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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000494.txt from 2000/09

Subj: Re: [kl] No response from J. Marioneau
Date: Fri, 15 Sep 2000 16:41:37 -0400

Yes, I have been quite busy. It's marching season and I my day job (as
well as many nights) is that of high school band director. That is which is
why I have not responded to your first inquiry. It is only my opinion
(others may have a different opinion) that a new instrument is generally
better than an old one if you are talking about instruments of the same
quality. I think a new student line instrument is not as good as an old
professional line instrument. "Old" is also a relative term. I just think
that a professional instrument made in the 50's that has been swabbed for
many years and not had the wood well taken care of would generally not be as
good an instrument as a professional instrument that is newly made. It is my
guess that the tooling in the factories would be more exact and better now
than it was 50 years ago. All of the companies have probably made
improvements over the years and tweaked things to make their product better.
Of course, sometimes they make them worse. I guess a master craftsman can
redo the bore, fill in or bore out tone holes if needed, install all new
springs, replate the keys, take the slack out of the key action, put in new
pads and regulate key heights to get proper tuning, experiment with different
barrels and mouthpieces to get the best response, pin and fill cracks if
needed, replace tennon and key corks, and other things I can't think of right
now to make the old instrument as good or better than new.
My point was that I think the money to do all that would better spent on a
new instrument which (IMHO) would be better because of improved technology.
Maybe I am just in the mode of newer should be better. I certainly did not
mean to offend anyone by any statements in this e mail or my previous one or
to start a controversy. There are many opinions about this and I know mine
is the not final word.
James Marioneaux

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