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 Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-23 18:42

I am curious if anyone knows of Buffet manufacturing insturments with no markings on them except the serial number?

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: tedm 
Date:   2007-01-23 18:47

I don't know about that, but I know my Buffet which has the logo markings and all has a weird s/n, with one more digit than B12's are supposed to have according to their database, very weird. Bought used from the UK.

2 Artley 17S & 1 Buffet B12 Crampon

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-23 21:00

Thanks for your post, It may be helpful :)

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Ken Shaw 2017
Date:   2007-01-23 21:21

During the transition to the R-13, Buffet made some instruments with logos but without serial numbers. I assume they were prototypes, bought at the factory.

Buffet also sold R-13s without logos to other companies to be used as stencils, though these are relatively uncommon. The Olds Opera model from around 1960, for example, was an R-13.

Ken Shaw

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-23 21:37

The reason I ask this question is my son's teacher insists the clarinet he lost (unmarked except a serial number) is a Buffet, and that I must replace it with a buffet from his store of choice. I have purchased a selmer (with a logo) to replace it with but the instructor does not seem content with it.

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: GBK 
Date:   2007-01-23 21:52

I'd ask to see some documentation to show that the clarinet was a Buffet (R13).

Where was clarinet originally purchased from? Call the store.

Does he have the original bill of sale?

Or, a receipt from the purchaser, if it was used when he bought it?

Did he have it listed on his insurance policy? If so - ask to see the policy.

etc... etc...


...GBK

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-23 22:12

Excellent suggestion, This was my initial thought. I wanted to get the input from the community before going there. It also dawned on me to contact Buffet, which could take some time to get a response, however so far it seems that this is an egregious error on the instructors part.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-01-23 22:20

I thought Buffet were sticklers for making sure all sections carried their logo.

I know some B&H clarinets never carried any logos but still had 'Made In England' and the serial number, and some older Italian and Czech clarinets were never stamped apart from the serial number.

Was this Buffet new or used when you bought it?

Chris.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-23 22:22

It was used and in fair condition when it was loaned to my son from the school.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: tedm 
Date:   2007-01-23 23:51

This may be far fetched, but is there a chance that my one-off Buffet Crampon B12 with extra digit in S/N is rare? proto?

2 Artley 17S & 1 Buffet B12 Crampon

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Jack Kissinger 
Date:   2007-01-24 04:57

What was the serial number?

Best regards,
jnk

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-01-24 05:22

Cygnus, are you sure it was a Buffet, or were you lead to believe that by the instructor or the school?


tedm, I assume you mean your B12 has a seven figure serial number, whereas most usually have six figures.

Chris.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-24 06:30

I don't have the serial number, because when I INSISTED on a police report being filed, they failed to provide a serial number.

I have already purchased a Selmer in an attempt to do the right thing (replacing a noname clarinet with a brand name one already gives him an upgrade) however he insists that it was a buffet that was lost. A most unethical man

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-01-24 07:17

It's a shame you have no detailed pictures of the clarinet in question, as I'm sure that several of us on here could say if it was a Buffet or not.

Strange that with it being a school's instrument, they have no record of it's serial number in their books, and it should be covered by the school's insurance against loss or damage.

Chris.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-24 15:04
Attachment:  clarinet.jpg (216k)

Actually I do have a photo... Please don't give me static about assembly or how it was being held. the picture was taken the day he got it :) he has since developed nicely and wows his family (even the skeptics) with his talent.

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

Post Edited (2007-01-24 15:16)

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-01-24 15:29

That's not a Buffet at all - it's most likely to be a Chinese clarinet that goes under many different names (and can be bought off eBay for under $100) - or have no name at all in this instance.

A Buffet B12 is a lot more expensive than this one, and much better build quality.

Chris.

Post Edited (2007-01-24 15:44)

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Ken Shaw 2017
Date:   2007-01-24 15:56

No Buffet I know of has "jump" trill keys. The photo shows the top trill key arching over the next-to-top key, with the pad cup pointing up rather than off to the side. Also, the body surface has the bright shine of plastic. Notice the lights reflected on the barrel and the bell.

School instruments are ALWAYS inventoried. Offer the teacher a used Vito, or the Selmer you got, either of which is probably a lot better than the lost instrument, and tell him you'll buy a Buffet if and only if he can prove from the inventory that that's what the instrument was. Be polite, but don't let him rip you off.

