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Thread: conn serial numbers

  1. #1
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    Default conn serial numbers

    found a website that lists conn serial numbers up to 1968. if i read it right it says that numbers starting with the letter "m" were seconds. is that right? don't ask for the web address because i don't remember. anyway if that is right does it affect the value of the vintage horns?

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    Distinguished SOTW Technician BOPITY FUNK's Avatar
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    Default Re: conn serial numbers

    No,No, the M prefix denotes the ARTIST models eg.M266xxxA (my late tranny/6M)
    When the Transitional period ended the pro horns were designated 6M,IOM,12M,The forum is full of info on these famous models. My 1953 10m simply has the 6digit serial number357xxx stamped below the PAT.APP'D FOR--
    Maybe you're confusing the M for an N these were the Nogales (Mexiconns) after the move from Elkart, Ind.
    Regards BF

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    Default Re: conn serial numbers

    Wrong on all counts.

    Conn started using letter prefixes on serial numbers in 1963. Those serials started with a 'C'. I have a 10M with a serial number starting with the letter 'L', made in 1968 in Elkhart, Indiana. The 10M production stayed in Elkhart until the end. It was not moved to Nogales Arizona or Nogales Mexico. The student horns were made there beginning in the 1970's or so.

    The 'M' prefix was used on earlier saxophones, too. See some commonly referenced serial number charts. Don't believe all serial number lists. They have mistakes. Also, Conn did some unusual things at times.


    http://www.xs4all.nl/~cderksen/ConnSerialsConnWW.html
    http://dancipsax.com/iserialconnsax.html
    The comment on production move date to Mexico is wrong in this next one.
    http://drrick.com/conn.html
    D.R.
    Martin and Grassi tenor. HR Link Phil-Tone. Grassi jade alto.

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    Default Re: conn serial numbers

    when dealing with the 1960s and later Conns it is good to provide a photo of the horn. The pre 1960 horns follow the numbers well. Also keep in mind that the Conn instruments all used a letter for the family. Thus, M= sax, O=flute, N=clarinet, D=French horn, etc.

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    Distinguished SOTW Member/ Forum Contributor 2010 Fungus Mungus's Avatar
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    Default Re: conn serial numbers

    There were 2 sets of Conn models that had M prefacing the serial number, and this often a source of confusion.

    Conn started putting "M" before the serial numbers during the New Wonder II (Chu Berry) line in the 20s. Not all NWIIs have an M in front of the serial number. As Bruce stated, the "M" stands for saxophone. BTW, officially, even NWIIs were listed as "6M" in Conn's catalogs, even though the 6M stamp didn't appear until after the Conn transitional period.

    The Ms you have to be careful of are the ones in the 60s...Conn ran out of serial numbers and started putting letters in front of them in the late 50s or early 60s...starting with "C". I'm not certain of this, but I believe that an "M"-prefaced serial number from this vintage will only have 5 digits. "M"-prefaced horns from the 20s-30s have 6 digits after the M. You'll see a NWII or 6M on eBay occasionally listed as a late 60s horn because someone consulted the serial number chart and misinterpreted it.

    As Bruce says, it's best to have a pic of the horn. Go to saxpics.com and check pics of various Conns so you know your forms, or you may end up paying 6M prices for a Mexiconn.

    fm

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    SOTW Administrator SAXISMYAXE's Avatar
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    Default Re: conn serial numbers

    One additional correction:

    Conn started moving production of their student lines from Elkhart to the ex Best Manufacturing plant in Nogales, AZ in the early 60's. And, as Dave mentions, the production of the "Artist" pro models remained in Elkhart, IN clear up until near the very end of the road for those models in early 70'/71'.
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    Default Re: conn serial numbers

    ok, that answers that. thanks

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    Default Re: conn serial numbers

    Quote Originally Posted by bruce bailey View Post
    when dealing with the 1960s and later Conns it is good to provide a photo of the horn. The pre 1960 horns follow the numbers well. Also keep in mind that the Conn instruments all used a letter for the family. Thus, M= sax, O=flute, N=clarinet, D=French horn, etc.
    My Conn Bari Sax has a n at the beginning of the serial number so this must be wrong.

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    Default Re: conn serial numbers

    "My Conn Bari Sax has a n at the beginning of the serial number so this [the earlier post that N = clarinet] must be wrong." post by keltonshields




    here is a list from a google search on vintage saxophone serial numbers

    according to this, the horn could be an "M" [that is, a saxophone] and have a serial number "N 12345" [which would mean it was built in 1970. Assuming that the site has the correct info.


    1963 C00S0l
    1964 C73854
    1965 E54106
    1966 H31247
    1967 K35274
    1968 L20454
    1969 "M"-Pretix[sic]
    1970 "N"-Prefix
    1971 "P"-Prefix
    1972 "R"-Prefix

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