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 Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: KathyM (---.mpls.qwest.net - (Qwest Communications) Minneapolis, MN United States)
Date:   2011-04-02 20:11

My 11th grade daughter has been playing the oboe but borrowed a school bassoon over Christmas break. She loved it and picked it up so quickly that she played it in the school concert in February. In March, she auditioned for and got in the higher level band as a bassoonist. This means that she will be playing every other day for 1 1/2 hours all of next school year. Currently, she is using a school bassoon, and it leaves much to be desired.

We'd love to buy her a bassoon. On Monday, we are driving quite a ways to look at a wood 3013 Fox Renard bassoon (without the high D key). I looked on the Internet and only was able to determine that, based on serial number, it was made in 1973. I talked with the seller who told me that she last played it 11 years ago when she was in high school, and her parents bought it from the original owner.

My daughter does not plan to major in music in college, but she loves band and is likely to continue playing in college and even after college. I'd love to have a repair person look at the bassoon, but we are meeting in the only music store in a town that is halfway between our two locations. The music store has a repair person who works from home, so we are on our own and will have to figure out if the bassoon is worth buying. If anyone has any suggestions, I would sure appreciate them! I've always been able to have a repair person look at an instrument beforehand.

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: CocoboloKid (63.116.214.---)
Date:   2011-04-05 15:13

I think perhaps the first thing we should establish is your budget...it would be very hard to recommend anything without knowing which pricing points to work with. :)

Without knowing that, if she plans to play for her own enjoyment (and the bassoon is a VERY joyous instrument to play!) into adulthood, she will probably at the minimum want a bassoon with a high D key. As her technique develops and she begins to play with community orchestras, chamber ensembles, or just wants to start working on some of the solo rep, she'll be glad she has one.

Charles Double Reed has a couple decent bassoons at a very reasonable price that would be perfectly adequate for her to use for many years. http://www.charlesmusic.com

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: KathyM (---.mpls.qwest.net - (Qwest Communications) Minneapolis, MN United States)
Date:   2011-04-23 00:17

Well, I ended up calling Fox, and the bassoon expert who had worked there since the late 1970s went back and forth on whether or not to buy it. It did not have a high D key. What he recommended was a Fox above 15,000 to 16,000 because Fox got better over the years. She does want to play bassoon for many years, and I'd love to buy her one, but we've got college expenses, car expenses, ortho expenses, etc. This is a nice to have rather than a must have. I may try to be very patient and see what might come up at pawn shops or estate sales. She really, really enjoys the bassoon, so I'd like to buy her one that is all her own. If anyone else has advise, please let me know. Thanks!

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: concertmaster3 (---.triad.res.rr.com - (Road Runner) Winston Salem, NC United States)
Date:   2011-04-24 11:16

the Takeda bassoon brand might also be something you can take a good look at. The model 2 sells for just over $3,000 brand new at mmimports.com, and has some great features (whisper-key lock, double low C plate, and High D). I've seen a lot of posts about these on the idrs.org forums also (International Double Reed Society). What's the price range that you're looking at?

Ron Ford
Woodwind Specialist
http://maestromusician.com

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: KathyM (---.mpls.qwest.net - (Qwest Communications) Minneapolis, MN United States)
Date:   2011-04-25 02:35

I was targeting $1,000. I have purchased many used instruments for my children: a clarinet for Anne ($50), two trombones for Tom ($100 and $300), a trumpet for Ellie ($250), and an oboe for Anne ($850).

It's sticker shock to be looking at bassoons. I actually found two bassoons that were $1,000, but one was sold before I could look at it and the other one was so old that not even the bassoon specialist at Fox said I should buy it.

It turns out that Anne will get a nice bassoon next year at school, so I'm really looking long term for her. I may resort to pawn shops and craigslist only and just be patient...

Ron, the feature list you gave me is very helpful. What exactly do they mean, however?

One of her teachers said she is a student who comes along once every ten years. I'd like to reward all her hard work by getting her a decent instrument.

KathyM

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: concertmaster3 (---.triad.res.rr.com - (Road Runner) Winston Salem, NC United States)
Date:   2011-04-26 10:17

Whisper Key Lock allows the whisper (register) key to stay closed when she plays in the lower register a lot. It's not necessary, but it's a very nice addition when you can add it!

high D, E and F keys are to help facilitate those notes (They're the top of the staff notes in Treble clef!)

The double low C key is another feature that is helpful but not needed. It allows for easier hand place when you need to get to the low C quickly. My first bassoon had one of these (the school one), and the next one that I buy will definitely have one (my current doesn't).

http://www.mmimports.com/xcart/choosing-the-right-bassoon/
You might also want to check them out. Since you're in the area, they can help you tremendously. If I recall correctly, they specialized in double reeds before they opened up to other instruments.

Good Luck

Ron Ford
Woodwind Specialist
http://maestromusician.com

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: KathyM (---.mpls.qwest.net - (Qwest Communications) Minneapolis, MN United States)
Date:   2011-05-07 01:11

My daughter just got a 34 on her ACT test, which puts her at 99th percentile. She's been an easy kid to raise because she's worked so hard. She wants to major in math and physics. Someday, I'm sure, she'll be able to afford a truly great bassoon. In the meantime, I'd like to find her a decent one. I have looked online at MidWest Musical Imports, but they were selling an old Fox Renard for $2,500 that was very similar in age and was the same model as the one we decided against buying for $1,000. I think I'm in the garage sale territory with our price constraints. Still, time is on my side, and I am still looking. If anyone knows of a way to look at a bassoon picture and identify some of the features listed above (like high D), I'd appreciate it. Or, maybe there's a book or brochure I could get that shows the differences. There's an online picture of two bassoons, one with and one without a high D, but I don't see the difference! Thanks.
KathyM

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: CocoboloKid (---.dyn.optonline.net - (Optimum Online) Brooklyn, NY United States)
Date:   2011-05-10 06:22
Attachment:  bassoon high D key example.jpg (205k)

See attached photo! :)

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: CocoboloKid (---.dyn.optonline.net - (Optimum Online) Brooklyn, NY United States)
Date:   2011-05-10 06:55
Attachment:  MyBassoon_AbBbtrillkey.jpg (193k)
Attachment:  my bassoon_left hand front keys.jpg (151k)
Attachment:  bassoon left thumb keys.jpg (77k)

I had a few minutes of nothing to do, so I labeled a few photos to help you identify some of the more common keywork options you might encounter in the course of your bassoon shopping. :-)

I hope this is even a little helpful! :)



Post Edited (2011-05-10 06:57)

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: KathyM (---.mpls.qwest.net - (Qwest Communications) Minneapolis, MN United States)
Date:   2011-05-14 20:46

Thanks! My daughter will be able to use a nice Fox Renard in the fall, but I'd like to buy her a nice bassoon if I find one through craigslist or pawn shops. I have the time and am looking online every night.
KathyM

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 Re: Seeking Advice for Bassoon Purchase
Author: KML (---.mpls.qwest.net - (Qwest Communications) Minneapolis, MN United States)
Date:   2011-06-13 12:45

My daughter was accepted into the highest level for band, and it turns out that she can rent a Fox Model 220 for $40. The one she has now rented and is in her room was shipped in December 2007 and retails for $6,925. We are thrilled! Thank you so much for helping me. I actually used the oboe board to find an oboe for her when she decided to switch from clarinet to oboe in 8th grade, but finding a bassoon was much, much more difficult. This looks like a wonderful option for her. She now intends to be a math major and will be taking a math course this fall at the U of Minnesota. Still, I think she'll make the world a little bit brighter with her love of music.
KathyM

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