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This very fine, rare, and unique, customised Rene Hagmann Buffet RC A Prestige clarinet is a commission sale for Clarinets Direct. We are fortunate to count many of the leading clarinet players in the world amongst our clientele, one such is Pedro Franco, who commissioned the work on this clarinet from the great Swiss inventor and designer, Rene Hagmann. Buffet employed Hagmann as a consultant in the 1990's to develop both their Bass clarinet design, and their new wide bore Basset Horn. Thse models were a great success with players Worldwide. It is such a pity that cost cutting at Buffet caused the cessation of manufacture of the Hagmann Basset Horn. The modern Buffet Basset Horn is a much less successful acoustic design than when originally launched in the 1990's. This RC Prestige A is a radical and vast improvement on the standard Buffet production model, it was used to successfully audition for the Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra against almost 600 other clarinettists. The instrument has been played in many orchestras both in Europe and here in the UK. The reason for the sale is that the owner now has another pair of Hagmann influenced customised Buffet RC Prestige clarinets.
The customisation is briefly described as follows: The single over blowing register vent, has been replaced by a "rocker" double vent. The lower of these vents acts as both a throat Bb and as the overblowing vent for the bell B, this by means of a linkage actuated by the low E/B touchpiece which operates through the wall of the body of the clarinet, see photo 12. This last is a Hagmann speciality. The instrument has had both joints shortened, with a guide screw added to the bottom of the upper joint to assist in the correct assembly of the double correspondence which is necessary for the re-designed speaker key mechanism. The upper joint lower tenon has been redesigned in metal. The upper joint C#/G# tone hole has been sleeved above the body of the joint to reduce water ingress into the hole, and improve the tuning. The low F has a touch piece, sleeved in rubber, and actuated by the players RH thumb, to correct the pitch upwards if desired. The lower joint upper tenon has been redesigned in metal.
The result of all of this mechanism which is, apart from the low F touchpiece, completely automatic, is to deliver a scale and intonation of unsurpassed evenness on a Buffet clarinet. The condition of this instrument is excellent. There are no cracks or damage to the wood. The Silver plating is very fine without wear or scratches. The clarinet has used fish skin pads throughout, with several on the upper joint in cork, all are sealing well and will be good for some time to come. The supplied double case is also in good condition, and comes with a dust cover.