Ken Shaw

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-01-24 18:07

Only the Buffet B10 and E11 C and Eb clarinets have inline trills, but their design is more elaborate than the one pictured, which isn't a Buffet in the slightest.

Cygnys, I don't like the sound of things here at all. You're being asked to replace a cheap Chinese clarinet with a tried and trusted one (Buffet B12) for a much higher cost.

Chris.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: johnnymo0829 
Date:   2007-01-24 19:11

what school is lending an r-13 to a student? Was it a college? if its a grade school or elementary please let me know so I can go back and repeat the 3rd grade. If it is the school's then there should be some kind of a reciept for it or something to check against. I'd say check with the principal if the teacher can't produce one

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-24 21:00

I am most grateful for your input. These references should be more than enough to defend myself from the selfish, and unreasonable requests of this instructor (I understand these insturments actually belong to him). I will attempt to deal with him as soon as the Selmer arrives through the mail. I anticipate needing to do some minor work to the clarinet before I give it to him.

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Kruzi 
Date:   2007-01-24 22:37

@cygnus: The clarinet shown on the photo is exactly the same model as the cheap wooden noname clarinet my father bought for me eight years ago. It has also a "serial number" stamped into almost every part (even under the keys!) except the mouthpiece, bell and barrel. The "serial number" of my clarinet is 21 and IMHO this means it was put together on assembly line no.21 rather than it was the 21st instrument build in one of the huge musical instruments factories in Shanghai where most of their zillions of R13-copies have their origin. This instrument in particular is made of african Mopani wood which was painted black and then got a clear polyurethane laquer sealing on the in- and outside of the instrument.Making it look very plastic. The wood got the black paintjob because unlike rosewood, Mopani darkens very unregular and this doesn`t look that nice on an instrument. The laquer sealing prevents moisture from entering the wooden material - advantage: you can play for hours and hours - if you have an instrument that is willing enough to let you play which most of the chinese R13-knockoffs don`t even think about;-).
The disadvantage is: you can`t oil the instrument except if you want to destroy the laquer surface. And one day the wood will just crack - as it has happened to the barrel of my clarinet twice. The clear laquer finish was put on quite dilettantic, too - it was sprayed over the bell`s lower ring so that one can`t polish the metal surface.
The keyworks are made of silver-plated nickle silver and look quite rough and sturdy - not elegant like those of a R13. The mouthpiece and the factory setup of the chinese horn made it unplayable - with a better mouthpiece, a new barrel from a real Buffet clarinet (in fact, the Buffet barrel had cost more than the whole chinese clarinet) and some pad and cork adjustments it has become an entry-level student instrument that was finally acceptable and has accompanied me for several years. Today I`m still using it as a backup instrument or when marching with the band outside in heavy weather. I don`t know what else to do with it, it`s practically worthless, has no resale value at all if not for firewood, and I have spend several hundred € for feeding and care plus I got some sweet memories of it that I don`t want to part with the weird thing. It`s got a nickname, I call it my howling chopstick;-)

Greetings,
Kruzi

Take what you`ve got and make the best of it!


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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-01-24 23:08

If it's a Selmer Prelude, then that's pretty much the same clarinet as the 'no-name' one - only you're paying more for the name 'Selmer' than you are for the clarinet.

If he wants a replacement, there's loads of cheapies on eBay that are a lot less than a Selmer Prelude (even though they're the same thing) but definitely don't get a Buffet as a replacement for him as he'd be the one that's got the better deal there at your expense.

Besides, his insurance should cover it, and the insurance excess is probably not far off what one of those Chinese clarinets costs - if he's put it on his policy as a Buffet, then that's fraud.

Chris.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-25 04:16

I'm unsure what the model number is of the unit I picked up, actually it only went for 31 dollars. It is branded with the Selmer and the Bundy names; and from what I hear it is a respectable school band instrument. The point that grabs my attention is about the school insurance covering this item and I will check that lead first.

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-01-25 09:53

Bundy clarinets are much better than the Chinese ones by miles - I know Bundys are pretty utilitarian as clarinets go, but they're worth having done up and will last much longer.

