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An exceptionally rare pair of superb condition early Buffet clarinets. This pair have been professionally owned and played in "The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment". These instruments have a larger bore of 14.9mm, and larger tone holes than the contemporary Buffet's. The result is a free and easy playing pair, with excellent intonation, and none of the third register problems inherent in the polycylindrical design. The drawbacks are flatter notes on low E and F, but to some extent this is corrected by the fact that, at this period, Buffet reamed the neck of the bell, continuing the flare of the lower joint: this does result in exceptionally even response across into the second register, a pity this is no longer standard practise.
The Bb has serial number 500L dating to 1898. It is in very good condition, and amazingly has no cracks. The wood shows some surface scratches and marks, but for a clarinet of this age, it is in remarkable condition. Both instruments have recently been entirely re-padded with cork on the upper joints and double bladder fish skin pads on the lower. The excellent quality key work is mainly of German Silver, though some of the key barrels are actually solid silver. The stamps read "Buffet Brevette SGDG". All pieces are matching and original. The key regulation is excellent and there is no joint wobble. There are 2 mouthpieces, one is a brand new Edward Pillinger copy of an original Carl Fischer Buffet m'piece. The original lay, accurately copied, is 0.98mm by 17.5mm. The other is an original Buffet wooden m'piece of the period.
A, S/N 84J, dates to 1896. Is is in excellent condition throughout, with no cracks or repairs to the wood, the surface condition is superb. The instrument has abviously had very little use. The keywork is also pristine. The pitch is exactly A=440 Hz. The case is the original Buffet, in good condition, and it still latches perfectly!