH pinky keys. These Vito's are "all over the map" in terms of logos, models and some features.



I'll post about my Vito, serial number B22750, manufacture date of 1974.
 Its not specifically labeled as a resonite, but it's not wood.  It is marked only with "Vito" on the upper joint and bell, and matching serial numbers on both upper and lower joints. School inventory number WSD 74-132 is scratched into each piece, except the mouthpiece.  The Vito mouthpiece pictured is my own, not the Encore one it came with.  I can't find any info, other than the serial numbers put it at 1974.  I've not found one picture like it, none.  The knurled metal joint rings-bands make it distictive.  Other forum members were sure it was wood, based on pictures, but it isn't, so maybe a prototype?
I think it plays very nicely and easily, I really like it a lot, and am not bothered that it isn't wood.  I hope a lot of kids played it, and got a good start on clarinet.  For a school instrument, with 74 scratched into it, telling me it was added to the fleet in 1974, and in my mind, verifying 1974 as a manufacture date, it's in fantastic condition, so I think it was appreciated by its players.
Lisa
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on May 31, 2017, 08:13:10 PM
"All over the map" might be a gross understatement.  How about a Reso-Tone 2 with standard offset trill keys?
https://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=40142976
No serial number visible or in the listing.
That's normal. The Reso II and Reso-Tone 2 had offset trill keys to separate them as cheaper models. I'm sure Leblanc ultimately concluded that spending extra money to make a second type of keywork for a less-profitable instrument wasn't a worthwhile endeavor.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Paul on June 27, 2017, 04:10:01 PM
I have an older 70's Vito with  out the In-line Jump Trill Keys. I have never seen another, but it plays great.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: shmuelyosef on July 28, 2017, 01:36:38 PM
Has there been any attention in this discussion to the keywork origin. I'm looking to get a composite clarinet (a few, perhaps) for outdoor gigs and travel, hiking, etc...
I like the older french keywork (I play 50s vintage Selmers) like the Selmer and Leblanc where the RH pinky cluster is as close as possible to the RH ring keys; it is also angled 'upwards'. I see a lot of the earlier Resotones have keywork that looks just like this and assume that this keywork was manufactured in France and supplied to Wisconsin for assembly.

Around the Resotone 3 series I see a mix of Leblanc-like keywork and keywork that has RH pinky cluster that is closer to perpendicular to the body and farther (3-4mm...not insubstantial) from the RH ring keys. The difference is very similar to the change in keywork design that Selmer made between the Series 10S and the modern instruments (Odyssee, Arthea to the present).

A lot of the pictures on shopgoodwilll are not good enough to see this...any hints how to tease the difference out from other cues?

On a different note as well regarding all these clarinets. Are the bores and/or toneholes machined? or are they just shipped as they come out of the molds?
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on July 30, 2017, 01:05:47 PM
Has there been any attention in this discussion to the keywork origin. I'm looking to get a composite clarinet (a few, perhaps) for outdoor gigs and travel, hiking, etc...

First post, third paragraph  :)   Jeff, If you can offer any insight and/or pictures of the French keywork and when it no longer was used on the Vitos, it would be greatly appreciated.

As far as the clarinet bodies go, I assume the they were molded as hollow blanks and then machined. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong!
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on July 31, 2017, 07:12:06 PM
On a different note as well regarding all these clarinets. Are the bores and/or toneholes machined? or are they just shipped as they come out of the molds?
The bores are as-molded, toneholes are machined. At some point in the mid-60s, the open hole chimneys on the lower joint became pressed-in inserts.

I've compared my Normandy Special and Noblet 45 against an assortment of Normandy Reso-Tones and 1960s Vitos. I don't see the differences you're describing. The only thing of note I see relating to those keys is that for a short time in the early '60s, the E/B touchpiece got noticeably shorter, but reverted back after a few years.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on August 03, 2017, 11:28:33 AM
Here's a nice newer 7214 if any of you want to join Club Vito!  This one looks clean.

https://www.shopgoodwill.com/auctions/Kenosha-Wis-USA-Clarinet-E43596-With-Leblanc-Case-41961664.html
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: bbrandha on August 05, 2017, 04:37:49 PM
We have 3 clarinets in Mounted Band this year. We will play these.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on August 05, 2017, 05:34:55 PM
We have 3 clarinets in Mounted Band this year. We will play these.

