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 Robert Malerne
Author: John Gibson 
Date:   2001-01-21 22:28

What do any of you know about Robert Malerne clarinets? Found one looks more like rosewood than grenadilla 'cause it's more brownish than black. Barrel and bell say Robert Malerne Paris Professional and have a row of four stars...

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 RE: Robert Malerne
Author: Dave Spiegelthal 
Date:   2001-01-22 15:26

I really like Malerne clarinets. I've restored one Malerne Professional wood clarinet (his top model) and it was excellent. I've also restored a couple of Standards (the 'student' model), both were very good for basic instruments, and I've got two more Standards (one wood, and one newer plastic version) on my bench. All were nicely made. Allegedly there was an "Intermediate" model, although I've never seen one. I also just finished restoring a 1940's (?)-vintage Malerne wood bass clarinet, and after a few modifications to correct a couple of response/intonation flaws, it is a wonderful instrument --- one of the best-playing bass clarinets I've personally tried. Check the Sneezy Archives -- there's a long thread about Malerne clarinets, although the writers there were generally more negative about Malernes than I am. Personally, I think Malerne instruments compare favorably with instruments from the "Big 4" (Buffet, Selmer, Leblanc, Yamaha) of the same vintage (up to around 1974 when Malerne went out of business and the factory was bought by SML).

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 RE: Robert Malerne
Author: Dee 
Date:   2001-01-22 21:12

It's my understanding that grenadilla can range in color from a brownish color, sometimes with a reddish hint, to black. Most clarinets are actually stained black to obtain a nice even color. You may have one that was left unstained or where the stain faded away.

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 RE: Robert Malerne
Author: Dave Spiegelthal 
Date:   2001-01-23 15:19

Dee is absolutely right. In fact, on my Malerne bass clarinet, whose serial numbers match between top and bottom joints, the top joint is dark black and the bottom joint is lighter and much more reddish, with considerably more visible grain. It's rather obvious that the otherwise matching joints were made from different pieces of wood, as the top joint seems to have retained a lot more of the black stain than did the bottom joint.

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 RE: Robert Malerne
Author: Bob Arney 
Date:   2001-02-23 23:48

Dave,et al;, I picked up a Robert Malerne off eBay and it looks quite nice. Might be rosewood and is nicely grained. No chips/cracks, etc. I have two questions:1.The number on it is A7634. I can't find a dating table for it in the archives. Does anyone one know what date that would be (just curious). 2. Needs pads and is a "Standard" model. Is it worth putting a lot of money into it for a complete overhaul? (I think I paid top price for a standard already).

I just play for my own amusement and am a much older restart/false uppers and hearing aids. I still have fun so don't say "Give it up and get a life." Got one! Love it.
Bob A

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