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Author Topic: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A  (Read 4111 times)

Online DaveLeBlanc

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Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« on: February 02, 2016, 11:54:32 AM »
Feast your eyes...
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
Irvine, California, United States

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2016, 07:22:50 PM »
 ::)
 Very, very, nice;- and even more rare.
- Silversorcerer (David Powell) exclusively for Phil's original “The Clarinet Pages" forum

Online DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2016, 09:04:16 PM »
Can't wait to see how it plays once it's all fixed up! 

Although I won't be the one to enjoy it when it's done, as it will be, like everything else, for sale...
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
Irvine, California, United States

Offline Silversorcerer

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2016, 07:49:00 AM »
What is the serial number on that one? I don't think it's already on the list I've been keeping? I lose track sometimes.
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Online DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2016, 08:41:24 PM »
Serial is 6839
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2016, 09:40:33 AM »
So noted. It has been added to the list, which is growing slowly and steadily. and I have added the photos to my PM files. At some point I will get these into a database with links to the photos. I am still looking for the best way to do this. One techie fellow suggested that we do a google document spread sheet. That will allow more than one person to add and edit information. I am still working on my personal spread sheet in Apple Numbers. It's at roughly half-way inclusive now. Maybe there is a way I can export that to a google doc when it is complete?  ???

I can also insert links in that thread to threads like this one that discuss specific instruments. It's only work....  ;)
- Silversorcerer (David Powell) exclusively for Phil's original “The Clarinet Pages" forum

Online DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2016, 10:58:09 AM »
Google doc sounds pretty good.  Otherwise, you would have to do everything yourself, which might take a while.

Crowd-sourcing is such a great way to get things done!
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
Irvine, California, United States

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2016, 01:16:27 PM »
My PM A is serial 8207. It is not full Boehm. I note that it also is marked LP at the end of the RH joint.
Mine looks like it was never played. Beautiful keys.
I had to do some serious tweaking to get it to play in tune, and it now plays very well in tune.

Anyway, that is a lovely and rare instrument, Dave.

Online DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2016, 04:41:06 PM »
This one has definitely seen some better days... There are several small, unrepaired cracks that I'll have to deal with eventually.  Unfortunately, it didnt come in the original case, and it's literally impossible to find a case for a full boehm A...
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
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Online DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2016, 06:51:24 PM »
Also, what are you ideas on dating?  I was thinking 1920s, due to the "LP" designation, which seems to have gone out of favor after that point.
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2016, 09:49:20 AM »
The only stake in time for the original numerical serial sequence is the 1927 marker, the June 1927 Sale's receipt for #9934 Penzel Mueller LP B Albert #5 (5-ring). If all the PM clarinets up until that date share the same serial sequence, then #6839 is before 1927 definitely. Even though the US government adopted the A=440Hz standard in 1920, the fact that #9934 still bears an LP designation means the mark persisted on PM clarinets well beyond the adoption of A=440. In practice the LP standard of 435 is not too different from the 440 standard because the two are measured at different temperatures, which brings them very close to matching the same pitch at a fixed temperature;- probably close enough that minor effects of mouthpieces and barrels mask any audible differences.

What we don't know is when the serial sequence began because we have seen several early PM models with no serial number, including A Boehm models, which I think we can safely assume are the earliest ones and all built before the serialization began. That leaves a good bit of room for guessing a date that falls between the beginning of the PM partnership in 1899 and our date stake in 1927. Without some idea of when the serialization began, "circa 1920" is about as close as we can do right now.
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Online DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2016, 01:26:33 PM »
Great info!  Hopefully as time goes on the PM serial database will get better and better!
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2016, 05:18:05 PM »
A theory that I have had for a short while now is that the Empire/ Empire State model is a continuation of the LP B model, that the introduction of a new model (M designation finally) created the model names "Artist" and "Empire".

It is worth noting that the appearance of the first two model names seems to be simultaneous with the disappearance of the "LP" designation and is closer to 1930 than 1920.

The "Artist" was the "new" model (still theory..) perhaps with a modified bore? The simple numerical serial sequence covered both Empire and Artist models until the numbers reached about 20,000, then the letter designation was introduced due to the higher production numbers during the 30s and from there on, the models have separate numerical sequences with "H" designating the Empire, "M" designating the Artist (theory without more hard evidence). Then a new model was introduced that was somewhere between the two and that was the "L" model, which became the new Artist. The "M" model continued but was renamed the Brilliante? This last statement is almost certainly what happened because as soon as we see the Brilliante model, it carries the M designation, and Artist models have either no letter (earliest) an "M" prefix (middle period for the model), or an "L" prefix (later models after "M" was renamed Brilliante).

I haven't inspected enough of these to know just what the differences are that constitute a particular model. I am beginning to think it is probably in the bore specifications. Early on I thought that only certain models could get the silver plated keys, but then I found an Empire with silver plated keys. For a while it appeared that LP B and Empire models both had bakelite bells; but the Empire with silver-plated keys also has a wooden bell. None of these appear to have substituted parts and all have matching trademark styles on all of the parts. There are also two very distinctive key-work styles and those don't appear to be tied to any particular model, but perhaps might be tied to a particular period of manufacture? And then there are the ones that are clearly marked as imports from either Germany or France and these are not the early ones, but appear to be post WW2 and some of those have two serials on both joints.

It is far easier to follow the history of a maker like C.G. Conn or H. Selmer, Paris. Conn had only two serial sequences for the entire history and Selmer's sequence is very logical. Breaking Penzel Mueller's system requires raising Alan Turing from the dead almost.

The timeline will become more complete even if only a few people add entries now and then. I have noticed that since I have been sending questions about the serials to sellers that don't provide it up front, many are now including that information in the auction listings and a few have even commented that they visited this site looking for date of manufacture information. That has helped me fill in the blanks, but what really helps is when an original owner reports a story or when someone has a dated advertisement or part of the paper work. Believe it or not, some of the most helpful information has come from reed envelopes that have music store stamps on them. In those early decades, Americans were not so transient. Most students bought an instrument from a local music store and continued to buy reeds from the same local store. If it's a pro instrument, then it might have toured, but many pro players toured only regionally and still bought reeds at home. Googling the names and addresses of those stores sometimes turns up historical advertising references in archived newspapers. One can find out what era the store was in business. Some of them were in business for decades, some are still in business. When one finds a sole proprietor then it's often just a few decades.

And then there are quite a few instruments that have military band designations of one sort or another. Small companies like PM continued to make musical instruments during the wars while large factories like Conn were converted to war machinery production temporarily. H.N. White and Conn made less of those instruments because their factories were diverted to war efforts while Bettoney, Penzel Mueller continued to make band instruments for the military bands. We can infer that when we see a large grouping of serials that are also "US" stamped in large letters that these are war production periods. These groups of military instruments, mostly Brilliante "M" models, also have serials that support the theory that models had separate numerical sequences. The production numbers were simply too high for there to be only one numerical sequence after the introduction of the letter prefixes.

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Online DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Crown Jewel: Full Boehm Penzel in A
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2016, 07:14:31 PM »
Hey silversorcerer, have you considered writing a book or something?  Your wealth of knowledge of clarinets is incredibly impressive, and would be great in an illustrated book!
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
Irvine, California, United States