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Saxophones AMETHYST - Martin Reiner Markneukirchen Tenor saxophone

ProfJames

Elementary member
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12,088
As I am now completely besotted with the Martin range of saxophones can anyone help with the Amethyst mentioned above? I have not heard of this name.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
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21,947
Are you talking about this one?

http://www.ebay.de/itm/Antikes-Saxo...t=Antike_Musikinstrumente&hash=item565383356a


I don't recognise it, haven't heard of the maker. But it's a lot like the Akustics and Weltklangs and other saxes from there. Seems a bit overpriced to me, but there's and interesting extra key on the left just above the bell. Seller clearly knows nothing about saxes.

One thing I'm sure of - this has nothing to do with the US Martin saxes. Best guess is that Martin Reiner was a dealer, not a builder, but I could be wrong. If he was a builder, then most of the parts were probably bought in from other makers in the area.
 

ProfJames

Elementary member
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12,088
Yes that is yjr one Kev. My pal in Dresden sent me the details. Not sure who is selling it as I haven't enquired. Have you had a look?
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
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On ebay? Yes. Interesting way of assembling the sax... Too far for me to go and see it, I can't drive at the moment, anyway. I've sent the ebay link to Helen who runs bassic-sax and is researching/posting quite a lot about older German and Cz saxes. She might know more. The East Geman makers were all nationalised into what became VEB in Markneukirchen post WWII. Some good saxes, but with a caveat that you may find the keywork dated by modern standards. Nice vintage sound on most of them and built like tanks. I love my alto, which came from just over the border in Kraslice.

Sax seems a touch overpriced to me, maybe I'm missing something, though..
 

ProfJames

Elementary member
Messages
12,088
I may make a bid if I can gather more information. Please keep me updated and thanks for your help - as ever!
 

jonf

Well-Known Member
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3,680
Hmm. looked a good bit overpriced to me too. You'd have to assume it needed work (beyond the obvious cork, and removing the reed cap from the neck!). Once you factor that in the price looks very high. Interesting looking sax, though.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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21,947
PJ, think of it as a Weltklang. It's about 30-40% over priced for Germany, and probably double the best you could expect in the UK in playing condition.
 

Ivan

Undecided
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7,337
It's an attractive looking beast in places, I especially like the bar across the crook, but not sure about the left table, looks like it might pare your finger nails
 

ProfJames

Elementary member
Messages
12,088
Many thanks guys. Although it is a Martin stencil I am still intrigued and will follow the sale and try to find out some more about it.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
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PJ, Sorry you must have missed what I said earlier. It is NOT a Martin stencil - at least not from the US Martin firm. There's also a French Martin company, completely disassociated with the US firm.

This is a bog standard post WWII East German sax. Apart from the unusal name on it, there's nothing to make one think it's in any way special. It doesn"t have full pearls, or an ornate finish for instance. You can't tell from the pics if it's got rolled tone holes or not, a desireable feature on these horns. The seller doesn't know what he's doing, there's no realistic statement on condition - pads/playability - and you don't even know if the neck will fit. That neck brace is a common feature on Weltklangs.

Martin Reiner is just a normal person's name. Could have been a shop, or a small maker assembling from mostly bought in parts. The sax industry there and across the border in Cz was a mix of factories, and small subcontrators/builders. Although this chaged with nationalisation after WWII, it wasn't overnight.

Buying a pre-war sax from that area pretty much guarantees high quality, good plating and (for the time) good playability. But standards slipped post war, and you've no way of assessing of this is a junker or a winner.

imho it's overpriced, even for Germany and you're taking a big risk if you do buy it..
 

ProfJames

Elementary member
Messages
12,088
Now I understand. Thank you for your knowledge and attention to detail. Shall leave well alone.
 

altissimo

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,354
You may also encounter Martin Busine and Martin Freres saxes - these have no connection with the US made Martin saxes - they're French. There may also be Robert Martin instruments - also French.

Stick to the american Martin saxes - I've got 3 and they're great... eventually I'll decide which one I want to keep and get rid of the other 2, but Martin junkie-dom is a hard habit to kick...
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,789
Stick to the american Martin saxes - I've got 3 and they're great... eventually I'll decide which one I want to keep and get rid of the other 2, but Martin junkie-dom is a hard habit to kick...
I second that. I have 6 Martins that I use and some other Martin made saxes. My oldest Martin is from -34. But I've been looking for a late Martin HC soprano. Great sopranos. Dark and round sound. I know were I can get one. And then there is The Martin Magna Baritone low A. In the same town. The problem is, they are asking too for the soprano and the bari. I've been trying to play a little more contemporary saxes, but the Martins are the #1 for me. I've never sold any Martin.

Thomas
 

Ivan

Undecided
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7,337
...the Martins are the #1 for me. I've never sold any Martin.

Thomas
I'm afraid thomsax the diagnosis is one of extreme Martinophilia

The condition is potentially terminal unless you take the necessary steps of sending all your saxophones to me and I can quarantine them out of temptations way
 

TheSax.Info

New Member
Messages
18
Howdy. Just came by because I was doing a bit of looking into Martin Reiner saxophones. Some info:

http://www.museum-markneukirchen.de/forum/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=8
http://saxwelt.de/index.php/geschichte/deutschland?showall=&start=1

I'll Google Translate then transliterate from the Museum Markneukirchen website:

Martin Reiner (1912-1956) apprenticed with Richard Hammig from 1927 to 1930. Martin Reiner produced soprano, alto, tenor and baritone saxophones from 1949 to 1956. His instruments are engraved "Amethyst" and "Non Plus Ultra" (Latin for "There's nothing better"). His company employed 7 people.
Looks like Reiner was part of the Migma collective. That was essentially a "clearing house" for professional quality (East) German and other Germanic makes and models. (They're still around, btw.)

While Reiner and some other makes under the Migma umbrella are not well known, a lot of them are really nice looking. I've also theorized that all the folks in the Migma group shared their designs, to some extent. Whether this = "great quality" or "no need for R&D" is up for debate.
 
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