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Author Topic: 1888 Crampon Buffet Clarinet  (Read 2524 times)

Offline woodwind

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1888 Crampon Buffet Clarinet
« on: February 08, 2017, 11:40:17 AM »
I have a Crampon Buffet clarinet with a serial # 1C419.  According to serial numbers this instruments was made in 1888.  It belonged to my Grandfather and probably has not been played for 75 years.  There is no reed on the mouthpiece.  The reed cap is on the mouthpiece and both reed cap screws are intact.  As you can tell from the photos, a few of the keys have since been redesigned.  I have been searching the Internet for months for more information and value of this clarinet, but I haven't found anything around the age of this one.  Can anyone give me any information?  Thank you.

Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: 1888 Crampon Buffet Clarinet
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2017, 04:16:58 PM »
I had a Buffet with similar key system that I *finally* sold for $200 after having it listed on ebay for like 4 months.
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
Irvine, California, United States

Offline Windsong

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Re: 1888 Crampon Buffet Clarinet
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2017, 04:53:18 PM »
Welcome, Woodwind.
Your clarinet appears entirely original in its function.  I do not see the redesigned keys you speak of.
What I see is a Bb 4 ring Albert system clarinet in Ebonywood--most likely in high pitch.
It's very nice, but probably not terribly valuable, as it has no exotic keywork or other designating features to make it particularly rare or highly desireable.  It IS a Buffet Crampon, however.
If it has intrinsic value to you, keep it, and have it restored.
If not, I recommend against restoring it.  Give it a simple spitshine, draw up your auction ad carefully with specifics and high definition photos, and let your viewing audience be the judge of its worth.  In today's market,  I recommend beginning the auction no lower than 99.00, hoping it will double (perhaps more) your introductory price.  If you can confirm that it is a LP clarinet, it will be worth more, but not by a significant amount--perhaps 25%.
Just my .02.
Expert bubblegum welder, and Pedler Pedler.

Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: 1888 Crampon Buffet Clarinet
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2017, 06:52:53 PM »
Welcome, Woodwind.
Your clarinet appears entirely original in its function.  I do not see the redesigned keys you speak of.
What I see is a Bb 4 ring Albert system clarinet in Ebonywood--most likely in high pitch.
It's very nice, but probably not terribly valuable, as it has no exotic keywork or other designating features to make it particularly rare or highly desireable.  It IS a Buffet Crampon, however.
If it has intrinsic value to you, keep it, and have it restored.
If not, I recommend against restoring it.  Give it a simple spitshine, draw up your auction ad carefully with specifics and high definition photos, and let your viewing audience be the judge of its worth.  In today's market,  I recommend beginning the auction no lower than 99.00, hoping it will double (perhaps more) your introductory price.  If you can confirm that it is a LP clarinet, it will be worth more, but not by a significant amount--perhaps 25%.
Just my .02.
I think the redesigned key he mentioned was the third left hand pinky key. Sort of like how some Boehms have an alternate Ab/Eb key on the left.

David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
Irvine, California, United States

Offline Windsong

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Re: 1888 Crampon Buffet Clarinet
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2017, 01:51:21 AM »
I did take note of it, but as that was standard fare for the late 80s, I dismissed it, and considered that he'd assumed modifications had been made to the keywork, after time of manufacture.  Of course, the Czechs had been making that modification to conventional keywork for a good 30 years prior, and a wonderful change it was, indeed, as it makes quick work of certain quick moving passages, and offers smoother playing, generally.  I prefer the fingering of an Albert, myself, but the overall functionality of a Boehm.  As such, I remain conflicted.  I suppose a good many of us do.

It's a $200.00 horn, unrestored, but in today's soft market, much more than $250.00 would be tricky.
It's ashame as I have said before, that a 130 year old clarinet in good order cannot bring more, but the general buying public these days has no interest in antiques, unless the antique is naturally superior, and has modern relevance.  It would appear they want the swiftest moving clarinet they can get, at the lowest price, and the Albert renaissance has yet to come.  If this IS a HP clarinet, the market gets considerably smaller, as old time bands are no more than a curiousity these days.  The market WILL turn, but thus far, it's bleak...
Expert bubblegum welder, and Pedler Pedler.

Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: 1888 Crampon Buffet Clarinet
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2017, 08:51:27 AM »
I did take note of it, but as that was standard fare for the late 80s, I dismissed it, and considered that he'd assumed modifications had been made to the keywork, after time of manufacture.  Of course, the Czechs had been making that modification to conventional keywork for a good 30 years prior, and a wonderful change it was, indeed, as it makes quick work of certain quick moving passages, and offers smoother playing, generally.  I prefer the fingering of an Albert, myself, but the overall functionality of a Boehm.  As such, I remain conflicted.  I suppose a good many of us do.

It's a $200.00 horn, unrestored, but in today's soft market, much more than $250.00 would be tricky.
It's ashame as I have said before, that a 130 year old clarinet in good order cannot bring more, but the general buying public these days has no interest in antiques, unless the antique is naturally superior, and has modern relevance.  It would appear they want the swiftest moving clarinet they can get, at the lowest price, and the Albert renaissance has yet to come.  If this IS a HP clarinet, the market gets considerably smaller, as old time bands are no more than a curiousity these days.  The market WILL turn, but thus far, it's bleak...
I just checked my sold history and the HP Bb Buffet Crampon sold for $185, after waiting for months and months.
If you want to get a higher price, then be prepared to wait a LONG time!
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
Irvine, California, United States

Offline Lisa

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Re: 1888 Crampon Buffet Clarinet
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2017, 01:06:40 PM »
I just got a clarinet back from Phil, who restored it for me.  It was not a low pitch C, as it was sold to me as, but rather a high pitch Bb.  Someone in the past, shortened the barrel so it's now a low pitch B.  It plays in tune pretty good, and sounds really nice, kind of sweet high up, and rich down low.  I mostly goof around playing alone, so it's not too big a disappointment to me that it's not a LP C. 
Phil said it's probably the best option for high pitch instruments, at least it's in tune to 440, so it could be played with other instruments if i ever figured out how to transpose to B.  It does sound really nice to me, at least, it's a beautiful instrument that can be played and not made into a lamp, and it's not even a historical instrument with top notch craftsmanship like a Buffet would be.  For the record, I paid 50 bucks for it, and yes, HP instruments sit forever on auction, i see the same ones over and over, relisted.
Lisa
Lisa  Upper Michigan

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