That is a fine collection of Vitos!  Thanks for posting the pic bbrandha.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: bbrandha on August 05, 2017, 05:52:23 PM
A couple of questions for those of you who know all:

1. I am repadding the lower half of the blue one. Whoever did it before didn't get enough shellac in to touch the pads, so they fell out. Anyway, all of the screws have a red dot on them. I haven't seen this before? Is it just so you can see them if you drop them?
2. The red and blue clarinets came with the original mouthpieces. (The red mouthpiece is awful.) The white mouthpiece is a slightly different color and is a Goldentone. Do you think that is the original? Goldentone was a Sears brand, wasn't it?
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on August 05, 2017, 07:20:12 PM
bbrandha, the red dot may be locktite - if it is, then it may be problematic to ever loosen those screws! I use the blue locktite for mounting optics on certain things to hold zero.

As to why someone would use the red stuff on a clarinet is beyond my comprehension.

Regarding the Goldentone MP, I thinks that's a standard issue Bundy piece.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: bbrandha on August 05, 2017, 10:27:31 PM
The screws came right out. Of course, with the way the pads were put in, maybe they let the Lock-Tite dry before they put the screws in.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: bbrandha on August 07, 2017, 03:16:25 PM
The blue clarinet has the number D189 scratched in by hand under some rods. Ideas?
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on August 07, 2017, 05:36:25 PM
The blue clarinet has the number D189 scratched in by hand under some rods. Ideas?

That's odd. Does it correlate with the actual serial number?
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: DaveLeBlanc on August 07, 2017, 06:55:58 PM
The blue clarinet has the number D189 scratched in by hand under some rods. Ideas?

That's odd. Does it correlate with the actual serial number?
Sometimes yes, sometimes no in my experience. I believe those are batch marks for the keys. Perhaps there were different keys made for different clarinets and there had to be a way to remember which went where.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on August 07, 2017, 07:39:00 PM
bbrandha, the red dot may be locktite - if it is, then it may be problematic to ever loosen those screws! I use the blue locktite for mounting optics on certain things to hold zero.

As to why someone would use the red stuff on a clarinet is beyond my comprehension.

Regarding the Goldentone MP, I thinks that's a standard issue Bundy piece.
The red dot probably isn't Loctite as such - the factory applied a material to the threads to keep the pivot screws from working loose and that's probably what the red dot is, unless someone figured out what it is and re-applied it at some point. There's a product called "VC-3 Threadmate" from Vibra-Tite that is similar, but it's pretty thick and I'm not sure it would work well on such small screws.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: bbrandha on August 09, 2017, 10:54:19 PM
The scratched on number does not match the serial number. There are no numbers on the keys that I can find. I have not taken the top half apart, but I do not see any numbers there other than the serial.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on August 20, 2017, 11:30:14 AM
The scratched on number does not match the serial number. There are no numbers on the keys that I can find. I have not taken the top half apart, but I do not see any numbers there other than the serial.

Any idea where it came from?  Schools are notorious for carving identifiers into their instruments.  The Saint Louis area has a school district 189.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: bbrandha on August 21, 2017, 09:49:24 PM
I have no idea where it came from. I doubt it was put on by a school unless the school removed keys in order to mark their horns. I guess they could, but it would be a very devoted band instructor that would  take the time.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: shmuelyosef on July 17, 2018, 07:28:32 PM
Here's one I can't explain.  No model number was visible, serial number is 22546.  Check the heavy, faux wood grain, the center ring and the left hand pinky key touches.
The key touches are interesting and I notice that this one appears to have offset trill keys like Buffet and Selmer...not the online design of most vitos.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: shmuelyosef on July 17, 2018, 07:35:34 PM
Quote from: 350 Rocket
The red dot probably isn't Loctite as such - the factory applied a material to the threads to keep the pivot screws from working loose and that's probably what the red dot is, unless someone figured out what it is and re-applied it at some point. There's a product called "VC-3 Threadmate" from Vibra-Tite that is similar, but it's pretty thick and I'm not sure it would work well on such small screws.
I use loctite 242 (removable) for the pivot screws...very reversible but makes the adjustments stable
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: shmuelyosef on September 05, 2018, 02:12:21 PM
This one that recently sold on ebay is also a 7242 but with the painted on big V logo.  Serial # E99328.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vito-Classic-7242-Bb-Clarinet-premium-beginner-student-instrument-Very-Nice-/332055420686?nma=true&si=9xR%252FNiJQ98Fm3YKiUK1QGZc%252BesA%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

The E99*** serial number doesn't even make the lists and to be from 1984 would mean a production run of over 70,000 that year.  The lists I have found show them going from E13605 to A07632 in 1984.  Another reason I think the painted big V is a late models is the addition of "Classic" on the big V. 

