Selmer MK VI 87xxx original US engraved Vintage Player

This horn exudes character and lyricism.  It has the ‘that look’ in droves and it sounds pretty much like it looks in my opinion- just one of those horns.  The serial number is 87xxx, US engraved and lacquered and it is has lived a lot.  It has dings, dents, repairs, blemishes etc.  If you are looking for a mint collector’s item this is definitely not it, but it IS a player.  It very much has a certain complex sound, I would say a darker core and then a shimmering warm edge on top of the sound, and the very quick response that is typical of this model period.

 

The neck is not the original but is an earlier VI model with the low octave saddle, possibly European market earlier VI.  That is what came with the horn and by the look of it, it has likely been with this horn a long time.  I have experimented with late 80k necks on this horn and so far I still like this neck best on this one; it has a certain focus and speed that is beneficial and somehow seems to let the proper character shine.  With this neck it absolutely sounds like an 87k would be expected to, and I think it can even be heard on the video.

I am not enamored of the pads and resos, but I’ve gone through the horn and got it playing quite smoothly.  I can only imagine how amazing it would be with a proper treatment, but it’s going well at the moment and the pads are not old at all.  These mid-late 80k horns are very rarely available now, most who have them are not willing to sell them and everyone is looking for just this serial number.  Collector’s condition examples are extremely expensive, so this, given the serial number is a serious bargain these days.  If this is what you are hunting, don’t sleep.

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Selmer MK VI 142xxx ‘Sanborn’ range original player

This is a prime serial number in the medium bow “Sanborn” popular model period and plays with the normal aggressive cutting quality that these are known for while also having the benefit of the medium bow tuning. It is a consignment horn, a player’s horn with obvious signs of use, showing some cosmetic blemishes but as a player will be fully functional and great.  More info available upon request.

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King Super 20 375xxx Exc. Original Player with HT Overhaul

King Super 20, I think this is right around 1960.  I consider this personally to be the apex of King saxophone production.  While it may no longer be the full pearls period, not as glamorous, I think these horns are the most flexible, open and resonant players.  Some people prefer the single socket neck (tail end of Cleveland and early Eastlake) and they do have a bit more undiluted power, for the complexity of tone vs the resonance these late double socket necks after the full pearls period are my personal favorites.

This horn I did a big restoration on.  It is original finish and in very very good condition, though not perfect.  It has one inobtrusive resoldered post and some truly invisible minor brass work.  Some of the key cups are a bit marred. The horn is very straight. The neck has never been pulled down and it is fitted to perfection.  The action is very light and extremely fast. The pads are a moderately firm setup fitted with nickel plated brass resotech flats.  I set this horn up for myself and have played it to great enjoyment myself.  This is an absolute kicker of a horn, very loud, very complex and very free blowing, can’t lose.

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Otto Link Florida Soprano Slant Signature .063

This is a fairly early (no USA) slant signature Otto Link with the large chamber.  It was stamped 5* with a bit of a thick tip finish,  I was inspired to open it to .063 with a traditional Link facing and a good rail contour.  This plays very big, and wide with a warm darker tone that also has a very fast and concise response. It has a unique singing quality that I think only these have.  I felt that this piece did well with intonation as well, for whatever reason.  It’s a very pretty sound.

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Selmer MK VI 143xxx original very nice condition

This is a fantastic 143k ‘Sanborn’ model period MK VI alto with the “Mark VI” stamp on the side of the body.  These are/were said to be specially good, but I’ve found most of the 140k altos to be great anyhow so I am not so clear on that part.  This horn is in very nice original (USA lacquer and engraving) condition with only one reattached low Eb Key guard foot, that is a very common situation with vintage Selmers.

The pads appear to be quite recent and seated nicely with a verifiable popping at the closing of the keys.  The resonators appear to be nice quality domed nickel plated brass which is a bonus.  The neck is in nearly perfect condition and is model period correct and without a serial number as the 140k’s were made.

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Selmer MK VI Alto 107xxx Excellent in all Aspects

Selmer MK VI alto here that is just exceptional in both condition as well as function.  The lacquer finish is original and is a wonderful bright gold the same as they were made without much darkening.  Physically the horn is in just great condition with no damage or repair that I could find. The original matching  neck has never been pulled and is in very nice shape along with bell rim and bow cap.  You may observe some lacquer wear on one side of the neck but that is just wear, the neck has been structurally unaltered. The lacquer does show some ‘water spots’ dark coloration here and there where we can see it’s age but these are not solders nor evidence of damage.  One area of the bell does show some lacquer breakdown.

This horn is a concise and fast player with a fine balanced projection featuring both nimble aggressiveness as well as complexity of tonal character.  It is a ‘vintage’ tone yet not weighed down by sluggish heaviness of the air stream.  I personally prefer this alto among many but I don’t play enough alto to keep it to myself.  I’ve listed it here mainly because people were asking and it deserves use, it’s very very good.  Years past I struggled with intonation on long bow altos but for whatever reason this, for me, tunes up beautifully.

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Selmer MK VI Tenor original 104xxx

This is going to be a fun one for someone.  It’s original lacquer, been played, shows some history on it, but in good condition and needs a real cleaning and overhaul.  I don’t have time to take care of it at the moment, maybe in t he future but for now I am offering it to someone to make this their special player.  These early 100k tenors just play great; a wonderful balance between quickness, punchy, brightness and vintage complexity.  This is pretty much the end of the early period tonal depth as they started to brighten up the horns (for amplification?)

There is some evidence of a life lived here, a few minor resolders of guard feet and some minor dents and dings, normal stuff.  Overall it looks quite nice with a very warm lacquer color.  It has been sitting and has some corrosion which will clean up nicely with either white vinegar or brass cleaner.  Bright dip would work well here too. There are some pads missing and it’s quite dirty so don’t ask if it plays.  It does not now but it sure will!!  The original (matching serial) neck is in excellent condition, obviously NEVER pulled down. The key pearls are also nice, almost no wear at all. Someone will get a project deal here.

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Selmer MK VII M-body 263xxx huge bright & wide, great player

Here we have a MK VII tenor, first I’ve played.  Word has it the “M” Prefix serials play better.  I cannot say if that is true but this plays really quite big and wide with a bright forward  presence that is very satisfying.  The pads are older but I’ve got it running at the moment.  I would suggest an eventual overhaul once played enough to decide how you want it set up.

This horn has lived, has normal bumps and bruises and some repairs but overall in fine shape for a player. Neck is in excellent condition, never bent it appears. The attached video illustrates the response pretty well, was a surprise to me.

 

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