Ohayou from the land of the rising sun!


Hi Breakfast Room,
I've spent the last little while reading back over all the new posts here, still have the archives to go, but you seem like a friendly bunch, and i'm enjoying the British humour...
I thought i'd give a bit of a longer introduction than most :w00t:

1. I'm an Aussie in Hokkaido.
2. I bought a cheap but "near new" 1966 Nikkan Tenor (N020) last year as a fixing project, but took a while of reading before getting round to actually fixing it. Just repadded, recorked and swaged tubes etc, tightening up the keys, and seems to play nicely now.
pictures of same model here, it has the kacky LH table
Nikkan (NIhon KAngakki seisakusho, ie japan wind instrument factory) has a bit of history and their saxes were solid student level horns (as far as i can tell)

3. Regarding the history of other big japanese makers...
Egawa Gakki Seisakusho, was founded in 1902 by Sentaro Egawa, the pioneer of wind-instrument manufacture in Japan.

Mr. Tokutaro Yanagisawa, established Egawa's "Rappa" factory around 1921, but later he left the factory and after that it became known as the Nikkan factory. He made his first tenor in 1954 (the T3), and was succeeded by his son who is now(?) president of Yanagisawa. According to Yanagisawa, they sold the Nikkan factory in 1955.

Yamaha started in 1897 as Nippon Gakki, with organs and such, but in world war 2 it stopped making instruments and made aircraft propellers and other parts. the US bombed all but one of their factories, and after the war, got financial assistance and started making more intruments!
In 1963 Yamaha started providing technical assistance to Nikkan. The first Yamaha branded saxes came about 1965.
After the N020 alto and tenors, the next model was the Nikkan Imperiale (with modern style LH table), which was also branded as Yamaha as the 21(?) series in about 1965. Nikkan merged with Yamaha about 1970...
So mine is one of the last before they became the actual yamaha design..doh!

4. I like fixing stuff. I made a little device to adjust the neck strap position after measuring pictures of many older saxes to find where was "best". (i have a thread on SOTW about it, but i can reproduce here if there is interest?). I will modify the LH table to give it a better position in the near future.

I also like making stuff, and after getting a nice "new" old Vandoren T101 mouthpiece, and finding it takes Alto sized ligs :(, i was inspired by the nice Christoph Heftrig lig and came up with this.. and it works really well! next version will be better.

I also made swaging pliers, leak light and spring tool to aid the overhaul process

5. re: sax music, i like ska and big band neo swing (Johnny favourite etc) but I just want to be able to play whatever i think of, with feeling... (I have wide tastes outside of sax music also)
I'm slowly learning about the intricacies of Jazz....

and so starts the journey :)

I have already spoken to a couple of BRers on saxchatlive, and since the US is asleep when the UK is awake, I think you guys and girls can take over the chat site for BR purposes :))) I'm looking forward to enjoying the beginner friendly atmosphere here!
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Justin Chune

Well-Known Member
Welcome to the breakfast room, I'm sure you'll enjoy it here. I used to know a guy who reckoned that he now owned the first ever Yamaha tenor saxophone sold in Britain. A friend of his bought the sax at an Earls Court exhibition. In those days anything made in Japan was regarded with suspicion. The friend thought that the demonstration model might be the only good one and insisted on buying it, and no other. The salesman however refused to let the sax go until the exhibition was over.

The new owner had to wait a week before collecting his prize and taking it to Glasgow where he had a residency playing on the "One O Clock Gang Show" This was a Mon-Fri show on STV. When this man died, his friend the late Tommy Heatley bought the sax from the family and brought it to Edinburgh. Tommy told me the story of his saxophone when he showed it to me. The first Yamaha saxophone sold in the UK is still playing well and looking good. I've no idea who owns it now.



¡Hola! and welcome to the BR from Spain. Although I'm a Brit my sister's been in Perth since the 1960s and I've always wanted to go visit Japan. End of connectivity stuff ... have a great time here ... sounds like you know what you're doing in your intro! Enjoy ...

old git

Tremendous Bore
Welcome to the BR but please stop referring to the English and Welsh Cricket Team as "British Humour." ;}


Hi JC, interesting story! i wonder if it was a 21 series or earlier??? (also gives me hope this one might last ;) )

Thanks Phil :)

Hi YC, OG and PE, from OC! Is there a TLA for "Two Letter Acronym"? or would that be TLA? is there a two letter version?