This is strictly conjecture on my part, but I think the logos will have a lot to do with dating the Vito's.  Here's my guess as to how it will all pan out:
Big V stamped into the clarinet (as seen on the clari-tone) will be the earliest, and not on the lists.
Oval Vito, pre 1972 to mid 1984.
Lyre Logo, mid 1984 to early 2000's
Big V painted on, early 2000's
Big L Leblanc, post Conn-Selmer purchase (2005).

I'm about 75% confident in the first 3 logos/times, the painted on ones- not so much.
Bell photo credit goes to ebay seller tiermis0

The E99xxx serial number probably posts the classic 7242 at 2005 or so, but hard to tell...
Regarding your Logos, I have here right now a painted large "V" logo 7214 clarinet with a serial number of A07***. The most trusted serial number list I have puts that around 1984. Also have a V40 with the Big "V" logo serial number D78 with a PRAG pin. The chart would suggest this is a 1999 horn, but it looks like new. Have overhauled and been playing this one. Have a Lyre V40 as well (no PRAG) that dates to 1995 (this fits your model).

Along the line of your original post, however, do you have any information about the 7242 design? Is this just a glorified 7214/V40 or is it one of the newer polycylindrical horns?
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on September 06, 2018, 02:58:42 PM
Vito serial numbers were "re-set" again relatively recently and given the timing it's very probable that it corresponds to the Kenosha factory being shut down and production moving to Elkhart, which was in 2008. The screen-printed Big V logo appeared in 2004 and continued into Elkhart production.

The 1984 serial reset happened when they switched model numbers from 7112/7114 to 7212/7214 - the latter will have the model number stamped, so they're easy to differentiate.

The difference with 7242 is that it has a .575" bore instead of .584".
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: shmuelyosef on September 13, 2018, 03:11:52 PM
Does anyone have post-2003 serial number information available. I have several "Big V" logo clarinets and had been thinking that these were late 90s, but it's very confusing as, for example, I have two Vito 7214s here with very close serial numbers, but one is an older-looking Lyre example and the other is a very new-looking Big "V".

I attached the SN info that I have
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Airflyte on September 18, 2018, 08:41:01 PM
This tread is still going! Awesome. As for your question Jeff, I would have to dig around on the web.
Oh, and 350 Rocket, thanks for validating the reset of serial numbers in '84.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on September 24, 2018, 05:20:34 PM
We now have a pre-serial number list date stake.

Vito Reso-Tone 3 serial number 14445 (model 14) was sold on 9/7/1966 in Lansing Michigan.  Certificate of Warranty, Receipt etc. below.

Watching serial numbers for the past couple years, Vito's are all over the board.  I've seen 4 numbers, 5 numbers, 6 numbers, 4 numbers and a letter (A through J, no I yet),  5 numbers and a letter (so far, only A, only Reso-tone 3's and Stubbins) , and the ever popular letter and 5 numbers.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: shmuelyosef on September 25, 2018, 04:42:26 PM
This tread is still going! Awesome. As for your question Jeff, I would have to dig around on the web.
Oh, and 350 Rocket, thanks for validating the reset of serial numbers in '84.
I have been poking around the web today, trying to find any way to contact Leblanc Vito in Kenosha, WI.

From the Vitos I have been collecting/redistributing lately (as part of a personal mission to get more competent clarinets into the hands of middle-schoolers), I am increasingly convinced that all of the "V"-branded instruments were manufactured after 2003; I have attached an article that in 2004 they were broadcasting a re-marketing of the Vito brand as "Leblancs" to connect the student instruments (which continued to be excellent players if one bothered to get a professional setup) to the professional Leblanc clarinets as step-up choices. I am focusing on the 7214 and less prevalent V40 clarinets. Most of the 7214s get Greenbacks with cork on register, and the V40s get roo-leather pads (with cork). I have recently done a V40 with Valentino Master's on the upper joint and leather on the bottom and it feels and plays wonderfully (I'm likely to keep this one); these are very nice clarinets to work on.

