Vintage Saxophones | Alto






Conn 26M

Serial # 284,xxx – circa 1938

full Just Saxes overhaul

Finish:  original lacquer (deep, honeyed vintage color, no indication of relacquer)

Overall condition:  mechanically excellent, cosmetically good to very good (notes below)

Voice, response:  typical for 26M — free and vibrant, full, wide and powerful.  This is a lyrical, comfortable 26M, the kind of horn you can get married to forever.

Intonation:  flexible pitch center, very comfortable even scale, better intonation than most 26Ms and 6Ms (less unevenness in the bell tones, more consistent through the midrange)

Ideal owner:  a Conn lover who is more in love with Conn’s performance, less so for collecting — this is what used to be called a “player’s horn.”  Its performance is excellent, and its price is greatly lowered (by about $1000, in this case) compared to other original finish horns that play this well, thanks to some cosmetic drawbacks.

(Please click here for more info and photos)

sold (thank you, K!)



2015-11-20 14.10.34

2015-11-20 14.10.16



Conn 6M

Pre-War, relacquered

Finish:  relacquered, probably 1970s or 1980s – very clean but certainly machine buffed.

Overall condition:  Excellent.

Voice, response:  typical pre-war 6M — full, thick core, broad dynamic range

Intonation:  excellent for the model.  Typically 6M flexible pitch center, even scale.

Pad installation:  old but workable (for a year at least) Conn Reso-Pads with typically sized flat resonators.

Ideal owner:  Conn devotee, big band/swing lover, Charlie Parker follower, you name it.  Can be driven hard for rock/blues, or laid back on for bebop and earlier trad sound.

The long & short:  it’s rare that I make vintage horns available without first fully restoring and overhauling them, but my work plate is very full right now and this horn is playing very nicely as is.  I’ve given it the same kind of play condition servicing that I’d give to any horn purchased used (or off eBay, for example) by a client where the wish was to play the horn and get to know it before considering an overhaul.  I could improve it with an overhaul, but that is generally true of any horn that comes in the door.

(Please click here for more info and photos – link to come)



Buescher 400 Top Hat & Cane

Serial # (to be updated)

full Just Saxes restoration

sold – thank you, Robin!









Modernized King Zephyr Alto – Serial # 336,xxx

Circa 1953, previously owned by professional player

-One of a kind vintage/custom alto.  I’m not aware of any one having ever done a custom-modernization of a Zephyr like this, although to modernize the table is a natural fit thanks to the tonehole layout.

Modernized left hand pinky cluster and bell keys, updated thumb rests, completely restored

I decided to give this alto the full modernization after playing it. When it came in, it was playing well, having been a professional player’s doubling alto, and after tightening it up I just had to update this horn to a fully modern ergonomic template, because it deserves it.

For the right player — a lover of Zephyr altos who just needed one with modern keywork — this will be the end of the line, the end of compromises.


Buescher New Aristocrat Alto

Serial #267,XXX / 01 neck

I have not had a chance to completely disassemble this saxophone yet, but it appears to have all but a couple of its original snap-ins, and all of its gold Norton springs. I have extra Buescher snaps on hand, and will be restoring any missing snaps.

This alto, very close to the same serial number vintage as Rascher’s Aristcrat, does not have the word “New” in the bell engraving. It has the same combination of opposing bell keys and Aristocrat-styled RH side keys as Rascher’s alto (I will put up some photos documenting this soon).

This transitional Aristocrat will be getting a full restoration, including no-buff refinishing, with Ferree’s Buescher snap-in pads (with metal backing, as with original Buescher snap-in pads).

The engraving is very sharp, so I don’t think this was originally silverplated (it is lacquer over brass, now). I suspect it was bare brass release that was later lacquered, but I will know more after I disassemble, and do a little more research.

More Info and Photos coming soon.

Conn Transitional 6M Alto

Rare, No-Tuning Barrel Example

sold – thank you, WS!


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Selmer Mark VI Alto

circa 1955 / Serial #57,XXX

~no longer available~

Thank you, Dr. P!

This is a collector’s condition Mark VI that will run with any Mark VI alto out there. Over time and heavy use, many examples that have been played harder seem to gain a bit of resonance but to have the sound become less focused and compact. This VI has a very whole, compact tone and quick, accurate response. It literally plays like a new horn — a really, really excellent one made by Selmer Paris in 1955.

Click Here for Photo Gallery and More Information

Silver-Plated Conn “Chu Berry” Alto

Original case included

Price TBA after overhaul

Very clean, promising horn. Scheduled for complete overhaul.

More Info and Photos coming soon.

Goldplated Conn “Pre-Chu”


Price TBA after overhaul

Rose-gold finish, very very clean, ornate early engraving, as on other goldplated horns (e.g. “Portrait”) of this era. Unusually free blowing; virtually no resistance. Plating on neck has been retouched, but the neck seems to be original (the original gold plating can be seen around the base of the posts). Only real drawback is a serial # added, as for a school horn, on the back of the body tube. Deserves an overhaul, but plays well as is.

More Info and Photos coming soon.

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