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Author Topic: Age & Model Help with Contra Alto Clarinet  (Read 116 times)

Offline PipeTobacco

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Age & Model Help with Contra Alto Clarinet
« on: May 02, 2021, 10:33:56 AM »
I have seen many serial number lists for clarinets and bass clarinets, but I am wondering if there is a list that helps gauge age and models of contra alto clarinets that any of you know of?

When I purchased my contra alto, I was surprised that it was not the Selmer-Bundy type I had been used to. It is pretty much the same but is specifically only named/stamped as Selmer..... no Bundy designation at all. And the original case has a square metal plaque on it that simply says Selmer, USA..... no Bundy on it either.

This has me curious to try to figure out the age of the beast..... not sure if it is newer or older than what I had been used to. And, frankly, I am not really sure if it is a different “model” of the time or not too.

The serial number is four digits only and is in the 85XX range.

If anyone knows how to help determine age.... year and model.... I would be very appreciative!

PipeTobacco
« Last Edit: May 02, 2021, 10:36:43 AM by PipeTobacco »

Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Age & Model Help with Contra Alto Clarinet
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2021, 09:13:34 PM »
Is it matte plastic? If so, it's likely to be a Selmer USA model. These are pretty much the same as (Selmer) Bundy but often with a different finish and marketed as a step-up from the Bundy.

Most of these are from the 1980s, it seems. The serial is unlikely to be of any real assistance since the larger clarinets tend to have a lot less consistency on serials.
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
Irvine, California, United States

Offline PipeTobacco

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Re: Age & Model Help with Contra Alto Clarinet
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2021, 04:19:09 AM »
Yes, it is more of a matte finish than I was expecting from previously playing a Bundy version.  So, it may be from the 1980s.... that is interesting to know as well.... thank you! 

Would you know, since you are suggesting it may be a “step up” from the Bundy version..... at that time (1980s).... were both Bundy versions and Selmer USA versions both produced simultaneously and if so, might my horn be considered a “better model” in any ways OTHER than just the closer-to-wood appearance to the body? 

PipeTobacco