Before cheap Chinese imports, Bundy, Artley, Vito and several other US and European and Japanese built student clarinets were the ones most people started on and the ones most schools owned and teachers recommended. Well maintained, these will last for years, though the current crop of cheapies are not worth repairing once they're past it as the replacement cost is a probably much less than having them serviced, and most repairers don't want to touch them.

Chris.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-25 15:58

I agree, and so it goes with the use it and toss it mentality with everything else in the world. I'm supprized to see it come to the music world as well now. :-^)

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-01-25 16:15

A glance at the clarinet listings on eBay says it all.

But in amongst all the dross are some hidden gems.

Chris.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-01-25 17:20

I've been eyeballing a german manufactured knockoff of a buffet (also unmarked) for my son to keep as a beater, his grandparents bought him a very nice b-12 which I think would be wise to keep him from using other than concerts and test performances.

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-02-22 21:19

Epilogue:

I wanted to make sure I had documentation to the extortion so I sent an email to the instructor in question. I requested that he document the missing clarinet and that the serial number match the police report. Not only did he say the Selmer would be an adequate replacement, the missing clarinet also resurfaced in a very public place. Now I’ll work on the Selmer and try my hand at re-padding and adjusting a clarinet (I tend to be highly skilled at mechanical repairs and should adapt quite easily to this task.

Thank you guys! I appreciate your input
.
Chris P, would you be willing to give me a little tech support if I get stuck? Please email macamon@gmail.com

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: D 
Date:   2007-02-22 21:39

flipin'ek! And this instructor is still teaching? I though you had to be practically an angel to work with kids these days!



Post Edited (2007-02-22 21:40)

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2007-02-22 23:36

Flippin' 'eck indeed!

Chris.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: BobD 
Date:   2007-02-23 14:08

How does one lose a clarinet?

Bob Draznik

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: tictactux 2017
Date:   2007-02-23 15:12

> How does one lose a clarinet?

"Forget somewhere" might be a better term for "lose".

--
Ben

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: EuGeneSee 
Date:   2007-02-23 15:21

. . . sort of like the way the guy left his $million Stradivarius on the roof of the car when changing a flat tire, then drove off with it still up there. I read somewhere that in an attempt to recover the Strad he was suing the person who found the it beside the road, but never heard the result.

Wonder where the "public place" was where the clarinet was "found" . . . a ditch, maybe?

Eu

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-02-23 16:32

The instrument resurfaced in the school gym almost a month after it's "disappearance" Just for giggles, the following email was sent to me this morning. Mind you, these are BEGINNING students in sixth to eighth grade… A bit discouraging on beginning students I would say. [yeah]
===============================================

"I would like to start this email with an important message - PLEASE PRACTICE daily for approx. 30 minutes. I'm worried about a few sections (trumpets) who are getting behind.

Main Point: This morning we had a severe and strange gradebook problem. Now all but 4 students show F's on their grades. We are attempting to rectify this problem. Sorry about any inconvenience this may have caused. If you musician asks, you may want to tell them to simply practice a lot more in order to raise their grades...but in all seriousness, we are working on fixing the problem.

TB"

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

Post Edited (2007-02-23 16:33)

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Gordon (NZ) 
Date:   2007-02-24 00:30

If it happens again, buy the cheapest nastiest Chinese, Indian or Turkish no-name clarinet you can find, and just tell the guy it is a Buffet. :-)

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Cygnus 
Date:   2007-02-24 01:15

Nah, I gave the piece of crap back to him and have my son taking a real buffet to school now. He's dreamed of having a buffet since he began playing so he is much more protective of it than he was the burrowed one (although that's not how I taught him to be)
*shrug* send 'em to school, buy them books they eat the covers.

I just think it's hilarious that he's so vicious with a beginning class that all but 4 students are failing *smirk*

CygnusX-1, the swan constellation, a place I might call home

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: clarnibass 
Date:   2007-02-24 04:27

Notice this part: "must replace it with a buffet from his store of choice."
For example, a local teacher here have pretty much all his students buy new instruments of a specific brand from a specific store, because he gets a lot of credit (or even money?!) for every instrument one of his students buy there. I won't be surprised if that was the reason in your case too.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: tictactux 2017
Date:   2007-02-24 08:25

clarnibass wrote:

> For example, a local teacher here have pretty much all his
> students buy new instruments of a specific brand from a
> specific store, because he gets a lot of credit (or even
> money?!) for every instrument one of his students buy there.