LOL, actually i was thinking of the sarf lundun massive.... people still play cricket in this day and age? :D

Thanks Mike, you guys scattered to far reaches of the earth! I have never been to Perth... too far away from sydney ;) (4-5hrs by plane) but i'd like to go sometime. You should definitely come to Japan, even if just to check out the sax shops in Tokyo.
sounds like you know what you're doing
nothing could be further from the truth :)))


Senior Member
Ah Gidday Old Corollas.. & Welcome to the BR

Hmmm I'v chatted with you a couple of times on the Saxchat....rather weird.... an ex Scot from New Zealand, talking to an Aussie in Japan with a equally weird mix of Nihongo..

Your ligature looks subarashi desu ne.

I saw Sue Terry on Youtube (she's an American Sax player with a sax strap (on an Alto) not around her neck, but around her left shoulder.

Interesting Eh!

You'll have lots of fun around here!



おはよう。Welcome from nr London. I have trained many years in Bujinkan taijutsu, the big boss is still alive Masaki Hatsumi in Noda. Unfortunately not been able to get to Japan so envy you there. I did a year of Japanese but very rusty, how do you find the language?
Anyway this is a sax forum, i have found it very useful. Play tenor and sop.
Just returned from Os, was in Melbourne, Perth and Sydney. Had a few job offers in Melbourne but did not like it enough to want to live there. If it had been Sydney, no hesitation. How long you been in Japan? Kind rgds Phil :w00t:


Konnichiwa Jimu san,
It has been good to chat to you on that chat site thing, definitely helps pass the time at work :D.. i'm finding the chat thing (and talking to you) good for inspiration to get more saxy.

Hi Pjonah, thanks!..... is that more english humour? >:) (are there actually sunny places in England?)

Thanks DrPhil.. i think i saw your show in New York once... or maybe it was Donahue.. i forget now ;} ahh, anyway, you can probably already teach me a thing or two!

heya Luluna.. Vermont? like in the US? hmm, still waiting for summer up here too... i am not sure it will come this year. if we get a week of days above 25 (77F) i will be happy! I hope it comes soon enough for you to unfrost toes and finges!

すごいな!たいじつは大変そう:shocked: I am not sure i am cut out for that martial arts stuff, but it must have been great to train here, and a very different life exprience.
Japanese is very interesting. the regular pronunciation of sounds and fairly strict structure makes it easy to learn, but chinese characters are always hard. I found that i understood the "unspoken" language much more than the spoken language when i first got here, so i feel like i fit in (as much as a tall gaijin can ;) )
have been here for just over 4 years now.. longer than i expected.. not sure if i want to go home now...

hmm, i think most Sydneysiders would do almost anything to get out :D i was actually thinking of moving down to Melbourne.. or at least somewhere outside of Sydney, but i can see how it would be attractive for a relatively short stint.

ahh right.. sax forum :)
i'm having co-ordination difficulties with octave transitions.. likeF2-D2-Bb2-D2
using D palm instead of octave key for D, and overblowing F with no octave seems to work, but i'm all thumbs on the transitions....

I'm looking forward to learning much on here by osmosis, and hopefully transferring some of that to my fingers!
Thanks for the welcomes and i hope i can contribute something here (^-^)


Hi oldcorollas,
Welcome to the BR. Great to have another from the Asia area. I'm living in Laos, but I used to live in Hokkaido in 1997-8. In Chitose actually, near the airport. I think I was the only Gaijin in the whole city, although a few USAF types passed through occaisionally. I loved Hokkaido...skiing in winter...surfing in summer...hiking on and around Shiretoko's Rausu-Dake, Lake Shikotsu, Lake Kutcharo and surfing off Tomakomai.

Hope you're enjoying life on "The Great White Manta Ray".
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