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Author Topic: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel  (Read 2743 times)

Offline Tinker73

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #15 on: April 01, 2018, 09:08:26 PM »
The keys on mine are just heavily tarnished german silver.  As for tuning of the integrated barrel clarinets, short of having the original MP, lots and lots of MP experimentation is necessary.  I know on my Laube In the key of C with integrated barrel, I have searched to no avail to find a matching MP to the original which I do have.  So far with every Bb MP I have tried tends to make the throat tone play rather flat, but hopefully in time I will find the perfect match for this one.  My Martel Freres on the otherhand was much easier to find a MP that allows it to play remarkably in tune.   I think with the vintage integrated barrel clarinets it is more important than ever to have the original MP to accurately test these instruments, as without the ability to change or pull out the barrel, the MP and its configuration become much more important part of the instument than on a clarinet with a barrel.
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Offline King_Richard

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #16 on: April 03, 2018, 09:35:06 AM »
According to one eBay seller, the integrated barrel was due to a lack of small, good quality pieces of grenadilla.
That doesn't really make sense to me at all, to be honest.
I agree with you, is easier to find small pieces of wood than bigger ones and in case of bigger, just cut to the desired length (the opposite can't be done, i.e: stretch the wood). I guess the seller didn't knew quite well what was saying.

The keys on mine are just heavily tarnished german silver.

The tonality on the photos really look like old gold and seem, at least to me, very appealing. So appealing that I even started toying with the idea of replating mine's keys with either gold or silver (to restore its pristine look). Also love the gold tone of Buffet Légende (more like copper). Anyone knows the estimate value of this type of integrated barrel clarinets? That is one big point keeping me from jumping into that kind of work as i don't want to cut its value if is significative.

Already started working on mine and for now have done the standard on the upper part: polished the keys, removed their gaps, oiled and cared the wood and replaced the tenon cork. So far, not a single mark or number under the keys as mentioned before, maybe only on the lower body.
I'm thinking on re-padding it entirely with Goretex pads as the weather here is too humid for leather and i don't like the sound made by cork. What do you think about that?

As for tuning of the integrated barrel clarinets, short of having the original MP, lots and lots of MP experimentation is necessary.  I know on my Laube In the key of C with integrated barrel, I have searched to no avail to find a matching MP to the original which I do have.

About tuning, yes. I think it is a challenge to tune without a barrel, but i find that my Vandoren B45 Lyre kinda liked this Buffet. At least i can get it in 440 tune from G to Bb (the ones i could do before re-pad). Don't know if sounds as the original as i don't have the original MP, but had a nice sound and curiously isn't tuning to 442 (bonus to me as i mainly use 440). As a workaround and because we don't have much of option for tuning, one can extend the entire clarinet (not the best but better than nothing) i.e: extend on MP, middle joint and bell joint. Of course that won't work if the tune is already flat. Let's see how it behaves during summer.

Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #17 on: April 03, 2018, 01:26:53 PM »
Value for integrated barrels are really all over the place. The lowest price I've ever seen was either $60 or $80, I don't remember which exactly.
And then on the high end we're talking $500+.

Honestly, I say go with whatever you like and would make you, as the owner, most happy. Sure, plating the keys kills the originality, but then again so does replacing pads, corks and springs. Depends how much of a purist you want to be.

These are generally collector's pieces so potential buyers may be put off by modifications, but as long as you don't plan on flipping it for profit any time soon, then I'd so go for a cool plating job.
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Offline King_Richard

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #18 on: April 05, 2018, 08:52:15 AM »
Yes, that is kind of the price i was expecting, not really worth for selling. I bought mine for around $130 but saw a dual set of them on original case sell for around $3600.

Just finished getting the keys polished and have to say: At that time people really were more interested in quality than cost. The thing looks almost like new (check photo with one key polished and others still untouched) and i didn't even use abrasives or chemicals on it, only a good microfibre towel and hand motion on each individual key. Also removed the gaps on the keys and silenced them with cork fittings. For now i'll leave it like that as the result is not bad at all. After restoring it completely, will check how it sounds. If it has a great sound i'll hold on to it and further improve to my taste, if not, i won't be spending more time with it, relegating it as a playable museum piece.

To the OP. The only markings and lettering it has, are located on the lower body: underside of "F#" key has marked an "S" and underside of "E" key has marked an "F". Took photos so you could check if is the same as yours. What they mean, i have no idea as they aren't the european scale initials. There are absolutely no markings on the wood except the logo and the serial number. Maybe under the joint corks? Will check that soon.

Next up: Corks, pads and wood hydration (it is so dry that the joint rings come of easily and it is the lightest clarinet I've held on, even lighter than plastic ones).