That'd be reason for a termination without notice here. If a teacher does that repeatedly he won't ever find a teaching job again in a public school.

--
Ben

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Lelia Loban 2017
Date:   2007-02-24 12:43

I see times haven't changed. My grade school band teacher, back in the late 1950s, took kickbacks for pushing Bundy instruments from a local music store that he touted as offering a "special price" to his students. It was a special price, all right: especially high.

He was such an excellent band teacher, and so well-liked personally, that somehow he managed not to get fired, but there was a major stink and the school district put a stop to that arrangement pronto. Bundy clarinets from that period were quite bad (though the more recent ones, now re-named under the Selmer, USA brand, are considerably improved). My dad had suspected a kickback arrangement, had investigated cometitors' prices and had bought me a Conn from a different store. (He remembered Conn from days of yore, although unfortunately, by the time he bought my Conn, C. G. Conn's widow had sold the brand name and that instrument wasn't much good, either (still isn't; I've kept it for nostalgia's sake), but at least it was an honest sale.

Btw, back to unmarked Buffets: People who buy old instruments will sometimes run into wooden clarinets marked with the logo of "C. Fischer, New York." This was a large store that imported clarinets branded with the store name. Some of these clarinets, including both Albert and Boehm models, are Buffets. Fischer catalogues from early in the 20th century advertised that they imported their higher-priced models of Fischer clarinets from Buffet. The way to tell is to compare the metal parts with marked Buffets from the same period (and the way to tell the period is often by the type of case, if the original hasn't been replaced--cases are a whole 'nother arcane subject). The contours of the tenon bands and the shapes of the keys and posts look a little bit different from one clarinet brand to another. Those old C. Fischer clarinets can be well worth buying as good players, even though the lack of the Buffet brand name will keep the price low. It's an excellent way to buy a vintage instrument at a discount price, if the playing quality matters more than the brand name.

Lelia
http://www.scoreexchange.com/profiles/Lelia_Loban
To hear the audio, click on the "Scorch Plug-In" box above the score.

Post Edited (2007-02-24 12:52)

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Ken Shaw 2017
Date:   2007-02-24 20:38

Lelia -

I have a couple of Buffets from the 1920s with the Buffet trademark and C. Fischer stamped on the bell to show that Fischer had the exclusive import rights. I didn't know that Fischer also sold stenciled Buffets without the Buffet name.

Dee wrote several years ago that Fisher clarinets not stamped "Made in France" were mostly Preufer stencils. http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=150432&t=150392

Ken Shaw

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Dee 
Date:   2007-02-25 01:29

My Pruefer has both the name Pruefer on it and Fischer.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Lelia Loban 2017
Date:   2007-02-25 12:58

I don't disagree with any of that. I've seen Fischers that are marked both Fischer and Buffet, and also unmarked Fischers that clearly are not Buffets. (In fact, I own a hard rubber C. Fischer in Bb with no other company logo that doesn't look anything like a Buffet--and plays like a pig, btw!) However, I think the company's rules about branding may have changed over time. For instance, I own an ebony, "C. Fischer, New York" Albert-system clarinet, with no other manufacturer marking, with metal-work and keywork identical in every way except the size (the Fischer is a Bb) to the metal on my 1898 Buffet Paris Eb that's branded as such. I'm convinced that this Fischer is a Buffet-manufactured instrument. I've seen some friends' C. Fischers that also appear to be Buffets.

Lelia
http://www.scoreexchange.com/profiles/Lelia_Loban
To hear the audio, click on the "Scorch Plug-In" box above the score.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: modernicus 
Date:   2008-02-06 13:10

Yep, I have a clarinet I bought off of the auction site that is marked "Carl Fischer" and "Excelsior" but I am 99% sure it is a Buffet. There is a thread hanging around somwhere that describes the details of the keywork,etc... What is unusual is that it is fairly obvious where the clarinet had other logos sanded/buffed off. You can see an actual depression where they were and even make out a few faint traces of letters. This clarinet was filthy, and I bet hadn't been played in 30-50 years so I'm pretty sure this wasn't done recently to fool somebody. Besides, I got it for less than $50 dollars. It really wasn't in that bad of shape and I should have it up and playing soon! Also, I think I read somewhere that people imported some "filed down" Buffets because Carl Fischer had exclusive importer rights? Just the Buffet name causes bidding fits on the auction site, even for High Pitch instruments sometimes (strange) but some unmarked ones that really look like Buffets get looked over.

