Clarinets Plugged upper G# hole on clarinet


I picked up a dark wood A Fontaine clarinet in an antique store today. Would like to get it playing. You know the story!
The upper G# key is missing, and the hole plugged. Anybody got a clue as to why the former owner would do this?
It also has broken off bridge F and F# keys. Will look into replacing these keys. Otherwise, a lamp or sell for parts.
It is otherwise a decent horn I figure from the 40's or so. No cracks and the cork tenons are decent. Needs some pad work.
Why would you go for such trouble? Replacing a missing key from thr 40th and fixing broken off keys won‘t be easy. Must be a fascinating clarinet. Please provide a foto documentation of your journey.

The hole is already plugged as if the previous owner intended to remove the upper G# from the horn for reasons unknown to me. I play tenor sax so I am in new territory with the clarinet.
I play tenor sax so I am in new territory with the clarinet.
Probably best to start with one that works. :). And an A clarinet (if i understood the original post correctly) will put you in some funny keys when you play tunes you've learned already on tenor. I'd recommend a modern(ish) functioning Bb clarinet (no need to spend a fortune) and see if you take to it. Not everyone does.
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If that key was lost, the only way to play the clarinet would be to plug the C#/G# tonehole. I have heard of some very good jazz clarinetists who plug the top two trill key holes because those keys tend to leak and they hardly ever use them anyway.

With all of the broken and missing keys something like this might be your best bet: A Fontaine clarinet You could use the best parts from each one and make a "Frankenclarinet". :)
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A friend of mine took his soprano to a repairer who lost the low Eb key so soldered a dime over the hole. When questioned about it the repairer said "you never play that notw anyway, what's the problem?"

True story.
Artie Shaw used to remove the sliver key from the top joint of his clarinets and block up the tone hole. It just got in his way, he said.
Some older players remove or block certain trill keys as their fingers lose sensitivity. Fudging can become a problem. I can only imagine a previous owner was playing in a band that stayed with flat keys, as some New Orleans bands do, and was having problems fudging the key.

Moving from clarinet to saxophone was a relief. I can only imagine the frustration a saxophone player will experience with the carinet. And it's in A. Good luck transposing for that can of worms. ;)
Thanks for the replies. Sounds like a lost cause. I will hook it up and play what I can here at home and then forget about it. I am busy enough with my tenor sax.

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