Side note: I'm really impressed with the quality!! Even the springs are in great condition, just removed the superficial rust with paper towel and they are shiny as new (some are dark bluish).
« Last Edit: April 05, 2018, 09:00:48 AM by King_Richard »

Offline Tinker73

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #19 on: April 06, 2018, 06:25:39 AM »
More interested in any hammer stamped markings in the wood.  Usually a letter number combination marking a match set of joints.  Different makers put these markings on the joints in different spots on the joints and used different letter number configurations, but almost all during this period used some kind of markings on the joints to match them up.

I think your probably low on your value.  Depending on the rarity and or popularity of the maker, and also on finding a correct MP to really make the integrated barrel clarinets good sounding players, I think they will command more $$$ than the $ 500 range.  To me these are way more significant in telling the true history of the evolution of the clarinet, especially when it comes to what they were doing on the bores of these instruments.  The integrated barrel clarinets had to be bored and undercut to a way higher degree than the clarinets with barrels, because you did not have the ability to change barrels or even pull out for fine tuning.  Probably the best example of this is my Martel Freres integrated barrel, as the Martel Brothers hand undercut each tone hole at the factory until each of their clarinets would play a perfect scale before leaving the factory.  The workmanship of the one that I have is by far the best of any clarinet I have from that time period, and it blows with noticeable ease over any of the other integrated barrel clarinets I have from that period.

The biggest problem that I see with a lot of integrated barrel clarinets from that period and probably the reason you don't see more of them still in existence today is unless the owners took very good care of them they did tend to crack the upper joints.  I think that is probably why a lot of these did not survive the test of time, you could not grab another barrel off another clarinet and keep playing them after they cracked.  They also did not seem to be very popular in the US during this time period, and were rarely seem with export markings that a few of the larger export makers used during  this time period.  Every one of my integrated barrel clarinets was either purchased in France, or is documented as coming to the US years after it's production, there were some available in older catalogs of the period in the states, but I have yet to see where they were very good sellers as most makers stopped making them around 1910 completely.

My daughter has started playing our Laube C with integrated barrel in the school band periodically this year, mostly playing oboe parts since they don't have much of an oboe section.  She has commented on how much harder the Laube is to blow than the Martel Freres, I think mostly due to the much smaller bore of the Laube.  She currently uses a Bb Sumner Acousticut on this clarinet most of the time, when she picked up the Martel Freres, she has had the best luck with a Langenous New York MP, but will from time to time use her Vandoren on the Martel with good results.

I think the biggest issue with playing the integrated barrels is they are going to be a lot more responsive to what MP and reed you are using on them.  I also think as temperatures and playing conditions change throughout the year, it is very possible that the MP is going to have to change with the conditions, so it may become necessary to have a variety of MP's available depending on your conditions.  I think more importantly on these MP's the bore and how the chamber is cut is going to be a lot more important to look at than the table and tip opening.  Somewhere in time everyone focused on tip opening and how easily a MP is to play and completely lost focus on matching the chamber bore of the MP to the bore and type of bore cut of the clarinet you are playing.  From inspecting MP's from the turn of the century and how the chambers were cut and the bores of some of the MP's, their focus was on that end, not the end in your mouth.  Yes, some of these are difficult to play, and a lot of times you are required to use a completely different size of reed on these than you are used to, but when you hit the right combination, they produce a sound that leaves no doubt as to why some of these clarinet makers were held in such high esteem by their peers of the day.

FYI - My daughter has used Legere plastic reeds (2.25, 2.5, 2.75 & 3) depending on which clarinet she is playing and has absolutely loved them since she started playing.  She uses a Vandoren 3 or 3 1/2 wood reed on the Laube C depending on the day as this has been the best sounding playing combination no matter which MP she is using on it.  Since doing more and more playing around with different combinations of reeds & MP's on the vintage clarinets, I think testing done with modern MP's and reeds should be taken with a grain of salt, and I think as large of variety of MP's & reeds (materials & sizes) should be played on these to find the "right" combination before discounting some of these instruments as lesser quality.  These vintage clarinets are proving over time that one size did not fit all, whether it is an integrated barrel clarinet or a barreled clarinet.
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Offline King_Richard

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #20 on: June 02, 2018, 04:37:06 PM »
Hello dear friends.
After a pause (longer than i expected), i'm back with more news.
If OP still has doubts about picking up his Evete, here is my feedback about mine which maybe will change his mind.
Finally i finished restoring it. Gave me some work, mainly the crack it had on the bell (big nightmare to fix), but boy, oh boy! It worth all the effort.
Now it is restored to its full glory with some improvements, for instance, the maillechort keys, are now silver plated with Britannia silver (96% silver), it has been fitted with own Buffet Goretex pads and got re-corked and silenced with fine cork.
Yes, it was tiresome to do, mainly fix some eaten screws and hydrating the wood, but in my opinion the outcome is excellent. Also sounds pretty good. The best i can describe is that the sound quality is a bit inferior to my R13, but not by much, meaning that its overall sound is good. One big surprise: i managed to tune it at 440 with one ESM F3A mouthpiece, unfortunately the sound wasn't great, obviously. The main difference i notice from the modern clarinets is that this one is harder to keep each note tuned trough the scale, definitively not for a beginner.