My talking points on this are:
- I have seen multiple occasions of near adjacent 7214s that have quite different bodies and bells...mainly differences in spring placement, bumpers, etc.
- The "V"-branded clarinets are in much better condition almost universally...kind of like on average they are 10-15 years newer.
- most of the Lyre-branded 7214s do not have the PRAG...only a few of them made after 1999 or so, pretty much all the "V"-branded 7214s have the PRAG
- The barrels on the "V"-branded have a slightly shallower taper although there is enough variation to make me uncertain about this

The 7214 clarinet can apparently still be purchased new! (https://www.interstatemusic.com/61889-Vito-V7214PC-Student-Model-Bb-Clarinet-V7214PC.aspx) I have failed completely to find any way to contact anyone in the Kenosha factory...any suggestions??
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on September 25, 2018, 08:49:11 PM
In 2004, Steinway Musical Instruments bought Leblanc.  Shortly after that, they closed the Kenosha plants.  The new lineup of Leblanc's are now made by Conn-Selmer.  It's my understanding that when they closed the Kenosha plants, they donated all the documents there to the National Music Museum in South Dakota.  Anything post 2004 though should be directed to Conn-Selmer in Elkhart Indiana.


The PRAG was patented in 1991. Patent US 5000072 A.  The earliest serial number I have seen with the PRAG is C59088, a Lyre logo 7214.  The official list would put that at 1995. 


The highest serial number in Lyre or Reso-tone 3 logos I've come across is E45597, on a Reso-Tone 3.  2002 by the list.  Anything higher than that has been Vito Classic, big V by Leblanc or the Leblanc L, and all had the PRAG.


I can't say for certain when the second reset took place, sometime after '04.  The highest serial number I've recorded is E99691 on a 7212  big V by Leblanc.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Yelnad on September 26, 2018, 08:59:23 AM
I have a Vito Reso-tone 3, serial #C61493 that I started playing in the 4th grade, 1983.  My family purchased it through the rent to own program that the school recommended.  It probably needs new pads and cork, but it works well enough to practice side by side with my daughter who is a beginning clarinet student.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: shmuelyosef on September 26, 2018, 04:20:04 PM

The PRAG was patented in 1991. Patent US 5000072 A.  The earliest serial number I have seen with the PRAG is C59088, a Lyre logo 7214.  The official list would put that at 1995. 


The highest serial number in Lyre or Reso-tone 3 logos I've come across is E45597, on a Reso-Tone 3.  2002 by the list.  Anything higher than that has been Vito Classic, big V by Leblanc or the Leblanc L, and all had the PRAG.


I can't say for certain when the second reset took place, sometime after '04.  The highest serial number I've recorded is E99691 on a 7212  big V by Leblanc.
Doesn't seem to be any rhyme nor reason on the installation of PRAG. I have seen lyres with and without PRAG in narrow ranges of SNs.
I would love to know if the they ever got to Exxxxx serial numbers after a 3rd reset...
Have you seen any lyre 7214s that have the trill springs rubbing directly on the body? I believe all of these has the metal button inserts for the spring contact and that is one of the key elements that makes me think the Big V and the Lyre 7214s were not concurrently made.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on November 05, 2018, 01:56:39 PM
We now have a pre-serial number list date stake.

Vito Reso-Tone 3 serial number 14445 (model 14) was sold on 9/7/1966 in Lansing Michigan.  Certificate of Warranty, Receipt etc. below.

Watching serial numbers for the past couple years, Vito's are all over the board.  I've seen 4 numbers, 5 numbers, 6 numbers, 4 numbers and a letter (A through J, no I yet),  5 numbers and a letter (so far, only A, only Reso-tone 3's and Stubbins) , and the ever popular letter and 5 numbers.

Thank you! That data point helps confirm my conjecture.

Four numbers and a letter is what I see on the original Vito (and on altos, basses, & contras). Leblanc did use the letter I, but it's only a straight line with no serifs, making it look enough like the numeral 1 that it's not easy to notice unless you're looking for it.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: BaritoneJack on December 01, 2021, 10:18:00 AM
New member here, just started playing clarinet 4 weeks ago - but am making very good progress with the help of a top-notch teacher.

