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BUFFET CONTINENTALE Bb CLARINET, 1245

When the American investor Martin Tolchin bought Buffet Crampon company he felt that though the R13 sold well in the USA different models would be more successful in Europe. The S1, Continentale and BC20, which evolved into the RC, were all attempts to make darker, more focused sounding clarinets.
This is an ultra rare Continentale Bb clarinet serial no. F128469 dating to 1972. This particular clarinet may well have been a special order from Buffet as it features a LH Ab/Eb lever which was generally only seen much later, when the Prestige range was introduced in the 1980's. The Continentale design features higher placement of the speaker tube, and significantly less undercutting of the upper joint, this results in a darker, more focussed, tone than the R13, with a typical Buffet "sweetness". Buffet Crampon advertised the Continentale as ideal for Chamber Music. This instrument was manufactured, right in the middle of Buffet Crampon's so called "Golden Era", and the intonation and response are much superior to contemporary Buffet manufacture. The Silver plating is in very good condition, with only slight wear, mainly to the LH 2 ring, see photo 6. The Grenadilla wood is in excellent condition throughout: No cracks or repairs. The key regulation is tight and there is no joint wobble. The instrument has had a complete overhaul & re-pad in Pisoni Premium Deluxe fish skin pads and is sold with a full years' Clarinets Direct warranty. The m'piece is a Vandoren 5RV Lyre, in ebonite, in good condition. This tunes the instrument right down to A=440Hz, despite the F prefix this instrument does not want to play at A=442! The original case is also in good condition. .