Saxophone Forum


by 10mTenorman
(2 posts)
10 years ago

The Year of the Conn

Hello, I have had my Conn 10m for some time now and I love it, but I have been growing curious of the year. I have heard rumors that some Conn's during the late 60's through 70's and possibly 80's were as good as a Bundy sax. My Conn was made in Elkhart Indiana, so I know that it wasn't it that time period since I heard that the Conn depression was when they were made it Mexico. Anyway, the serial # is C09357. I have gotten many complements on this sax, and alot more recently since I got my otto link Mouthpiece, but I was still curious about the exact year. Any helpin would be hot! Thanks!

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  1. by saxismyaxe
    (574 posts)

    10 years ago

    Re: The Year of the Conn

    Your horn was made between 1963/1964, and yes these are indeed still good 10M models. They have underslung octave keys, sheetmetal keyguards, no rolled tone holes or ladyface engraving, however they are 10Ms through and through just like their earlier brethren. Same sound and feel. The term Mexi-Conn is a bit misleading, as these horns were actually made at Conn's Nogales, AZ plant (on the border with Mexico). It is safe to say that horns made after around 1968/1969 dropped in quality to such an extent that they are not worth serious consideration. In actuality, the 70's and 80's marked the WORST time in Conn's history. Conn never really regained it's previously deserved reputation in the Saxophone market, to this day. I have 10Ms from the early 30s through to my 1967 10M, and the last one plays and sounds every bit as great as my prime vintage horn. Saxophonists are starting to discover these and other "sleeper" horns, what with the internet, Ebay etc. Hang on to yours, as they will become more and more coveted as time goes by. Mike.

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    1. by saxismyaxe
      (574 posts)

      10 years ago

      Re: The Year of the Conn

      "The term Mexi-Conn is a bit misleading, as these horns were actually made at Conn's Nogales, AZ plant (on the border with Mexico)." By these horns, I mean models such as the Director or "Shooting Star" student horns, not your 10M. Your horn was of course, as you have rightly stated, made in Elkhart, IN. I just wanted to clarify that info.

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      1. by 10mTenorman
        (2 posts)

        10 years ago

        Re: The Year of the Conn

        Thanks, I really love the horn and I don't think I would ever sell it, but because of Connsaxman I want a 1948 'naked lady' tenor as well. Anyway, thanks alot!

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        1. by connsaxman_jim
          (2336 posts)

          10 years ago

          Re: The Year of the Conn

          I saw a 1948 10M naked lady on ebay a few nights ago that looked really nice for $1500. Even the later 10's are good horns, as I don't believe any of the 10M's were made in Mexico or even Nogales. Conn started moving production to Nogales in 1969. After 1972, they started moving production across the border into Mexico, and later models WERE made in Mexico and were stamped Mexico above the thumb rest. After Daniel Henkin took Conn back from MacMillan in 1980 He started closing the Conn factories in Mexico and returned Conn to Elkhart, Indiana. Unfortunately, the Selmer Snobs had already taken over Elkhart when they bought out Buescher in 1963. With the poor reputation of Conn after the Macmillan years, and Selmer cornering the market, Daniel Henkin was fighting a losing battle. He sold Conn to UMI, which also became part of Selmer. After Carl Greenleaf retired in 1949, the Conn company really started going down hill. They had the market! They also had the technology, with some of the greatest saxophonists of all time helping to design new instruments. Unfortunately, the research wasn't put into production fast enough. When Leland Greenleaf stepped up in 1959, the company was in serious financial trouble, and Leland felt that the only way Conn would survive was to expand and produce other musical instruments, including organs, guitars and drums; having aquired Ludwig. By 1969, Selmer had a hold on the school market with their Buescher Bundy line, and Leland feared a bitter take over by Selmer, selling the company to Macmillan. Interesting history. The Selmer company is very shrude in the way they do business!

          Reply To Post Yahoo!