My clarinet is a Reso-Tone, Model 7212, Serial Number C.48611 - bought on Ebay (UK) for £69.  Assuming I've read the serial numbers list on Danny Chestnut's website correctly, it was made at Kenosha in 1979 - making it a heck of a lot older than I thought!

Unfortunately, I can't work out how to add a picture of the logo, but it's 'Vito' inside an oval, with Reso-Tone, below it, USA below that, and a 3 inside a circle at the bottom (all markings engraved, not painted).

I certainly wouldn't have guessed that age from its condition, as the only problems I've found were a slightly sticking key, some of the buffer pads have slipped slightly out of position (though still working), and the corks are getting to the end of their useful life (though still making a good seal).  The sticking key was sorted with a tiny drop of oil on the relevant hinge - I used valve oil from my baritone horn, and it worked a treat.  The pads all appear to be in very good condition - though, in fairness, I've only got as far as playing the notes from C below the stave to A on the second space, so there are a shedload of keys which I haven't used as yet.

I have mixed feelings about playing music;  since I started playing baritone horn in 2015, I've had a heck of a lot of enjoyment and made lots of new friends, and found 'fresh fields to conquer' in the shape of a five string banjo (played two-finger, thumb-lead) - and now the clarinet, and loving the deep, rich sound it makes.  But, at the same time, sad that some unhappy experiences with piano and guitar in my teens convinced me that "I would never be a musician".  Even when, forty years ago, I became good friends with a brother and sister who played in a top notch brass band, I never expressed the slightest interest in having a go - though I know they would have been delighted to help me get started.

And if I hadn't gone along to a Christmas concert put on by a local brass band when I was 68, and heard the conductor saying that they had a training band, and would provide beginners with a free weekly lesson and loan them an instrument, I might never found out that I can make music, too.

The moral of my story?  You NEVER know what you're capable of doing until you've tried - and what have you got to lose?

With best regards to you all,

Baritone Jack
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: DaveLeBlanc on December 01, 2021, 02:55:42 PM
New member here, just started playing clarinet 4 weeks ago - but am making very good progress with the help of a top-notch teacher.

My clarinet is a Reso-Tone, Model 7212, Serial Number C.48611 - bought on Ebay (UK) for £69.  Assuming I've read the serial numbers list on Danny Chestnut's website correctly, it was made at Kenosha in 1979 - making it a heck of a lot older than I thought!

Unfortunately, I can't work out how to add a picture of the logo, but it's 'Vito' inside an oval, with Reso-Tone, below it, USA below that, and a 3 inside a circle at the bottom (all markings engraved, not painted).

I certainly wouldn't have guessed that age from its condition, as the only problems I've found were a slightly sticking key, some of the buffer pads have slipped slightly out of position (though still working), and the corks are getting to the end of their useful life (though still making a good seal).  The sticking key was sorted with a tiny drop of oil on the relevant hinge - I used valve oil from my baritone horn, and it worked a treat.  The pads all appear to be in very good condition - though, in fairness, I've only got as far as playing the notes from C below the stave to A on the second space, so there are a shedload of keys which I haven't used as yet.

I have mixed feelings about playing music;  since I started playing baritone horn in 2015, I've had a heck of a lot of enjoyment and made lots of new friends, and found 'fresh fields to conquer' in the shape of a five string banjo (played two-finger, thumb-lead) - and now the clarinet, and loving the deep, rich sound it makes.  But, at the same time, sad that some unhappy experiences with piano and guitar in my teens convinced me that "I would never be a musician".  Even when, forty years ago, I became good friends with a brother and sister who played in a top notch brass band, I never expressed the slightest interest in having a go - though I know they would have been delighted to help me get started.

And if I hadn't gone along to a Christmas concert put on by a local brass band when I was 68, and heard the conductor saying that they had a training band, and would provide beginners with a free weekly lesson and loan them an instrument, I might never found out that I can make music, too.

The moral of my story?  You NEVER know what you're capable of doing until you've tried - and what have you got to lose?

With best regards to you all,

Baritone Jack

Jack, sounds like you've found yourself a new hobby! 70 quid isn't bad for a functioning Vito. I always liked the rugged quality of these clarinets - you can put these through a meat grinder and it'll still chirp right up.