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Ken Shaw 2017
Date:   2008-02-06 16:29

modernicus -

My Buffet keywork description is here: http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=11130&t=11130

One addition: on the pre-R-13 instruments, the bottom of throat Ab key and the right end (viewed from the front) of the throat A key share a single post. On the R-13, each key has two posts.

I'm not aware that importers who wanted to get around Carl Fischer's exclusive license removed the Fischer stamp, and I doubt that anyone would remove a Buffet logo, since that would reduce the resale price. Certainly there have been thieves who took the serial number off of stolen instruments to prevent tracking.

If you can post some pictures of the front, back and sides, with closeups of the logo and serial number areas, we may be able to help you identify the maker.

Ken Shaw

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: modernicus 
Date:   2008-02-06 20:05

Yes, it was your post in the link I was referring too (temporary loss of mental faculties). I'm not sure where I got the idea that there were "filed down" Buffets. I actually saw what I believe was a C clarinet on ebay recently (listed as a Bb but had "C LP" stamped on it) that had many of the characteristics from your posting as far keywork was concerned (hard to tell from a few pics). It looked like the trademarks had been filed/sanded off at some point in time. To what end, I do not know, as it didn't bring in a fortune or anything. As soon as I get my Carl Fischer reassembled, I will post some pictures. After cleaning, oiling, and polishing the keywork, the components are looking great-it won't even be recognizable as its old neglected self! Without having it in my hands, just about everything matches your description except that it has no recess for the register key, but it has even the initial inside a pad cup (yes, it has the doughnut key also). I can't find any evidence of a serial number existing whatsoever. It could be worn off- this thing was well played. It looks very much like pictures of other older Buffets I have seen on ebay and elsewhere on the net. I could be mistaken, as I am just starting to get into these old clarinets. Again, I have no clue why trademarks would be filed off (serial numbers would make sense in the case of theft), let alone selectively in this case. Perhaps it never had a Buffet logo, but was custom engraved/stamped for a specific owner, then later sold?



Post Edited (2008-02-06 20:58)

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Vytas 
Date:   2008-02-06 21:30

I do not believe Buffet sold R-13s (or any other PROFESSIONAL) clarinets without logos to other companies to be used as stencils. I've seen many claims like this trough the years. None of them turned out to be true.

Vytas Krass
Clarinet Repair
Professional clarinet technician
Custom clarinet mouthpiece maker
Former professional clarinet player




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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Ken Shaw 2017
Date:   2008-02-06 21:59

Vytas -

I have played at least one R-13 stencil -- an Olds Opera from around 1960. It was "common knowledge" among commercial travelers in band instruments that at least that model was an R-13.

Ken Shaw

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: Vytas 
Date:   2008-02-06 22:19

Ken,

I have to see it to believe it!

I've seen several "Olds Opera" clarinets (with the same claim) on the auction site. None of them were R13

Vytas Krass
Clarinet Repair
Professional clarinet technician
Custom clarinet mouthpiece maker
Former professional clarinet player




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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: modernicus 
Date:   2008-02-07 01:53

What about the pre R-13 era though? I've seen a "Henry Gunckel" being represented as being made by Buffet (Crampon). There is, of course, the confusing Auguste Buffet factor...

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: BobD 
Date:   2008-02-07 10:56

I haven't read all the posts to this old item but I do have an older wood horn that is a Holton that also has stamping on it indicating it was made by Buffet. It does have intonation and other issues that caused me to discontinue restoration.
Holton, of course, was a well respected instrument maker in Elkhorn, Wisc.

Bob Draznik

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: CharlesDance1721 
Date:   2019-05-12 21:41

Hi Guys,

First time poster!

Could anyone identify the below?

It is unmarked, but has a serial number of 115800 and made in England. Appears to be well made.

Thanks in advance!

07990013565

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 Re: Unmarked Buffet Clarinets?
Author: CharlesDance1721 
Date:   2019-05-12 21:45

Hi guys! First timer here....

Could anyone identify this: https://ibb.co/cDbFj38

It is unmarked but has just the serial number (115800) and made in England.

Appears to be well made and in perfect condition.

Thanks in advance.
C

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