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An exceptionally rare pair of Buffet clarinets, which are a commission sale for C. D. The son of their former owner brought to us for refurbishment. They are a one owner pair, played professionally by his Father: A professional pianist and clarinettist. These instruments have a larger bore, 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 O963 dating to 1901. It is in good condition, but with the following faults: A couple of repaired, sealed cracks to the upper joint. 1. A long crack running almost the entire way down the upper joint which has been repaired in three ways: A. Three screws through the wood across the crack to pin it. B, An ebonite ring to hold the top end in and prevent further cracking. C. Some kind of filling. NB This is an old original repair, and it has stood the test of time, and heavy professional use as well. There is another small crack between the top two trill keys, which doesn't go right through to the bore. Despite these the instrument plays excellently. The barrel is a modern Buffet of 67.5mm which tunes well. The stamp reads "Buffet Brevette SGDG" We have just entirely re-padded in tan leather pads, all cork and touch corks are tight, the key regulation is excellent and there is no joint wobble. The German silver key work has been buffed to a nice shine. The mouthpieces are an Edward Pillinger copies of an original Carl Fischer Buffet steel ebonite m'piece: 0.98mm tip by 17.5mm, and a used Selmer B*.
The A clarinet, S/N E 37, dates to 1890. Is is in excellent condition throughout, with no cracks or repairs to the wood. The bore is 14.75mm and this instrument works well with a Buffet 65mm barrel, which is supplied. The key work is also excellent, like the Bb we have entirely re-padded in Pisoni Premium Deluxe Tan Leather. The L1 F/C fingerhole has been bushed in ebonite, a nice repair. Both instruments play at A=440 Hz with the supplied barrels. The case is a modern Yamaha, in good condition with keys.