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Saxophones Any info on VITO saxophone? Photos....

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,852
Stumbled across this VITO sax on my travels. Does anyone have any info on which maker this might be and its approximate age?

Not that I'm at all interested in... ehem... buying a third sax you understand. Even if the seller wants £50 for it.
No, no... I'm sure I'll be able to resist temptation thanks to your comments. Could be a bag o'worms naturally...

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jonf

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,680
Oh dear the devil is at your elbow, my friend.........

Vito can be the route into some of the best bargains in saxophones. Vito was a rather portable name, being used on saxes made by Yamaha, Yanagisawa Beaugnier (France) and in the US. Brand was owned by LeBlanc, maybe still is. There are quite a lot of Yamaha made altos, with fewer tenors, made by Yamaha. These are the same as the Yamaha YAS23/YTS23, but tend to cost much less as they do not have the Yamaha name on them. Bargain, I've had two of them. Or is it three? Hmm. Then there are the ones made by Yanagisawa, rarer, but if anything an even more outrageous bargain. Then there were the ones made in France by Beaugnier. Never had one, but supposedly very good. Finally, there are the US made ones, built in Kenosha, Wisconsin. The one you've pictured is, I'm pretty sure, a French one, as made by Beaugnier. If you have a good look at it, the country of manufacture (which should be somewhere on the horn) should give you a clue. If it says USA or WIS it's a US one. If France, it's a Beaugnier. It's definitely not a Japanese one.

Could be a great horn.......

.....but does it play? Is it cheap? Oh, an if the seller does end up wanting fifty quid for it, drop me a note and I'l have it!
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,852
Oh dear the devil is at your elbow, my friend.........

Vito can be the route into some of the best bargains in saxophones. Vito was a rather portable name, being used on saxes made by Yamaha, Yanagisawa Beaugnier (France) and in the US. Brand was owned by LeBlanc, maybe still is. There are quite a lot of Yamaha made altos, with fewer tenors, made by Yamaha. These are the same as the Yamaha YAS23/YTS23, but tend to cost much less as they do not have the Yamaha name on them. Bargain, I've had two of them. Or is it three? Hmm. Then there are the ones made by Yanagisawa, rarer, but if anything an even more outrageous bargain. Then there were the ones made in France by Beaugnier. Never had one, but supposedly very good. Finally, there are the US made ones, built in Kenosha, Wisconsin. The one you've pictured is, I'm pretty sure, a French one, as made by Beaugnier. If you have a good look at it, the country of manufacture (which should be somewhere on the horn) should give you a clue. If it says USA or WIS it's a US one. If France, it's a Beaugnier. It's definitely not a Japanese one.

Could be a great horn.......

.....but does it play? Is it cheap? Oh, an if the seller does end up wanting fifty quid for it, drop me a note and I'l have it!
Hi Jon, I'm aware of my addiction to collecting things but with any hobby I'm always curious and want to find out everything. One of the ways to do this is to OWN everything! I've had just about every target rifle and Olympus camera through my door and by doing this was able to make first hand decisions on what suited me and what to keep. At this early stage it would be a mistake for me to go out and buy Yanagisawas, Mk VI's and he like. That will come maybe in a few years when I can appreciate the differences, but not now as a beginner. My collecting nose does still twitch and it seems there are bargains to be had in the sax world which are hard to resist. The ones purchased prudently, which I don't hang on to, might help to fund something special at a later date?

I suppose I could add this one to my upcoming "beginner's review": 15 year old Jupiter 500; 3 year old YAS-275; new Jericho J6; 40 (?) year old VITO?

:confused:
 
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jonf

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,680
I'm hardly one to urge restraint. I've currently got 15 saxes........

Oh dear, how did that happen? :)))

Seriously, though, if that Beaugnier plays well and is at a good price it could be a bargain.
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,852
Ooops, I've accidently bought it for £50!

Purchased blind from a radio presenter in Southampton. She used to play it 15 years ago, and I suggested the pads may need replacing but she said it still played fine. Leather pads I believe? Is that likely after 15 years!?

Should be here by Wednesday, the YAS-275 by Monday, but I'm going away Thurs-Sunday so the review will follow my return, with Robbie's "pass around" J6 MkII in matt gold coming sometime the following week to add to my trio.


:shocked:
 

jonf

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,680
Ooops, I've accidently bought it for £50!

Purchased blind from a radio presenter in Southampton. She used to play it 15 years ago, and I suggested the pads may need replacing but she said it still played fine. Leather pads I believe? Is that likely after 15 years!?

Should be here by Wednesday, the YAS-275 by Monday, but I'm going away Thurs-Sunday so the review will follow my return, with Robbie's "pass around" J6 MkII in matt gold coming sometime the following week to add to my trio.


