Saxophone Forum


by selmerfan
(67 posts)
13 years ago

How to tell if it's relacquered...

I have a Selmer Mark VI alto that I bought in high school from Randy at Tenor Madness. It has about 70% lacquer remaining and the inside of the bell appears to have been stripped of all lacquer. It's a 141xxx, BTW. The remaing lacquer has a very even relfection to it with sharp engraving on the bell, the only thing that makes me even raise the question is that just above the serial number, which is very crisp and sharp, are the patent numbers, which are definitely discernible and visible, but not as deeply marked as the serial number, which makes me wonder if it was relacquered long ago. Randy has done all of my work on this horn, there are no dings, one re-solder, not by Randy, and it plays fantastic, with the factory F# key. I'm just wondering if there are any other thing to look for to tell if it's a relacquer job, I don't think it is, and Randy has never mentioned that it looks like a relacquer. He has valued it at $4500-$5000, he sold it to me for $2700 ten years ago. :) Willie

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  1. by selmerfan
    (67 posts)

    13 years ago

    Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

    I checked out some other Mark VI's with regard to the patent numbers that I KNOW are original lacquer. The imprint depth varies widely, and mine isn't the shallowest, so I'm sure it's not a relacquer job. It's a great playing horn for jazz, so it doesn't really matter, and I'll never sell it anyway selmerfan

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  2. by Jazzhound
    (6 posts)

    2 years ago

    Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

    I'm having a similar experience.  I bought a Selmer BA alto (#27110) about 4 years ago, and for insurance purposes am trying to appraise it.  I love how it plays.  Its the best alto I've ever owned.  I've owned several vintage Buescher altos, some original laquer (and showing it) and some re-laquered that looked very nice at first.  It has been my experience that the corrosion eventually always comes back through on re-laquered instruments.  As for my current Selmer, it is in about the best condition I've ever seen a horn from that era.  It spent the majority of its life in California with a "professional-playing" owner, and the seller (the owner's daughter) believed it was original laquer.  I've been playing it here and there for weddings and big band events, and so far, it still looks like it rolled off the factory floor (except for the expected small wear by the right hand thumb hook and palm keys.  The engraving is deep and there are no dents or pitting anywhere.  I am only questioning because it is almost too good to be true.   

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  3. by Lefty
    (21 posts)

    13 years ago

    Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

    Is this something like the question who did my wife have sex with before we were married? If you must know, will the wrong answer somehow compromise her performance, the sax, that is? Or why don't you just ask Randy? If there is no commerce to be transacted on the horn, that is to say that you are happy with it and not going to sell it soon, WHAT DOES IT MATTER?? I can get behind the idea that maybe your performance on this sax might suffer if you are less than completely confident in it AND its finish, but this is a mental health issue and not one for vintage saxophone forums. Lefty

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    1. by chiamac
      (586 posts)

      13 years ago

      Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

      my jeep is worth 5-6k, but why does price matter? it's almost like gold/plat prices lately, they are going up like mad, but the bubble will burst. same with these saxs.

      Reply To Post Yahoo! AIM


    2. by selmerfan
      (67 posts)

      13 years ago

      Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

      Just curious, take it easy Lefty. One of the reasons is that I have a separate insurance rider on all of my horns, and they ask for value updates periodically. And if I want to commit true heresy, I will hereby reveal that I also own a Serie III alto that is only outdone by the Mark VI when I need to play lead alto in a big band, then I reach for the VI, other than that, legit, solo, and combo settings, it's my Serie III. As for the mental health issues, I'm a candidate for ordained ministry in the ELCA, I had to go through extensive psychological evaluation and testing before being accepted, and I came through quite well, with a professional opinion to back it up. :) It was just a curiosity question and one to spark a discussion, and yes, because there are vintage horns that have been relacquered and marketed as original, it IS a discussion for vintage sax forums in that respect. selmerfan PS I fully intend to ask Randy about the shallow engraving next time I have it in his shop, he usually has a pretty good answer and explanation for such little idiosyncracies about horns.

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      1. by chiamac
        (586 posts)

        13 years ago

        Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

        sorry, I was cranky and maybe hungover =)

        Reply To Post Yahoo! AIM


        1. by selmerfan
          (67 posts)

          13 years ago

          Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

          That's alright, apology accepted, forgiveness given. selmerfan

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      2. by Sax Mom
        (964 posts)

        13 years ago

        Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

        Where are you in the candidacy process? Do we expect you on the roster soon, or are you just beginning?

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        1. by selmerfan
          (67 posts)

          13 years ago

          Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

          Whew, what a direction change in the thread! :) I have been accepted for entraance into candidacy, and have been accepted at Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, IA for fall of 2006. Going is contingent upon my wife find a music teaching job in the Dubuque area full-time for fall of 2006, until then, we'll stay where we're at in Hampton, IA until a position opens over there. Not going to be on the roster anytime soon, sorry. Lots of schooling to go yet! selmerfan PS Thanks for the interest!

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        2. by Sax Mom
          (964 posts)

          13 years ago

          Re: How to tell if it's relacquered...

          Hey, Selmerfan, blessings in your journey.

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