Have fun :D
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: mechanic on December 01, 2021, 03:13:02 PM
Jack,
If it's stamped 7212 below the serial number, it's from the second run through of the numbers.  It would be from 1995.
My son played one through 4 years of marching band and they are rugged and sound great. 
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: BaritoneJack on December 01, 2021, 03:26:17 PM
@DaveLeBlanc
I was interested to read your opinion of Vito clarinets; judging from my own experience with baritone horns, I think many people fail to appreciate the potential of 'student' instruments - and that 'cheap' does not necessarily mean 'cheap and nasty' (though in the case of my Ford Fiesta, it does - and decidedly so  :-\).

About 40 years ago, I read a lovely story to illustrate that point.  A weekly paper called 'New Musical Express' featured an article by a guitar techie who worked in a London guitar store.  A young customer came in one day to ask if there was anything they could do to improve his (insert string of epithets!) Fender clone guitar.  The techie said that it was a pretty cheap clone, but nowhere near as bad as the owner made out.  At that point, a rather scruffy individual wandered up to the counter, and asked if he could have a look.  Owner passed it over to him, still keeping up the bitter refrain as to how afwul it was, and how could anyone expect him to learn with it.

Scruffy bloke checked the tuning, plugged it into an amp, and started to play . . . and the whole damn store came to a standstill, mesmerised by the wonderful music he was making!  Then he handed it back to the owner, said "Ask them to lower the action for you, and it will take you quite a long way before you need to upgrade it", and quietly wandered away - leaving the poor lad speechless!

When he finally got his voice back, he whispered to the techie, "Who the (blank) was THAT??"

Grinning from ear to ear, the techie whispered back . . . "Eric Clapton!"  8)

With best regards,
Jack

PS - during my practise session earlier this evening, I realised that I made a slip in my first post;  I've got as far as playing from A below the stave (not C) to A on the second space.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: BaritoneJack on December 02, 2021, 02:05:25 AM
Jack,
If it's stamped 7212 below the serial number, it's from the second run through of the numbers.  It would be from 1995.  My son played one through 4 years of marching band and they are rugged and sound great.

Good morning, Mechanic - many thanks for the correction;  I've been reading through this thread, and must admit I found the proliferation of serial numbers, prefixes and resets pretty baffling - so I'm pleased that I can now put a date on it.  Re. the sound;  my teacher is very happy with the sound I'm making - and, come to that, so am I!  :)

The first instrument I bought (after having a loan baritone horn from the band for a couple of years) was a Boosey & Hawkes Regent - Regent being the B & H student range when their pro line were the Imperials.  I bought the Regent from a band in Stockport which had been one of their loan instruments for years - and it looked it, too!  The chairman of the band offered me a choice of three;  two in quite reasonable condition, and the very scabby Regent.  I tried the first two - one was no great shakes, the other sounded pretty good, but as soon as I tried the Regent, I said to her "That's the one!"

It was 44 years old, the silver plate was worn away in places, there was a load of black tarnish on it, the valves had patches of brass showing through where the plating was worn or corroded away - yet the sound it made still put the other two in the shade!

My MD asked to try it out, so I had the chance to hear what a really good player could do with it (it was great - a very bright 1950s sound, thanks to its medium bore), and he said to me he'd forgotten that the Regents were actually very well made, with the costs being kept down by a basic specification, rather than being cheap because they were nasty.

When I bought a new one from John Packer, I gave the Regent to the band as a loan instrument, and it was promptly loaned out to a new beginner, who got on very well with it, too.

Thanks again, Mechanic, and best regards,
Jack
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: BaritoneJack on December 02, 2021, 02:23:45 AM
The Vito clarinet started out as a metal clarinet, but the plastic clarinet was more popular because it was less expensive.

Wouldn't you know it?  I'd never heard of such a thing as a metal clarinet before reading this thread - and this morning I find an advert for one on Ebay!

Not a Vito, though; the ad reads as follows:
"Vintage metal clarinet.  Jefferson USA is marked on the bell, the clarinet is in one section. Please see photos for condition. The clarinet is in B flat I presume. I am a cornet player.  Does not come with a mouthpiece, but a standard B flat mouthpiece fits."

I wonder how the metal construction would make it sound?
Jack
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/125026224776?_trkparms=amclksrc%3DITM%26aid%3D1110006%26algo%3DHOMESPLICE.SIM%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20140131123730%26meid%3D7bcf4bc6c8cd46adb5feca024b2c48cd%26pid%3D100167%26rk%3D5%26rkt%3D15%26sd%3D304187916217%26itm%3D125026224776%26pmt%3D0%26noa%3D1%26pg%3D5411%26algv%3DDefaultOrganic&_trksid=p5411.c100167.m2940
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: DaveLeBlanc on December 02, 2021, 01:48:58 PM
The Vito clarinet started out as a metal clarinet, but the plastic clarinet was more popular because it was less expensive.