Also, after some investigations, i could trace a bit of its story: was played frequently on an opera orchestra in Sofia (Sofia National Opera Orchestra). Seems to have not been played for at least 40 years, as it was retired or replaced by a modern one sometime at 1970's and was stored since then. The person who sold it to me, found it among some instruments on an empty house that was going to be demolished. What was its life before that, i couldn't manage to find.

Here are some photos of it back to its pretty days.

Offline windydankoff

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #21 on: June 03, 2018, 09:11:40 AM »
Interesting thread! I offer a method of tuning when you can't go to a shorter barrel - Shorten a mouthpiece.

This can be done either on a metal lathe or, quite easily on a wood lathe if you have even rudimentary woodturning skill. First is to create a mandrel to hold the mouthpiece. A mandrel is a work holder that fits snugly into the work, in this case the bore of the MP. I turn a wooden cylinder from high quality wood that is unlikely to distort when cut. Then put the cylinder in the lathe chuck and turn down a bit bigger than the MP bore. Next I taper it, and see how it fits into the MP. I finally sand it down here and there, whatever I have to do until it holds the MP firmly, but will release with a twist of the hand. Now the MP should turn concentrically, perfect enough.

Next I use a small parting (cutoff) tool. It is the easiest woodturning tool to use, even for a beginner. As long as it's sharp, there's really no danger if you haven't been drinking. I'll then cut the desired amount (or less) from the end of the tenon. The tool will continue into the wood as it completes the cut. If it didnt cut squarely, use the corner of the tool to take off a bit more. Next, I'll remove the same amount from the base of the MP just above the tenon and round off the edge a bit with a file or abrasive, while turning.

An ordinary precision caliper is perfect for measuring. I use a cheap digital one, set to millimeters. Check the resulting tenon length and cut whatever to see that it will fit the socket precisely.

I can try the MP on the horn, warm it up, check the tuning ... Then if I want to shorten it more, I just shove it back onto the mandrel and cut a bit more.

So when it's done, the MP tenon looks as if the cork is positioned lower than usual on the tenon. There are also many cases where a MP needs to have the tenon base material turned down a bit smaller to fit. If you're uncertain at the lathe, that can be done using a file on the turning tenon. This mandrel method is also perfect for sanding down tenon cork. If you're careful, the result looks professional.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2021, 09:37:14 AM by windydankoff »
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Offline Tinker73

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #22 on: June 03, 2018, 09:08:31 PM »
I had no doubts about the integrated barrel and if the clarinet was of good quality, my Martel Freres w/integrated barrel is by far the best playing clarinet I own.  My doubts were that this was really a stamped Evette & Schaeffer, if it is and by the Buffet serial number it dates 1899, this is approximately 20-30 years before the first known stamped Evette & Schaeffer clarinets were known to exist.  It is well know that E&S were turning out very high quality saxophones in the early 1890's, but I still have found no information that they were producing an E&S clarinet in 1899. 

Im glad you finished yours up and it turned out so well. 
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Offline modernicus

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #23 on: January 14, 2021, 05:24:44 PM »
I know it's an old thread, but I have a 19th c Buffet Crampon on the way to me from Europe that has a bell marked exactly like this (later replacement), so at least a component of another similar one has been found.  Wonder if the OP still has it or found any new info.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2021, 05:27:30 PM by modernicus »
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Offline Airflyte

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #24 on: January 14, 2021, 06:23:56 PM »
I know it's an old thread, but I have a 19th c Buffet Crampon on the way to me from Europe that has a bell marked exactly like this (later replacement), so at least a component of another similar one has been found.  Wonder if the OP still has it or found any new info.

I sent Tinker a PM. Hopefully he will give you a reply!
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Offline modernicus

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #25 on: January 14, 2021, 07:53:10 PM »
I haven't seen him around in a while.
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Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #26 on: January 17, 2021, 10:57:41 PM »
I haven't seen him around in a while.
I wonder how he's doing. Hope he's okay, Tinker's a pretty cool dude
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Offline modernicus

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #27 on: January 18, 2021, 05:46:34 AM »
I haven't seen him around in a while.
I wonder how he's doing. Hope he's okay, Tinker's a pretty cool dude
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Offline modernicus

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #28 on: January 23, 2021, 09:59:12 AM »
Here's a pic of the bell, instead of 99 it says 07 (year?). No additional markings.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2021, 10:05:26 AM by modernicus »
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Offline LarryS

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Re: 1899 Evette & Schaeffer Bb (LP) Boehm w/ Integrated barrel
« Reply #29 on: January 24, 2021, 04:04:14 AM »
Seems so strange seeing a clarinet with built in barrel! Surely that means, short of pulling the mouthpiece out slightly, its untuneable?
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