:shocked:
You lucky ******! :w00t:

Fifty Quid

I said FIFTY QUID!

Hey, good on you mate. Even if it's a crock, that's a bargain.

You never know, the pads may well still be fine. I've had some super cheapo saxes with the original pads and they've still been supple and sealing well. I once bought a YAS23 for £75, it still had all the original pads and it played a storm, so you never know.

Good luck with it, at that price you defineitely did the right thing to buy it. :thumb:
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
21,947
As Jon thought, it's a Beaugnier.

Have fun, that's a real bargain. But I'd guess it's 50's. Good chance the pads are OK, even if it's been sitting for 15 years.
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,852
You lucky ******! :w00t:

Fifty Quid

I said FIFTY QUID!

Hey, good on you mate. Even if it's a crock, that's a bargain.

You never know, the pads may well still be fine. I've had some super cheapo saxes with the original pads and they've still been supple and sealing well. I once bought a YAS23 for £75, it still had all the original pads and it played a storm, so you never know.

Good luck with it, at that price you defineitely did the right thing to buy it. :thumb:
Beginner's luck?

;}
 

dubrosa22

Senior Member
Messages
413
Wow that's a French Vito in top notch conditon for an AMAZING price! Congratulations :)


Sent from my Xperia
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,852
Just doing some research...

It seems there were all sorts of Beaugnier model numbers, 33; 34; 35; 36... etc.

What denotes the model? Is it stamped, or by serial number, or just the design?

:confused:
 

Nick Wyver

noisy
Subscriber
Messages
5,953
15 years for pads isn't a problem. My Yanag sop, which I bought new 30 odd years ago, still has most of the original pads.

Now I come to think of it - it might be all the original pads.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
21,947
Just doing some research...

It seems there were all sorts of Beaugnier model numbers, 33; 34; 35; 36... etc.

What denotes the model? Is it stamped, or by serial number, or just the design?

:confused:
Beaugnier were a big stencil maker, and their saxes can be found under many names, as well as their own. Like most of the French makers they were in/around Paris and probably bought many parts from external suppliers. However the picture of who did what is about as muirky as it is for the German/Czech saxes from the between the wars period, especially in the Enligsh speaking world.

Unless someone chimes in, you'll probably have to work it out for yourself - shape of LH table/RH table, bell brace, LH/RH bell keys and so on. I haven't done much on Beaugniers, but saxpics.com is usually a good starting point. Look under Vito as well as Beaugnier and Leblanc. You may also get something on thesax.info, which is run by Pete Hales, the guy who originally set up saxpics. He has his own forum, woodwindforum.com (some of the guys here are members, including me) and is usually able to help. You may be able to find more on French sites, so I hope your french is adequate.
 

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,379
It looks similar to the Vito C Melody that I have, also made by Beaugnier. http://www.simplysax.de/Vito.htm

Mine is very unusual in that it was made in the early 60s, (I think), long after the golden era of the C Melody in the 20s and early 30s. You can see the serial number on one of the pictures (19657) - is that close to yours ?

The LH thumbrest is unusual and comfortable and the horn is very well made. Soundwise it is similar to my Conn C Melody (straight neck) and I guess that Beaugnier may have based their tube design on the Conn.

Rhys
 

majordennis

Senior Member
Messages
486
You will be very pleasantly surprised by this sax, I have a Beaugnier/Noblet tenor late 50's early 60's which I bought as a project, I did the stripping down and cleaning then had it set up by a tech, they are very good.
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,852
You will be very pleasantly surprised by this sax, I have a Beaugnier/Noblet tenor late 50's early 60's which I bought as a project, I did the stripping down and cleaning then had it set up by a tech, they are very good.
I'm used to stripping down old rifles to refurbish them but I have no idea about saxophones, yet. My method is to photograph as I disassemble, especially any tricky assemblies, then label or box each one separately. Let's see what it needs and I'll take it from there. How difficult can it be? ...famous last words, eh?
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
21,947
I'm used to stripping down old rifles to refurbish them but I have no idea about saxophones, yet. My method is to photograph as I disassemble, especially any tricky assemblies, then label or box each one separately. Let's see what it needs and I'll take it from there. How difficult can it be? ...famous last words, eh?
The mechanics are really straightforward. You just need decent screwdrivers, pliers, roundnose pliers. And for installing pads a heat souce and some pad slicks and a decent leak light (or fag papers).

But.... the sax won't play unless the pads seal exactly right, and the regulation is spot on. The interactions between the different keys are quite challenging at first. Key height has a big effect on intonation if you get it wrong, and there effectively are no sources of this info. Curt Altarac has an article on setting key heights - but treat these values as minima.

Get Stephen Howard's Haynes Saxophone Manual before you start.

Interesting articles on cybersax.com, musicmedic.com shwoodwind.co.uk and other web sites.
 
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