Wouldn't you know it?  I'd never heard of such a thing as a metal clarinet before reading this thread - and this morning I find an advert for one on Ebay!

Not a Vito, though; the ad reads as follows:
"Vintage metal clarinet.  Jefferson USA is marked on the bell, the clarinet is in one section. Please see photos for condition. The clarinet is in B flat I presume. I am a cornet player.  Does not come with a mouthpiece, but a standard B flat mouthpiece fits."

I wonder how the metal construction would make it sound?
Jack
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/125026224776?_trkparms=amclksrc%3DITM%26aid%3D1110006%26algo%3DHOMESPLICE.SIM%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20140131123730%26meid%3D7bcf4bc6c8cd46adb5feca024b2c48cd%26pid%3D100167%26rk%3D5%26rkt%3D15%26sd%3D304187916217%26itm%3D125026224776%26pmt%3D0%26noa%3D1%26pg%3D5411%26algv%3DDefaultOrganic&_trksid=p5411.c100167.m2940

The clarinet in question is a low-end student model. These were mass produced with mostly questionable quality. In fact, so many metal clarinets were so bad in the 30s-50s that to this day, older players look at metal clarinets with disdain.

There are a few brands that are excellent, though - for example, the Silver King is probably the best (and most expensive!) I sold one a year or so ago for a client, racked up $1300 for a freshly restored Silver King.

You can typically find the common metals for $50 or less. They aren't worth much more and tend to be good lamps.

In terms of sound quality - find yourself a nice one (ie Silver King) and I think you'll find a very powerful, focused tone with more projection and a "jazzy" sound that you're more used to with saxophones. I love them myself.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: BaritoneJack on December 02, 2021, 05:47:21 PM
DaveLeBlanc: "You can typically find the common metals for $50 or less. They aren't worth much more and tend to be good lamps."
 ;D
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: Clare O. Nette on December 12, 2021, 08:10:57 AM
Hi folks.  Yesterday afternoon, I greased up some cork, stuck some black things together, blew into it and wouldn't you know it....a noise came out. Does this make me a musician?  I hope so.  This is the first instrument I've ever owned (besides a kazoo).  I had no idea what I was buying at the auction house, but it looked cool and came in a velvet lined case.  SOLD!  Needs some work (new corks), but all the keys (?) seem to work.  I really like this.  It makes such a nice sound, think I'm going to enjoy this.

Quick review:  Vito (oval) Reso-tone  #3 .  Model # 7212, ser. # E09624 .  Carlton mouthpiece.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: RMcCarty on April 13, 2022, 04:56:59 AM
Hello, I recently bought a Vito Reso-tone bass clarinet on a whim at a local antiques mall.
I am unsure of the model #, the serial # is 2334B with a one-piece plastic body and oval logo. The low number places it maybe in the early 70s? Why does the serial number have a letter suffix instead of prefix like the others I see listed?
One interesting thing I noticed is that the keywork is made for a two-piece instrument - would that be an indication that it has a French keyset?
Am a clockmaker by trade and had no trouble repairing a few slightly bent parts and the keys feel really nice.

If anybody has any thoughts on the date/model #, please chime in.
Thanks
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: DaveLeBlanc on April 13, 2022, 05:12:38 AM
While most Vito bass clarinets are strictly meant to operate in one piece, there are some that actually do come apart in the center.

They are not meant to, but with enough force you could separate the two pieces. Not sure why you would, but you totally could.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: RMcCarty on April 13, 2022, 05:34:56 AM
Mine has some chipping at the center that might indicate that someone tried to pry it apart.
Fortunately, the seat for the pad right above the center joint looks ok.

Maybe another point of reference, the clarinet came with a Selmer Paris mouthpiece that appears to have silver plated hardware and a nicely finished cover that looks like an old fancy salt shaker.

