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 Help identifying a clarinet model
Author: Tomer Amikam 
Date:   2021-10-06 21:12

One of my students bought a clarinet without consulting me. The seller told him it's a buffet rc clarinet but there isnt a marking of rc anywhere. All I have is the serial number. Is it possible to know what model the clarinet is by just the serial no?
The number is : F 106873

Post Edited (2021-10-06 21:12)

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 Re: Help identifying a clarinet model
Author: Doug Leach 
Date:   2021-10-06 22:21

I would say it would be unlikely this would be an RC model. The F preceding the serial number indicate made to tune to A=442. The serial number 106873 was from 1969. Since the RC was introduced in 1975, the horn your student has seemingly can't be an RC.

Doug Leach

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 Re: Help identifying a clarinet model
Author: jdbassplayer 
Date:   2021-10-06 22:29

The good news is that if that serial number is correct then it is actually an R13 from the golden era which is a great instrument (Arguably better than the RC in many respects). Pictures would definitely help though.


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 Re: Help identifying a clarinet model
Author: John Peacock 
Date:   2021-10-07 18:25

It's true that RCs didn't exist in 1969. But Buffet had other non-R13 models: the BC20, the S1, the Conservatoire. Exactly when these began being made is unclear, but I've seen several claims that the BC20 was introduced sometime in the 1960s. There are also claims online that these variants all originated in the search for a darker and more European sound, which terminated in the RC. I'm personally not convinced there was any direct evolutionary pathway from these earlier non-R13 models to the RC, but I suppose it's conceivable that the seller conflated all non-R13 models under the "RC" heading. As is well known, the R13 bears no explicit stamp, whereas these others had the model name stamped just below the Buffet logo. But this area can get pretty worn, so the question would only be settled if the logo is still clearly visible, but not any extra symbols below it.

A few years ago, Buffet had a nice online tool where you could put in your serial number and see exactly what you were dealing with. This was very useful, and it's a great pity they removed it - I've often wondered why they felt the need to do so.

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