Some of the pads are a bit sticky and the bottom cock is loose so if the instrument is really about 50 years old I have a good excuse to take it apart!
I have never owned or played a woodwind instrument and as a clockmaker, I find this thing to be mechanically exquisite - it is a pleasure to use, a quality that I value greatly.
I was mainly inspired to try a bass clarinet because of Captain Beefheart and Reich's Music of 18 Musicians.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on April 13, 2022, 06:36:27 PM
Hello, I recently bought a Vito Reso-tone bass clarinet on a whim at a local antiques mall.
I am unsure of the model #, the serial # is 2334B with a one-piece plastic body and oval logo. The low number places it maybe in the early 70s? Why does the serial number have a letter suffix instead of prefix like the others I see listed?
One interesting thing I noticed is that the keywork is made for a two-piece instrument - would that be an indication that it has a French keyset?
Am a clockmaker by trade and had no trouble repairing a few slightly bent parts and the keys feel really nice.

If anybody has any thoughts on the date/model #, please chime in.
Thanks

The year would seem to be accurate. Leblanc used different serial number sequences for each "voice" of clarinet - the ones you see for Vito soprano clarinets have no relation to those used for altos, basses, and contras. Why they moved the letter from a suffix to a prefix for Vito sopranos in the '70s is anyone's guess.

I have one that's from 1969 according to the chart, and based on other evidence, that checks out.

By the keywork being "made for a two-piece" I take it you mean the bridge key between the upper and lower joints? It's possible Leblanc USA used the same keywork as Leblanc Paris, but even if not, that key is built that way because it's a regulation point and needs to be adjustable.

The model number depends on if the low Eb key is on the main body or on the bell. If on the bell, it's 7166 (maybe 66 - I'm not entirely sure when Leblanc changed around their model numbers), if on the body it's 7168.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: RMcCarty on April 30, 2022, 02:37:26 AM
Just for the record & in case other people have this problem down the road -

My Vito bass clarinet (2334B) uses mostly thick saxophone pads, with the largest 5 having resonators. Only the 4 pads that have flat shallow cups use regular clarinet pads

As a complete beginner, I thought it made sense to buy a pre-assembled pad set which caused a great deal of head scratching and bewilderment as it turns out only 4 of them fit my instrument. The material suppliers on the web will happily let you select & send you a set of Vito bass clarinet pads without any mention of the fact that not all Vitos use clarinet pads.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: windydankoff on May 04, 2022, 08:20:00 AM
Good to know. Thanks for sharing that info!
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: supervinx on July 23, 2022, 11:19:01 PM
Hi to you all.
I've got a Vito oval logo Contra Alto clarinet, #7152D, low Eb on the body.
Is it a 7168 1995 made model?
Which material? It's extremely heavy, with wood like veins.
Thanks!
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: DaveLeBlanc on July 24, 2022, 08:02:02 AM
Hi to you all.
I've got a Vito oval logo Contra Alto clarinet, #7152D, low Eb on the body.
Is it a 7168 1995 made model?
Which material? It's extremely heavy, with wood like veins.
Thanks!
Throw a picture in here please. I don't think Vito ever made any wood contra alto clarinets. It could be an ABS material with "grain," somewhat like the Buffet B12.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: supervinx on July 25, 2022, 03:01:08 AM
Here they are...
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: DaveLeBlanc on July 27, 2022, 11:22:30 AM
That's definitely an ABS plastic material. I'm not sure if the striations were meant to emulate wood grain or just a product of production, but it's definitely not metal.

That logo looks like its from the early 80s, I think.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: 350 Rocket on July 28, 2022, 05:41:05 PM
Yeah, that's a "brushed" finish. They did that to give a vague impression of woodgrain - on soprano clarinets it was usually reserved for the more-expensive ones.

They used that logo from the mid-'60s through the early 2000s.

The Eb contra-alto was model number 7181. I don't know for sure if the serial numbers used the same sequence as basses or if they had their own. But, I can't believe they would've sold enough contras for them to get to a "D" suffix on their own, so it probably matches the basses and you're correct on the year.
Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: DaveLeBlanc on July 31, 2022, 06:48:01 PM
Typo correction: I said "it's definitely not metal."

I MEANT: "it's definitely not wood..."

Title: Re: The 'Official' ClarinetPages Vito Reso-Tone thread.
Post by: supervinx on August 06, 2022, 03:04:41 PM
Thank you all for your kind response.
The clarinet plays well, even if it needs some adjustments.
It has a big sound, with decent harmonic content (it's not wood...)
I paid it 1200€: still shiny, no scratches, nothing.